Saturday, November 24, 2018

SYDNEY TRAVEL GUIDE : Tourist Attractions, Itinerary and Budget

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One of the top visited cities in the world, Sydney is the oldest and the largest city in Australia. It's a bustling city with broad sandy beaches and world-class landmarks like the Sydney Opera House and Sydney Harbour Bridge. 


To make it easier for you to explore Sydney, we have made a comprehensive travel guide for your reference.

VISA REQUIREMENTS TO SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA

Philippine passport holders are required to apply for an Australian Visa prior to his/her planned visit. The process is now online so you can apply for your Australian Tourist Visa at the comfort of your home. The visa cost is AUD140 / Php5,500 and the processing time takes about 3 business days up to 30 days. Once approved, you can stay in Australia for a maximum of 3 months. Here's a step-by-step process of applying an Australian Tourist Visa in the Philippines.

WHEN IS THE BEST TIME TO VISIT SYDNEY

Sydney is an all-year round destination. Depending on your preferences, you can pretty much visit Sydney any time of the year. Ideally, it's best to explore Sydney during autumn (March to May) and spring (September to November). You can witness the Vivid Festival in May if you visit during autumn. In spring, you can experience the flowers in full bloom at the Botanical Gardens.

HOW TO GET TO SYDNEY FROM MANILA, PHILIPPINES

Cebu Pacific, Philippine Airlines and Qantas Airlines have direct flights from Manila, Philippines to Sydney Australia. The flight time from Manila to Sydney takes about 8 hours.

AirAsia, FlyScoot, Singapore Airlines, Thai Airways and Malaysia Airlines have connecting flights from Manila to Sydney via Malaysia, Singapore or Thailand. It’s best to check these airlines as they sometimes offer cheaper rates.

HOW TO GET TO YOUR SYDNEY HOTEL FROM THE AIRPORT

There are a lot of ways to get out of the airport to your hotel in Sydney. You can easily take taxi or book an Uber for a cheaper rate. The cheapest way to get to your hotel in Sydney from the airport is by taking a train. The train from Sydney International Airport to Sydney Central Station only costs AUD17 / Php650 / USD12. From the Sydney Central Train Station you can transfer to another train to your hotel in Sydney. It’s pretty convenient to commute in Sydney.

Take note that you will need to have an Opal Card to take the trains. You can get the card for free and just load it so you can use it on your way to the city.

HOW TO GET AROUND SYDNEY

Taxis and Uber are abundant in Sydney but the most popular way of getting around the city is by train and bus.  If you take the trains and buses, be prepared to do a lot of walking.

As mentioned above, you need to have an Opal Card to take the trains and buses. There is a maximum cap per day of around AUD15 so if you have spent the maximum cap, you can already take the trains and the buses for free. You can learn more about the cap and fares by visiting the NSW Transportwebsite.

HOTELS IN SYDNEY: WHERE TO STAY IN SYDNEY


Budget Hotels and Hostels in Sydney ideal for budget travellers and backpackers


The Pod Sydney
Address: Level 6/ 396 Pitt Street (Enter via Goulburn Street), Sydney CBD, Sydney, Australia, 2000
Why stay here: Top-rated budget accommodation in Agoda. Located inside the city center. About 300 meters from Museum Railway Station.Clean bathrooms and common areas.
Check rates and availability


Sydney Central Inn
Address: 428 Pitt Street, Sydney CBD, Sydney, Australia, 2000
Why stay here: Less than 500 meters away from Museum Railway Station. Clean common areas and very affordable.
Check rates and availability



Mid-range Hotels in Sydney


Mrs Banks Hotel
Address: 259 Oxford Street, Paddington, Sydney, Australia, 2021
Why stay here: Top-rated hotel in Agoda. Just 900 meters from the city center.
Check rates and availability


Meriton Suites North Sydney
Address: Arthur Street, North Sydney, North Sydney, Sydney, Australia, 2060
Why stay here: Top-rates hotel in Agoda and Booking. Close to North Sydney Railway Station, about 300 meters.
Check rates and availability


