Life in Sydney revolves around the water, whether it be an early morning surf at Manly, a picturesque ferry commute across Sydney Harbour, or a post-work swim at Bondi Icebergs. And as the year comes to an end and the mercury begins to rise, the city goes boat mad.
The Rolex Sydney Harbour Yacht Race (RSHYR) captures the hearts and minds of Sydneysiders, who line the foreshore, headlands, and beaches to catch a glimpse of the fleet as it begins the gruelling 630 nautical mile journey to Hobart.
The way the city embraces the RSHYR is proof of how much Sydneysiders love their sport. Sydney is spoilt for choice all year round, with rugby league, rugby union and AFL in the winter, and cricket and football in the summer. For those who would rather participate than spectate, the options are endless, including kayaking, kitesurfing, stand up paddle boarding, rock climbing, bushwalking, and mountain bike riding.
With all this activity, thankfully Sydney is also a city that knows how to relax and unwind. There are few better ways to start the day than a stroll or run along the Bondi to Bronte Coastal Walk, a three-kilometre trail hugging the spectacular eastern coastline of Sydney. There are plenty of cafes along the way where you can try Australia's famous flat white coffee, as well as ocean pools to escape the summer heat.
Bondi Beach is where Sydneysiders come to play. You can try your hand at surfing or join the crowds of locals and tourists alike at the many bars and restaurants that line this iconic beach. The crystal-clear water makes Sydney's east a favourite with scuba divers and snorkelers, and Gordon's Bay Underwater Nature Trail, a 500-metre chain-guided path through reefs, sand flats, and kelp forests, is not to be missed.
While Bondi Beach is Sydney's most well-known sandy stretch, it's northern cousin Manly is also well-worth a visit. A short trip on the ferry across Sydney Harbour will deliver you to this laid-back beachside suburb, a prime place to enjoy some fish and chips on the golden sand.
Almost one-fifth of Australia's population, some five million people, call Sydney home. And with 34 per cent of that population born overseas, the New South Wales capital is one of the most multicultural cities in the world.
This cultural diversity can be seen most clearly in the food. A tour of Sydney's suburbs will give you a taste of the world. From Vietnamese to Greek, Indian to Japanese, Thai to Italian, and of course, the traditional Australian sausage sizzle barbecue, Sydney has something to suit every taste.
And when it comes to the perfect location for a night-cap, Opera Bar in the shadows of the iconic Opera House sails or one of the many harbour-side eateries will give you an incredible vantage point to watch the sun set over the Harbour Bridge.