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Sydney, Australia

What is there to do in Sydney?

Does Australia require a visa(ETA)?

YES! You WILL NEED to obtain a visa for entry in Australia. You can get a short stay visa online at Electronic Travel Authority (ETA). An ETA is for short term stays for tourism or business visitor activities. After your ETA is granted you are able to enter and leave Australia as many times as you need to during a 12 month period, from the date the ETA is granted or until the expiry date of your passport, whichever is earlier.

When entering Australia, all we had to do was give the teller our passports, since the visas are an electronic visa. An application cost $20AUD per person. To apply on the Australian Government website click the link.

Anyone who arrives in Australia without a valid travel document, visa or authority can be refused entry to or delayed until their identity and claims to enter Australia have been confirmed.

Where to stay in Sydney?

Sydney CBD (Central Business District)

perfect location if you are on a business trip or pleasure. Public transportation is available everywhere and you are close to the main attractions too! If you have a short stay in Sydney, consider staying in CBD!

Darling Harbour

is a little bay directly connected to the CBD (walking distance). The views from Darling Harbour is magnificent! You find many pubs and budget restaurants & hotels. This is one of the best places to stay in Sydney! We stayed in the area of Haymarket, which is apart of Chinatown. You'll also find a mall in the area and Paddy's market! We highly recommend staying in this area!


It is the most famous area of Sydney for nightlife and bars.

Surry Hills

is the trendy and arty area of Sydney. It's more of a local area but their many cafes in this quiet neighborhood.


is the upper-class area of the city, with some amazing art centers and small exhibitions. Expect to pay some big bucks to stay in the area! On the plus side, if you stay in Paddington it's only a short bus ride to Bondi beach and in the other direction, you'll be able to reach the city!

Bondi Beach

It is the worldwide famous beach that is a must to visit! In summer it becomes the most popular beach in Australia. It probably not the best area to stay in the summer unless your willing to spend money or you're surfer. There's not much else to do here in Bondi Beach but visit the beach. If you do stay in the area there is a strip of restaurant options close to the beach.

Manly Beach

It is another beach that's a local favorite but not as touristy. If your planning to spend most of your time at the beach, consider this area. You'll find many shops and dining options here. Manly is only a 15 fast ferry away from the center city!


It is close to the airport but plenty of live music options in the area. You'll find lots of Middle East cuisines in the area as well.

Where did we stay in Sydney?

Since most hotels were overpriced in the city of Sydney, we stayed in an Airbnb. This was one of the cheapest options for traveling to Sydney! We also purchased our Airbnb the day before the flight to Sydney and saw the prices drop dramatically!

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How to get to your destination from the airport?


A taxi from the airport to Sydney Central Station is about $30AUD($20USD) one way. The airport is only about 15-minute away from the heart of the city.


There is a railway link from the airport to Central station. A one-way ticket is ($15AUD($10US) The trip to Central should take 10-15 minutes. You can take connecting trains (or buses or a combination of trains, buses and even ferries) from Central to your destination.

Airport Shuttle Bus

There are several shuttle buses from Sydney International Airport. Fares depend on where you're going. Inquire at the airport. Most shuttle buses cost about 20-25AUD($13-16USD) round trip.


is about 20AUD ($13)USD, which is one of the cheapest options.

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FAMILY TRAVEL TIP:Australia has very strict laws about a child not having a car seat for kids under 7. If you don't have a car seat for your child(ren), Uber can refuse your ride. An Uber driver can lose their licenses if caught, so you'll have to pay the extra few dollars to take a local taxi!

How to get around Sydney?

The Opal card

Sydney's public transport network runs on a smartcard system called Opal.

The card can be obtained (for free) and loaded with credit (minimum $10) at numerous news agencies and convenience stores across Sydney.

You can still buy Opal single tickets from machines at train stations, ferry wharves, and light-rail stops, or from bus drivers. These are more expensive than the same fare using the Opal card. For kids you can purchase a child/youth Opal card for those aged four to 15 years; they travel for half price. For student and pensioner discount Opal cards, you have to apply online.

