Looking for a special weekend away with your loved one? Sydney is the capital of New South Wales and the gateway to the state’s national parks, coastal regions and wine areas. Australia’s oldest wine region, the Hunter Valley, is within driving distance of Sydney. There are so many places to visit and things to do in Sydney. Where do you start?
A stunning harbour, a world-renown Opera House and over 70 beaches are all good reasons to visit Sydney. Bondi Beach is world-famous and (according to the Guinness Book of Records) Hyams Beach has the whitest sand in the world. Yes, Sydney is home to many famous Australian landmarks!
- 20 Romantic Things To Do In Sydney For Couples
- 1- Cruise around on a motorbike
- 2- Cruise Sydney Harbour
- 3- Climb the Sydney Harbour Bridge
- 4- Hang out at Bondi Beach
- 5- Wander around Darling Harbour
- 6- Explore Sydney Harbour’s Hidden Coves
- 7- Go Shopping In The Rocks
- 8- Go on a whale-watching cruise
- 9- See the lights of VIVID Festival
- 10- Spend the night on Cockatoo Island
- 11- Take a Helicopter tour of Sydney
- 12- Relax in the Royal Botanic Gardens
- 13- See the New Year’s Eve Fireworks
- 14- Go on a bar crawl
- 15- Check out Sydney’s cultural scene
- 16- Visit Taronga Zoo
- 17- Spend Australia Day in Sydney
- 18- See the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras parade
- 19- Take A Day Trip To The Hunter Valley
- 20- Explore The Blue Mountains
- 21- Go On The Grand Pacific Drive
- If you have a few days to spare
- Where to eat and drink in Sydney
- 20 Romantic Things To Do In Sydney For Couples
20 Romantic Things To Do In Sydney For Couples
1- Cruise around on a motorbike
Travel writer Maria Visconti, who lives in Sydney, recently experience the city in a way that made her fall in love. Read her account here:
I have fallen in love with an Indian, an American Indian this time… A veteran of the American plains.
Brave, hardy and agile but soft on my curves and comfortable to ride.
Is your mind taking you somewhere risky?
This Indian Scout has shown me Sydney in a way I had never seen it before.
Together we discovered the pleasures of the North Shore; flew a drone over the Twin Heads; explored the attractions of Shelly Beach – including the intriguing motorcycle wreck- crossed bridges I have crossed before but never with my head thrown back admiring the overhead structure.
And that is what is different and exciting about motorcycle riding.
You see everything and you are part of the landscape.
You star in your own movie and you turn heads.
None of this happens when you ride a car where you view is framed and you see things as if you are watching TV.
The Indian Scout is an American classic motorbike. Low, comfortable, powerful, agile.
A cruiser with style with a V-Twin 1133cc engine.
Established in 1901 in Springfield, Massachusetts, Indian motorcycles were second to none, and in just a few years the company became the largest motorcycle manufacturer in the world dominating the public market alongside Harley Davidson.
During WWII Indian devoted a huge part of production to the allied forces, causing their collapse in 1953, leaving Harley Davidson to lead the market for decades to follow.
Despite this, Indian motorcycles kept their reputation for their performance.
Sixty years after, a pure breed Indian rolled out the production line and today, after its rebirth in 2013, this brand is once again celebrated for being the original and most traditional motorcycle company – one synonymous with American culture flaring up the hundred-year-old rivalry between Indian and Harley Davidson.
The guys at Black Eagle Escapes ride them with panache and take you on a Rock-n-Roll ride full of fun, information, action and thrilling sights on well-researched itineraries designed to please.
We ride, stop, take selfies, admire the view, fly drones, learn about Sydney.
Giacomo points out the good restaurants, cafes and picture-perfect spots.
I have lived in Sydney for over 20 years but this ride has shown me things I’ve never seen before or perhaps saw but didn’t notice.
If you’d like to take a ride on the wild side, have a date with an Indian Scout.
Whether you are a Sydneysider or come from another state or from overseas, you will not regret it.
And as for the engaging Giacomo and Roberto, the Black Eagle Escape’ guys, you could say they are the icing on the cake…
2- Cruise Sydney Harbour
A lovely way to spend a memorable few hours with your partner is to cruise Sydney Harbour.
You can choose one of the many cruises or if you’re on a budget just take the ferry.
Looking for a Sydney day trip that’s easy to do? Take the ferry to Manly and spend the day on the beach.
3- Climb the Sydney Harbour Bridge
The Sydney Harbour BridgeClimb, walking across the top of the bridge, is an adrenalin rush you’re unlikely to forget.
