Sydney is one of the most photographed cities in Australia.
Its world-famous iconic landmarks such as the Sydney Opera House, Bondi Beach, and Sydney Harbour Bridge have been featured in countless photos and videos from around the world.
As an intrepid traveller, however, you want to show your friends and family more than just a collection of predictable photos from the usual tourist attractions.
To help you along, we have curated a selection of favourite Instagram photo spots in Sydney. These surprising backdrops for your photographs of your next Australian quest will definitely show a different side of Sydney and induce wanderlust in your friends back home.
Fans of urban exploration and nineteenth century factory architecture should head to Carriageworks, a large multi-arts centre supporting Australian and international artists with commissions and exhibitions.
Situated in the old Eveleigh Rail Yards building at Wilson Street in the Redfern Waterloo precinct, Carriageworks has been developed by the government’s Arts NSW program.
Once a railway carriage and blacksmith workshop, the building’s preserved iron and brick details make a great photo backdrop. The venue often hosts international fashion shows and major festivals such as Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia, Pacific Runway Fashion Show and Vivid Sydney, to name a few.
Get directions to Carriageworks | Event Listing
|Address||Taronga Zoo, Bradleys Head Rd, Mosman NSW 2088, Australia
|Phone Number||+61 2 9969 2777
|Opening Hours||9.30am - 4.30pm daily (May to August)
9.30am to 5.00pm (September to April)
9.30am to 4.00pm (New Year's Eve)
Open daily including Christmas Day
Home to over 4,000 animals from over 350 species, the Taronga Zoo presents over 20 keeper talks and shows daily, as well as periodic zoo tours. Focused on conserving endangered species, the zoo participates in breeding programmes of mammals such as the Tasmanian Devil, Long-Nosed Bandicoot, Asian Elephant, and Snow Leopard.
These animals make great photo subjects—just avoid using flash! The best time to visit Taronga Zoo during the Australian summer months is early in the morning, when the animals are more active. Don’t fret if you miss your favourite animal - you can come back the next morning with your entry ticket as your admission is valid for two days in a row.
Wish to take in great views of Sydney Harbour? Check out the Wild Ropes adventure course in the zoo. Its high-altitude rope obstacle course allows you to catch a unique view of the harbour.
Get directions to Taronga Zoo
|Address||140 George St, The Rocks NSW 2000, Australia
|Phone Number||+61 2 9245 2400
|Opening Hours||Monday-Tuesday: 10:00am-5:00pm
Wednesday: 10:00am to 9:00pm
Thursday-Sunday: 10:00am to 5:00pm
Closed on Christmas
The Museum of Contemporary Art Sydney is a natural choice if you’re seeking a classic museum selfie. Explore over 4000 works by Australian artists, including Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists. Indigenous art on display features renowned artists like Vernon Ah Kee, Kumpaya Girgirba, and Noelene Girgirba, amongst others. Prepare to spend the day going through two floors of exhibition galleries, a library and an education centre.
The Museum of Contemporary Art Australia is also a frequent host of the Biennale of Sydney, Sydney's largest contemporary visual arts event held since 1973.
Get directions to Museum of Contemporary Art Sydney
|Address||Royal National Park, Audley Road, Audley NSW 2232, Australia
|Opening Hours||8.30am to 4.30pm daily (closed on Christmas Day)
Grab a shot of the unique sandstone rock formation aptly named Wedding Cake Rock, located in Royal National Park. A 6-hour drive from Sydney will get you there.
Wedding Cake Rock is famous for its white sand that makes it a popular subject of photos, although authorities have warned that the rock is fragile and vulnerable to crumbling. This flat-surfaced rock was once a favourite of daring photo stunts on the rock’s edge, but after a few mishaps, it is now fenced off for safety reasons.
You can still get good shots of Wedding Cake Rock with a perfect 90-degree angle. To do so, simply brave the Royal National Park Coast Track while staying safely behind the fences. Do remember to wear suitable clothes and footwear for the steep, rocky trek.
Start from 71 Beachcomber Avenue, Bundeena, which is the start of the Royal National Park coastal walk, then walk 3 km (or one hour) to reach the scenic site.
Get directions to Wedding Cake Rock
|Address||Technology Lane, The University of Sydney, Camperdown NSW 2006, Australia
|Opening Hours||24 hours daily|
Believe it or not, the University of Sydney actually encourages its students to create graffiti on campus walls!
They are legally allowed to spray paint in one underground tunnel, as long as their art is inoffensive in nature. To locate this graffiti tunnel, find the underground link between the Manning and Holme Buildings on Technology Lane.
Its slightly grimy but edgy appearance has made the underground pathway a popular spot for campus tours. Fresh graduates have also made it a photo stop, resplendent in their graduation robes.
While you are there, check out the various statements and club election messages left on the wall by students. You will have probably have difficulty finding any bit of the original wall cement left!
Get directions to the graffiti tunnel at University of Sydney
|Address||Parramatta, New South Wales 2150, Australia
|Opening Hours||24 hours daily|
If you wish to catch some fresh air, going for a cruise down Parramatta River could be a good option.
Flowing through Parramatta Park, the Parramatta River weaves its way past the Sydney Opera House all the way into the open sea.
Once a trading area of local aboriginal peoples and a key source of seafood, this riverine attraction can be traversed by hopping on board Sydney Ferries services both upstream and downstream. When doing so, you can even capture sunsets against gorgeous views of the wave-washed wharves.
Plan your river trip by visiting the Transport NSW site.
Get directions to Parramatta River
|Address||Church St, Parramatta NSW, Australia and surrounding areas
|Opening Hours||Various hours, depending on the restaurant
Allow your eyes and nose to lead the way! Parramatta’s Eat Street, located at the northern end of Church Street, has become a local food hunters’ haven with its array of attractive outdoor stalls and diverse restaurants.
Food outlets such as the San Churro chocolateria, starring hot chocolates, truffles, and churros cooked fresh on the spot with a dusting of cinnamon or icing sugar, are must-go places. Or check out Discover Parramatta's list of international cuisine to expand your repertoire of tastes.
Eat Street is accessible from Victoria Road’s bus stops. It is located 10 minutes on foot from Parramatta Station and Bus Interchange, and a short 10-minute walk along the river from Parramatta Ferry Terminal. 200 metres away, Eat Street Car Park’s street art provides another perfect canvas for your Instagram photography.
Get directions to Eat Street Parramatta