Destinations
November 05, 2019 Words: Renwick McAslan and Stephen Milioti

The Best Time to Visit Sydney

Get set for fun in the sun — plus world-class natural and cultural wonders

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When it comes to traveling Down Under, you’re going to be in good shape weather-wise the majority of the time. But that doesn’t mean this generally sunny paradise is without its less-than-brilliant weather days (as relatively rare as those are). Here are some quick tips to help you figure out the best time to go, based on what you like to do most — as well as some options that’ll help you squeeze maximum fun out of your stay, no matter the weather.

Best Season to Visit Sydney

If you’re visiting Sydney from September to May, it’s likely that you’ll have great weather. In September through December, when the city experiences its spring season (and the beginning of summer), it’s balmy but not too hot — think highs of 70-75 degrees F (21-24 C). Many find that spring is their favorite time to visit, but technically, the general high season (and most popular time for vacationers to visit) is December to February. During these months, the weather is at its warmest and sunniest, with an average of 78 degrees F (26 C). Humidity can be highest during this time.

Low season tends to be May/June to mid-August. This is winter — and when the Sydney winter comes, it tends to bring rain, wind and a bit of chill (but it’s all relative: high temps are still in the 60s F, or around 16-19 C).

Best Time for Sightseeing in Sydney

Anytime from September to May is the time to visit if you’re looking to visit one or more of Sydney’s stunning outdoor sights — including the Sydney Harbour Bridge (one of the city’s most iconic landmarks), the breathtakingly lush Royal Botanic Garden (don’t miss its rose garden with 1,800 roses total), Hyde Park (a calming oasis located right in the central business district) and Taronga Zoo (who wouldn’t enjoy a “Lemur Walk-Through”?). There’s also picturesque Darling Harbour, an intersection of the natural world and the human-made city, blending natural elements (don’t miss Cockle Bay Wharf, Tumbalong Park, and the Chinese Garden of Friendship) with a large concentration of shops, restaurants, museums and cultural centers, and more.

Best Time for Outdoor Activities

Water-borne sports such as swimming and surfing are best in the summer (December - February) but other activities for outdoorsy types — such as hiking and cycling — are best pursued in late spring (October to November) or early autumn (March and April).

Best time for beach-lounging

For anyone looking to center their vacations around the beach (and that’s a lot of people, as this is one of the world’s most popular — and beautiful — beach destinations), head to Manly Beach or, of course, the world-famous Bondi Beach. The best time for getting your bronze on is unquestionably from November to March — but, again, bear in mind that beach activities are generally available all year round … just with more limited services during the off-peak season.

Indoor attractions for whatever weather

Even in the low season (or on a rare less-than-picturesque day in peak season), Sydney has enough world-famous attractions to satiate a seasoned world traveler. Undoubtedly the most well-known is the Sydney Opera House: a UNESCO World Heritage Site, its famously extroverted facades look like sculptural takes on sails. The opera house hosts 40 shows a week, from full-fledged operas to art exhibits and kids’ shows.

Other attractions include the Rocks Discovery Museum (located in the Rocks, a historic piece of land which protrudes into Sydney Harbour, it pays tribute to the Gadigal aboriginal people who settled the area) and the observation deck of the Sydney Tower Eye (the city’s tallest building and one of its great landmarks). And shoppers and foodies will find plenty to peruse in the 200 high-end shops housed within the majestic Queen Victoria Building.

Get the Seabourn Experience

Book an ultra-luxury vacation with Seabourn to experience the best of Sydney during peak season on board the best at sea. Discover fascinating places from Australia to New Zealand, including Wellington, Tauranga, Milford Sound and Melbourne and visit landmarks like the Sydney Opera House. Rewind at the beach or experience a UNESCO site like Cockatoo Island. Learn more about our sailings and optional shore experiences here.

Overview of Sydney
Seabourn Sydney Opera House
Australia Queen Victoria Building

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