Shopping and dining
Food, glorious food. Sydney city caters for all tastes from international cuisine and fine dining restaurants through to contemporary eateries, pub fare and cheap eats. Visit one or all of our dining precincts and experience our vibrant culinary scene.
Chinatown is full of exotic choices – Chinese (of course), Vietnamese, Thai, Korean and Japanese restaurants abound. Follow your senses and feel the heat of a fired wok, smell the aroma of fresh cooking and marvel at the sight of the lively dumpling houses and noodle eateries. Be sure to keep an eye out for the bilingual street signs, which add yet another layer of authenticity to your Chinatown experience.
What would one of Sydney's prime entertainment precincts be without some prime dining establishments? Harbourside and Cockle Bay in Darling Harbour are only minutes from Central Sydney and offer great waterfront dining. Complete your evening at one of the fine bars in the area. Stunning views guaranteed.
East Circular Quay
Experience the perfect location for both alfresco and indoor dining: the stunning backdrop of Sydney Harbour. A short stroll from the Sydney Opera House, eastern Circular Quay offers a blend of old favourites, smart casual dining establishments and acclaimed restaurants to ensure you will never be short of choice as you take in the view.
East Sydney and Darlinghurst
Stanley Street has a great selection of Italian cafes and restaurants, nearby Oxford Street is known for its low-priced ethnic eateries, and Victoria Street in Darlinghurst is famous for its coffee and Italian cafes.
Glebe, Forest Lodge and Broadway
Glebe Point Road has over 60 cafes, restaurants and pub dining rooms serving cuisines as varied as Nepalese, Italian, Australian and Korean plus a famous pie shop, great cafes for breakfast and several late-night eateries.
Kings Cross and surrounds
Be spoilt for choice with more than 200 restaurants, bars and cafes in this precinct. At Woolloomooloo, be sure to sample a famous pie floater at Harry's Cafe de Wheels, or head to the glamorous Finger Wharf for acclaimed waterfront dining. The restaurants on the historic timber wharf are surrounded by some of Sydney’s most prized real estate and with the odd celebrity or two known to frequent these nosheries, you never know whose yacht may be anchored at the front!
Newtown and Erskineville
More than 120 food outlets appear along King Street and Enmore Road. Many are BYO and open until late, and most are very reasonably priced. King St could became your new favourite one-stop shop, as pre or post-dinner drinks have long taken place at one of the many bars and pubs along the strip. There are several more good cafes and pub dining rooms in Erskineville.
Oxford Street and Paddington
There is no shortage of places to eat along Oxford Street, from Darlinghurst to the corner of Jersey Road. The best dining strips are west of Victoria Barracks and east of Paddington Town Hall.
Dine at one of more than 30 restaurants in this precinct. If seafood is your style, the Sydney Fish Market is the place for fish and chips, sushi, chilli crab, freshly shucked oysters and much more.
Redfern, Cleveland Street and Waterloo
Cleveland Street is well known for its Lebanese eateries and for its great range of Indian establishments towards South Dowling Street. There are also many ethnic restaurants on Crown and Bourke Streets. In Waterloo, Danks Street, a relatively new eat street, has become a firm favourite for foodies, thanks to its friendly, creative buzz and village atmosphere. Danks Street is home to fresh, contemporary and flavoursome Australian cuisine created by food lovers for food lovers. You can also pop in to some unique art galleries and furniture showrooms here.
Enjoy some 'old Sydney' ambience at one of the many pubs, cafes and restaurants nestled among charming old shops and convict-built cobblestone streets. Sydney's most historic neighbourhood is popular with local and international visitors and there really is something for everyone to enjoy here.
Discerning diners can't go past Sydney's own Spanish Quarter in Liverpool and Kent Streets. The best spot around for tapas, tostadas, tortillas or paella, washed down with a jug of sangria. Be entertained as you dine by passionate Spanish musicians and flamenco dancers.
There is an extraordinary range of eateries in Crown Street, from tiny Lebanese takeaways to upmarket modern Australian restaurants and some very good pub dining rooms. Oxford, Riley, Bourke and Albion Streets are also worth a visit.
Embark on a world-class shopping experience in Australia's leading shopping destination, Sydney city. See how old meets new, where local meets international, and enjoy shopping, dining and being entertained.
There’s a certain bohemian buzz in the air in Glebe, which attracts those who love their art, books and fashion. The café culture is another drawcard for the inner-city precinct and Saturdays means taking a leisurely stroll through Glebe Markets, at the Broadway end of Glebe Point Road.
The beating heart of Sydney at its eclectic and diverse best, whatever your taste in clothing, music, homewares or even art, chances are you’ll find it on King Street. Goth, glam and everything in between will have a boutique dedicated to it in an area that is our city at its bold and bohemian best. Ask any Sydney resident and Newtown will probably be near the top of their list for a great place to eat or drink too.
Flagship designer boutiques live on Oxford Street, where you will find the crème de la crème of Australian designers. As well as being a must-see destination for fashion lovers, don’t miss out on the great selection of outlets stocking gifts and homewares. Browsing through the designs of up and coming talent at Paddington Markets every Saturday has become something of a ritual for locals, with more than a couple of Australian household names getting their start at a stall here. Around 250 stalls are set up every week in the open-air market, with fashion, contemporary artworks and hand-made craft pieces being directly sold by the designers and artisans.
Pitt Street Mall and surrounds
Pitt Street Mall is the busiest strip in Australia. As you would come to expect from any cosmopolitan city, Pitt Street Mall (and surrounds) features high-end, upmarket labels as well as Australian and international high street staples. Need a meeting spot or a place to start? Just look up: Pitt Street is home to Sydney Tower.
Once you have seen all the shops in Westfield Sydney, head to the Mid City Centre, the Strand Arcade and the Queen Victoria Building. All are within walking distance and you really are spoilt for choice for public transport links too. Train and monorail stations are nearby, and many bus routes service the area.
If you are looking for something quintessentially Australian to decorate your home with, chances are you’ll be able to find it at The Rocks. Sydney’s historic precinct is home to a great selection of gift and homeware boutiques, as well as some unique and international fashion labels. The cobblestoned paths and sandstone architecture dating back more than a century really could sell The Rocks to anyone, and we haven’t even mentioned the million dollar views of Sydney Harbour which are, of course, free.
Paddington’s younger, edgier counterpart, Surry Hills is the go-to spot if you have a love for vintage, retro and emerging design talent. Crown St makes a great first port-of-call and then you can slowly shop your way through the surrounding streets that are home to specialised boutiques. Surry Hills Markets take place on the first Saturday of every month and they are well worth a look. When the sun goes down, or you need a drink after a hard day’s shop, Surry Hills is home to many of Sydney’s coolest bars and restaurants.
Last updated: Monday, 27 May 2013