An Insider’s Guide to Sydney, Australia

An insider's guide to Sydney

More than 30 million tourists stop by into this iconic city each year. You can’t say they don’t have enough reasons. From the world-famous tourist attractions like Sydney Opera House and Harbour Bridge, to irresistible cityscapes and bustling nightlife, this city has something for everyone. However, almost every visitor that comes to this city has a similar route upon arriving. They visit all the tourist hotspots and go back home without experiencing the true spirit of the city. If you want to get to know this tourist Mecca on a deeper level, here are some tips that should help you.

An insider's guide to Sydney

Photo Credit: Jorge Láscar

Eat like a Sydneysider

An insider's guide to Sydney

Photo Credit: Yun Huang Yong

Sydney carries the badge of “Foodie heaven” for a very good reason. It’s a home to a rich and vivid restaurant scene that includes everything from affordable Asian meals and local seafood to hipster restaurants and internationally recognized chefs. Take your breakfast or brunch at some of the city’s brunch institutions like Bill’s and Three Blue Ducks. Sample some amazing Italian foods for lunch at Jamie’s or visit one of Sydneysiders’ favorite Thai restaurants Boom Boom Thai. Finally, leave it to the famous Aussie chefs to prepare your dinner at Tetsuya, Apollo, The Bridge Room and Four Fourteen.

Complement the food with some Aussie wine

Feeling thirsty after all that food? It is time to see why Sydney can stand shoulder by shoulder with Paris and Rome when it comes to the quality and taste of wine. Most of the restaurants have a wide selection of domestic wines, but if you’re a true wine lover, you wouldn’t mind taking a two or three hours long drive to visit Hunter Valley and try their famous botrytized Semillon.

An insider's guide to Sydney

Hunter Valley Vineyards  (Photo Credit:  chazrt)

Find an alternative to crowded beaches

An insider's guide to Sydney

Long Reef Beach, Sydney. (Photo Credit:  MD111

Here’s a simple rule for you: If you can remember the name of the beach or if you’ve heard of it before, you should stay clear of it. Sure, there is nothing wrong with Bondi beach, and many Sydneysiders still love going there, but it is a place packed mostly with tourists, and the crowd is preventing you from absorbing all the beauty of the city’s seaside. Instead of Bondi, go to Long Reef Beach, Palm Beach, Milk Beach or Redleaf Beach.

Stray from CBD

An insider's guide to Sydney

Photo Credit:  Andrea Schaffer

Sydney’s Central Business District is truly a sight to be seen, but it is not the only neighborhood of Sydney worth exploring, and it is not nearly the best place to stay while in Sydney. There are many other charming suburbs and city parts like Balmain, Darlinghurst, Coogee, Double Bay and Randwick, that are not only more affordable, but also have a more distinct character that can help you get to know the town better. For example, the eastern suburb of Randwick is similar to a village, but with the addition of great dining options and shopping places. Randwick accommodation options, such as Avonmore on The Park Boutique Hotel, are unique, because this historic district features many fully-restored Victorian buildings turned into world-class hotels.

Follow the locals

Finally, the best way to actually get to know Sydney is by getting to know a Sydneysider. Locals will tell you Harts pub offers some of the best craft beers in town and that Bald Rock Hotel is a top-notch bistro with fantastic live music (you can even gather a team and sign up for a weekly trivia). Try rock ’n’ roll bingo at Cricketers Arms Hotel or visit Fortune of War to see an authentic no-nonsense Aussie pub. Go see a cricket game (we bet you’ve never tried that before) at The Sydney Cricket Ground or if that’s not your cup of tea, watch an opera inside the Opera House, instead of just admiring it from the outside like a regular tourist.

An insider's guide to Sydney

Sydney is an amazing city, especially if you look beyond the postcards and discover its true personality. Use these tips to do that, and we promise, you will fall utterly in love with it.

An insider's guide to Sydney

This is a guest post by Marie Nieves. Marie is a lifestyle blogger who loves unusual trips, gadgets and creative ideas. On her travels she likes to read poetry and prose and to surf the Internet. Her favourite writer is Tracy Chevalier and she always carries one of her books in her bag. Most of her free time at home she spends walking her Labrador Retriever named Max. She is an avid lover of photography who loves to talk about her experiences. You can find Marie on Facebook or follow her on Twitter and Pinterest.

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