Here's Why Sydney, Australia's Largest City, Is One Of The Most Livable In The World
Sophisticated and outdoorsy at the same time, there’s so much to see and taste in beautiful Sydney that you’ll be tempted to settle in among its friendly, local Sydneysiders.
A day at the beach is the pastime of choice for most Aussies. One sign that you’re a Sydneysider is if you can leave work in the late afternoon sunlight, hop on a bus or bike and get to the beach in under 30 minutes to an hour. One of Sydney’s more popular surf beaches is Maroubra Beach. Maroubra is the aboriginal word for “like thunder,” which aptly describes the sound of the waves slapping against the shore. The open beach is bound by parks, with jutting rocks and cliffs above that make for a spectacular view. The famous Mahon rock pool can be accessed through jagged stone steps from the parking lot.
THE POOL CAFÉ
Just beyond Maroubra Beach is a residential neighborhood with a resort vibe, dotted with hipster-ish coffee shops. An order of orange juice at The Pool Café literally means orange juice freshly squeezed, shaken, not stirred. After a dip in the sea, it’s nice to head there for a quick meal: a chorizo, cherry tomato and spinach omelet, or eggs Benedict with slices of ham on hot buttered toast with warm and creamy hollandaise sauce.
The world-famous Bondi Beach is located on the east coast. Bondi is also the name of the surrounding suburb, which has a village feel, buzzing with tourists especially in summer. Regular year-round events are held on this iconic beach, like surfing competitions and the much-loved Sculpture by the Sea, an outdoor exhibition of sculptures by Australian and foreign artists displayed along the entire coastal walk.
BONDI ICEBERGS CLUB
While you’re there, head to this winter swimming club that boasts of a 50-meter ocean pool, a hotspot for sunbathers and show-off-your-abs swimmers.
You can get an amazing vista of the ocean pool, Bondi Beach and the sea from the club’s outdoor terrace. Even from inside the restaurant, you can watch swimmers do laps in the saltwater pool despite the nippy air, while enjoying some good old fish and chips and an ice-cold beer.
THE GROUNDS OF ALEXANDRIA
This magical place should be on everyone’s list of “Things to Do in Sydney” alongside the Opera House, Harbor Bridge and the koalas. Located in the inner industrial suburb, this repurposed warehouse (formerly a pie factory) is all about coffee. The sprawling ground has its own roastery, cafés, bakery, kitchen garden, bar, weekend market, flower shop, mini farm and garden courtyard all stylishly set up.
Shop and eat
Walk around and explore the shops. A patisserie kiosk sells strawberry tarts and baked bread for munching on, perfect to take on the go. The Soda Barn has fresh fruit juices, smoothies and fruity cakes. At the flower shop, I couldn’t help but stop and smell the roses, drinking in this colorful burst of flowers grown on Sydney farms and sold at the markets.
The Bakery is filled with freshly baked loaves, including wholemeal, ash white sourdough, bamboo charcoal loaves, and an assortment of olive and rosemary, and fig and walnut breads.
Open air brunch
On weekends, families flock to the Courtyard for casual brekkie in this sunny garden. I loved the fun and complicated deconstructed hot chocolate, and the king crab omelet made with freshly shelled crabmeat, free-range eggs and crème fraiche, served with a zucchini and herb salad.