How to: Sydney

Written by: Zanita Whittington

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photos – Sophie Braland and me, editing – me

Excited to present another instalment in my cities series for Amex – my home base of Sydney! I’ve lived here in Sydney for around 9 years having moved from Esperance after leaving high school to start my modelling career. Its  a brilliant city to live in  – the weather is usually pretty great – and we have an excellent quality of life. Two complaints – it’s a pretty expensive city to live in, with rental prices comparable to New York or London and also it’s really damn far away from the rest of the world. Meaning, you donate 24 hours of your life to get to Europe and if you’re a seasoned traveller like myself – you really need to own your jetlag. Other than that – my favourite things are about Sydney are the outstanding cuisine and the sunny winters. I have loads of tips for anyone visiting – so here goes!

Things to do:

Stroll around The Rocks, Darling Harbour and Circular Quay and the Botanical Gardens. The scenery is beautiful – you can see the Opera House and Harbour Bridge from Circular Quay and the Botanical Gardens as well as some great scenes of the city itself (pictured). Darling Harbour has some great places to eat though a little touristic – the IMAX theatre and Aquarium are fun for a visit. The Rocks is the suburb situated under the Harbour Bridge and its the oldest suburb in town. Many of the original buildings are still in great condition and you can do a historical tour if you’re keen to learn more about the area.  On the other side of the harbour you can see Luna Park which I would only recommend for kids – I know its one of Sydney’s icons but its really kind of boring.

Food – we do it so well here. Maybe I’m such a die hard fan because I’m gluten intolerant and we really have loads of Asian food available which is usually pretty much gluten free. My fave places to eat on a budget are Mamak (malaysian), Chat Thai (thai), Din Tai Fung (Chinese – easily the best dumplings in town) and Wagaya (Japanese – only for the fun electronic menus!) – there are some places for good Pho around but I can’t figure which place is best… I kinda like Pho 236 in Newtown and Haymarket.

If you’re into fine dining then I’d have to say that eating at Tetsuyas  (japanese/french) was one of my favourite experiences ever – Oscillate Wildly in Newtown is great for some creative contemporary style meals and Porteno in Surry Hills is one of the best places for fine slow cooked and BBQ meats. These places will absolutely need a reservation – sometimes weeks or months in advance – so be organised.

Coffee – Sydneysiders are obsessed with coffee and breakfast, it’s like a religion. My favourite haunts are Cowbell 808, Kawa and Reuben Hills. I’m talking corn fritters, breakfast tacos, beans and ham on toast, salted caramel milkshakes, eggs in a huge variety of ways… So great.

I’m not really crazy about the shopping in Sydney – only because I find shopping on the street so time consuming – I’m all about online baby! We do however, have some really fine boutiques if you want to drop a few dollars. My favourites are The Corner Shop, Blood Orange, Desordre,  The Intersection Paddington (the proper website seems to be down….), Belinda, Incu – might add some more to this list as I recall them.

Getting around – we don’t really have the best public transport system here in Sydney but its functional. You can buy 10 ride passes for the bus (around $20) and a weekly ticket which includes the trains for around $40. Taxis are on the more expensive side of things and we also have uber here in Sydney which is a great service (I’m addicted) but also costs a bit extra. Be ambitious and aim to visit places on foot – you can never regret a bit of extra exercise and taking in a little more of the city this way.

I really could recommend so much more here – so if you want some tips or have any questions please shoot away!

And my outfit! Casual  with a touch of glam (heels!). Very sydney.

knit, Country Road

jeans, Gstar

shoes, Mode Collective

monogramed bag, Mode Collective

sunglasses, Nick Campbell

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