Australia is a magical country of contrasts. Stunning beaches, arid deserts, cosmopolitan cities and quaint neighborhoods promise to enchant every type of traveler. Often viewed as the gateway to Oz, there’s no better place to start a tour of Australia than in its largest city, Sydney.

This timeless city is often perceived to be expensive—but it doesn’t have to be. Here are our recommendations for Sydney on a budget:


Take the Ferry to Manly Beach

For only a few dollars, you’ll be promised spectacular views of the harbor as you speed across the water. Manly Beach is a beautiful alternative to the more touristy and crowded Bondi Beach, and the perfect way to spend a day in the sun. The best part? A day at the beach is free!


Picnic at the Botanical Gardens

Stroll through Sydney’s iconic Botanical Gardens and leave plenty of time to smell the roses. Enjoy the views of the opera house while you walk. Once you finally tire yourself out, find a quaint patch of grass, pop open a bottle of wine, and relax with a picnic. This is as cheap as your picnicking tastes prefer.


Take a Free Walking Tour

Get to know the city with a free walking tour offered by I’m Free Walking Tours everyday at 10:30am and 2:30pm. Rain or shine, these three hour walking tours will introduce you to the city without setting you back a dime.


Walk Across the Sydney Harbor Bridge

A popular—but pricy—way to experience the Sydney Harbor Bridge is via a climb. Alternatively, a stroll across the historic bridge will still allow you to experience the harbor and panoramic views, but for free.


With all the money you are saving on these budget-friendly attractions, you’ll be rewarded with a bit extra to spend on food and accommodation. Accor hotels in Sydney is a great place to lay your head at night after a fun-filled day of sightseeing. For great grub, head to the heart of the Circular Quay district for trendy restaurants with great views.


Have you visited Sydney? What budget options would you suggest?