Sydney is best known for its incredible beaches and iconic harbors. It’s no wonder then that the city is packed with tourists during summer. But what if you’re visiting Sydney in the winter?
Unlike the northern hemisphere, winter in Sydney starts in June and lasts until the end of August or the first week of September. During these months, temperatures can range from 14.6 – 22.2°C (58.3 – 72°F). This makes the city a refreshing getaway for those looking to escape the sweltering heat of northern summers.
But is Sydney still worth visiting in the winter? Definitely!
Sydney is a magical place, no matter the season. Sure, the beaches and harbors will be freezing. But there are still countless things you can do to have an epic winter in Sydney. Here are some of them:
Even in winter, Sydney has clear skies. Couple that with the city’s crisp, cool air and you got yourself the perfect weather for hiking. You can hike along the beach or drive a few hours to the iconic Blue Mountains or the Wombeyan Cave.
2. Garden Hopping
If driving for hours to see the nature doesn’t sound that appealing, you can always visit the impressive gardens right at the heart of the city. The most popular of which is Royal Botanic Gardens Sydney. But there are also other less-known but equally magical gardens you can visit like:
- Lisgar Gardens in Hornsby
- Wendy’s Secret Garden in Lavender Bay
- Swain Gardens in Killara
- Lex and Ruby’s Garden in Cremorne Point
3. Weekend Market Shopping
Whether you’re looking for souvenirs or cheap eats, the city’s weekend markets are the place to be. From locally made arts and crafts, fresh produce, second-hand clothes, to global dishes, they have it.
4. Hollywood Movie Tour
Did you know that some of Hollywood’s top-grossing movies were filmed in Sydney? The best news is you can still visit some of their filming locations. You can get a guided tour or just do the tour on your own.
5. Art Gallery Tours
The art scene is very much alive in the Harbour City. This much is evident with the many art museums located all over the city. You can visit popular ones like the Museum of Contemporary Art or undiscovered ones like the Macleay Museum.
No winter getaway would be complete without skiing. And Sydney is just a few hours away from some of Australia’s best ski resorts. You can head to Thredbo, the most famous ski destination in the country. Or head out to the less crowded Charlotte Pass for a “true alpine experience”.
7. Boat Tours
Even in the middle of winter, you can still enjoy the city’s world-renowned harbors. You can join a group boat tour or book a private one for those romantic escapades.
8. Whale Watching Tour
The whale season in Sydney lasts from May until November. But it’s best to see them between late June and early July. So if you’re visiting the city in winter, a whale watching tour should be on your itinerary. Lots of cruise companies are offering two to three-hour whale watching tours. You can also book a private yacht for a more comfortable viewing experience.
9. Visiting Bath Houses
From Japanese to Korean to adult-themed ones, Sydney’s bathhouses are as diverse as its people. But if you’re looking to soak in a relaxing warm tub to cap off a tiring day, the Japanese saunas are where you should be.
10. Cave Exploring
Aside from its beaches and harbors, Sydney also has its fair share of gorgeous cave systems. The Wombeyan Caves, for example, is home to various endangered species of birds, wallaby, and possum among others.
11. Pub Crawling
Whether you’re a local, expat, or just visiting, there’s a pub in Sydney that’s right for you. With pubs dotting almost every corner, pub crawling is a popular social activity in the city. Most bars close at midnight but others won’t let you in after 11:30 pm. So be sure to map out your route and know their closing times beforehand.
12. Events and Festivals
With festivals held almost every week in different parts of the city, your winter escapade will surely be anything but boring. Some of the winter festivals you can check out are: