Sydney Travel Advice: Documents Required and When to Go

sydney travel advice

Sydney is one of Australia’s most popular destinations, with a lot to offer to international visitors. From surfers and nature lovers to cultural tourists, people from all continents are attracted to the third most livable city in the world.

Australia has long been a welcoming country with both tourists and immigrants. In fact, nearly 30% of Australia’s resident population was born abroad, and Sydney alone welcomes 10 million tourists from overseas every year.

Foreign citizens wishing to travel to Sydney, however, will need to hold a valid Australian visa. In this article, you’ll find useful travel information for international tourists visiting Sydney, including:

  • Visa information on how to get a travel authorization for Sydney
  • Weather information to decide the right time to travel to Sydney
  • What to do and see in Sydney as a foreign tourist depending on the season.

What Do I Need to Travel to Sydney Australia?

Foreign nationals cannot enter the Australian territory without a valid travel authorization. Most tourists intending to spend a limited time in Australia apply for temporary visas such as the ETA travel authorization or the eVisitor visa as they are often the most straightforward to apply for.

As part of your visa requirements for Australia, it’s possible that you will be asked to obtain further documentation in order to be granted entry. This will depend on the visa you decide to apply for and may include, for example:

  • Medical or travel insurance
  • Proof of employment or studies
  • Proof of financial means to support yourself during your time in Australia
  • A return plane ticket as evidence of your plans to leave Australia

Once you arrive at the Australian border, you’ll need to have a copy of your visa with you. You will also need your passport — the same you used during the visa application. If you plan to drive while in Australia, remember to take a valid driver’s license with you.

How to Get a Visa for Sydney Australia

In order to travel to Sydney from abroad, you’ll need a visa for Australia. The visa requirements, application, and processing time will depend on the type of Australian visa you are applying for.

Applying for an electronic Australian visa is one of the most convenient ways to obtain your travel authorization, as travelers can complete the application online from anywhere in the world and don’t need to visit an Australian embassy in person.

In order to complete your Australian visa application online, you’ll need your passport, supporting documents, and a credit or debit card to pay the application fee. Some of the documents may be submitted at a later stage in case you don’t have them at hand.

What Is the Best Time to Visit Sydney Australia?

Sydney is a lively city that is worth visiting all year round. Depending on what you would like to do during your holiday in Sydney, however, you may want to choose a specific time of the year to plan your trip.

If you’re from the Northern hemisphere, keep in mind that the Southern hemisphere follows an opposite season cycle compared to the one you’re used to. This means that Sydneysiders enjoy Christmas time on the beach while they experience colder temperatures between June and September.

What to Do and See in Sydney During the Summer

The peak season in Sydney runs between late November and February. The temperatures go up to 30 degrees during the warmest weeks, the ocean is calmer, and Christmas holidays make the most popular tourist attractions crowded with both locals and foreign visitors.

This is the ideal time to enjoy laying on the beach, camping, and other outdoor activities. Sydney is surrounded by a plethora of national parks (like the Blue Mountains and the Mimosa Rocks National Park) where you can explore the unique Australian nature. Moreover, the city is buzzing with music and cultural festivals in the many city parks and outdoor spaces.

What to Do and See in Sydney During the Winter

The low season is considered to run from late February to the end of August. The weather is colder and more humid. However, this is the ideal season for travelers on a budget and ocean lovers. Sydney’s in a privileged location for whale watching: in June and July, you can sit on Sydney’s Eastern coast and observe these animals from afar, or book a specialized boat tour to get closer.

Waves are bigger in the winter months. This is when experienced surfers come to Sydney to enjoy less crowded and more exciting waters.

Finally, the city is quieter. During the low season, you will spend less time queuing for the most popular Sydney landmarks and attractions — like the Sydney zoo, the Harbour and Opera House, and the many museums and galleries.