We were in Sydney at the end of November 2015, when it was the start of summer-time there. The exchange rate at the time was 1 USD to 1.36 AUD. We stayed at the Park Hyatt Sydney – review here. Here’s what we did and where we ate.
1 Day Tour of Blue Mountains, Featherdale zoo, and cruise
For one of the days, we decided to book a 1 day tour of the Blue Mountains, Featherdale Zoo, and a river cruise. This is the tour we chose. I got the idea from OMAAT’s post. We actually enjoyed the tour. They picked us up from the hotel at 7:30AM, and we went to the zoo first. We spent an hour there petting the koala bear, feeding the baby kangaroos, and watching the crocodile feeding (highlight.)
We then went to the Blue Mountains, which I thought was a bit overrated. You can do some minor hiking (30 minutes) there to the “Three Sisters” peaks. We did pay for the $35 AUD upgrade for the ‘rides’ there. It consisted of a gondola ride and a roller-coaster type ride. To be honest, I don’t think it’s worth the money, but my wife convinced me to do it anyway.
The last part was a ‘river cruise,’ but it essentially was a public ferry ride back to the wharf close to the Sydney Opera House. I really do recommend this tour since you see so much of the Sydney area in one day. I’d skip the upgrade for the rides though.
On the other day, I wish we had done a tour of the opera house or attended an event there. Instead, we had a friend who lived there who walked us around the downtown area and then took us to the Fish Market, which I highly recommend. We thought about doing the Sydney bridge walk, but that was too expensive for our tastes. We also didn’t go to Bondi beach, which everyone says is the beach to go to. I feel like I should have stayed 1 extra day in Sydney to do all these things.
This is THE place for happy hour or just drinks in general. Lots of beautiful people dressed up for the Opera House. Lots of seating although can be hard to get a seat.
This was a restaurant that the Park Hyatt recommended. It’s a prixe fixed dinner. We got some complimentary champagne due to the Park Hyatt making the reservation for us. You have the best view of the Opera House, especially if you can get a seat at the window. We had an inner table, so while not great, it was still a good view nonetheless. It was pricey though, so beware.
Altitude at Shangri-La Restaurant
Our friend took us to the Shangri-La restaurant as well for a good view of the nightline. The prixe fixed dinner wasn’t that great. We had the live osyters and felt they were too warm for us, and when we told them, they were nice enough to bring us 4 more warm live oysters. Dough! All in all, the food wasn’t great and I wouldn’t recommend it. If you want a view, go to Aria instead.
Sydney Fish Market
Like I mentioned before, this is the 2nd largest public fish market (I think after Tokyo.) You can get some huge lobster and prawns here. Our friend got us a 2kg lobster which was both massive and delicious. We also ordered the cold boiled prawns, and they were the freshest prawns I’ve ever tasted. Just delicious. Beware! Fresh seafood is expensive in Sydney, but it just might be worth the cost.
Like I said, if you do go, try to stay at least 3 days there and don’t miss out on the things that I didn’t get to do…this trip!