Don’t worry, it’s safe.
You’ll be strapped into a harness.
It’s a particularly great way to see the city if you have a fear of heights.
After all, what’s better than conquering a fear while visiting one of the most beautiful cities in the world?
4- Hang out at Bondi Beach
Surf, swim or sunbake at Bondi Beach.
If you prefer to stay dry, there are gorgeous cliff-top views along the Bondi to Coogee Beach Coastal Walk.
Bondi Beach is one of those beaches you simply must visit, even if to say you’ve put your toes in the sand.
After all, it’s one of those iconic things to do in Sydney you need to experience to brag about to your friends!
It’s one of Sydney’s busier beaches (there are plenty of other beaches around of course) and has lots of atmosphere.
5- Wander around Darling Harbour
Spend the day wandering around Darling Harbour, which is a busy waterfront entertainment precinct with lots of shops, cafes and restaurants.
Places to eat and drink range from casual cafes and pubs to sleek bars and fine dining. There are many excellent restaurants but sometimes the quality or service can be a bit hit and miss. Here’s a good guide to Darling Harbour’s restaurants.
Other things to see in Darling Harbour is Madame Tussaud’s, Sydney SEALIFE Aquarium and WILDLIFE Sydney Zoo.
Also well worth visiting is the Australian Maritime Museum, which has an impressive 140,000 items and 13 historic vessels on display.
6- Explore Sydney Harbour’s Hidden Coves
Explore Sydney’s beautiful harbour and discover hidden coves on a kayak or yachting adventure.
Or you can just catch a local ferry or book a dinner cruise.
Do you think Sydney Harbour is the most beautiful harbour in the world?
Well, I’ve seen a few and I’ll have to say it’s right up there at the top of my list.
A great way to see Sydney Harbour is to book a room with a harbour view.
There are loads of luxury hotels that have fantastic views, including Intercontinental Sydney, Park Hyatt and Four Seasons.
7- Go Shopping In The Rocks
Learn about Sydney’s history on a tour of the Rocks area.
This is where colonial Australia was born.
The Rocks has a historic ambience with old sandstone buildings that house craft shops, cafes and boutiques. And you could easily spend a few hours or even a few days exploring The Rocks area.
At night, the bars and pubs come alive.
This is the place to get into the Aussie spirit and one of the best things to do in Sydney to get into the swing of the city’s nightlife is to go on a pub crawl.
8- Go on a whale-watching cruise
Being an island, Australia’s marine life is important to our ecosystem and even in Sydney, which is Australia’s biggest and busiest city, it’s not difficult to be touched by experiences with marine life.
Going on a whale-watching cruise are two memorable ways to learn about the denizens of the ocean.
Sydney is a great place to combine a harbour cruise with a sail through Sydney Heads to the open waters of the Tasman.
9- See the lights of VIVID Festival
Winter is an exciting time to visit Sydney, especially during the VIVID Festival in May and June.
Each year, during winter, Sydney lights up the sky with an amazing outdoor immersive light experience.
It’s like one big fairyland with twinkling lights and plenty of fun distractions after dark.
10- Spend the night on Cockatoo Island
Cockatoo Island is Sydney Harbour’s largest island that played a significant role in Sydney’s history.
Explore the historic prison barracks, military guardhouse and period houses along with Fitzroy Dock and a workshop used to service Royal Navy ships.
The island is located at the junction of the Parramatta and Lane Cover Rivers and is only a 10-minute ferry trip from Circular Quay.
For more things to do in NSW read:
11- Take a Helicopter tour of Sydney
Fly above Sydney and the Northern Beaches in a seaplane or a helicopter for a memorable birds’-eye view of the city.
Wow! The view will always be etched in your mind.
You’ll be surprised at the plunging cliffs and the waterways, which look absolutely stunning from the sky.
12- Relax in the Royal Botanic Gardens
Visit the Royal Botanic Gardens, which is a tranquil escape in the heart of Sydney.
It’s amazing how serene the gardens are, just a short walk away from Sydney’s vibrant city centre.
It’s one of the things to do in Sydney that is often overlooked.
13- See the New Year’s Eve Fireworks
Celebrate Sydney New Year’s Eve at one of the world’s biggest parties.
New Year’s Eve draws around 1.6 million people to the Sydney Harbour foreshore to watch the spectacular fireworks display (it’s a larger crowd than Paris, London or New York).
