10 Reasons to Visit Sydney Australia – The Country’s most Populous City
Sydney Australia (first British colony site), Capital of New South Wales, is situated on the Tasman Sea, Australia’s south east coast. Two of the many reasons to visit Sydney Australia is it’s Australia’s most populous city. The city comprises both an international and cosmopolitan population. It’s inhabitants are called “Sydneysiders”.
Sydney has hosted major international sporting events, such as 1938 British Empire Games (Commonwealth Games), the 2000 Summer Olympics. Also the World Masters Games in 2009 and Invictus Games in 2018.
In 1788, Arthur Phillip, commodore of the First Fleet, established Sydney as a penal colony at Sydney Cove. It was built on hills surrounding Port Jackson (commonly and famously known as “Sydney Harbor”). National parks and coastal regions—rivers, inlets, beaches, bays that surround the hinterland. Both Manly and Bondi beaches are situated here. The main port is “Port Botany” while the main airport is “Sydney Airport”.
A Great Excuse to Visit this World Class City
Sydney is the largest, oldest and most cosmopolitan city in Australia. As a result it has an enviable reputation as one of the world’s most beautiful and liveable cities. Sydney is the Harbor City. It is brimming with history, nature, culture, art, fashion, cuisine and design. The city is set next to miles of ocean coastline and sandy surf beaches. Sydney is also home to the Sydney Opera House and the Sydney Harbour Bridge, two of the most iconic structures on earth.
Most noteworthy, Sydney Australia is a major global city. It is an important financial center in the Asia-Pacific region. The city is surrounded by nature and national parks. They extend through the suburbs and right to the shores of the harbor.
Before details are given, one must know that there are three aspects of the city’s history:
- Geological: Originally, Australia was a part of Gondwanaland (super-continent), along with New Zealand, Antarctica, India, Madagascar, Africa and South America. When Gondwanaland broke about 175 million years ago due to continental drift, Australia was the last landmass to form—about 45 million years ago, it broke away from Antarctica.
- Ancient: Arrival of indigenous Australians (the first ones to enter north from Asia, across a land bridge via Indonesia and Papua New Guinea) 68,000 years ago in the Sydney area.
Learn about the original people of Australia. These are the Aborigines. Much later the Torres Strait Islanders came.
These indigenous Australians were of two types:
- Traditional Aborigines: Indigenous clans from all parts of Australia.
- Torres Strait Islanders: People who came over from Torres Strait Islands (between Papua New Guinea and Cape York Peninsula.
- Modern: Penal Colony established by the British and all-round development of Sydney.
Before the British arrived, the land was “Terra Nullis” meaning “owned by no one”; later, it was named “New South Wales”.
Aboriginal occupation in Sydney goes back 22,000 years (according to radiocarbon dating evidence) at Wentworth Falls in the Blue Mountains. Their occupation site in the Baulkham Hills region—Bidjigal Aboriginal Reserve—dates back 10,000 years. Evidence of aboriginal settlements have also been found in Penrith (west Sydney)—about 5,000 years old.
There were about 34 aboriginal groups that lived across Sydney (greater region)—Wallumattagal (Ryde), Wangal (Concord), Cadigal (south head of Petersham), Burramattagal (Parramatta), Kameygal (Botany Bay), Cannalgal (Manly Coast), Birrabirragal (Sydney Harbor), Borogegal-Yuruey (Bradleys Head), Kayimal (Manly Harbor), and Muru-ora-dial (Maroubra).
A Brief History of Sydney Australia from 1770 to 1888
On April 29, 1770, Captain James Cook discovered Botany Bay, and on May 6 the same year, he discovered Port Jackson (Sydney Harbor, Middle Harbor, and North Harbor).
The proposal for setting up a Penal Colony at Botany Bay was put up by James Matra, Cook’s midshipman. The reason for this colony was to send convicts over from Britain’s overflowing prisons, and settle them here.
On August 18, 1786, the British Government decided to set up the colony; as a result, Lord Sydney (Home Secretary) and Evan Nepean were put in charge of organizing the convicts’ travel.
Exactly a year later, on August 18, 1787, the First Fleet with 788 convicts (586 men and 192 women) sailed for Botany Bay; the captain of the ship was Arthur Phillip.
After 5 months, the First Fleet landed in Botany Bay on January 18, 1788. Because the place was found unsuitable, Phillip decided to build the colony on Port Jackson. Due to the delay they reached Sydney Clove on January 26, 1788.
In April 1789, 90 per cent of Dharug-speaking aborigines were killed by small pox epidemic. Two years after the Penal Colony was established, there was a fierce aboriginal resistance (led by Pemulwuy) in December 1790.
In 1790, when Pemulwuy killed Phillip’s gamekeeper McEntire (because he had fired at the aborigines), Phillip ordered for 6 aborigines of Botany Bay be put to death. Most noteworthy, McEntire admitted to committing the crime before he died.
