Besides having one of the best beach cultures in the world and a climate that rivals that of San Diego, Sydney also ranks in terms of highest costs of living in the world, coming in at number 11 according to the 2012 survey led by Mercer.
The cost alone is enough to make even the most money-savvy travelers worry, but rest assured: some of the best attractions and activities in Sydney are free or cost but a dime. To help with your planning, we’ve compiled a list of the more budget friendly things to do below.
Go on a ferry ride
Costing just $5.60 or $7 one way, depending on distance, a ferry ride is the perfect way to experience a sunny Sydney day out on the water. You’ll get clear views of the Sydney Harbour, as well as views of your destination, whether that be the Taronga Zoo, Manly or Balmain.
Grab a pub dinner on trivia night
One of the best value dinners you can get in Sydney would be a pub dinner. Of course, meals will vary by pub, but it’s not uncommon to get a nice steak and 2 vegetable dinner for a mere $10. Even better is doing this on pub trivia night where you and your team get to eat and work out your brain with the chance of drinking for free!
Picnic in the Royal Botanic Gardens
Although the ability to enjoy the Royal Botanic Gardens that stretch to the harbor in Sydney is free, if you want to have a picnic lunch, you will need to pay for supplies. That, still, runs on the affordable side since you can easily do some grocery shopping, picking and choosing the extravagance of your picnic feast.
See a cheap Tuesday movie
For rainy days, or days when you just need a break from sightseeing, a movie often does the trick. Movie theater tickets, however, come with a hefty fee in Sydney, unless you go on Tuesday night and get your ticket for just $10.
Climb the Pylon Lookout
Many people think the only way to get a good aerial view of Sydney city is to climb the Sydney Harbour Bridge or go up the Sydney Tower. Those two options also bring a high price tag, but you can get relatively great views for just $15 by climbing the 200 steps to the Pylon Lookout.
Drive through the Royal National Park and on to the Grand Pacific Drive
A beautiful seaside drive lies to the south of Sydney, just after the Royal National Park. If you can, rent a car and go for a drive being sure to stop off in the Royal National Park, one of Sydney’s best parks, for a picnic lunch before driving on the Grand Pacific Drive heading further south.
Eat seafood at the Fish Market
Fresh seafood graces the menus and plates of the majority of restaurants in Sydney, but a great way to get to the source besides fishing yourself is to head to the Sydney Fish Market. It’s both a visual and tasty experience — one of the best sources for waterside dining — that only costs the price of your meal.