Sydney Itinerary for 4 Days
There is no doubt about it, Sydney is one of the best cities on earth! In this Sydney Itinerary, we visit the glistening harbour, take in the city’s impressive architecture, stay at stellar hotels and visit iconic landmarks like the Sydney Harbour Bridge and Opera House.
Learn to surf on our sun-kissed beaches and refuel at our funky brunch spots. Then, on your final day, take a leisurely day trip to the Blue Mountains, Hunter Valley or Central Coast where you’ll see life slows down but the good vibes ramp up!
You will be spoilt by the trendy boutiques, galleries, museums, and 5-star restaurants.
Sydney is the perfect destination for a long weekend or to spend 4-5 days here when you first arrive in Australia. If you’re thinking of planning a trip to Australia, our Sydney itinerary for 4 days is a great place to get started!
Where to Stay in Sydney
There is a huge range of accommodation available in Sydney from budget backpacker options to luxe 5-star suites with city views!
Deciding where to stay in Sydney can be quite overwhelming as there are lots of great places to choose! The best areas to stay in Sydney are the Sydney Centre, Bondi, Surry Hills, Darlinghurst, The Rocks and Darling Harbour. I recommend staying at Pullman Sydney Hyde Park Hotel or Novotel Sydney on Darling Harbour Hotel as they are very central and possess that Accor service that I just love!
Related: “Novotel, St Kilda Review”
How to get to Sydney
To get yourself from the airport into the city, you have a couple of options and the easiest is probably to grab an Uber.
I always hop on the Sydney Airport Link Train though, which takes 15 minutes and costs around $17. You will just need to get yourself an Opal Card which you will continue to top up and use to access public transport during your stay in Sydney.
Day 1- Sydney Itinerary for 4 Days
One of the first things I like to do when I arrive in a new city is to go walking! It’s so helpful to get to know the area and you will find many cool places to eat or things to do along the way.
Start your Sydney Itinerary with a walking tour in the CBD. There are a number of walking tours you can do in Sydney. I would recommend doing one of these to get a feel for Sydney. The guides are highly informative, and you will learn a lot about the city and its history in the process!
If walking isn’t your thing the hop on/off tour is also a great option.
Head to the Rocks
When it’s time for lunch, head to the Rock, Sydney’s colourful convict precinct with a rich history and epic views! Wander down the cobbled laneways and discover cute little cafes and friendly pubs for a bite to eat. If you are there on a weekend you will also be able to visit markets that are held every Saturday and Sunday from 10 am to 5 pm! Here you will have the opportunity to find some unique Australian gifts and souvenirs.
Dinner and Drinks at Circular Quay or Darling Harbour
One of my favourite things to do in Sydney is to watch the sunset over the harbour! The best place to do this is at Opera Bar! Enjoy sunset drinks and fresh oysters at Opera Bar before catching a performance at the Sydney Opera House. The iconic Sydney Opera House showcases more than 450 performances each year, from classical music, comedy, theatre, dance and more.
If there are no performances that coincide with your dates, dinner at Circular Quay is just as fun! Try Aria or Quay for something very fancy. Mr. Wong and Bar Patron are my favourite!
Top tip: Visiting between Fri, 24 May 2019 – Sat, 15 Jun 2019? The city ‘lights’ up for Vivid in an epic collaboration of lights, tech, art and amazing speakers showcased throughout the city!
Alternatively head over to Darling Harbour, there is often fireworks to watch after having a yummy meal at one of the top Darling Harbour restaurants!
Check out Accor’s Ultimate Vivid Sydney Guide to learn about the many installations scattered around the city.
Day 2- Sydney Itinerary for 4 Days
Perhaps my favourite place in Sydney, the famous Bondi Beach!
Take the 333 bus to Bondi Beach from Bondi Junction Station and grab a delicious breakfast and top notch coffee from one of the MANY hot spots! My favourites include Vida Surf Store, Harry’s, Speedos Cafes and Preach Cafe!
One of the best things to do in Bondi is obviously going to Bondi Beach! Discover why Australia’s most iconic beach enjoys the reputation it does. If visiting during summer, you may see them filming reality tv show Bondi Rescue, but don’t forget to swim between the flags to avoid making an appearance on the show!
TOP TIP: Sydney has lots of great vegan and vegetarian options! This guide showcases the best vegetarian and vegan restaurants in Sydney.
Other than beaching, brunching and doing the coastal walk (which I’ll go into more detail below), there are many other things to do in Bondi! See our highlights below!
- Bondi Weekend Markets at Bondi Public School
- Go shopping at the boutiques
- See ‘Sculpture by the Sea’ during 24 October – 10 November 2019
- Sunset drinks at Bucket List Bondi
After soaking up the iconic Bondi Beach, set out on an adventure across the beaches. The infamous coastline from Bondi to Coogee is very popular with both locals and tourists! The walk will take about 2 hours to complete, but I’d give a good 3 hours (4 if you are stopping at a cafe to refuel) so you can take photos along the way.
