It was always my plan to head back to Australia after finishing my July / August house renovations in the UK.
I arrived back in Australia on the 12th of September and I had 4 months left on my first holiday working visa. My plan was to use my time to get my 88 days regional work signed off and get my second year visa granted.
I flew into Sydney airport with Air India which had one stop in Delhi. As with my flight to Bangkok last year I was pretty impressed with Air India. They feed you a lot – you get enough leg room and the entertainment system actually holds up. For £500 one-way this is probably the cheapest way to get from England to Australia.
The one downside is having to go through immigration at Delhi airport. Their technology, procedures and processes are completely out of date and it takes ages for them to bumblingly check each passenger for nothing.
They stopped me for having a lighter in my bag although I had just come off an airplane from the UK. They also made me take my hat off even though the guy in the turban behind me was not asked. He could have hidden a grenade in that head space.
By the time I reached Sydney airport I was very tired and jet-lagged and although they were friendly they meticulously went through every bag I had with me which totally messed up my zen packing system in my main bag. I struggled to shove all of my underwear back in my back as the next passenger grumbled.
I got the airport shuttle to right outside my hostel which was $19 dollars. A bit more pricey as you can get the shuttles back from your hostel for $12 so might be worth booking it in with your hostel before you arrive.
My hostel was the original backpackers hostel on Victoria road. As with most Australian hostels it was full of 20 – 25 year olds being all wacky, boozing all hours of the day. I was on a bit of a tight budget here until i had secured a home stay or farm work so decided to keep a low profile on the social front and use the daytimes to explore Sydney on my own.
Compared with Asia, all hostels in Australia are shit, but I seriously had no big complaints with this place – the staff were real nice and friendly, it was clean enough and I got more than enough sleep in the 6 bed dorm. I was actually moved into an 8 bed dorm as they had doubled booked and this was honestly much better, cleaner and had a really nice en-suite and was cheaper – so book the 8 bed mixed room if you stay here.
I highly recommend the circular free map that is probably given out at most hostels for free as it lists a load of free things that you can do and visit in Sydney. I literally took advantage of the whole list and was a total tourist experiences all of the sites this great city was so famous for.
If you like walking like myself then you can spend the whole day getting around the whole main part of the city on your feet. You can also get the 555 bus for free which does a circular route like the free tram in Melbourne.
Highlights of Sydney for me were the botanical gardens (I love a well kept garden), the biggest imax in the world and the Darling Harbour area for its modernness and kid friendly attractions.
I watched ‘Hidden Universe” at the iMax and it was truly breathtaking. The best simulation of the Universe I have ever seen and I was truly mesmerised for most of the production.
A good tip would be not to sit in any rows prior to Row F as you will get neck ache. Not sure why they design the seating so disproportionally but I felt very sorry for the guys in the rows in front of me.
I also really enjoyed the Museum of Currency notes. I went to all of the free tourist places and this was by far the most interesting, but also the Government House was also worth a look.
Eating food in Sydney is super expensive but I found a fair few places that did fresh sushi roles for between $2 and $3 dollars which is a good price for lunch. Notably the sushi place in the Met centre served real nice rolls for $2 a pop.
I only stayed in Sydney for seven days. I’m not convinced it is as accessible as Melbourne, but its certainly got a ‘wow’ factor that you only get in the big metropolis cities of the world. If you’re on a budget, avoid the place. I ate mainly from supermarkets for the whole seven days and stayed in a cheap hostel and still spend more than $400.
Come here if you have a free place to crash or you have already saved up or are working as it will sting your wallet. Also food, drink and hostels are definitely more expensive here than in Melbourne.
[schema type=”person” name=”Danny Beddows” url=”Adventure-Seeker.com” ]