We landed at the Sydney Airport and began our new year’s eve 2016 adventure. One of the things about Sydney is that they have a great transportation system and you need to buy an Opal card when you get there. They stopped doing the paper train passes on January 1st, 2016 so it was necessary to get on board with the Opal card as soon as we landed.
You can buy Opal cards at convenience stores and news stands. So when you’re in the Sydney Airport, look for something equivalent to the the Hudson News in the airports. If you don’t know where one is, you can ask the information desks which are super helpful. The information desks also have great maps of the city and some coupons for the local tourists. When you get to buy an Opal card, you can only put money on it in increments of 20 AUS so be prepared for that.
The train from the airport into the city is all the way at the far end of the airport (I believe it is on the north end of the terminal). And the closest newspaper stand was about a 6-8 minute walk from the actual train station.
That being said, when you’re heading into the center of Sydney, you have a few options. Obviously you can take a taxi but it’s better if you take the public transportation options. There are two main options which would be the public bus or you can take the train into the city and the connect to the buses. We opted for the train which is actually significantly more expensive but you don’t need to worry about traffic on the train. If I remember correctly, the public bus was about 6 AUS total while the train into the city plus the bus ended up being about 18 AUS.
The train only has two major routes that takes you around to Circle Quay (pronounced Key) and throughout the main center of the city. It’s a great transportation system, especially because the trains are newer and air conditioned. When you walk onto the train, be prepared that you can either go upstairs or downstairs, don’t just stand in the door way because it will get cramped. Also, no eating or drinking on their trains. They are super clean and would like to keep it that way.
We hoped on the train and made our way up to Bondi Junction where we caught the bus to Bondi Beach where our Airbnb was. We settled into a cute little apartment just off the main street in Bondi and got ourselves mentally prepared for the long day ahead of us.