Sydney, the mecca of Oz. I first visited during the holidays in 2016 for the wedding of my dear friends, Melissa and Danny. Take the City (CBD) to the far north, which is also filled with quiet residential suburbs that are north of the Harbor. At the harborfront, you have The Sydney Opera House and nearby is The Royal Botanic Garden. Below the CBD, you have The Rocks, Potts Points, and Darlinghurst. These neighborhoods are filled with coffee shops, restaurants, and harborside views. Hipster and super-cool Surry Hills with Crown Street is below with chic it-girl Paddington to the east with Oxford and William Streets with the best brands in town from Aussie fashion (check out Parlour X on Oxford Street for brands like Ellery), and Woollahra to the right of Paddington. In Woollahra, you’ll likely explore Queen Street with everything from fashion to galleries to antiques; you must make a stop at my dear friends art gallery that features important Australian artists from emerging to more established names at Olsen Gallery. Beach babe Bondi is to the far east with alternative and hip Newtown/ Enmore/ Glebe to the far west. Bobo Balmain/ Birchgrove that make up the “"insular peninsula” to the northwest. Up the coast to the northeast is beach town, Byron Bay. 

There is really no bad time to visit Sydney, but it gets very busy during the holidays (their summertime) in December- January. You’ll be flying into the Sydney Airport (SYD), which is about thirty-minutes from the CBD. Uber's work everywhere and are easy to use to get around. At the airport, you can grab a local sim card at the Vodafone stand at the Terminal 1 Arrivals; I think I paid something like $20 USD gets you 12.5GB of data. Tip an extra 10% at cafes and restaurants and there is a 10% tax on all goods that you purchase there, but if you’re paying in USD, the dollar is strong right now so you’ll be saving money. The Sydney Fish Markets have the freshest selection of fish in town on Bank Street. I booked an AirBnB in Paddington that I just adored (perfect location, perfect hosts) here.

*PS, a HUGE thanks to my dear friend Mel for showing me your Sydney