Luxury Hotels in Sydney


Park Hyatt Sydney
Address: 7 Hickson Road , The Rocks, Sydney, Australia
Why stay here: Amazing view of the Sydney Opera House. Top-rated hotel in both Booking and Agoda.
Check rates and availability


The Langham Sydney Hotel
Address: 89-113 Kent Street Sydney CBD, Circular Quay, Sydney, Australia, 2000
Why stay here: Top-rated luxury hotel in Agoda and Booking. Located within the city center. Large and spacious rooms and exceptional amenities.
Check rates and availability


The Darling at The Star
Address: 80 Pyrmont Street, Pyrmont, Darling Harbour, Sydney, Australia, 2009
Why stay here: Top-rated hotel in Agoda and Booking. Exceptional amenities and services. Located inside the Darling Harbour.
Check rates and availability


If you have a specific location in mind, check our hotel map to find your preferred hotel below.




SYDNEY TOURS


Sydney Attractions Combo Pass
Experience four of Sydney's top tourist spots in one ticket. It's a deal you shouldn't miss! Visit Sydney Wild Life, Sydney Aquarium and Madame Tussauds and Sydney Tower Eye for less than Php2,000 / AUD53 / USD38. Book now.


Blue Mountains Unlimited Discover Pass
See the best views of the Greater Blue Mountains, a UNESCO World Heritage site about two hours away by car or train from Sydney CBD. This ticket is inclusive of the park entry and unlimited use of skyways, railways and cableways. Book now.


iVenture Sydney Flexi Attractions Pass
This pass will allow you to experience the best of Sydney attractions. You can choose 3, 5 or 7 attractions to visit in one card. Save up to 50% on Sydney's top attractions with a simple swipe of your iVenture Card! Book now.


Sydney Bridge Climb
Conquer the iconic Sydney Harbour Bridge on one of the world's longest bridge climbs and see a breathtaking view of the Sydney Opera House. A one-for-the-books experience when you visit Sydney. Expensive but worth it for those who love adventure. Book now.


Canberra Capital City Day Tour
Visit the Australian capital city of Canberra on a day tour from Sydney. See the best tourist attractions of Canberra on a jam-packed full day trip to Canberra from Sydney. Tour begins at around 7:40 and ends at around 9PM. The tour costs Php6,529 /AUD170 / USD123. You can book here online.

TOP TOURIST ATTRACTIONS IN SYDNEY: THINGS TO DO AND SEE IN SYDNEY


Sydney Opera House
The Sydney Opera House is one of the world's most popular icons situated in the glittering harbor of Sydney. It's a UNESCO World Heritage site shaped like shells surrounded by water. The perimeter is open to the public so you can take as many photos as you like. There's also a Sydney Opera House Guided Walking Tour for you to learn more about the history and to get a behind-the-scenes look at this popular building. This is a flexible ticket that allows you to join any one of the tours throughout the day, departing every half hour from 9am to 5pm. You can book here in advance



Address: Bennelong Point, Sydney
How to get there: Take a train to Circular Quay, from the station, the Sydney Opera House is just a short walk.



Sydney Harbor Bridge
Prior to the construction of the Sydney Opera House, the Sydney Harbour Bridge was once the city's most popular landmark. Today, it's still one of the top tourist spots in Sydney. It's accessible by both trains, cars, bikes and even pedestrians. You can cross the bridge on foot. If you're an adrenaline junkie, you can opt to climb the bridge for a breathtaking scenery of Sydney City.



Address: 5 Cumberland Street, Sydney
How to get there: Take a train to Circular Quay, from the station, the Sydney Harbour Bridge is just a short walk.

Bondi Beach
Bondi Beach is Australia's most famous beach and at the same time a world icon. Whether you are into swimming, surfing, sunbathing or just beach bumming, Bondi is the place to be. 



