Sydney Harbour in a day
When planning a trip to Sydney I'd suggest setting aside a day to explore Sydney's harbour. Sydney is a very clean city with a great atmosphere. Despite it being 44 degrees Celsius during my visit I was passed by a runner every few minutes. Around each corner there is a water fountain for you and a doggy tap. Although teeming with tourists, locals are easy to spot with their sun kissed hair, a tan and dressed either in gym clothing or office attire in keeping with the famously well dressed women on the US TV series 'Suits'. A day around Sydney had me wanting to be healthier, learn how to surf and go shopping for a new wardrobe!
I found one of the best ways to get around Sydney was using public transport. You can load an Opel card that you then just 'tap in and out' of. This works for busses, trains and ferries. There is a maximum daily limit of $15 during the week and $2.50 on Sunday. Start early in the day and make the most of it.
We took the Metro to Milson's point which then allowed us to walk across Sydney's famous harbour bridge. Unfortunately it has high fencing which makes taking decent photos difficult, but you can pay to access a stone building at the far end which gives you this opportunity. If you are feeling particularly adventurous you can walk on top of the bridge (complete with harness).
Upon leaving the bridge you walk through an area called 'The Rocks'. This is where the first settlers set foot on Australian soil. This historical area is very charming with older stone buildings many of which have been turned into cafes, bars and restaurants. There is a free tour of the area that leaves from the visitors centre everyday at 10am.
Sydney’s main attraction for most people is of course the iconic Opera House. You can get close enough to touch the individual tiles of the Opera House and see that despite what you'd always imagined they are in actual fact not white!
One of the best ways to appreciate the Opera House is by ferry. Instead of spending money on a tourist boat, use your Opel card and catch the ferry to Manly. The ferry's skippers are friendly and quick to suggest local hangouts as you sail past extravagant houses and beautiful coastline. Manly itself is well worth a visit with it's great beaches, a friendly vibe and a large selection of ice cream shops!
Another ferry worth considering is the one to Darling Harbour. This trip offers a different view of the harbour and you sail underneath the bridge which allows you to get a photo of the bridge and opera house in one frame.
Darling harbour provides a unique atmosphere in the early evening when the bars are full of young executives and the live music gets underway. If you are looking for somewhere for dinner, the possibilities are endless. You can't go wrong at Darling Harbour, Sydney Harbour or The Rocks.