TOP TIP: If you are able, try to do the walk on a weekday when the crowds will be a little smaller.
If you haven’t seen enough gorgeous beaches yet, there’s a stack of coves and bays close to Watson’s Bay.
Take an afternoon dip at Parsley Bay, Camp Cove or Gibsons beach. These beaches will be much less crowded than the likes of Bondi or Coogee.
Once the sun goes down, head out for drinks and dinner at the iconic Watsons Bay boutique hotel.
Think chilled afternoons cocktails overlooking the harbour views as the sun goes down. They specialise in seafood platters, fresh produce and unforgettable parties.
We highly recommend catching a ferry to Watsons Bay, it’s just a 15-minute ride from Manly or Circular Quay. The ferry drops you off at Watsons Bay Wharf, only seconds from the entrance to the hotel. Uber is also an option.
Day 3- Sydney Itinerary for 4 Days
Day trip to the Blue Mountains
After enjoying the fast-paced city of Sydney wind down with a romantic weekend getaway to the Blue Mountains. In 2000 the Blue mountains were listed as a Unesco Heritage site, and with stunning sweeping mountain ranges, cascading falls there’s no surprise we have put it on our Australia bucket list as a must-see destination for all visitors.
Getting to the Blue Mountains is fairly easy, just jump on a train at central with the journey to Katoomba taking around 2 hours. Or self-drive the distance giving you the freedom to make scenic stops along the way.
Once you’ve arrived in Katoomba, you have the option of jumping on The Blue Mountains Explorer Bus which picks up from the Katoomba train station. The hop-on-hop-off bus is the most convenient way to explore all the great spots of the Blue Mountains.
Head to the Echo Point lookout, where you can see the iconic Three Sisters’ rock formation against the backdrop of the never-end mountain ranges. From this look-out there is an opportunity to take short hikes to other lookouts or you can head to Wentworth Falls for longer hikes to the waterfalls.
- The area includes ten national parks and features pretty waterfalls, sheer sandstone cliffs and vast regions of dense forest.
- Several pretty mountain villages full of cute shops and excellent cafes
- Spending the day in the Blue Mountains makes a nice contrast to the harbour and beaches in Sydney.
Editors Tip: If you are after a closer ‘day trip’, jump on the Manly ferry at Ciruclar Quay. Explore the beautiful beaches or even try a Manly surf lesson!
Day 4- Sydney Itinerary for 4 days
Breaky at the Grounds
It’s hard to create a Sydney itinerary without mentioning this iconic Aussie spot! Made famous by Instagram, spend your last morning brunching at the gorgeous Grounds!
Much more than just a cafe, the Grounds of Alexandria is a sanctuary from the hustle of city streets! Located in a former industrial precinct from the 1920s, The Grounds of Alexandria is a landmark cafe, restaurant, bar, garden, bakery & patisserie, coffee roastery, animal farm, florist, markets, wedding venue and often showcases different events.
The cafe serves delicious pastries, speciality coffee, and a fresh, innovative, farm-to-table style menu! Whilst you are waiting for your breaky explore the grounds and see the vibrant stands, flower market, gardens and meet some of the friendly locals!
Explore Surry Hills or Newtown
Spend your last day leisurely exploring the hip inner-city suburbs of Paddington, Surry Hills or Newtown. Wander down Oxford Street to Sydney’s fashion strip known as ‘The Intersection’, where you’ll discover premium Australian labels including Bassike and Camilla and Marc.
Jump on a train to central and Surry Hills is just a short walk from there. Enjoy a feast at the favs like Chin Chin and Nomad – note you will need to book, as these places can get very busy, especially on weekends. If you are on a budget enjoy a casual pub meal at Trinity Bar or the Clock Hotel on Crown Street.
Spend your last night in Sydney with some friendly locals at the Taronga Zoo Roar and Snore experience. Located in Mosman, Taronga Zoo is a conservation society and education hub that aims to ensure the safety and conservation of our wildlife.
This intimate safari is scheduled after normal operating hours, which means you will have epic views of Sydney Harbour as the sun sets before your once in a lifetime animal encounters.
During your stay you will be treated with intimate animal encounters, expert keeper talks, full buffet dinner, nibbles and drinks on arrival and luxe safari-style accommodation with stunning views of the Sydney Harbour!
You can get to the zoo by car, bus or ferry. I think the best way is by a short ferry ride from Circular Quay which takes around 10 minutes and gives epic views of the harbour.
Editors Tip: I highly recommend this experience for everyone, but if you have kids this is a top pick for things to do in Sydney during winter!
So that was our Sydney itinerary for 4 days! Have you been to Sydney before? What was your favourite thing to do? Let us know in the comments below!
This post was in collaboration with AccorHotels. As always opinions, photos and ideas remain my own.
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