Name: Britt Haddy
Location: Sydney, Australia
Travel Style/Profile in 5 Words or Less:
I’m what the French call, “a planner”. So although it’s not under five words, I think my approach to travel is best captured by a quote from the late Richard Cushing, Archbishop for Boston (…drama), “Always plan ahead. It wasn’t raining when Noah built the arc.”
Favourite Food Spots:
On a shoestring:
1) Boon Café (Haymarket) – This is an interesting Thai café/grocery store which is perfect for either brunch, lunch or a late night dinner.
2) Don Don (Darlinghurst) – Cheap and cheerful Japanese curries, ramen, etc. Popular among students from the nearby arts college.
3) Lal Qila (Redfern) – A Pakistani restaurant which is starting to grow (in locations) and gain popularity across Sydney. It’s close enough to Indian food that you can feel comfortable ordering, but still something a little different and exotic.
4) Bad Hombres (Surry Hills) – A vegetarian taco restaurant with hipster vibes and good margaritas.
5) Ayam Goreng 99 (Kingsford) – Delicious and authentic Indonesian cuisine near to one of the universities and in a neighbourhood with many other cheap and cheerful Asian restaurants.
6) Puntino Trattoria (Darlinghurst) – Napoli style pizza and wine by the ounce!
7) Mr Liquors Dirty Italian Disco (Mascot) – Another great pizza spot that features exclusively natural wines.
1) Miyako Sushiya (AKA Oishi Sushi) (Cremorne) – This place is very unassuming. It’s in the middle of suburbia and appears to be just a hole in the wall joint. In fact, it’s a very authentic and high quality sushi restaurant where you can write your name on your sake bottle (in Japanese) and keep it there for your next visit.
2) Golden Century (Sydney) – A Sydney institution! The party doesn’t get started here until 10PM and from that point onwards it is a hub of the “who’s who” in the food industry. I’ve seen many a famous chef here enjoying outstanding seafood.
3) China Doll (Woolloomooloo) – Located in a posh suburb and strip with a great wharf view.
4) Ester (Chippendale) – Super hip and eclectic restaurant making outstanding food.
Favourite Non-Food City Spots:
· Royal Botanic Garden Sydney – A beautiful, expansive park where you can appreciate native species of plants, trees, flowers, herbs, etc., have a picnic, host a friendly game of cricket with friends, people watch, etc. The Caylyx is especially Instagram-worthy, but there are always other pop-up bars and restaurants emerging in the park.
· There are a few great galleries in Sydney, including The Art Gallery of NSW and the Brett Whiteley Studio. The latter features many of his original works, as well as the original, untouched furnishings of his studio and apartment. Both galleries are free to the public.
· A coastal walk – There are many coastal walks within Sydney which really hit home how truly special this harbour city is. The iconic and most popular walk is from Bondi Beach to Coogee Beach along the eastern beaches coast line. My next favourite is from Spit Junction to Manly Beach. This walk is a bit longer and involves trails into the bush, but you’re left feeling like you’ve escaped the city. The last is from Taronga Zoo to Bradley’s Head Amphitheatre. This is just a short walk, but it can be extended past Bradley’s Head and features some gorgeous views of the harbour.
Favourite Places To Go With Friends:
· A day at the beach – Sydney is unique in that it houses so many beaches all over the city. You’re never more than 30 minutes away from a beach on the coast or the harbour. My favourites are Dee Why (North), Maroubra (South East) and Shelly Beach (North).
· Picnic in the park – There are tons of great spots for picnics across Sydney. I suggest Vaucluse House, Wendy’s Secret Garden in Lavendar Bay, Rushcutters Bay Park, or Nielsen Park. They all feature gorgeous views in some way, shape or form.
· Shopping – My favourite shopping neighbourhoods are Paddington or Surry Hills where you can access a number of smaller, independent retailers.
· Theatre Bar at the End of the Wharf – I don’t really “go out” for drinks very often, but when I do, or when I have a friend visiting from outside the city, I always take them here. It is as it sounds, a bar at the very end of a wharf atop the Sydney Dance Company. It looks onto the Sydney Harbour Bridge and is way better than some of the tourist trap bars you’ll find directly in the harbour.
· Outdoor cinemas – If you visit in the summer, I highly suggest checking out one of the many outdoor cinemas. Whilst there are outdoor cinemas in Bondi, Centennial Park and elsewhere throughout the city, I highly suggest the St George Mrs Macquarrie’s Chair cinema. Without fail, I have an emotional and humbling experience at this cinema, watching the screen come up with the bridge and the opera house in the background. It’s worth the premium for the ticket.
Best Secret Spots Only A Local Would Know:
· There aren’t many well kept secrets in Sydney, but generally I find even the touristy of places to be quite manageable with respect to crowds. All that said, Wendy’s Secret Garden (as noted above) is a great picnic spot that only locals seem to know about. I also think the Eastern suburb beaches around Vaucluse and Watson’s Bay are the best kept secret beaches that only have locals on them.
A Perfect Saturday Looks Like:
· A Saturday market – Going to one of the many local farmer’s markets, including in Potts Point, Paddington, Bondi, etc. to buy produce for the week and brunch for the morning.
· A couple of hours in the sun on the beach – The sun here is no joke, so I can usually only handle a couple of hours outdoors before I need to retreat inside. I like to hit up an Eastern Suburb beach, but on special occasions I’ll make the trek across the bridge to visit a Northern beach. See the list in “Favourite Places to go with Friends” above.
· Dinner at a “hole in the wall” restaurant (“On a Shoestring Restaurant” above) with the man I love, and then the classic “Netflix and chill”.
Any Other City Favourites or Tips for Travellers?
· The tourist spots in Sydney are touristy for a reason; they’re gorgeous and one of a kind. Thus, I think they’re all worth visiting and shouldn’t be poo-pooed.
· Learn how to order your coffee in Australian. It’s a whole other coffee language here!