This Summer - on a budget
Travelers planning a trip around Australia will no doubt be aware of all the big attractions – climbing the Sydney Harbour Bridge, surfing at Bondi Bea ch, driving the Great Ocean Road, having fun at the theme parks on the Gold Coast and sc uba diving the Great Barrier Reef.
Chances are you'll need to have a fat wallet in order to see and do all of these things. So, we've compiled 101 travel tips, hacks and shortcuts to help you enjoy travelling around Australia - whilst not burning a hole in your pocket.
Things to see and do across Australia
Here are some of the lesser known things you can do around Australia for free or next to nothing, starting in Sydney and then going beyond:
1. Coastal Walks – You can do the gorgeous walk between the famous Bondi around to Tamarama. On the walk along the coastline you can check out the colourful Sculptures by the Sea (18 Oct - 4 Nov 2018). On the northern side of the city there's also the Manly to Spit walk.
2. Kuringai National Park - Depending of course where you're staying, and providing the weather is co-operative, any of the local parks dotted in and around the cities make for a lovely place to stop, watch the passing scenery and have a bite to eat.
3. Hyde Park – Free to walk around and catch the annual Noodle Markets and art lining the central walkway of the park during October.
4. Centennial Park – Free to walk around but only a small fee to yee-haw it on horseback!
5. Sydney's Botanical Gardens - Free to roam around and get a beautiful aspect of the harbour, opera house and bridge all in the same photo. You'll experience the local fruit bats, ibis and cockatoo's in close proximity to the CBD.
6. Homebush - Home to the Sydney Olympics in 2000, this a great place to walk or cycle.
7. Circular Quay - A great place for sight-seeing and taking in some local culture.
8. Bondi Beach – In many respects Bondi is the epicentre Australian lifestyle (sun, sand and surf). However, parking at Bondi is notorious and the parking stingers will pounce on any offenders! Ideally park your vehicle at King's Cross or Bondi Junction and catch the bus over for your day at the beach.
9. Tap Gallery, Darlinghurst – Free exhibition of "fringe" art and cheap drinks.
10. Free Pool Tables – Be on the lookout for a number of Sydney CBD bars and hotels offer free use of pool tables including the Roof Bar, every Tuesday until Saturday after 5pm or the Golden Barley, 167 Edgeware Road, Enmore on Tuesdays after 7pm. Also check out Nag's Head Hotel, 162 St Johns Road, Glebe for free pool tables all day Sunday.
11. Mardi Gras (Sydney) - fantastic colourful & lively, it's a yearly spectacle that you can catch early March.
12. Luna Park (Sydney) – It's free to get into Luna Park but if you want to experience one of the rides it'll cost around $10.
13. Combined Pass or Discovery Triple Pass – Save up to 20% off full price admission for the Sydney Aquarium, Sydney Tower (including OzTrek) and the Sydney Wildlife World.
14. Sydney Opera House – The iconic landmark on Sydney's harbour. You're free to roam around outside but a 1 hour guided tour inside will set you back $35 for adults. Save up to $6 when you book it online.
15. Visit the set of Home & Away – That's right, drive up to Palm Beach on the Northern Beaches of Sydney and you can wander around where the beach scenes of Home & Away are filmed. Time it right and you can watch the show being filmed too!
16. Kincumber Mountain Reserve, Central Coast – Check out the historic Aboriginal carvings and axe-grinding grooves which can be seen at Kincumber Mountain Reserve amongst the 700 ha of undisturbed rainforests.
17. City Ghost Tours – At the Rocks (Sydney), Picton (Sydney's south), Quarantine Centre (Manly) and Melbourne, not to mention at places like Port Arthur in Tasmania
18. Queen Victoria Markets – Melbourne's Queen Victoria's market host an eclectic mix of food, art, clothing and home wares (to name but a few) worth a stroll-through.
19. Melbourne’s Free City Tram - Melbourne is home to the free city circle tram which you can hop on and hop off anywhere along the route.
20. Haigh's Chocolates, Adelaide – Situated in Adelaide, Haigh's offer a free 20 minute tour of their chocolate factory along with free samples afterward!
21. Hobart's Salamanca Markets - Not to be missed if you're in Tasmania.
22. Bus Depot Markets, Kingston, Canberra – Check out the excellent quality hand-made foods, crafts and art
23. Floriade, Canberra - Held each September in Canberra it's a beautiful month floral display that you should check out if you're passing through. Entry during the day is free.
24. Koala Hospital, Port Macquarie – Port Macquarie is situated half way between Sydney and Brisbane on the NSW Mid North Coast. Get up close to injured koalas and kangaroo's for free.
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