The Royal Botanic Gardens, a veritable oasis of greenery, boast breathtaking views of Sydney Harbour and the city's skyline. The gardens were the first area of land cultivated by Europeans on the Australian continent, though the gardens themselves were not opened to the public until 1816. Visitors can explore the Herb Garden, the Fernery, the Rose Garden, a walled Succulent Garden and the HSBC Oriental Garden. The main pond in the lower garden offers a splendid view of the harbor. Keep an eye out for ibis or cockatoos that call this place home.
The controversial but decidedly beautiful sail-like roofs of Sydney's most recognizable icon glisten against the backdrop of Sydney Harbour. The Sydney Opera House was constructed over a fourteen-year period and caused an opera’s worth of drama that involved differences between the architect Jørn Utzon and the Australian government. The now world-renowned architectural wonder stands as an unmissable icon of Sydney's cultural landscape. It houses among other small venues, the Joan Sutherland Theatre, the Utzon Room and a grand Concert Hall. It also has an impressive yearly program of contemporary and classical performances, and is a striking cultural sanctuary to take in theater, opera and ballet. Riveting guided tours take visitors behind the scenes and into the establishment’s many interesting rooms.
Stretching over the sparkling waters of Sydney Harbour, the Sydney Harbour Bridge is certainly a wonder to behold. The steel through arch bridge was designed and constructed by Dorman Long and Co Ltd back in 1932 and has since become one of Sydney's most iconic tourist attractions. Thanks to its arched shape, many Sydney residents call the bridge "The Coat Hanger", and while this might sound a bit mean-spirited, the bridge is well loved. Standing at 134 meters (440 feet), the Sydney Harbour Bridge is one of the tallest steel arch bridges in the world. Its incredible height inspired many daredevils to climb across the bridge illegally, which in turn inspired BridgeClimb, a tour that takes visitors up and across the bridge. For visitors who prefer the safety of the ground, the bridge can also be viewed from the south-east pylon, and walkers can traverse it on the bridge's footpath.
A masterpiece of Gothic architecture, the foundation stones for St Mary's Cathedral were laid by Governor Lachlan Macquarie in 1821. After a series of architects and religious figures suggested their own versions of the cathedral, the building finally opened in 1900, although work continued until 1928. Wardell's original design had two spires that were never built. After ten years' debate and political fund-raising, the twin spires were finally completed in 2000. Today, St. Mary's Cathedral is heralded as one of the most beautiful buildings in Sydney. Visitors to the cathedral can wander around the beautiful interior, which is lit by ornate stained glass windows. Treasures located in the cathedral include the moving and beautifully sculpted Grave of the Unknown Soldier, a marble replica of Michelangelo's Pieta and many gorgeous religious paintings from the late 19th-Century.
One of the most visited attractions in Australia today, this iconic Sydney beach was established between 1855 and 1877 and officially declared a public beach in 1882. Some investigations into the name Bondi Beach posit that it originated from an Aboriginal word meaning "water breaking over rocks." However, according to the Australian Museum, it more closely translates to "a place where a flight of nullas took place." Either way, this cityside beach is known for its natural blessings, which its moniker no doubt reflects. A stroll between the lush headlands of this roughly one-kilometer (0.6-mile) beach or a walk along the bustling promenade is an adored activity here. Between the surrounding eateries, accommodations and shops, there is so much to do at Bondi Beach, even after getting a good share of sun, sand and surf.
Aside from the beautifully kept gardens, Hyde Park provides a tranquil haven to the thousands of daily urban commuters amidst the hustle and bustle of Sydney's city life. It is not only a sanctuary but also a fitting home to the famous 1934 Art Deco Anzac Memorial, and the Archibald Fountain; a magnificent bronze and granite fountain commemorating the French and Australian alliance in World War I. The park looks particularly attractive at night when thousands of tiny fairy lights twinkle amidst the boughs of the ancient trees which line the walkways.
You will feel just like those magnificent men in their flying machines when you don your goggles and leather helmet, and take a seat in the open cockpit of this classic biplane. A trip in one of these classic planes of Red Baron Scenic Flights, will provide an unforgettable memory of the scenic city. Flights are also available further afield covering major terrains in the north and south. Real dare-devils can go up, down and flying around on the Aerobatic Thrill Seeker Flight. Not for the faint-hearted.
Take a step back in time and follow Sussex Street towards the Rocks area where you will come across a charming area of Sydney that has all the beauty and history of the Rocks area but without a maddening big crowd. Infact, the early Millers Point was an exotic seaport village. It was home to the whaling, sealing and sandalwood ships that plied the Pacific and Southern Oceans. Old pubs and shops nearby give a feeling of Sydney in days gone by.
Mike Mobbs, a Sydney environmental lawyer, and his lawyer wife Heather and two kids decided in 1996 to renovate their 100 year old terrace, situated in the densely populated inner-city, between two major roads. On a block less than 35 meters (115 feet) long and five metres (16 feet) wide, with vision and tenacity, they have made their home completely self-sustainable! Their home collects all its drinking water from the roof, generates its own electricity from solar panels and processes all its wastewater, including sewage, on site.
This prominent gallery specializes in both indigenous and non-indigenous contemporary Australian art. As the former area has been racked with controversy, it is reassuring to note that Utopia places emphasis upon the ethical representation of Aboriginal artists and the importance of authenticity, authorship and provenance. The owner has strong links with the Papunya Tula Artists (located west of Alice Springs) and acts as their representative in Sydney. He also exhibits other major Aboriginal artists such as Gloria Petyarre, Turkey Tolson and Makinti Napanangka. He was closely associated with the now deceased Emily Kame Kngwarreye too.
The United Cinema - Avalon invites cine buffs to view latest blockbusters as well as classic art films. With two wide screens and a multi-format digital sound system, movie watching gets all the more pleasurable at this theater. For an even more enjoyable experience, sit back and relax with popcorn and a soda from the refreshment stand. For film times, ticket prices and further information, please call or check their website.
Featuring a rich collection of contemporary paintings and sculptures by Australian artists, Gallery 41 is a one stop destination to discover phenomenal paintings. This classy exhibition space hosts temporary expositions and group shows with an aim to acquaint more and more people with the nuances of modern art. Both established and upcoming artists showcase their talent during these exhibitions. Call ahead to know more.