I recently ticked off a bucket list item in my home city of Sydney, Australia. I bought Curtis 2 tickets for the Bridgeclimb for Christmas and we finally got to use them on his 28th birthday! For 48 hours Sydney blessed us with all its treasures and adventures! Here's our itinerary for a fantastic weekend in Sydney for a couples getaway!
Best Things To Do In Sydney
Day 1 - 48 Hours Sydney Itinerary
We checked into Radisson Blu hotel. We stayed here last year and loved it! This hotel has all the added fancy bonuses without paying for them. It's in an excellent location as well! The service, the room size, the bed, the bathrooms, everything was at an excellent standard! They also have a Member's program you can join. Giving you little perks to make the experience even greater! Get settled in, freshen up and get ready for a great night out!
Head to HotelsCombined.com for the BEST hotel rates in Sydney
Check out Airbnb for UNIQUE stays in Sydney
Arriving in sydney via air or land, there's some tricks I can pass onto you.
Try and use public transport or walk as much as possible. It's the cheapest and fastest way to get around.
You need an Opal Card to use any trains, buses or ferries in the city. You can purchase these from most train stations or News agencies. Then go to a pay station booth where you load you're preferred amount of money onto the card.
Ticket prices are calculated by distance. Unlike commuter time or the number of stations you use, in Europe for example.
Swipe on and off wherever you go, otherwise you will be charged a full-trip fare.
To & From The Airport
Use the airport train line, when getting to and from the airport. This will be cheaper and faster than a taxi from the city. Though keep in mind, whenever you are using the airport stations, it is a private station. This means the ticket price is substantially higher than a normal ticket. It will be a normal distance fair (distance from destinations) + The Sydney Airport Station Access Fee of $13.80 per Adult.
The City Circle is what you need to look for when commuting around the city itself.
I only ever use taxi's if it's raining, or we need to be somewhere specific, not near a train station, fast.
Head out into the hustle and bustle, but opt for a beautiful afternoon stroll around the Royal Botanic Gardens Sydney with the sunset through the trees. You'll see plenty of native birds through here and possible some bats too! A nice way to get over the jet lag or do something nourishing for your body before a big night out
Happy Hour at Frankies. $3 Pizza slices, House Beers and House Spirits everyday between 4-6pm. Best pizza i’ve eaten in a very very long time!! This underground bar is inviting, with a relaxed friendly atmosphere. A great place to catch up with friends! Especially with it being just metres away from the hotel! Ironically you'll find among the manly scotches and bourbons, an apple juicer serving freshly squeezed apple juice. This was great for me, as i'm not a typical bourbon and coke fan, i like unique spins on classics! Try a cinnamon whiskey shot with your juice - an awesome mix! Live bands most nights and pinball machines in the corner, Frankies is a must-visit on a night out in Sydney.
Head to Palmer & Co on Abercrombie Lane for a smashing cocktail! This 1920's themed bar is unique in every way! Antiques, Taxidermy and leather lining the scuffed back brick walls, flashback to a time of class and fun in Sydney. Waitresses are dressed to the theme and serve you at your table. If you didn't fill up on Pizza at Frankie's i'd recommend any of the items on this menu! The smells from the kitchen wafting through this underground bar were enough to convince me i could still fit more in! A destination not to miss for any pub crawl through Sydney!
Dessert time! Head back down George St and check out The Choc Pot. Unique signature dishes filled with chocolatey goodness. Waffles, Ice cream, Brownies, Fudge, Milkshakes and Hot chocolates all hand-crafted! The best part was all items were very reasonably priced. A good substitute for Lindt, Guylian, Max Brenner or San Churros cafes that can be out of many peoples budget.
Stumble home, bellies full of goodness and have a fantastic sleep in your humungous king-sized bed in Radisson Blu.
Day 2 - 48 Hours Sydney Itinerary
Sleep in! Take advantage of the block out curtains and swim in the sea of sheets. Radisson Blu check out is 12pm.
Coffee shops are everywhere! Joe & The Juice is a nice alternative to muffins or eggs, instead offering a fresh boost to your morning. If you can't find any cafes to satisfy your cravings, head to Pitt Street Mall. It's very close, so check out the foodcourt for a million choices at pretty good prices - Maccas, Subway, Muffin Break etc.
9am - 11am
Go shopping around Pitt Street Mall, George St and Queen Victoria Building. Be lost in a world of Unique Australian Artisan products, souvenirs and travel essentials. Pitt Street Mall is usually home to the best Buskers in Sydney! Mainly on the weekend, you'll find anyone from singers, musicians, clowns, magic acts and poets! Gaining a busking licence is quite simple so allows people with all backgrounds and talents to showcase to the public!
11am - 1pm
Head to chinatown for lunch. It gets kooky and unique but is a great insight for anyone who hasn’t visited Asia yet. There's an incredible mix of Chinese, Malay, Vietnamese, Thai, Japanese and Korean flavours lining these streets!
Tip: Pick a restaurant where there is already plenty of people in there eating. Locals, people who speak the native language, or people from the restaurants origin country will know a good place before you do. If a restaurant is empty at lunchtime, find another place.
Grab a custard puff from The Emporer's Puff window near the bottom of Dixon St. These are the BEST custard puffs you will ever eat!!! Try and grab them during the day though, as a busy night can promote a line metres and metres long, trying to grab some custardy goodness.
Of course there's plenty of bubble tea to wash it all down, that can be found along here too. Especially at Chatime - Asia's bubble tea king!
1pm - 3:30pm
Head down George street and check out Circular Quay. Get your incredible photos of the Sydney Harbour Bridge and The Sydney Opera House. Head up the hill and explore the hidden gems throughout The Rocks. This historical area has incredible little artisan stores, markets every weekend and a rabbit warren of century old buildings and bi century old archaeological sites of original settlements in Sydney.
3:30pm - Climb the Sydney Harbour Bridge!
Pre-book your tickets and time slot for the Sydney Harbour Bridge Climb for the most incredible experience of your life! I would highly recommend booking for the sunset or sunrise climb. This timeslot allows you a 2-in-1 experience! On the way up (or down) you get to see the city still in daylight, as the sun sets across it. Watching the ferries scurrying underneath you and normal daily activities still playing out. As you reach the top, the sun sets and you see the city lights bring it back to life! Walking back down you can feel pretty good about yourself not being one of the commuters in the city traffic underneath you. The opera house lights up and seemingly beams out of the harbour! Apartments sparkle as the night life comes out to play. The best thing to do in Sydney!
Head to darling harbour for dinner. There are so many options here but grabbing some incredible Australian seafood is a great finish to an amazing night! Plenty of budget options and dessert places available as you watch the twinkling of the city lights dancing on the water.
Crash back into your King-sized bed and dream about the city lights, smells and unique people that have made this city so special!
In 48 hours Sydney has a lot to offer. But if you have more time, my suggestions for a 3rd day in Sydney, include:
- Visit the Blue Mountains
- Natural History Museum
- Taronga Zoo
- Sydney Aquarium
- Any festivals or markets that are on. You'll find awesome little treasures and some of the best eats here
What do you love most about Sydney? Let me know in the comments!