I will be in Sydney for just over 4 days. Yes, I know it's not nearly long enough! But, I've never been before, so I am really looking forward to it. I've read tons of travel books, but since I'll be there for just a short time, I'd like to know what the absolute "do-not-miss" items are. Please help!
There's a lot you can see and do in Sydney in one day. For instance, you can see the harbour bridge, opera house and the CBD area in one day.
Other suggestions are:
1. take a ferry to Manly (about 40 mins from Circular Quay) and go for a walk to Manly beach. The ferry trip is quite amazing as you get lots of harbour views of many sites. The walk from the ferry to the actual beach in Manly is about 10 mins.
2. take a ferry or jetcat to Watsons Bay (about 15 mins by jetcat), and have a good walk around there. It's a small suburb right on the southern tip of the entrance to the harbour, and is almost like a peninsula in that you have the harbour on one side and the ocean on the other. The ocean side is known as "The Gap" and is a 5 min walk from the ferry stop. There is also a great pub for lunch/beers.
One thing I like doing when I'm in a big city is getting on a train and pretty much going wherever it takes me. You get a good, cheap view of the suburbs and surrounding areas away from the usual tourist places. In Sydney, try a train to Cronulla (beach) for a half day. The walk to the beach from the train station at Cronulla is about 5 minutes.
What James said and also make certain not to miss the Chinese Garden of Friendship (near Darling Harbour).
It might not be quite as pretty as the Chinese Tea Garden in San Francisco, but it's still an amazing feat of beauty crammed into a tiny space, going on forever and ever. You can easily wander around in it for two or three hours.
Also try having lunch or dinner in any of the countless little restaurants or cafes on Glebe Point Road, about ten minutes southwest of central station (take bus 431-434 iirc). I absolutely love that neighbourhood. Right at the edge of the CBD, but it feels almost like a little village, with people always smiling and randomly stopping for a chat left and right, and a very bohemian vibe about it all.
I agree with Sander; Glebe is very good. In fact I had one of the nicest pizzas I've ever had in Glebe.
A friend of mine moved there about a year ago so I go there fairly often now.
hehe! thanks James-i am thinking of 4-5 days in Sydney-i suppose you either love it or hate it! but you can't say until you've been there i suppose!
I can't think of any reason to hate Sydney!
My partner isn't a huge fan of cities generally, but on our RTW trip, Sydney was probably her favourite place. There's something for everyone and such a relaxed feel about it.
Thanks everyone! I really appreciate your advice!