Where to stay in Sydney
See also: Things to Do in Sydney
Sydney, where the sunlight beckons you towards its indiscriminating warmth, covering the street, it's people and the city in an enviable natural filter and the salty air of the ocean a few miles away entwines with the fragrance of the coxcombs and carnations in the flower shops at every turn. To a lot of people, Sydney, the capital of New South Wales in Australia, remains etched in the cliché of the Sydney Opera House. But there is more to most populous city down under than just this iconic structure.
The coastal city holds in itself the perfect brew of rejuvenation and exhilaration. Even with its fast paced city centre, ultramodern infrastructure and a plethora of options for adventure fanatics like abseiling, rock climbing, jet skiing and skydiving, Sydney remains at heart a poets paradise with its utopian beaches, libraries, and idiosyncratic cafés, and is one of the most ideal places to live.
Here are the perfect places to stay in Sydney:
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The CBD, or central business district, are the pivotal parts of all Australian cities, and more to Sydney, which is a national and international crowd pleaser all through the year, and living in a neighbourhood located at the centre of the Sydney CBD is a dream realised through the suburb of Wynyard. A historical location amidst modern structures, Wynyard is full of colonial buildings and structures, the most important being the Wynyard Square, built in the name of Colonel Edward Wynyard, the commander of forces in nineteenth century Australia. The historical background of this suburb is more so emphasised by the presence of the Karlangu Aboriginal Art Centre, a celebration of Australia’s aboriginal culture, damaged during the colonial regime.
If we pick up a map if Wynyard, we can see how this town is captures the mixes soul if Sydney best, with old structures like the Regimental Square, a war memorial on George Street, giving way to the quirky art installations in Angel Place, where more than fifty cages hover above a cobblestone alley, coupled with a sound installation in the memory of endangered Australian birds, driven out by the clamour of cities. Wynyard is a town that’ll surprise you at every turn, even if you live there your whole life, and you don’t know what is coming at the next corner.
Sydney’s efficient railway network has made commute all over the city very easy, but if you still want the hubbub of the city’s city centre ringing in your ears, the place to stay is Bondi. This high end backdrop just six kilometres away from the business district is the heartthrob of Sydney’s urban milieu.
With cafes and eating joints like Gelato Minasa and Icebergs, as well as a horde of bookshops and nightclubs, Bondi can seem like just another urban town. But what differentiates it from the rest is the Bondi Beach and it’s weekend markets.
Swimming or surfing at the Bondi Beach, or watching the sky tainted purple at sunset, Bondi is the ideal mix of natural and global. The weekend markets are an opportunity to unwind after a week of work, where everything from clothes, accessories and souvenirs is available at throwaway prices. The Bondi to Coogee trail and the Bondi-Bronte walk gives an opportunity to relax in the lap of nature, surrounded by the white chalky sands of Sydney’s sought after beach.
Called 'Tallawoladah' by the natives, the Rocks is a network of historic streets in the heart of Sydney. Deriving it’s name from the sandstone houses that were first constructed here, The Rocks hold many sartorial and culinary treasures in its unassuming folds. The Rocks is the modern piazza of this city, with everything from high dining to tangy street food, and high end designers to upcoming new ones. The house of Jean Michel Raynaud, the 'southern hemisphere’s finest pastry chef', The Rocks is a meeting ground for old and new, high end and street, international and local, and a niche for the Australian hipster generation.
The greatest part of The Rocks is it’s markets, where the wonderful works of local artisans, gourmet food and the electric harbour side views amalgamate under the canopy of the azure Sydney sky. The Royal Botanical Gardens are just a fling if a stone away from the neighbourhood, and who wouldn’t be attracted to the prospect of stepping out and running into the music beats swimming gently around the Farm Cove, a recreational area in the Gardens.
If you are a history buff, The Rocks won’t disappoint you, with its founding aboriginal heritage and eighteenth century colonial buildings around every other turn, as well as the famous Mrs. Macquarie’s Chair just a few metres away from its fringes.
