By Tim Piccione
2nd Dec 2021
It’s been a hot minute since we could say this but travel and holidays are back on! It’s finally time for some well-deserved R&R.
If you’re looking for somewhere to go, think about booking your first holiday to Sydney—the Harbour City is finally open and vibing again in all its glory. So, why not renew your weekend plans and come enjoy the nightlife, beaches, and everything in between?
Whether you’re driving down from Brisbane, flying up from Melbourne or you’re simply seeking a much-needed staycation—Sydney has your summer weekend holiday plans covered.
We understand you might still be dusting off the ‘preparing for a holiday’ cobwebs (as we said, it’s been a while). That’s why we’ve started the itinerary planning and research for you by rounding up some of the best places to stay, eat and drink in Sydney, as well as a few experiences and nature adventures you have to check out. And don’t worry, we’ve found a few deals along the way to save you some coin too.
There’s nothing quite like a summer weekend in Sydney. A romantic getaway, a friend’s weekend away or some “me time”—here’s how you can renew your routine and recharge your batteries with a vacation in Sydney this summer.
Trade Your Usual Takeaway For Dining Out
There’s nothing we love more than being out on the town on holidays. Letting yourself order that extra cocktail, having a few daytime beers, stopping in for a late-night bite or treating yourself to some fine dining. Renewing your menu and eating to your heart’s content is all the better if it also means you can support Sydney’s local hospitality industry, which has done it tough this past year.
You could spend months trying to eat and drink your way through Sydney, so we’ve put together a few of our favourite spots. So, what are you in the mood for?
Tuck into antipasti, milk braised pork ragu, tiramisu and all your Italian culinary dreams at Parramatta’s CicciaBella. Pair a round of barefoot bowls with a cocktail jug at The Greens North Sydney. Or split a tomahawk steak with every side under the sun at the Tramsheds’ Butcher and the Farmer in Forest Lodge.
And if you prefer cocktails or a vino with a spectacular view, reserve yourself a spot at one of Sydney’s best rooftop bars like The Royal Hotel in Paddington or the East Village in Darlinghurst. Although, who are we kidding, if you’re after a sky-high view, secure a spot for modern Australian restaurant Infinity at Sydney Tower, which revolves 81 levels above the city.
Deal: Book with TheFork and receive up to 50% off food bills at selected restaurants. Dine and Discover Vouchers can be redeemed with discounts based on the restaurant T&Cs.
Go Off-The-Grid With These Nature Adventures
You may not first think of adventures out in nature with a city-based holiday, but Sydney will pleasantly surprise you. You don’t have to go far to feel entirely in touch with nature and detached from the bustling CBD.
From beachside reverses to the Sydney Harbour National Park, Sydney is one of the most unique cities in the world where you can step away from the city and be throwing down a towel in a lush park or at the beach. One of the best ways to immerse in Sydney’s picturesque nature is with a half-day guided kayaking tour of Middle Harbour or a snorkelling trip in the Manly waters. That’s without even mentioning the endless beaches you can explore, from world-famous Bondi to hidden gems up the coast from north to south.
Recharge Your Senses With Iconic Sydney Experiences
Before heading out for the night or spending the afternoon lying on the sand to soak up the sun, make sure you delve into some of Sydney’s unique experiences and get the most out of every minute you stay. The city isn’t just a pretty face–with an embarrassment of riches for adventures.
Why not see more than 350 animal species without leaving the harbour at the world-renowned Taronga Zoo? Treat yourself to the ultimate lunch by taking a seaplane to Palm Beach and enjoying a three-course meal at Jonah’s waterfront restaurant. Keen to cruise picturesque Sydney Harbour? You can do just that with a three-hour live jazz cruise or for dinner accompanied by a magnificent sunset. From a guided tour of Sydney’s best craft breweries to treating yourself with a private bird’s eye view helicopter ride over Sydney—you can renew all your holiday expectations.
Deal: Get 30% off all NSW bookable experiences listed on Tripadvisor when using the code NSWVIP30. *T&Cs apply.
Renew Your View At These Hotels
Before thinking about exploring Sydney and adventuring around, you need a good, comfortable base. And there’s nothing like staying in a hotel for those proper holiday vibes, especially with a couple of summertime deals on offer. We’ve picked out a few places in and around the city you can call home with easy access to prime areas.
Why not stay in the heart of one of Sydney’s best dining and shopping precincts, with easy access to the CBD by booking a room at Rydges World Square. Not much further down the road, you can also stay in one of Rydges’ Independent Collection hotels, The Ultimo Sydney. Built in 1911, this four-star hotel sits adjacent to the Chinatown district and is all about comfort and luxury. The pet-friendly accommodation even bills itself as the world’s first astrology hotel if you feel like getting in touch with your star sign during your stay.
Deal: Rydges is offering up to 20% off and $20 food & bev credit per night if you stay 4+ nights and book to stay between now and February 28, 2022.
Keen for the comfort of a hotel but the feel of an apartment stay? Book yourself a room with Quest Apartment Hotels–with Sydney locations all around town from St. Leonards to Mascot and Chatswood to Sydney Olympic Park. But if you want centrality, access to Sydney’s Northern Beaches and to be a short train from the city, we recommend the North Sydney CBD location as the ideal spot.
Deal: Book to stay between 15 November 2021 — 31 January 2022 at a Quest hotel and score 15% off the best available rate for a 3+ night stay, and another 10% off if you book directly through the Quest website.
Finally, choose from one of the endless hotel or apartment options from Accor all around the city. You can easily find the price and spot that suits you best, but we’ve got a couple of our own favourites. Such as booking a room directly across from Manly Beach, where you can grab a lounge chair next to the rooftop pool and laze out with one of Sydney’s best views. Speaking of good things to look at, you could also opt for harbour and city views combined, right in the thick of it all with either Novotel or Sofitel Darling Harbour outposts.
Renew yourself in Sydney. Swap Zoom on screen for a zoom around the harbour. Abandon the couch for front-row seats at the theatre. Reinvigorate your lockdown love with a romantic room above the city. Renew your routine, recharge your senses and experience the best of Sydney. And with so many great deals, did you really need another excuse to book? Head to Tripadvisor for more things to book and do.
*Important stuff to know:
- Discount is capped at$60 per booking. Limited Units of discount is available for redemption.
- Promo code is valid for purchases between 16 November to 21 December 2021. Bookings can be made for a later travel date.
- Tripadvisor reserves the right to modify the promotion period and promotion mechanics at its own discretion. In the event of a cancellation or refund, the refund amount will be based on the amount paid.
Image credit: Destination NSW
Editor’s note: This article is sponsored by Destination New South Wales and Tripadvisor, and proudly endorsed by Urban List. Thank you for supporting the sponsors who make Urban List possible. Click here for more information on our editorial policy.