You can also use contactless credit/debit cards on train, bus, light rail and ferry services, but you won't get discounts for off-peak travel or transfers.

Light Rail(Tram)

Trams run between Central Station and Dulwich Hill, stopping at Chinatown, Darling Harbour, the Star Casino, Sydney Fish Market, Glebe and Leichhardt en route. Opal-card fares cost $2.20 for a short journey and $3.66 for a longer one.


If you are taking the bus, purchase an Opal card. It's an electronic pre-paid ticket that automatically calculates the cheapest fare for your journey. Read the Opal card above on how to obtain a card.

On foot

It's cheaper and FREE! Most times its quicker to get around Sydney by walking. You'll find many dining and shopping options within walking distance where ever you stay at in Sydney!

Water Taxis

are a fast way to get around the harbor (Circular Quay to Watsons Bay in as little as 15 minutes).


Most Sydney ferries operate between 6 am and midnight. The standard Opal card one-way fare for most harbor destinations is $6.01; ferries to Manly, Sydney Olympic Park, and Parramatta cost $7.51.


A taxi around the city is about $15-30 AUD ($10-20USD), but taxis can be expensive and I would avoid them.


Cairns has an excellent network of cycling paths and circuits. Rentals start from $15 AUD ($11 USD) per day. You'll also find many city bikes all around Sydney where you'll be able to rent a bike off the street and just ride!

Rideshares(UBER) is about 9-25AUD ($6-17)USD, which is one of the cheapest options.

New with Uber? Sign up and use my code for a discount(link):jessica43008ui

FAMILY TRAVEL TIP: Australia has very strict laws about a child not having a car seat for kids under 7. If you don't have a car seat for your child(ren), Uber can refuse your ride. An Uber driver can lose their licenses if caught, so you'll have to pay the extra few dollars to take a local taxi!

Rent A Car

In Sydney, you'll be able to rent a car for as low at $13 AUD($8 USD). If your staying in the heart of Sydney, renting a car isn't needed since everything is within walking distance. If you choose to travel to the outer center city of Sydney, then a car may come in your favor, but you'll still be able to reach the outer city by bus.

TRAVEL TIP- Beware, when renting a car in Australia you drive on the left side of the road. The driving seat is also on the opposite side.

When to travel to Sydney?

Sydney is a destination to visit all year round! If you want to visit the beaches in Sydney, then perhaps you may want to visit during Australia summer months which are December-February.

Even if you visit during the winter months in Sydney you'll find that many locals still go the beaches to surf to enjoy the water. June to August are the cheapest months to travel to Sydney from airfare to hotels!

We traveled to Sydney in August, during their winter months and the weather was still pleasant. All we needed was a winter jacket with day time temperatures reaching 70 degrees Fahrenheit. The only time we felt the winter chill at nightfall where temperatures dropped to 50 degrees Fahrenheit.

If you want to enjoy Sydney without the summer crowds and warm weather, visit March-May!

Where to eat in Sydney?

What language is spoken in Sydney?



Australian dollar

Things you should know when traveling to Sydney?

  • If you're coming from the states. Australia has opposite seasons.

  • Australia is huge!!! You may think you can hop on a quick flight from one side of the country to the other, but the reality that a flight from Brisbane to Perth will take over a five hour flight! From Sydney to Cairns its a 3-hour flight.

  • Aussies don’t have pennies

  • Australians today show great respect towards the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people; after all, they are the traditional owners of the land you are living or stepping on. These respects are also paid verbally before certain ceremonies, meetings, and events.

  • Call 000 in an emergency

  • Aussies don’t tip! The minimum working wage is a lot higher, meaning tipping isn’t necessary. All service charges are included in the bill!

Is Sydney kid-friendly? Things to do with kids?

Is that even a question? Sydney offers endless options for fun for kids in the city! We wish we stayed for more than 3 days in Sydney! It wasn't enough for what we wanted to experience with the kids!

"Every Next Level of Your Life Will Demand a Different You."


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