Sydney’s first newspaper, the “Sydney Gazette” was published in 1803. In 1818, Hyde Park Barracks was constructed for male convicts; it was designed by Francis Greenway.
To house Lord Mayor and other officials’ offices, the Sydney Town Hall was built 1880.
Centenary Australia Day celebrations on January 26, 1888 were boycotted by aboriginal leaders but to no avail.
More of Sydney’s History from 1923 to Near Present
Between 1923 and 1932, the Sydney Harbor Bridge was built; in between, the City Circle rail line was constructed in 1926.
Between 1957 and 1973, the Sydney Opera House was constructed.
Now, the aborigines account for 2 per cent of Sydney’s population—as per 2006 census.
Sydney’s Typical Climate and Weather
Temperate climate with mind winters and warm summers, Sydney faces rainfall throughout the year. Due to proximity to the ocean, the weather is moderated and as such, bearable. The inland western suburbs face extreme temperatures.
January is the warmest with temperature between 65 °F and 78 °F. In a year, about 15 days record temperature more than 86 °F.
July is the coldest with temperature between 46 °F and 61 °F; as it is, the winter temperature hardly drops below 41 °F.
In the first six months of the year, the rainfall is heavier (than the other six months) because of easterly winds, averaging to 1,217 mm.
Sydney’s weather pattern is determined by the El Nino-Southern Oscillation—on one hand, bushfires and on the other, floods and storms.
70 °F is the average annual temperature of the sea with the monthly average ranging between 66 °F and 75 °F.
Best Places to Visit to know about the Aborigines
To see and learn about Sydney’s Aboriginals, one must visit:
- Museum of Sydney: Dedicated to the city, stories and artifacts of local aborigines are exhibited here.
- Cadi Jam Ora: An excellent place for appreciating the history of the aborigines, it is a walk-by installation in the Botanic Gardens.
- Australian Museum: It is the best indigenous Australian exhibition, so far.
- Tribal Warrior: One can learn about the aborigines by embarking on a Sydney Harbor cruise—the captain and guide are the local aborigines.
Other Places and Reasons to Visit Sydney Australia
- Sydney Opera House: Designed by Jorn Ultzon, a Danish architect, this 20th century great urban sculpture was constructed between 1957 and 1973 (at the tip of a peninsula projecting into Sydney Harbor), and inaugurated on October 20, 1973 by Queen Elizabeth II.
It has 3 groups of interlocking “vaulted shells” set on a large platform with terrace around it—roofing a restaurant and 2 main performance halls.
It is 185 m x 120 m and has 1,000 rooms. The roof has 2,194 pre-cast concrete sections, held together by 350 km of tensioned steel cable. It (roof) has 1 million tiles, 6,225 sq m of glass and 645 km of electric cable!
As its first performance, The Australian Opera’s production of “War and Peace” by Prokofiev was presented.
The Opera house conducts 3,000 events, provides guided tours to around 200,000 people and has an annual audience of 2 million—all calculated on ‘per year’ basis.
- Bondi Beach: Australia’s most famous beach, it is located in the suburb of Bondi (7 km from the center of Sydney). Bondi (an aboriginal word) means “sound of breaking waves”.
It is 100 m long; the width is 50 m at the north end (there is a children’s wading pool and Wally Weekes pool) and 100m at the south end (where the Bondi Baths are located).
Red and yellow flags, which are moved as per the surf conditions, mark the swimming areas. The safest for swimming are the center and northern end.
Set in 8 m of water, a shark net is laid about 150 m off the beach.
Buildings on this beach are the Pavilion (opened in 1929; built in Mediterranean Georgian Revival style). Other pavilions at Cronulla and Balmoral, Bondi Pavilion Community Cultural Center, a souvenir shop, and a café/gelateria.
- Manly Beach: With a laid-back atmosphere and relaxed village feel, this favorite beach (out of many others) is a short ferry trip from the Circular Quay. Cafes, bars, tranquil bays, beautiful beaches, and coastal walks make every visitor yearn for more.
The best way to explore is either by rollerblade, or bike, or on foot. The Sealife Sanctuary is worth seeing—giant stingrays, turtles, fish, and huge sharks steal the show!
- Paddy’s Market: In 1834, when Governor Bourke decided to move the hay and grain traders to a place next to Campbell Street’s cattle market, the traders created a split among the stall-holders—some had regular customers and some were just carrying on. Paddy’s Market saw the day when Bourke ordered for the market to be kept open till 10 pm on Saturdays.
When the markets came under Sydney Council by 1842, the Paddy’s Market was already established. It got another boost when George Street market remained open till 10 pm on Wednesdays.
Anyway, the market those days was an open air one—sideshows, farmers, secondhand dealers, merry-go-rounds, craftsmen—full of life. The fairground atmosphere did not remain the same after the gold rush period—the market patrons turned their attention to gold! The Saturday night market still continues.
