First up, you’ll be needing to stretch your legs after that flight! Why not kill two birds with one stone, and get some Christmas shopping out of the way. Pitt Street Mall boasts more than 600 specialty stores, and while you’re there, swing by David Jones to check out their Christmas window display.
Nearby on George St, The Strand Arcade offers high-end designer wear with stores including Bassike, Camilla and Marc, Dion Lee and Lover.
Don’t forget to take in the sights of Martin Place and the famous giant Christmas tree! Various events are also running around this area for a full month from November 23rd.
If you’re here for business as well as pleasure, staying in the CBD makes sense.
It’s hard to go past the Swissôtel Sydney’s Swiss Executive rooms, which are designed for the modern business and leisure traveller. The rooms provide the perfect setting to unwind and escape the noise of the city, but still keep you within easy eye-shot of the spectacular views of Sydney Tower.
There’s also an outdoor heated pool on the roof and a modern fitness centre as well as a stunning spa offering an array of packages and treatments. The perfect antidote to a day of eating and shopping your way around the city!
After you’ve unloaded your bags at your accommodation (and taken a dip), take a walk to The Rocks for an easy dinner at the Glenmore Hotel replete with a great rooftop setting, perfect for whiling away the long Summer twilights with a craft beer or cocktail in hand.
Or, if you fancy a Christmas affair fit for Santa himself, head down to Nel. on Wentworth Avenue. The slick, basement restaurant has designed the perfect Christmas dinner which includes traditional favourites with innovative twists and delicious sweet treats.
If you’re after something a little more casual, The Rocks Christmas Markets are catering to our love of all things festive. Christmas decorations, toys and gifts can be picked up easily. Or meander down the cobblestone lanes to grab any number of mouth-watering street food options.
Staying more than one night? Catch a show at the Sydney Opera House, and be sure to grab a pre-show drink at the Opera Bar. On any given evening during the week, there are theatre plays on at the Drama House or a classical music concert in the Concert Hall.
The next day, if your shopping mojo is still full steam ahead, there are several pop up markets sprinkled around the city. In November, there are markets shooting up in Surry Hills, Chippendale and Moore Park.
If you’re over the crowds, take a break and head to any number of Sydney’s stunning beaches. Bondi is just a bus ride away from the city, as are Coogee, Bronte, and Clovelly.
If you really want some peace and quiet, Sydney’s northern beaches take you far away from the bustle. Walk along the coastline at Manly, Freshwater, Curl Curl or Narrabeen. Don’t forget to stop in at Merivale’s newest delight, The Collaroy for a Christmas Negroni.
If you’re committed to the city, beautiful strolls can be taken across the Harbour Bridge, around Mrs Macquarie’s Chair, or venture through to Potts Point and Rushcutter’s Bay for some waterside pathways and parks.
Later on, dive into the newly relaunched Hyde Hacienda Sydney Bar, situated in the Pullman Quay Grand Sydney Harbour. If modern and vintage had a beautiful child, this is what it would look like. The venue boasts seriously impressive views across Circular Quay while the vibe inside is inspired by 1950’s Miami hotels.
We suggest you don’t rush away from here too quickly! Take a stool by the views, and get acquainted with the delicious, playful cocktail and bar menus.
Still hungry? Head downstairs to the newly refurbished Q Dining which takes inspiration from its iconic location of land meets sea.
Later that evening, St Mary’s Cathedral is truly spectacular with the Lights of Christmas Show between 8:30pm and midnight. And of course, if you’re here a few days before Christmas, be sure to pull in a few friends, a picnic blanket and some nibbles and head to The Domain for the yearly spectacle sing-along Carols in the Domain.
Sydney is undeniably one of the most magical cities to be in at this time of year. Plan your trip ahead and make the most out of your stay!