- YHA Locations
Five-star views of Sydney harbour and fairy garden vibes, for absolutely nothing. Secluded and private, in spite of its popularity. Peace, quiet and zen. A spot so special, locals are loathe to share it around. Located in North Sydney - just a few stops on the train from Sydney Central YHA - Wendy Whiteley’s Secret Garden is a no-brainer for a unique and special romantic or social date. Bond over picking out items in the supermarket to prepare for your picnic, make the scenic walk down the steps together, and find a table or a lovely patch of grass to settle into for the afternoon. For a date, it provides a truly romantic backdrop – especially as the sun is setting. For friends, it is the perfect hideaway for stimulating conversations and an all-round relaxing catch-up. You can even go by yourself for the ultimate relaxing experience, take a book or take nothing and feel your worries float away. Honestly, you can’t go wrong with this spot.
Enjoy a masterpiece by Matisse in the Life & Spirit exhibition which is opening November 20th 2021. Masterpieces from the Centre Pompidou, Paris are heading to Sydney until the 13th March 2022. Spanning six decades and over 100 works that are brilliantly coloured, visually joyful and affirm everything that is great about life. Book tickets here.
Just a short walk from Sydney Central YHA there’s Spice Alley – dozens of hawker-style Asian eateries under a canopy of glowing lanterns. Highlights include Japanese dining hall KYO-TO and Vietnamese delicacies from Viet. You and your companions can soak up the atmosphere, breathe in the smells and experience a touch of Asia right in the heart of Sydney, settle into a couple of the 350 seats available. Converse and connect as you munch on some of the best Asian food in the country.
If you’re an adventurer and water-baby at heart this is a must-do! Hire a kayak from Manly Kayak Centre (or bring your own!) and push off from a little beach right near Manly Wharf. If you’re not confident on your nautical navigation skills, Manly Kayak Centre also hosts a tour, so you can relax and enjoy knowing you’re in safe hands. The difficulty of this kayak depends on a number of a factors, but it’s always best done with a buddy to ease the workout, and for maximum fun! Hug the coastline as much as you can. When you need a break, steer into secluded and peaceful Store Beach to rest and refuel. When you’re ready to head off again, you’ll scoot around to the famous (and allegedly haunted) Q-station – where you can snorkel and frolic around Quarantine Beach, or take a ghost tour if you’re game!
It will take you more time to wait for an uber than it will to walk from the Capitol Theatre back to your bed in Sydney Central YHA. With world class musicals such as Come From Away, Cinderella and 9 to 5 there is something for everyone, and after the long lockdowns it is time to GET OUT and ENJOY!. Book tickets here
Just as a local, suburban market should be, Glebe Markets are diverse, colourful and full of life. Meander through stalls of fashion, books, jewellery, artwork, furniture, bric-a-brac and pretty much everything cool you can possibly imagine. The most popular stalls are the rows upon rows of colourful vintage clothes. Both new and handmade and pre-loved, you very well may find your next perfect pair of jeans or statement tee here! Recycling is a strong theme of these famous markets – turning something old into something new and fabulous. When you get peckish, take your pick from the countless stalls, ranging from the best gozleme in Sydney to Hungarian donuts. Grab your nosh and find a lovely stretch of grass, and enjoy live music and soaking up the atmosphere as you eat. Rain, hail or shine – you can always rely on Glebe Markets to fill your Saturdays with fun, food and fresh discoveries.
As a big island, it’s no surprise that Australia’s seafood is absolutely glorious, and there’s only one place the Sydney locals go to get it: the famous Sydney Fish Market. The largest fish market in the Southern Hemisphere and the second-largest seafood market in the world outside of Japan, the Sydney Fish Market offers you the opportunity to sample the freshest of the fresh. Browse the countless seafood retailers and pick up some seafood to cook up at Sydney Central YHA later, or let others do the work for you and enjoy an endless array of fantastic dining experiences. From a casual eat at the sushi bar to an epic seafood platter overlooking the water, there’s something for every seafood lover. If you’re into upskilling, book a class at Sydney Seafood School – where some of Australia’s leading chefs teach you how to perfectly cook anything from canapes to BBQs!
Head for this boutique, one-of-a-kind spot in Surry Hills - a ten-minute walk from Sydney Central YHA. You won’t find Avengers or Star Wars here, but you will find a range of new independent movies, much-loved golden classics and also forgotten cartoon favourites such as Spirited Away. Before or after your flick, you and your companions can enjoy delicious food such as cheeseboards and gourmet toasted sandwiches at the bar, as well as an impressive collection of wine, beers and cocktails – sometimes there will even be live music playing. All in all, a visit to this iconic spot is an experience in itself, providing good vibes all round.
But first, you have to find it! Enter a fire door next to a sandwich shop on Sydney’s Pitt Street and follow a corridor so long, you’ll be sure you’re lost. But soon, you will see a polished brass pineapple door knocker – enter and you’re in! Boasting a diverse and delectable cocktail and nibbles menu with a distinct Japanese feel, you’ll fall head-over-heels in love with the cozy atmosphere at Door Knock Bar, described as “feeling like you’re in a mate’s place.” Specialties include the Hey Macadamia cocktail served in a tiki cup, and the substantial mac and cheese croquettes. If you’re after something fancier, there’s also freshly shucked oysters, perfect for sharing with someone. With dim mood lighting, it also makes it a perfect spot to take a first date (wink wink).
Now, this one will actually put you a step ahead of the locals! We Sydney locals tend to be creatures of habit – we work hard during the week and generally spend our weekends in our own backyards or being human sloths indoors with Netflix and UberEats. As an adventurer, you’re of course going to spend your weekends discovering hidden gems outside of Sydney that are mere train rides away! The cream of the crop has got to be the Blue Mountains - world away, yet only two hours from Sydney CBD. Enjoy the most exquisite landscapes you'll ever see - from the iconic Three Sisters rock formation to gliding above lush canopies at Scenic World. You're definitely going to need to crash overnight here, so secure your bed at the cosy and homely Blue Mountains YHA - just a stone's throw from terrific pizza, lively pubs and cute cafes!