We have with us Annie, who is sharing her favourite spots in Sydney. Annie lives in Sydney and spends her time exploring the best local secret destinations! Specifically, she recommends a 2D1N Sydney weekend itinerary.
Where is your favourite place in Sydney?
You can’t go past the beach. It’s the ultimate place to go while you’re in Sydney and we’re spoiled for choice on the number of beaches you can visit. My personal favourite is a tourist must see: Bondi Beach.
There are lots to do in the markets and shopping for beachwear and activewear to brunch and a little nightlife.
Day 1 in Sydney
Start off your first day in Sydney in The Rocks, a part of the city centre preserved for its heritage buildings dating back to the arrival of the English. If you’re looking for a modern bite to eat around the area, Kansas City Shuffle is one of my personal favourite spots for a coffee. Grab one to go and make your way around the quay to the Royal Botanical Gardens. The best of the Gardens is at Mrs Macquarie’s Chair, which will give you uninterrupted views of the Sydney Harbour Bridge.
You’re in one of the few cities in the world with a ferry network! Take advantage of this by hopping on a ferry and spending your afternoon at any one of:
- Manly Beach: Manly Beach is another popular favourite with Sydneysiders. It’s only a 30-minute ferry ride away from concrete jungles to soothing waves and shorelines. Bonus points to you if you take a lesson at Manly Surf School!
- Taronga Zoo: Australia is known for its vast array of wildlife. For your chance to see kangaroos, koalas, seal shows and more – this is your chance!
- Watson’s Bay: Over in the eastern suburbs, Watson’s Bay sits in a very affluent part of Sydney – and for good reason. The views you take in from Hornby Lighthouse are one of the best-kept secrets of Sydney.
Take the ferry back to Circular Quay and watch the sunset with a drink at Opera Bar. It gets crowded on a weekend, but it’s worth it for the atmosphere. For more food, I highly recommend taking a train or an Uber over to Surry Hills or Darlinghurst. You can find lots of different cuisines that meet whatever budget you have. And a gelato from Gelato Messina is a non-negotiable must-have.
Day 2 in Sydney
No morning is complete in Sydney without going out to brunch! In Sydney, you are so spoiled for choice when it comes to cafes. If you start this day by browsing through vintage goods and homewares at Glebe Markets, here are just a handful of my favourite nearby spots:
- The Wedge Espresso: for when you want pancakes but also want to be healthy
- Wellco: for if you want to feel like you’re at home feasting through classic Aussie brunch fare
- Concrete Jungle: A 10 minute walk away towards Chippendale, these guys know how to make food please to the eye and your phone’s camera.
For some more shopping, head over to the Queen Victoria Building. Built in the late 1890s, it’s one of the oldest malls in Sydney.
Try to visit it close to Christmas time: Swarovski decorates the tree in thousands of magical, sparkly crystals which can really brighten up a cloudy day.
Nearby the colloquially known QVB is Centrepoint Tower, the tallest building in Sydney. Climb up for 360-degree panoramic views stretching to as far as the Blue Mountains.
Evening: Darling Harbour & Newtown
Darling Harbour has changed dramatically over the past few years from a ferry and shopping hub to an entertainment mecca. One of the many new additions to space is Steam Mill Lane, filled with some of Sydney’s favourite bites and shops.
If you’re here on a Saturday, aim to be here at around 8-8:30 for the weekly fireworks display over the water. Then it’s a perfect time to make your way to Newtown, a favourite amongst hipsters and artists for its cool bars and restaurants.
Trevellers tip: Newtown is one of the closest areas to Sydney not affected by the nighttime lockout laws.
What is your favorite weekend getaways from Sydney as a local?
For one of the best bush experiences in New South Wales, the Blue Mountains is where you need to go. Don’t get your hopes up – they’re not literally blue but appears so from afar. One of the highlights is the Three Sisters, a rock formation formed by land erosion with an Aboriginal legend. Nearby neighbourhoods Katoomba and Leura are full of local businesses from cafes to gift shops.
Palm Beach is technically still in Sydney but I think you can really make a weekend out of it! Drive up on a Saturday, then watch the sunrise and grab brunch at The Boathouse. If you’re looking for more incredible seaside views in the area, hike up to the top of Barrenjoey Lighthouse! (P.S. This is where Aussie soap Home & Away is filmed.)
Jervis Bay is a collection of beaches on the south coast of NSW, about a 3-hour drive out of Sydney. Hyams Beach is the standout of the region. It currently holds the record as the whitest beach in the world!
Pictures are taken by Annie from LatteandLuxe.
Trevellers is my way to change the world. Through my stories, tips and lessons learnt, I truly hope to inspire you to get out of your comfort zone, see the world and see who you truly are. Travel is more than just taking a selfie at beautiful destinations. Travel is an adventure, where you can truly become who you are, give you the time to reflect and grow to become the person you’ve always dreamt of.