3 days in Sydney: what you can’t miss in the city

Does your Australian holiday start with 3 days in Sydney? Then have a look at our itinerary, which covers all of the city landmarks while giving you time to enjoy the seaside.

We love city getaways! To blend in the busy streets, admire historical buildings and discover the locals’ everyday habits. Luckily, Sydney offers all that and much more. Its privileged location allows a perfect mix of cosmopolitan buzz and a laid back beach lifestyle. Find out what you can’t miss during your 3 days in Sydney!


3 days in Sydney: what you can't miss in the city
Harbor Bridge. Credit: Tourism Australia


Day 1: Soaking up Sydney’s Vibe

A great start to your 3 days in Sydney is to join a walking tour with the I Am Free local guides. You will have a general perception of the city and a lot of great tips for the next few days. The walk ends at Circular Quay, where you can hop on a ferry to Manly Beach.

Sit back and enjoy the views of Sydney from a privileged spot, while sliding away towards a laid back neighbourhood. Once there, explore the local boutiques and stroll down the beach promenade reaching the track to Shelly Beach. Snorkeling gear is a must, for this little beach is the gateway to the clear waters of Cabbage Tree Bay Aquatic Reserve. Swim among the seagrass meadows and colourful schools of fish while keeping an eye out for the impressive Blue Groper.

3 days in sydney
Sydney Opera Bar. Credit: Tourism Australia


Day 2: The Harbor City

Kickoff your day early at Darling Harbor and take in the morning sea breeze, visit the Sea Life Aquarium and shop for charming souvenirs.

Next, cross the busy CBD streets and climb Sydney Tower Eye for a stunning 360º view of the city. Only two blocks away is Queen Victoria Building, a beautiful example of historical architecture encasing high end shops and cafes. Another fine example of conserved architecture worth visiting is St. Mary’s Cathedral, at the far end of Hyde Park. From there, you are just a few steps away from the Art Gallery of NSW, which holds an extensive variety of contemporary and aboriginal art in addition to a dynamic agenda of exhibitions and events.

Then grab some take away for your next destination, because you’re in for a picnic at the Royal Botanic Gardens! A great spot to explore on your 3 days in Sydney, with its flowers and tropical greens framing the waterfront. Once you’ve crossed the Gardens you will have reached Sydney Opera House, the postcard of Australia. Take a moment to admire this majestic place, surrounded by the city’s skyline and the iconic Harbor Bridge. You can book an adventurous climb or simply walk across it for another great viewpoint of the city.

Tucked in by the bridge is the historical district of The Rocks, where you’ll find the oldest pubs in town. Explore the cobblestone lane ways and picturesque alleys that tell the story of the first english colonials. Here is also where you can try a kangaroo burger, just step in the emblematic Australian Heritage Hotel!

Wrap up your day at the Opera Bar, toasting to a wonderful scenery and admiring the shells of the Sydney Opera House at sunset, as they light up with aboriginal artwork projections. If you have the chance, get tickets to one of the first-class shows or join a tour to visit this state of the art, modernist building.

Bondi Beach. Credit: Tourism Australia


Day 3: Hang out with the Cool Crowd

On your last day of the 3 days in Sydney we suggest you follow a local tradition: enjoy the beach! But first, stopover at the stylish Paddington markets, cool cafes and independent boutiques in the neighborhood of colorful typical houses.

From here you’re closer to the famous Bondi Beach, where you can relax in the golden sand or join the sporty vibe. You wouldn’t believe the crowds gathering here on a yoga position at sunrise! If you are into that, we recommend the Yoga By The Sea for a session right on Bondi Icebergs. This is also where the Coogee Coastal Walk begins, slithering along rock pools and the quiet Tamarama and Bronte beaches. For a full Australian experience, why not book a surfing lesson for a fun afternoon catching waves like a true Sydneyite?


We hope you enjoy your 3 days in Sydney, and if you’re headed to other parts of Australia make sure to check our guide of cities not to miss!

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