Cosimo Commisso shares his personal itinerary for making the most out of a week in Australia
Australia is enormous — which, unfortunately, makes it absolutely impossible to see it all in one week! But if you’re craving a trip Down Under and only have one week, fear not: even if you only get to see one or two cities, you’ll have a truly memorable time. If this is your first visit to Australia, I’d recommend devoting your trip to experiencing its capital, Sydney, where there’s so much to do and see.
Combat your jet lag with a nap and/or a jolt of caffeine — and if you find you’re still tired but still have a full day ahead of you, don’t sweat it. The Aussies are generally a laid-back bunch, so just go with their naturally relaxed flow!
I like to take this first day easy, so I spend my time exploring the Circular Quay, the Sydney Opera House and The Rocks. All of this can be done at a leisurely pace, so you’re soaking in Sydney’s essence without having to expel too much energy!
Invest this day in seeing the most iconic landmarks of Sydney. If it’s your first time, you’ll want to check out places like the Sydney Tower, where you’ll get a primo view of the city from up top. Wildlife lovers should stop by the Taronga Zoo (kangaroos and koalas!), Sydney Aquarium or the Featherdale Wildlife Park — although you should note that the latter is about an hour and a half’s drive from the heart of the city.
Now that you’ve checked off the downtown must-sees, spend your third day out of town at the Blue Mountains, an incredible national park where you can soak in Australia’s unique landscape. Ask your concierge about transportation options to and from the renowned area.
The fourth day is cruise day. It’s easy to find and book a day cruise that sounds best to you, but I highly recommend checking out Captain Cook Cruises — they offer a wide variety of different trips, my favourite being the sunset one.
Before or after your day (or night) on the water, be sure to complement the experience by heading to the Sydney Fishmarket, which is one of the three best fish markets in the world.
It’s wine time. If you know anything about me, it’s that Cosimo Commisso loves a good wine. And Australia is known for producing some of the world’s finest! Spend your fifth day on a wine tour — I’d recommend Australian Pacific Tours’ trek to the Hunter Valley. If by the end of it you’re still sober enough to function, I’d recommend taking the ferry to Manly Island, then cabbing to the renowned Kiosk restaurant, where you’ll enjoy a waterside view that’s as lovely and as laid-back as the menu.
I’d recommend spending your last full day relaxing, since you undoubtedly have a long journey ahead of you. Catch your breath at Bondi Beach, where you can swim, suntan, surf, watch skateboarders or enjoy sculptures. Find inspiration with a romantic walk through the Royal Botanic Garden, Sydney. Rejuvenate with an adventure through Darling Harbour. When your day is drawing to a close, make sure the grand finale of your trip is a good one — I always opt for a scenic dinner at a restaurant overlooking the harbour (there are many), which will send you home with a dreamy, postcard-like image of Sydney in your head.
Happy travels, mate!