Sydney or Melbourne...?

Travel Forums Australia / New Zealand & The Pacific Sydney or Melbourne...?

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1. Posted by Brayden15 (Budding Member 19 posts) 12y Star this if you like it!


So I'm stuck on which city I want to fly into (from Canada). I'm leaning more towards Melbourne, but I've heard great things about each city, so I thought I'd get the opinions of travellers on TP. A little background, I'll be leaving in March on 1 year WHV, backpacking and working all the a budget accommodation and a job is a huge factor!

Thanks all!


2. Posted by Sam I Am (Admin 5588 posts) 12y Star this if you like it!

Hi Brayden,

I think this actually depends on what you prefer in terms of a city, as both probably offer roughly the same in the way of budget accommodation and finding a job. Melbourne is a little cheaper than Sydney, but that will depend on the suburb more than anything. There might be a few more jobs in Sydney overall and since more backpackers arrive there, they're slightly more in tune to this kind of work, but considering there are less backpackers in Melbourne looking for work, I think the ratio jobs to people looking for jobs is pretty much the same.

Atmosphere wise they're both pretty different though. I like them both for their own things. Sydney has great beaches, better than Melbourne imo. But Melbourne is much more funky than Sydney... and has better going out and vibe in general. Again, my opinion only (don't want to offend anyone!) I like them both though; tough call!!!

ps. if I had to compare them to Canadian cities, I'd say Melbourne is more like Montreal and Sydney is more like Toronto. Or San Francisco (as Melbourne) vs. LA in the US (that's actually a better comparison than the Canadian one).

3. Posted by lil j (Travel Guru 1303 posts) 12y Star this if you like it!

Hey when i went to Oz i only got to go to Sydney and loved it there, only wish i had more time.

I have heard great things about Melb and really want to go there. Melb as i've heard is a lot smaller. I'm flying into sydney, also working and backpacking for 1-2 years...come join...

4. Posted by stevieh (Respected Member 615 posts) 12y Star this if you like it!

Hi there,
Can't go wrong with any city really. The Aussie 'vibe' is pretty universal. But as Sam says, I think Melbourne has a bit more culture, whereas if you're a pure party animal, then Sydney might be better.
Sydney's great generally though, with enough to see and do for yonks.

5. Posted by kacjp (Budding Member 14 posts) 12y Star this if you like it!

I'm biased, I live in Geelong (an hour from Melbourne). Sydney is much closer to everything else if you want to travel to other places, however Melbourne is just Melbourne. The culture in Melbourne is much better, you won't see any racist riots happening in Melbourne as all nationalities are spread out everywhere, not contained in certain suburbs and only those suburbs.

The beaches are better in Sydney, however a drive down to Torquay from Melbourne for the weekend will get you to some of the best beaches in the world (about an hour 20 mins away). My theory is, Sydney is great for the yuppies and Melbourne is great for the laid back ppl :)

6. Posted by maba (Inactive 227 posts) 12y Star this if you like it!

Hi Brayden,
Some very good replies - every place offers different experiences so why not do both!!
Fly into Melbourne, the weather March - April will be very good. Take in the attractions and experience the lifestyle. Then as we approach winter, you probably don't want to be in the Southern States so head North towards Sydney and continue into Queensland.
Cheers - Mario