Address: 7km East of Sydney CBD
How to get there: You can get to Bondi Beach by taking a train and a bus. From Central Sydney stations, Circular Quay and Town Hall, you can catch a train to Bondi Junction. From Bondi Junction, you can take several local bus lines or walk about 25 minutes to the beach. Bus 381 and 382 from Bondi Junction will drop you off at Bondi Beach.


Alternatively, you can also take the 380 bus from Circular Quay, which goes all the way to Bondi Beach. The bus is the cheapest way travel, but it takes longer to get there.

Blue Mountains
Blue Mountains is a UNESCO world heritage site which stretches over a million hectares. It's a mix of rainforest, canyons and heathlands.


Address: New South Wales, Australia
How to get there: Sydney trains depart from Central Station at frequent intervals throughout the day. The fastest trains reach Katoomba (the jump-off point) in in less than 2 hours, with stops at Parramatta, Westmead, Penrith and Springwood. Other trains have more stops and take longer to reach Katoomba Station.


From Katoomba Station, public buses are available to Echo Point. You can also take the hop on, hop off Blue Mountains Explorer Bus for sightseeing. Starting from Katoomba Station the big red bus travels in a giant loop, stopping at all the major attractions from Scenic World to Leura.

Manly Beach
Manly beach is one of the many beaches you can enjoy in Sydney's Northern Beaches region. 



Address: Northern Beaches, Manly, New South Wales
How to get there: Take a train to Circular Quay. From there, go to Wharf 3 and take a Manly Ferry. Travel time is about 30 minutes.

The Royal Botanic Gardens Sydney
The Royal Botanic Gardens Sydney is one of the many FREE tourist spots in Sydney you shouldn't miss. Yes, there's no entrance fee. You can explore this massive garden for free.



Address: Mrs Macquarie's Road, Sydney
How to get there: Take a train to Circular Quay, from the station, the Royal Botanic Gardens Sydney is just a short walk.

Taronga Zoo
Have a close-up encounter with iconic Aussie wildlife like Kangaroos, koalas, Tasmanian devil and other animals from around the world when you visit the Taronga Zoo in Sydney. You can purchase a Sydney Taronga Zoo Entry Ticket in advance, which includes ferry tickets, zoo entry & sky safari cable car (gondola).



Address: Bradleys Head Road, Mosman
How to get there: Take a train to Circular Quay. Get out of the station and proceed to Wharf No. 4 and take the ferry to Taronga Zoo.

Sydney Tower Eye
Sydney Tower Eye is a 309-meter high structure. It's the tallest building in Sydney and is one of the great landmarks of the city along with the Sydney Opera House and Sydney Harbour Bridge. It is located in the Westfield Shopping Centre, at the corner of Pitt Street and Market Street in the heart of Sydney's shopping haven.  Head up to Level 5 and follow the signs from the food court. Get your ticket online.


Address: 100 Market Street, Sydney
How to get there: Take a train to Town Hall or St. James station. St James is on the City Circle Line and is just a 2 minute walk west from the Westfield Sydney centre where Sydney Tower Eye is located. Town Hall station on the other hand is a 5-10 minute walk away north along George Street and the east up Market Street.

Jacaranda Trees in Spring
Mid-October to November in Sydney is Jacaranda season. It's a sub-tropical tree with purple flowers. It is often mistaken for an Australian native but it's actually indigenous to Brazil.



Where to spot Jacanranda trees? Head over to McDougall Street in Kirribilli (near Milson Park) - one of the most beautiful streets in Sydney with canopies of jacaranda trees.
How to get to Milson Park / McDougall Street in Kirribilli : Take a train to Milson's Point station. From the station, Milson Park / McDougall Street is about 5-10 minutes walk. Alternatively, you can cross the bridge from Circular Quay to Milson's Point.


MUST-TRY RESTAURANTS IN SYDNEY : WHERE TO EAT IN SYDNEY?


