If you’re heading to Sydney for the Invictus Games, then there’s a strong chance you’ll want to explore the city whilst you’re here, yet at such a busy time to visit, it can be challenging to squeeze the most out of what the city has to offer unless you prepare in advance.
This is particularly pertinent if you’re looking for accommodation options during the Invictus Games, as accomodation fills up pretty quick when such significant events are taking place. In fact, you might find it cheaper or at least more rewarding, particularly if you’re travelling as a group, to hire a luxury apartment that means you can feel more at home.
Hotels can be nice, from time to time, and Sydney has some of the nicest hotels in Australia, yet, they can feel quite clinical at times - and after a long day at a sporting event, it can be nice to come “home” to a more authentic experience that allows you to share your environment with friends, and for instance, fire up the BBQ in the garden and live like an Australian rather than a tourist.
That said, there are a lot of touristy things to see and do in Sydney, so this article takes a look at some of the top things to do whilst here during the Invictus Games.
1. SYDNEY HARBOUR BRIDGE
This impressive and iconic structure known as the “coathanger” is one of the centrepieces of the Sydney skyline, but did you know you can actually climb the bridge? This way you can get the best view of Sydney Harbour whilst providing a more interesting story to this typical photo. The express climb will take you up the inside arc where it will feel as if you’re within the metal ribs of a skeleton.
This is a fantastic dawn experience (unless you’re not a morning person) as the sun lights up the city as it prepares for the day ahead. There’s a certainty serenity and calm to be had, whereas at sunset, it’s a little busier.
2. DHARAWAL NATIONAL PARK
This national park, about an hour’s drive from Sydney provides a welcome opportunity to step away from the hustle and bustle to enjoy a more natural experience. You can enjoy a guided tour of bushland with an Aboriginal Discovery Ranger; where you’ll receive local insight into the flora and fauna along with authentic stories that connect the indigenous population with modern day Australia.
3. MUSEUM OF CONTEMPORARY ART
If you’re after some culture, the harbourside Museum of Contemporary Art is a fantastic place to experience interesting art exhibitions; with three new galleries (opened in 2012) and a rooftop cafe with a sculpture terrace that boasts superb views. It’s a chance to take a breath, get out the sun, and indulge in a more peaceful pace of life before getting on with the energetic demands associated with the traditional tourist trail.
4. SYDNEY OPERA HOUSE
Of course, the Sydney Opera House features high on the list of most travellers, yet if you want to experience this venue in a more insightful way you could take a Backstage Tour that allows you access to the area that are usually reserved for the stars of the show. Here, you can tread the boards of its famous stage and get a glimpse into the dressing rooms of this famous institution. Tours include a healthy breakfast, and tend to take place quite early in the morning, for obvious reasons.
5. SURF AT BONDI BEACH
Perhaps, one of the most famous surf beaches in the world, Bondi Beach is on many an adventure traveller’s wishlist. If this is your first time, then you could start off with a bodyboard, or book in for a beginners class. Whilst, in the space of two hours, you’re unlikely to become a pro - this should give you an opportunity to stand up on the board, learn some basic sea safety skills, and have you catch a wave or two!
In summary, there are plenty of things to do in Sydney - in fact, sometimes the choice can be overwhelming, but if you’re coming from overseas this list should offer a chance to experience a variety aspects of what Sydney has to offer. Of course, the one thing that hasn’t been touched on is the incredibly cuisine on offer - but all you need to do, is head to wherever you see crowds of local people, and you’ll be in for a treat!