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Exploring Darling Harbour - Top Attractions to Visit

Home > Sydney > Day Trips | Family | Fun Things To Do | Places of Interest | Walks
by Gypsy Rose (subscribe)
I am a travel writer and photographer with a passion for the great outdoors and food! I love travelling and discovering hidden gems... experience the journey on Instragram! @gypsy_compass
Published September 24th 2016
Explore the wonders of Darling Harbour with this list
For more than 7,000 years, Darling Harbour was a frontier and today it still remains as one of the top tourist attractions in Sydney. From the first light to the twinkling stars at night there is something to see, do, explore and enjoy with many attractions that call Darling Harbour Home.

Darling Harbour is a 10 minute walk from the heart of Sydney and is lively as well as interactive and offering something for everyone from entertainment precincts, dining, shopping to outdoor and indoor activities.

The list below includes top things to do, see, experience and explore at Darling Harbour.

The historical Pyrmont Bridge...

1. Pyrmont Bridge
The bridge began operating in 1857 and is one of the world's oldest surviving electrically operated swingspan bridges making Pyrmont Bridge an attraction to explore. Walk across and stop to admire the picturesque views of Darling Harbour and beyond. Click here for website.

2. King Street Wharf
Be welcomed to funky nightclubs, wine bars, bistros serving fine food, great cocktails and late-night dancing. The wharf makes a lovely walk both during the day and night offering different perspectives of this lively wharf. Click here for website.

3. Cockle Bay Wharf
Explore the culinary playground that Cockle Bay Wharf has on offer. A few minutes walk from Chinatown and the Imax Theatre lies this exciting precinct. There are a variety of restaurants and cafes. Click here for website.

Admiring the city lights at Darling Harbour...

4. Sea Life Sydney Aquarium
With a large variety of Australian aquatic life and displays of more than 700 species, comprising more than 13,000 individual fish as well as other sea and water creatures, a visit to the Sea Life Sydney Aquarium is a must when visiting Darling Harbour. There are many exhibits, feeding demonstrations, talks, interactive activities and much more to explore. Click here for my article and click here for website.

5. Wildlife Sydney Zoo
Explore Australian Wildlife and enjoy admiring the cute and cuddly animals at the exhibits. There is plenty to see, do and experience with animal talks, interactive activities, exhibits and much more. Click here for my article and click here for website.

6. Madame Tussauds
This Darling Harbour attraction is a museum filled with life-size replicas of celebrities and historic icons in themed galleries. There is plenty to explore here with interactive activities such as dressing up as a historian, spinning books that reveal history, step into Ned Kelly's armour and much more. Click here for my article and click here for website.

7. Chinese Garden of Friendship
This is truly a tranquil gem in the busy city and a cultural attraction in Darling Harbour. You will find exotic plants, pavilions, tea house, ponds, wildlife including opportunities of birdwatching, hidden pathways and much more at this secret garden. Click here for website.

The Australian Maritime Museum...

8. Darling Quarter & Playground
Darling Quarter features Tumbalong Park, Darling Quarter Kids Playground, restaurants, cafes and green space to relax. The Darling Quarter Kids Playground is one of the most spectacular playgrounds which features water games, climbing ropes, swings, slides and flying foxes and it is free! Click here for Playground website & click here for website.

9. Harbourside
Located on the water's edge Harbourside Shopping Centre features unique dining, leisure and shopping experiences. There is a food court, entertainment level which includes a 20 lane Kingpin Bowling Centre, M9 Laser Skirmish and Australia's first Boeing 737-800 flight simulator, Flight Experience. Click here for website.

10. Australian National Maritime Museum
Explore Australia's maritime history with permanent, travelling and feature exhibits, collections, library and research centre, action stations, interactive & hands-on activities, vessel displays and much more. Click here for website.

Enjoying a Captain Cook Cruise around the Harbour...

11. 9D Action Cinema
Have fun with the action at this simulator amusement ride which features the latest technology in a dynamic, multi-dimensional, small theatre. It is suitable for all ages, including the little ones. Let your senses go in overdrive with this exciting active motion with dramatic effects such as rain, fog, lightning, wind and more, all while watching a short movie! Click here for website.

12. Ferry & Cruise Rides
Darling Harbour is one of the gateways to explore the harbour waters by catching a ferry or take a cruise across Sydney Harbour. Click here for the local ferries website and click here for cruises

13. Jet Boat Rides

A very exhilarating way to explore Darling Harbour at full speed with 270 degree spins, power break stops and get ready to get splashed! The Sydney Jet offers a 35 minute Jet Thrill with loads of fun and the Harbour Jet is the ultimate sightseeing adventure.

14. IMAX
The world's largest cinema screen is a must visit where you will find a diverse range of feature films and documentaries in 2D and 3D. Do note that IMAX will be refurbishing and will close in September. However, it will be back in 2019 still maintaining their title of 'the world's largest cinema', for all details click here.
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Why? Explore and experience the attractions at Darling Harbour
When: All year round
Where: Darling Harbour, Sydney
Cost: Free & ticketed attractions - check above
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