Australia’s most populous city and arguably the most well-known and travelled is located in New South Wales. Sydney sits on the south-east coast of the country alongside the Tasman Sea and has a population of approximately 4.6 million people. While not the capital of Australia, Sydney is the capital of New South Wales and those who reside here are known as Sydneysiders.
The City’s History and Growth
Sydney was actually the first settled city in Australia, back in 1788 when it was first established at Sydney Cove by Arthur Phillip as a penal colony for Great Britain. The city sits on hills which surround Port Jackson, better known as Sydney Harbour, the location of the famous Sydney Opera House and the Harbour Bridge. Australia has been inhabited for at least 30,000 years by indigenous Australians.
The city itself is surrounded by beautiful parks, bays, inlets and rivers, as well as the famous beaches Manly Beach and the incredibly popular Bondi Beach. Visitors might like to stroll through Hyde Park or visit the Royal Botanic Gardens. The city has hosted some international sporting events like the Commonwealth Games in 1938, and the 2000 Summer Olympics.
Sydney typically has a temperate climate, meaning it leans towards warm summers and mild winters. The city does receive rainfall throughout the year and since it sits so close to the Pacific Ocean, its temperatures are controlled by the ocean, making it less susceptible to extreme temperatures found further inland.
Since Australia is situated in the Southern Hemisphere, their warmest month is January, at the height of their summer. The average temperature is usually about 65-75 °F, with only a few days exceeding 86 °F. For visitors to Sydney in winter, expect temperatures of about 46-68 °F.
Getting Around Sydney
Sydney Airport is the busiest airport in Australia and the way most people arrive in Sydney. One of the easiest ways to get around Sydney is to pick up a rental car straight at the airport. While it’s more expensive than choosing public transport, it’s cheaper than relying on taxis, and having your own vehicle gives you the freedom to get around the whole city on your own terms. Sydney’s public transport system includes multiple bus lines, rail and several ferry routes. You’ll find more information about Sydney’s public transport here.
Things to Do
Sydney is a fantastic city to visit as it is consistently ranked one of the world’s best cities. The city has no shortage of things to see and do. For example, it has museums and galleries with the best art pieces, restaurants and bars that are sure to tempt anyone’s taste buds, and the parks and nature surrounding the city are second to none.
The city has plenty of festivals such as Sydney’s Film Festival, Writer’s Festival and of course its huge New Year’s Eve event showcasing a giant fireworks display off the Sydney Harbour Bridge. Any visitor to this gorgeous city will find plenty to do, places to relax and unwind and will definitely make Sydney a must-return city on their list.