australia · Solo Travel Destinations · Uncategorized

Solo Travel: Sydney, Australia

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Are you ready to take the solo travel leap? If you’re like me, Sydney seems an impossible, unattainable dream—a trip of a lifetime! But it’s so far away. You can’t possibly deserve to treat yourself to a trip so dreamy, so frivolous, so FAR! But I’ve been to Sydney three times now, and the only question I have left is why in the world did I wait so long?! I don’t want you to have to ask yourself the same question, so here is your quick guide to traveling solo to crazy-wonderful Sydney, Australia!

Why Sydney?

Why not?! It’s inarguably one of the most iconic cities in the world, recognized by people everywhere. There are exotic animals to see, incredible accents to hear, and independence to be found in beautiful Sydney. It’s also reasonably priced for Americans, and you will never run out of things to do!

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Oh, just a casual morning run to the Sydney Opera House!

Is It Safe?

Yes! Just look both ways twice before crossing the street! I have never felt threatened in Sydney, but as usual, be smart, don’t flash your cash, and always look like you know where you’re going. For added safety, look for the “Nightsafe Area” in the train stations; this is close to the night guard stand. For all my tips for safety traveling solo, check out my Solo Travel Page! For more on preparing for Sydney, check out What to Know Before You Visit Sydney!

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Nightsafe Area

How Can I Get There?

Unless you are heading to Sydney from elsewhere in Australia (and even then), you will most likely need to fly! If you’re coming from the U.S., it will take two days to get there, and one very long day to get back, so remember that in your planning! For the best way to get there from wherever you may be, take a look at Rome 2 Rio!

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Sunrise over Sydney, from the air!

Where to Stay?

I am a major advocate for staying in the city center. It’s a bit safer since you don’t have as far to go if you’re out late at night, and who doesn’t want to be close to the sites they want to see when traveling? Transportation can get expensive going back and forth, as well. There are plenty of hostels, hotels, and other accommodations, so choose a place that is convenient to the things you want to see and do. You’ll be glad you did! 

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My Bridge View Room at the Marriott at Circular Quay!

How to Stay Occupied?

If you find yourself bored your first time in Sydney, it’s not Sydney’s fault! See an opera or another type of show at the iconic and world-renown Sydney Opera House, treat yourself to the sweeping views of Sydney Harbor on the Sydney Harbor Bridge Climb; see Koalas and Platypuses at the Taronga Zoo; roam the botanical gardens; take the Manly Ferry to Manly Beach! If you’re a running you’ll be delighted to know that you can run for miles through the Botanical Gardens and along the waterfront without crossing a single street or looking for cars—just other runners and walkers!

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Taking in the sweeping views from atop the Sydney Harbor Bridge Museum inside the first pylon!

How to Save Money?

So let’s be real… those long-haul flights can be expensive! Here are a few money-saving tips I came across and I would love to pass along to you:

  • There is an AUD$14.30 fee tacked on to the AUD$4..40 base fare for the train from Sydney Airport to the CBD (Central Business District, or downtown). To avoid the fee, you can walk to the Wolli Creek Station and take the train from there. Also, check Uber. A taxi will be more expensive than the train unless you can find people to split the fare with you.
  • Instead of paying for the Bridge Climb or Sydney Tower, take in bird’s-eye views from Pylon 1 on the bridge! There is a museum along with a viewing area for AUD$15.
  • Looking for free things to do? Try the Botanical Gardens, walk across the Sydney Harbor Bridge, enjoy the Art Gallery of New South Wales, listen to free music at Opera Bar every night and on weekend afternoons, take in the Museum of Contemporary Art, visit St. James and St. Mary’s Cathedrals, and check out The Rocks Discovery Museum!

Are you ready to take on Sydney solo? Want more? For tips, itineraries, and what to eat, check out my Australia Page!

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