I have lived in Sydney for many years, I studied and worked here so this city is familiar to me. Visiting the CBD (Central Business District) area is kind of the must-do in Sydney. Sydney CBD is often referred to “the City” which include Haymarket, Chinatown, George Street, Darling Harbour and the Rocks.
There are a number of things to do when you are in this area.
Sydney Tower is the tallest structure in the CBD area, at the top you can see Sydney skyline with 360 degree unblocked view, including Harbour Bridge and Opera House. The 90 mins of all you can eat buffet include Australian fresh seafood (oyster and prawn), kangaroo meat, Japanese, Chinese & Thai cuisine. The best part is you are able to enjoy the revolving view of the city.
2. Darling Harbour
Darling Harbour is a harbour adjacent to the city centre, the Sydney Aquarium and Madame Tussauds Wax Museum are located here. The Chinese Garden and Big harbourside Shopping Center are also located here. Oh yes, if you love gambling, there is the Star Casino. Cockle Bay in Darling Harbour has lots of trendy pubs, cafe, and nice restaurants. It is really cool to have dinner, to see the night view of the harbour and looking at people walking up and down. You can spend the whole day here with your family as there are so many activities to do for the adults and kids.
3. George Street
George Street is an important street in Sydney, also the oldest street in Australia. Some of the important architectures are located here, such as the Queen Victoria Building, The Strand Arcade, Sydney Town Hall and St Andrew’s Cathedral.
4. Mini Denden Town in Sydney – Kings Comics
Don’t worry if you have not visited the mecca for anime Kingdom – Denden town in Osaka Japan.
Kings Comics George Street, has a huge range of cools stuff, from superhero from western and Japanese, all line up neatly at the window display. You will also find manga, anime, comics, graphic novels, toys etc!
My favorite Totoro! Totoro appeared in one of the most famous anime called “My Neighbor Totoro” by Hayao Miyazaki
Super Mario – The Nintendo Game which is hits in the 80s
Bambi – the American animated film directed by David Hand.
Mary Poppins – She loves the umbrella and always seen with a suitcase.
5. The Strand Arcade
Strand Arcade is a heritage-listed Victorian-style retail arcade established in 1891. From the outside, you can’t see much difference but inside you will discover the grace and elegance of this building. The iron lace balconies, stained glass windows, and its cedar stairs are something you will encounter when you walk inside the shopping mall. Things here are posh and expensive, good for window shopping.
6. QVB – Queen Victoria Building
The Romanesque architecture of QVB is an iconic landmark in the CBD of Sydney. The dominant feature is the huge dome at the top and the stained glass window. The architect is George McRae. It is now a shopping center with restaurants. I used to work here during the school holiday as a part-time salesperson in one of the high-end Australia sweater shop called – Coogi Australia, an Australian label. Bill Cosby, the American comedian once wore the colorful sweater in his show! Every sweater from Coogi is individual and you can’t spot two identical sweaters.
7. Sydney Town Hall
When I worked in Sydney Martin Place or CBD, Sydney Town Hall is a great meeting point for me whenever I wanted to meet up with friends after work for dinner or a drink. The steps at the front hall has a huge space for people to wait and sit. This is a major landmark in the heart of the city built more than 130 years ago.
8. “To Sail, To Stop” Statue
A large bronze anchor designed to represent a sailing ship can be seen not far from the Town Hall. This statue has been made with the support of the Chinese Community to mark their contribution since the early days of the City. In a wider sense, “To Sail, To Stop”, symbolises all those who have traveled and who have chosen to stay.
9. Oldest in Australia – St Andrew’s Cathedral
Sit next to the Town Hall, St Andrew’s Cathedral built-in 1819, the oldest cathedral in Australia. If you see the cathedrals in Europe, then this one here has nothing special and small. If you have not seen any grand cathedral, you still find St Andrew’s Cathedral very pretty, pay attention to the beautiful stained glass window and the sandstone wall, a lovely neo-gothic architecture.
10. Sydney Harbour Bridge
There are a number of places to check out the Sydney Harbour Bridge, you can go to Circular Quay or do a cruise ride. Alternatively, you can also walk across the Sydney Harbour Bridge as it is really short distance only, slightly over 1 km only and it is free. If you love adventure, then go for Sydney Harbour Climb. There is a total of 1,002 steps up to the summit and a truly great experience.
11. Opera House
A visit to Australia wouldn’t be complete without a tour to the Sydney Opera House at Bennelong Point. The billowing white sails of the Sydney Opera House are made of white ceramic tiles, looks super stunning from afar.