In Sydney for 24 hours? Explore the best of the city.Less
8AM: Enjoy a delicious breakfast at industrial-hip café/roastery Reuben Hills in Surry Hills, and make the most of the great coffee teamed with Latin American-inspired dishes.
10AM: Take a morning stroll around the harbour. Start at Sydney Harbour Bridge and walk along the waterfront to the Museum of Contemporary Art, where culture vultures can linger (the rooftop MCA Cafe has ace views), before looping around Circular Quay to the Sydney Opera House, and even on to the Royal Botanic Garden.
11 AM : Pick up a piece of Australian design from the appealing selection at Spence & Lyda homewares store in Waterloo, which also stocks gorgeous international pieces. It’s an atmospheric showroom filled with stylish, finds. Nearby restaurant Kepos & Co (Casba, Shop 5) is perfect for refuelling.
NOON: Source local fashion at Kitx, one of many rated Australian brands at the junction of Oxford Street and Glenmore Road in Paddington. Founded by Kit Willow Podgornik, this exciting label offers feisty women’s fashion and footwear ticking the sustainable style box. Her flagship boutique, sporting indoor trees, is just as creative.
1PM: Discover contemporary Cantonese delights over lunch at Mr. Wong, from dumplings to steamed mud crab and crispy eggplant. The dramatic decor comprises brick, old tiles, seductive murals and elegant Chinese accessories, and the glass counters display whole Peking ducks and baskets of dim sum created by chefs Dan Hong and Michael Luo.
2PM: Check into the boutique Paramount House Hotel, part of a sociable hub including a lobby café, cosy cinema, wine bar and rooftop gym. Stunning heritage-modern design is by Breathe Architecture, with indoor-outdoor zones in stylish rooms and local art and amenities.
3PM: Explore Australian art at the Art Gallery of New South Wales. The Grand Courts display 19th-century paintings by major names such as Tom Roberts and Arthur Streeton. Opposite, the 20th-century gallery captures Sydney in more modern times, with works celebrating the bridge, harbour and beaches. Look out for Australian talents John Brack, Sidney Nolan, Margaret Preston, and Grace Cossington Smith. Leave time for the inspiring Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Gallery.
4PM: Buy some tasty treats at Haigh’s Chocolates, Australia’s oldest family-owned chocolate maker, founded in Adelaide in 1915. The Sydney store is in the magnificent Queen Victoria Building (QVB), a shopping arcade designed by George McRae and constructed between 1893 and 1898.
5PM: Savour a fine selection of European and Australian wines at one of Sydney’s best bars, 10 William Street in Paddington. This intimate, convivial watering hole is renowned for its Italian-accented bar snacks and share plates too.
7PM: Get your glad rags on for a show at Sydney Opera House, such as a Puccini or Verdi classic in the gorgeous Joan Sutherland Theatre, or a lively performance of a Dvořák, Beethoven or Mahler symphony in the majestic main Concert Hall. Ballet, contemporary dance, theatre and gigs are also up for grabs.