Sydney, a city like no other, is a treasure trove of natural wonders, rich heritage, and diverse cultural offerings. As enthusiasts of this extraordinary city, we've curated an exciting Part 1: Sydney bucket list for 2023: 20 Experiences You Have to Try. Whether you're a first-time visitor or a seasoned local, these must-do activities will grant you a unique perspective of Sydney from every angle. Come travel with us to Sydney by booking your ticket today!
1. Embark on a Cultural Journey at the Art Gallery of NSW
Discover one of Australia's finest cultural institutions, housing remarkable collections of Australian, European, and Asian art. The recent addition of the Sydney Modern section further elevates its appeal. With nearly 40 exhibitions annually, workshops, talks, and free film screenings, this gallery promises a captivating experience.
2. Uncover the Magic of the Sydney Opera House
Delve behind the scenes of Australia's iconic architectural marvel, the Sydney Opera House. Step through the stage door and explore the prestigious Concert Hall, Opera and Drama Theatres, Playhouse, and Studio. Uncover the secrets and stories that unfold behind the curtain, and immerse yourself in the VR experience of performing with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra.
3. Discover Wendy's Secret Garden, a Hidden Oasis
Tucked away in Lavender Bay with breathtaking views of the Sydney Harbour Bridge, Wendy's Secret Garden offers a serene escape. Transformed from overgrown land into an enchanting haven by Wendy, the widow of artist Brett Whiteley, this oasis beckons for a delightful picnic amidst towering fig trees and native flora.
4. Embrace the Timeless Beauty of the Manly Ferry
Savour the mesmerising views of Sydney Harbour as you glide past iconic landmarks such as the Sydney Opera House, Taronga Zoo, and picturesque harbourside beaches on the Manly Ferry. A scenic voyage to Manly, a bustling beachside suburb, awaits, promising a delightful array of bars, restaurants, shopping, and snorkelling.
5. Witness the Sunrise Kayak Experience with Sydney by Kayak
Join the weekly dawn tours led by Laura Stone and her husband Ben, offering a serene and picturesque experience of Sydney Harbour. As the sunlight graces the Sydney Opera House, paddle around Luna Park, capturing picture-perfect moments for your Instagram feed.
6. Scale the Majestic Sydney Harbour Bridge
Embark on an awe-inspiring climb up the world-renowned 'Coathanger' and witness the grandeur of Sydney Harbour in all its glory. Whether opting for the express climb or the full arch experience, the breathtaking views at dawn or dusk are nothing short of spectacular.
7. Unearth the Hidden Gem of Wattamolla Beach
Venture deep into the Royal National Park to discover the sandy oasis of Wattamolla Beach. Embrace a refreshing swim in the emerald waters of the creek-fed lagoon or bask under cabbage tree palms with a good book. Capture stunning photographs of the Wattamolla Waterfall, a true natural wonder.
8. Encounter Wildlife at Taronga Zoo
Visit the not-for-profit Taronga Zoo, offering spectacular views of Sydney Harbour. Marvel at the diverse range of Australian and international animals, including koalas, giraffes, and elephants. Engage in daily talks and animal encounters for a memorable experience.
9. Expand Your Horizons at the Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA)
Immerse yourself in cutting-edge art at the harbourside MCA, featuring exhibitions by renowned international artists. The rooftop café and sculpture terrace offer superb views of Circular Quay, making it an artful and scenic experience.
10. Dive with Sharks at Sea Life Sydney Aquarium
Embark on a cageless shark diving experience in Darling Harbour, offering a unique encounter with grey nurse sharks. Observe these placid creatures up close in a safe environment and delight in the company of the king and gentoo penguins residing in the aquarium.
11. Take a Plunge into Bondi Icebergs Pool
Indulge in a swim at the most photographed ocean pool in Australia, located at the famous Bondi Beach. For just $9, relish a refreshing dip in the saltwater pool, complemented by a soothing sauna.
12. Catch the Waves at Bondi Beach with Let's Go Surfing
Tick off surfing at Bondi from your bucket list with a class at Let's Go Surfing. Their popular two-hour beginners’ course ensures you learn water safety, paddling techniques, and wave-catching skills while having a blast.
13. Embark on a Bush Foods Tour of the Royal Botanic Gardens
Join a guided tour of the Royal Botanic Gardens and delve into its Indigenous history. Experience the unique flora and fauna of Sydney's harbourside, learn about the Gadigal people's connection to the land, and indulge in the delights of bush foods like Davidson plums.
14. Savour the Best Margarita at Cantina OK
Visit Sydney's tiniest tequila bar, Cantina OK, and treat yourself to the best Margarita in the city. The secret to its unparalleled taste lies in the 50/50 blend of Mexico-made tequila and mezcal, garnished with orange oil.
15. Revel in a Night at the Abercrombie
Immerse yourself in the vibrant nightlife of the multi-level Abercrombie, a heritage-listed pub that reopens as a party palace. Dance the night away on Casa Rosa's terrazza rooftop while savouring Italian-inspired cocktails and dining.
16. Drink in Panoramic Views at Bar 83, Sydney's Highest Bar
Perched 83 storeys above the CBD, Bar 83 offers a quirky, retro-futurist cocktail lounge experience. Marvel at jaw-dropping vistas of Greater Sydney, stretching from the Pacific horizon to the Blue Mountains.
17. Explore Contemporary Chinese Art at White Rabbit
Witness the bold and thought-provoking exhibitions at White Rabbit, a state-of-the-art gallery showcasing 21st-century Chinese art. Conclude your visit with delightful dumplings and tisanes at the in-house tea room.
18. Indulge in World-Class Cocktails at Maybe Sammy
Experience Sydney's top-ranking cocktail lounge, Maybe Sammy, renowned for its mixology expertise and outstanding hospitality. Sip on sophisticated, fruit-forward cocktails with playful twists.
19. Relish a Fabulous Drag'n'Dine Experience at the Imperial Hotel
Dive into the vibrant world of drag at the Imperial Hotel, a historic venue featured in The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert. Enjoy a sumptuous dinner and a spectacular drag show, immersing yourself in Sydney's LGBTQIA+ culture.
20. Immerse Yourself in Indigenous Culture at Dharawal National Park
Take a guided walking tour of Dharawal National Park, located an hour from Sydney's CBD. Discover stunning scenery and hear Dreamtime stories from an Aboriginal Discovery Ranger, connecting you to the rich history of Indigenous Australians.
In 2023, embrace the spirit of Sydney through these unforgettable experiences, each offering a unique glimpse into the heart and soul of this exceptional city.