- Darling Harbor: Called “Tumbalong” (meaning “where seafood is found”) by Gadigals (original inhabitants) till the arrival of the British, this harbor is one of the world’s leading entertainment and waterfront leisure destinations. It had developed into a major goods-handling and industrial precinct from a bustling market as commissioned in 1812 by Governor Macquarie.
It turned to a series of empty warehouses and used train tracks by mid 1970s. In 1984, under Labor premier Neville Wran, the New South Wales State Government decided to redevelop the harbor.
During Australia’s Bicentennial celebrations in 1988, the harbor re-opened. It celebrated 21 years since its redevelopment in 2009.
It is home to the Chinese Garden of Friendship (haven of peace and tranquility).
- University of Sydney: Established in 1850, it technically began in 1852 with degree in Arts. Land at the Grose Farm was given to the university by the government when architect Edmund Blacket planned the “Quadrangle”, the original building. Focal point of the university, the “Great Tower” was completed by 1862. In 1909, government architect Walter Liberty designed and completed the south western corner. In 1920, architect Leslie Wilkinson (professor at the university) designed the western and northern wings in the 1920s.
Other Interesting Places to Visit
In 1990s, Sydney College of Arts and Sydney Conservatorium of Music amalgamated with this university. Sydney Institute of Education merged with the Faculty of Education, Cumberland College of Health Sciences became Faculty of Health Science, and Sydney College of Advanced Education Institute of Nursing Studies became the Faculty of Nursing.
Equally interesting are some other places like:
* Queen Victoria Building
* Town Hall
* George Street
* The Royal Botanic Gardens
* Mrs. Macquarie’s Point
* Hyde Park Barracks
* St. Mary’s Cathedral
* Bronte, Coogee, Maroubura, Tamarama, Little Bay, La Perouse, Cronulla, and Brighton-le-Sands beaches
* Watsons Bay, Rose Bay, Doubt Bay, the Gap and Elizabeth Bay
* Museum of Contemporary Art
* Justice and Police Museum
* Sydney Jewish Museum
* Museum of Sydney
* Australian National Maritime Museum
* Australian Museum
* Powerhouse Museum
* Art Gallery of NSW
Sydney has So Many other Attractions too Good to Miss
There are so many other attractions this great city has which is another of the reasons to visit Sydney Australia. I’ll just briefly name some of them in this short article. But when you visit this beautiful city you can explore it to your hearts content.
Here are a few more of the many Reasons to Visit Sydney Australia
- Beaches – The most popular are Bondi Beach, Manly and Coogee. There’s a great variety, ranging from ocean beaches in the Eastern Suburbs to quiet bays facing the harbor in Mosman. Bondi and Coogee are backpacker haunts. Manly and Cronulla have a feeling like separate seaside towns.
- Kayak and canoeing – Sydney’s waterways offer great canoeing and kayaking.
- Walking – Walking is a great way to experience the city’s parks, reserves and remaining bushland. There are also great walks through more built-up areas. They allow you to check out the city’s modern architecture and its colonial heritage.
- Fishing – Being out on a boat fishing in Sydney is one of the great Sydney experiences in the warmer months.
- Biking and Skating – Cycle around Centennial Park or Bicentennial Park. Or you can mountain bike on the challenging hills around the parks, forests and waterways surrounding Sydney and through some spectacular countryside.
- Music and Arts – Sydney has three major commercial theaters which show the big international musical productions. There is the Sydney Symphony Orchestra, the Australian Chamber Orchestra and the Sydney Conservatorium of Music. There is also Jazz, ballet and opera.
- Festivals – Sydney is home to a number of major and minor festivals and calendar events each year.
- Universities – If you’re a student rwo of these universities, the University of Sydney and the University of New South Wales are part of the prestigious “Group of Eight”. There are opportunities for international students to enroll in these universities. These provide foreigners with an excellent opportunity of live in Sydney for an extended period.
Sydney has something for everyone. Many reasons to visit Sydney Australia are not covered here.
However here is a brief list of Must dos for families when you visit.
- Explore zoos and aquariums
- Picnic on Bondi Beach
- Marvel at whales while on a cruise
- Ride Luna Park’s Ferris wheel
- Soar through trees on a zip-line
Sydney Australia – City tour
by Jörg Rausch – mymoviestyle
Published on Youtube on May 29, 2017
Sydney is in the southeast of Australia and has over 4.5 million inhabitants. Because of its beautiful location on the Pacific Ocean, its 300 sunny days per year and its life-loving inhabitants, this city is one of the most beautiful places in the world. Sydney is full of sights and you need far more than a day to visit just part of it. The main attractions are the Harbor Bridge, the Sydney Opera House and Bondi Beach.
There’s lots to experience for everyone in Sydney. Things to enjoy and participate in include adventure and sports, beach lifestyle, drives and road trips, fashion and shopping. Don’t forget there is also nature and parks, luxury experiences to enjoy, plus good food and wine. Once you experience Sydney you’ll be able to list even more reasons to visit Sydney Australia again.
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