(SPOT.ph) Looking to ‘gram your way through Sydney, Australia? It’s practically impossible to run out of spots to snap in the country-continent’s largest city. It has a beautiful mix of British architecture, from when Australia was colonized by Britain in the 1700s, with a distinctly Aussie flair. Old factories and mills-turned-heritage buildings now house modern shops and offices, adding to the charm of this city. Plenty of green spaces and works of art in every form complete the picture.
Get your grid ready and rake in those hearts by checking out these locations around the capital city of New South Wales.
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The Grounds of Alexandria
Building 7A, 2 Huntley Street, Alexandria
Open daily, hours vary
If there was ever a restaurant made to be Instagrammed, it’s this former pie factory-turned-brunch hot spot. Brick walls, overgrown gardens, cute signs, outdoor food stalls, a glass house, an ATM inside a red phone booth, an animal farm that houses resident pig Harry Trotter and his friends—you’ll go crazy snapping everything. Take your pick from the seating sections in the indoor café, the garden area, and the bar-slash-eatery called The Potting Shed. During weekends, bakers and makers run the stalls at The Grounds Market. The best time to go, though, is on a weekday morning as the lines can get quite long. The Grounds is slightly nearer to the airport than the Sydney CBD, so set aside a few hours for this place, or make a pit stop on your way to or from the airport.
How to get there: From St. Peter's Station, catch bus 348 and get off at Bourke Road. at Huntley Street. From Green Square Station, exit at Bourke Road and walk for about 10 minutes towards The Grounds.
Angel Place Birdcages
Angel Place, George Street
This art installation titled "Forgotten Songs" commemorates the songs of 50 bird species that used to be heard in central Sydney before they were gradually forced out by the European settlement that first arrived in the 1700s. Created by Michael Thomas Hill, it is made of 50 empty birdcages suspended above Angel Place, a narrow lane between George Street and Pitt Street. Make sure you’ve got the sound on for your IG story as the installation also features the chirping of the birds that change from day to night, mimicking their natural flow hundreds of years ago.
How to get there: From Circular Quay Station, take the train to Wynyard Station and walk for about five minutes to Angel Place. Or, walk for about 11 minutes from Circular Quay via Macquarie Place and Pitt Street.
Bondi Beach too crowded on your visit? Take a ferry to Manly Beach, where you can watch surfers tread through huge slabs of rocks in the sea to jump off at the edge and catch the waves. If you’re up for a long walk—19.5 kilometers to be exact—go on the Manly Scenic Walkway, starting at the Spit Bridge, winding around Manly North Head, and ending at Manly Beach. Visiting the neighborhood of Manly is well worth the 20-minute ferry ride from the Sydney CBD, which also gives you a great view of the Sydney Opera House and Sydney Harbor Bridge.
How to get there: From Circular Quay, take a ferry to Manly Beach.
19 Rialto Lane, Manly Beach
Open daily from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m.
The beach isn’t the only reason you should go to Manly—the neighborhood is teeming with aesthetically pleasing coffee shops that would go well with your feed. Rollers Bakehouse, for instance, has all the succulents, tiled tables, and millennial pink you could ever want. Not just a pretty face, it consistently ranks as one of the best places to grab a croissant in Sydney. Their flavors change all the time; get your taste buds and camera ready for out-of-the-box flavors like Vegemite and Cheese, Charcoal, and Sushi. Go early as the café closes at 3 p.m., and don’t forget to check out their IG-worthy bathroom art before you go!
How to get there: From Manly Beach, walk for about six minutes to Rollers via The Corso and Rialto Lane.
Ferries are an integral part of the Sydney transportation system, and you can take photos of these water vessels set against the skyscraper landscape at Darling Harbour. At night, the clear water sparkles with the lights of the buildings, making for gorgeous photos. Drop by on a Saturday night for the free fireworks show best viewed at Darling Harbour.
How to get there: From Circular Quay Station, take the train to Museum Station or Town Hall Station and walk for about 10 minutes to Darling Harbour.
Established as a penal colony in 1788, The Rocks was the first European settlement in Australia. It takes its name from the blocks of local sandstone used to make the original buildings. You can still see some of the heritage buildings preserved on the outside and modernized on the inside to house cafés, bars, and even information centers. The Rocks is a good spot to photograph the Sydney Harbor Bridge, as well as a starting point for those who want to walk across the 2.4 kilometer-long bridge.
How to get there: From Circular Quay, walk for about five minutes via George Street.
St. James Railway Station and Museum Station
For the past 92 years, these train stations have not only been a convenient mode of transportation for those who reside in Sydney, but also serve as living pieces of history. The cream tiles with maroon and green highlights bring to mind London underground tubes, while the vintage posters and signage complete the retro look.
How to get there: From Circular Quay Station, take the train and exit at either station.
State Library of New South Wales
Macquarie Street corner Shakespeare Place
Open from Monday to Thursday, 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; and Saturday and Sunday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Established almost two centuries ago, the oldest library in Australia houses a whopping six million items in its historical and contemporary collections. There’s much to discover and take photos of, from the soothing rows of books to the grand architecture to the special exhibits on display. An exhibit called #NewSelfWales even lets you be a part of the library: take a selfie and they’ll project it on the wall alongside modern-day selfies and vintage portraits.
How to get there: From Circular Quay, take the bus and get off at Martin Place Station, Elizabeth Street, Stand F. Or, walk for about 10 minutes via Young Street. and Bent Street.
The Strand Arcade
412-414 George Street
Open from Monday to Wednesday and Friday, 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Thursday, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Saturday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.; and Sunday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Located in the heart of the CBD is this beautifully preserved shopping center built in 1891. One of the first Victorian buildings in Sydney, The Strand brings old-school charm to the modern era with its patterned tile floors, cast iron rails, and tinted glass roof. Get your pasalubong shopping done here and make sure to go up to the second floor for a great view of the arcade.
How to get there: From Circular Quay Station, take the train to St. James Station and walk for about six minutes towards The Strand.
Take a quick train or bus ride southwest of the Sydney CBD to explore this vibrant suburb. Its main road, King Street, is lined with quirky shops, hip restaurants, and theaters with old-school marquee. Explore the inner streets to discover all kinds of street art, from small drawings to huge building wrap-arounds.
How to get there: From Circular Quay Station, take the train to Newtown Station.