Sydney is famous for its spectacular fireworks display on Sydney Harbour and catching the fireworks from the world’s famous harbour is one of the iconic things to do in Sydney.
If you haven’t picked your travel dates yet then why not plan to be in Sydney on New Year’s Eve?
Sydney puts on one of the best fireworks displays in the world and there are parties all around town.
Of course, book early as Sydney accommodation can shoot through the roof at this time of the year.
14- Go on a bar crawl
Glam up and go on a bar crawl of cool bars around the CBD, Surry Hills and Darlinghurst.
It’s one of the things to do in Sydney that is a lot of fun. Sydney is a top spot and has some of Australia’s best watering holes and restaurants.
Some of the coolest bars in Sydney are located in the city’s dim alleyways.
A bar crawl is a great way to get to know the soul of the city while having fun.
15- Check out Sydney’s cultural scene
Explore Sydney’s cultural side through a musical or a show or take a fascinating behind-the-scenes tour of the Opera House.
There’s so much on in Sydney, you could spend weeks just going to all the shows.
Sydney Festival (January) is a three-week mega event with 20 venues and over 1,000 artists.
There are dance groups, circus performances and a programme of music by the Sydney Symphony.
16- Visit Taronga Zoo
Visit Taronga Zoo, a not-for-profit organisation that supports wildlife conversation with an impressive collection of wildlife from around the world.
The zoo is in a picturesque location and covers a large area. Plan to spend the whole day.
17- Spend Australia Day in Sydney
Australia Day (January) is the best day of the year to soak up the atmosphere around the city and harbour.
There are performances around the city, in Hyde Park, Darling Harbour and at the Opera House.
Of course, don’t miss the fireworks at Darling Harbour.
18- See the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras parade
Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras (March) is a spectacular celebration that draws a crowd of over 20,000 people each year.
If you haven’t seen the parade, check it out as it’s likely to be one of the more memorable things to do in Sydney during your stay.
19- Take A Day Trip To The Hunter Valley
The Hunter Valley is a wine region of vineyards and cellar doors a two-hour drive from Sydney. It’s Australia’s oldest wine region and has over 120 wineries.
A trip around the Hunter Valley is a great way to discover a favourite wine or two or three.
20- Explore The Blue Mountains
The Blue Mountains is a 1 ½-hour drive from Sydne and is a World Heritage-listed bushwalking paradise with picturesque vistas of sandstone plateaus and valley views.
It’s a pristine region that can be explored as a day trip but staying for a night or two is a lovely way to soak up the atmosphere.
21- Go On The Grand Pacific Drive
The Grand Pacific Drive is an exploration of the south coast past beautiful beaches and bays.
The route passes over 30 national parks, marine parks and reserves.
Jervis Bay is the destination for dolphins, surfing and kayaking.
It’s possibly one of the most beautiful driving trips in Australia.
Turn up the music, wind down the windows and let the wind ruffle your hair.
If you have a few days to spare
Byron Bay is a popular destination for Sydneysiders looking for a relaxing weekend away.
It has some of the country’s best beaches and five national parks.
Cape Byron Lighthouse is the place to watch the sunrise.
Your first sight of Byron Bay will take your breath away.
The region is a blend of hip and hippy, with plenty of spa and healing practitioners as well as cool boutiques.
Lord Howe Island
Lord Howe Island is a two-hour flight from Sydney and a pristine island where time has stood still.
It’s one of four island groups in the world to be granted World Heritage status.
It’s an exclusive destination where only 400 visitors are allowed at a time.
The scenery is absolutely stunning.
Where to eat and drink in Sydney
1. The Star
The Star has several dining options including Black by Ezard’s, Balla’s Italian cuisine and Gelato Messina. There are a couple of hotels and Sydney’s casino is also part of the complex.
2. The Morrison Bar and Oyster Room
Love oysters? The Morrison Bar and Oyster Room is a classical oyster and ale house with a menu of Australian oyster varieties and an impressive list of craft beers and cocktails.
Quay is ranked in the San Pellegrino World’s 50 Best Restaurant list and has great food and spectacular views. It’s definitely a good choice if you’re looking to impress or be impressed.
4. The Glenmore Hotel
The Glenmore Hotel’s rooftop beer garden will impress with views of the Opera House and Harbour Bridge.
5. Opera Bar
Opera Bar has a large open-air terrace, live music, harbour views and a great vibe. And it’s right there at the base of the Sydney Opera House.
6. York 75
York 75 is the spot to huddle up in a private booth to watch a game.