The Grounds of Alexandria
Address: 7a/2 Huntley St, Alexandria NSW 2015, Australia
Opening Hours: 7:30 AM - 4:00 PM





How to get there: Take the train to St. Peter Station then catch bus 348 from St Peter’s Station and get off at Bourke Rd at Huntley St which is directly outside The Grounds of Alexandria.

Alternatively, to walk, head towards King St and cross directly onto Sydney Park Road. Follow this road down, and at the round-a-bout stay straight and go onto Huntley St. Follow this down for approx 450m and The Grounds will be on your right. 

St. Peter Restaurant
Address: 362 Oxford St, Paddington NSW 2021, Australia
Opening Hours:  11AM to 3PM and 5:30PM to 10PM
Must try: Fish and chips and octopus legs

Hubert Restaurant
Address: 15 Bligh St, Sydney NSW 2000, Australia
Opening Hours: Lunch on Thursdays and Fridays 12pm-3pm and Dinner Monday-Saturday 5pm to 1am. Closed Sundays.
Must try: Chicken fricassée

SHOPPING IN SYDNEY: WHERE TO BUY PASALUBONG IN SYDNEY

Paddy's Market Haymarket
If you're wondering where to buy pasalubong or souvenirs from Sydney for a relatively cheaper price, head over to Paddy's Market  Haymarket. It features cheap imported clothes, gift items and also has a small section for fresh fruit, vegetables and seafood.

How to get there: Catch the train to Town Hall or Central Stations. It’s only a five-minute walk to Paddy’s.

SYDNEY ITINERARY AND EXPENSES

Day 1 Canberra to Sydney
10AM – Depart Canberra to Sydney by Murrays Bus AUD39 / Php1,495 / USD28
2PM – Arrived at Sydney Central Train Station
3PM – Arrived in Blacktown Train Station
3:30PM – Arrived in my friend’s house and freshen up (stayed with my friend so no expenses for accommodation)
4:00PM – Meetup with another friend and early dinner at Westpoint Shopping Center
5PM – Went to Narragingy Reserve Park, walking distance from Doonside Station
7PM – Went back to my friend’s house and rest
Uber rides Blacktown station to my friend's house and back to blacktown station to my friend's house - AUD33 / Php1,250 / USD24

Day 2
9AM - depart Blacktown Station
10AM - Meetup my friend and snacks at The Garden of Alexandria AUD10
12:30PM - Off to Bondi Beach 
2:30PM - Late lunch AUD34 / Php1,290 / USD25
4PM - Off to Paddy's Market
5:30PM - Off to Sydney Opera House and meetup with a friend
9PM - off to Blacktown / Uber to my friend's house AUD11 / Php417 / USD8

Day 3
10am - Depart Blacktown
11:30am - Visited Milson Park and photo session at McDougall Street in Kirribilli
1PM - Cross Sydney Harbor Bridge
2PM - Visited Pyloon Lookout AUD15 / Php750 / USD11
4PM - Cahill walk
5PM - Explore the Royal Botanic Gardens Sydney
7PM - Off to Blacktown

Day 4
10am - Depart Blacktown
11am Ferry hop on / hop off AUD59 (Visited Taronga Zoo and Manly Beach) Php2,240 / USD43
12nn Lunch AUD10 / Php380 / USD7
4PM - back to the Royal Botanic Gardens
6pm - Dinner with my friend AUD15 / Php570 / USD11

Day 5
Chill in Blacktown and shopping for pasalubong at Parramata and Westpoint.

Day 6
Homebound!


SYDNEY TRAVEL TIPS

  • Book a roundtrip ticket if you are taking a full-service airline. It's usually cheaper than booking a one-way ticket separately.
  • Stay in a hotel/hostel near a bus stop to easily go around.
  • Ride Uber if you must. It's cheaper than regular taxis.
  • Cross the Harbour Bridge to get a good view of Sydney Opera house.
  • Take a ferry to Northern Beaches or Taronga Zoo so you can get a different angle / view of Sydney Opera House.

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