King’s Cross is just 2kms away from the Sydney city centre, and a walk along the Darlinghurst Road will take one directly to this locale in the nucleus of Sydney’s nightlife. With trendy cafes, bistros, nightclubs and bookshops, this is the home to Sydney’s Gen Z, and boasts of a plethora of entertainment options.
The place to stay in King’s Cross is essentially Potts Point, north of the locality, and a little further away from the bustling market. Full of cutting edge theatres and fine dining options, King’s Cross is the most happening place to stay in Sydney, and gives you a chance to watch the city in tints of neon. It is the place to go totting along two of Sydney’s major modern landmarks, the giant fluorescent Coca Cola billboard and the dandelion shaped El-Alamein Memorial Fountain.
Living in the Potts Point is heaven for theatre connoisseurs as well, with the Griffin Theatre Company and the King’s Cross Theatre Group performing everything from the classic Les Miserables to the modern intimates at SBW tables, where even stalwarts like Cate Blanchett have performed. A ten minute walk to Hyde Park and Martin Place, King’s Cross is the way to go if you never sleep, like the town.
Surry Hills and Strawberry Hills
With just $3 in your pocket and 5 minutes of your time, you can travel to the unofficial locality of Strawberry Hills from Sydney’s business district.
A quiet setting near the lifeline of Sydney, Strawberry Hills is the quintessential Australian neighbourhood, serene but close to the action. Adjacent to the Surry Hills, the locality rings with the rustle of oaks as well as the music from its bistros and nightclubs. One can commute to the heritage listed Blue Mountains easily from Strawberry Hills, and revel in a weekend of the typical cerulean hues of its eucalyptus forests. The Sydney Harbour Bridge and the Sydney Showground is just a train ride away from this neighbourhood, which also has immense cultural importance for Australia.
The area is home to many national cultural organisations, like the Opera Australia and the Australian Council of Arts. For a night of music, one can head to the Strawberry Hills Hotel, which is a hotspot for traditional Australian jazz, or watch the Belvoir Street Theatre on this erstwhile colonial farmland.
A city suburb, Balmoral is located in the Mosman district of Sydney. With its swimming enclosures, beautiful picnic spots and beaches, Balmoral is one of the top listed neighbourhoods in Sydney. The eye catching building if The Esplanade built along the Balmoral Beach is the stopping point for all things local and traditionally Australian, with quirky décor mixed with orthodox aboriginal art pieces, clothes and restaurants. The splendour of the Sydney Harbour is best viewed from the white sands of Balmoral, a town which sits adjacent to the award winning Toranga Zoo, in Mosman.
Retiring in your porch to read a book under the Australian sunset, or learning to snorkel with the Balmoral Sailing School, this suburban city gives you everything you could ask for. A little jog across the Balmoral Beach in the evening will leave you gawking at the ruins of beautiful colonial fortifications and the stunning perspectives of The Heads, the Sydney Harbour's entrance.
Surrounded by the Milk Beach and Nielsen Park, Greycliffe Avenue is a small neighbourhood located in Vaucluse, Sydney. This modest looking location is enveloped by many of Australia’s most spectacular views and wonders, like the Hermitage Foreshore Track, the Strickland House, and the Parsley Bay Reserve.
If you turn a corner at the 14 Greycliffe Avenue, at your foot lies one of the most postcard perfect locations in Sydney, the Hermitage Foreshore Track, a nature preserve, and gives a panoramic view of the Shark Island and the great Harbour Bridge. One of the most famous walks in all of Australia, the Foreshore walks also leads one to the massive grounds of the Strickland House, a historical location of colonial importance, supported by magnanimous Corinthian columns, which now functions as a film studio and tourist attraction.
Also accessible is the Milk Beach, one of the rare white sand beaches in Australia that remains mostly untouched across its vast stretch. The Nielsen Park, with a harbour side café and photogenic views, is a gateway into wild Australia, and remains the most important heritage site in the area, a neighbourhood which serves one of Sydney’s best outdoor offerings.