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Sydney see + do

It would be remiss, maybe even criminal, to visit Sydney without taking to the water. Few cities can boast such a dazzling array of ways to appreciate nature, be it soaking up the sun on the beach, hiding away in a secluded cove, or taking in the dramatic panorama from the narrow heads, where harbor gives way to ocean. Of course, there's more to Sydney than sheer physical beauty. The city has a flourishing art scene, great shopping (especially for hard-to-find homegrown labels), a lively gay subculture, and plenty of ways to gain insight into Australian history and culture. And after all that…you can go to the beach with a clear conscience.

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Beaches, Sydney

Sydney has 37 ocean beaches, stretching from North Palm in the north to Cronulla in the south. There are also more than a dozen placid harbor beaches, including...more

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Circular Quay and Ferry Rides

It may be the name of Sydney Harbour's busy ferry hub, but Circular Quay also encompasses the wide sweep of foreshore jammed with boutiques, restaurants, bars,...more

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Gay & Lesbian Mardi Gras, Sydney

2008 marks the 30th anniversary of Australia's foremost gay pride event: For those who marched in the original, it must seem like a thousand years since the...more

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Harbour Bridge Climb, Sydney

The three-and-a-half-hour climb up and over the bridge, snaking along the girders, is thrilling, but not for the unfit—and best avoided on very windy or...more

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Luna Park, Sydney

The restored 1930s amusement park is back, and entry is free (although the rides themselves will cost you; unlimited day passes are available). Grown-ups can...more

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The Rocks, Sydney

Just a few streets west from Circular Quay is a neighborhood that seems frozen in time, with a 19th-century pub on nearly every corner. The oldest preserved...more

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Royal Botanic Gardens, Sydney

This undulating series of gardens wrapped around the southeastern edge of Sydney Harbour was the site of the city's first farm. Today it's an oasis where...more

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Sydney Aquarium, Sydney

Giant stingrays, sharks, huge turtles, and thousands of fish swim right over your head as you walk through this aquarium's feature attraction, an underwater...more

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Sydney Opera House, Sydney

Are those soaring roof peaks more like giant shells or sails? You can decide for yourself when you take a behind-the-scenes tour and get up close to one of the...more

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Sydney Tower, Sydney

It's been dominating the skyline for a quarter of a century, as both the highest point in the city and the highest observation deck in the Southern Hemisphere....more

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Information may have changed since date of publication. Please confirm details with individual establishments before planning your trip.



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