Sydney is not only a city – it is an idea. It is a goal. Its infrastructure is something to look up to, and its breathtaking cityscape is a place people from all over the world aspire to live in. Few cities in the world are as diverse, exciting, bustling yet spacious as Sydney is. It’s a destination I fall in love with every time I get a chance to visit. If you’ve never been to Sydney and yearn to find out why it is a place like no other, here are a few things you should know.
Why There Is No Other Place On Earth Like Sydney
Begin with the harbor
Sydney is also known under the moniker of the Harbour City for a good reason. The delta of Parramatta River spreads into a complicated web of twist and turns that is lined with endless rows of buildings and cut by countless bridges. It’s hard to discern the exact place where it finally marries the Pacific.
As a newcomer to Sydney, you should go straight to the central business district – the area that has the densest grouping of landmarks, hotspots, and new establishments. Proceed to the rocks – the historic area of Sydney’s downtown that ends on the shores of Sydney Harbour. The sheer spectacular synthesis of the water and the city will leave you breathless, and to truly relish the size of it all, board the ferry to Manly and discover the new perspective of the city as you slowly sail on the Pacific waters.
Enjoy the charming Manly
Manly is one of the hippest suburbs of Sydney among tourists. The famous Manly Beach is a fantastic spot to spend a lazy summer afternoon and enjoy aquatic activities like swimming and surfing. This is also a place where you’ll be able to gauge the sheer diversity of both residents and newcomers, as well as get a real feel of the relaxed and upbeat atmosphere of the city.
It goes without saying that Manly also has numerous shopping malls and fabulous restaurants. The food is held up to a high standard, so if you’re in the mood for a culinary adventure, this is an excellent place to start.
Savor the city lights from the rooftops
Once the night comes, Sydney turns into a dazzling kaleidoscope of dancing lights. The sheer magic of this site is nowhere more evident than from a good vantage point – high on the rooftops of the central business district.
Thankfully, Sydney has the incredible number of establishments with access to the highest floors, and if I’d have to single out a particularly nifty place, the Old Clare Hotel has the most fantastic rooftop bar near Central Park (not to be confused with THE Central Park). Go out for a few glasses of the cocktail, find a comfortable spot on the rooftop and enjoy the mosaic of city lights.
Dare to try the exciting bridge climb
On the other hand, if you want to “earn” your right to a high vantage point, there is no experience that can quite compare to the blood-pumping climb to the top of the Sydney Harbour Bridge. This magnificent structure is a landmark of historical significance to the city and one of the greatest icons of Sydney, along with the opera house.
Since you can go on a climb during the day or night, I recommend to time it just right, so you’ll get to the top as the sun begins to set. Don’t worry – you’ll get a sturdy belt that is then attached to a metal hook to a safety cable which leads up the bridge. The journey itself looks daunting and exciting, but all the safety precautions are made to make it 100% safe. The climb itself will take you around an hour and a half, and the view from the top of the arch is breathtaking.
Walk into a whole new world of Chinatown
As I’ve mentioned before, Sydney is a fantastic multicultural environment, and this is reflected in the physical makeup of the city as well. Out of all the puzzle pieces that make up this diverse urban mosaic, Chinatown is by far the most captivating area. It’s a colorful hub of shops, restaurants, and cafes, and it has its unique atmosphere that you just have to taste as a newcomer.
When you get a chance to climb to the higher ground and take a long hard glance at how the enormous harbor blends with the glistening cityscape in a spectacular fashion. When I did this for the first time, it dawned on me that this is what an ideal modern city looks like. From there on, I’ve come to measure every bustling metropolis to Sydney – yes, even New York. Call it a personal preference. But you don’t have to believe me. Book a vacation in Sydney and see for yourself.