‘And here’s ya free beer tickets’ begins this walkabout in Australia’s first streets. We’re good for schooners in the oldest pub (hearing too of the infamous ‘six o’clock swill’); the Irish pub where U2 launched an album; and on the Glenmore’s roof terrace where architect Jørn Utzon may once have sketched and we’ve one of the best views of his sensational Opera House.
Pub Tour is early evening also daytime tours, both bookable at the vast Sydney tourist information centre on the edge of The Rocks. Many other good pubs and restaurants and a good museum.
Forget the Sydney Opera bar, Scubar and the party buses driving you around Darling Harbor.
I’m taking you for a day out to the alternative and indie kids paradise, Newtown. Although only one station from Central, backpackers and tourists tend to miss this lively area.
Here is my guide to a place often forgotten for the Bondi sunshine and lifeguards. So put away you boardies and pick your favorite pair of skinny jeans.
Newtown is amazing for food. Every time I went to Oz, I ended up piling on the pounds because I lived so close to so many delicious places. I am actually slightly drooling when I think of it. Get me there now.
To start the day right, one of my favorite places for breakfast is Café Sophia on Erskenville Road. You have to try their banana raspberry melon smoothie with salmon and eggs benedict or their French toasts. Actually try everything. Just go every morning for four months like I did.
For lunch, I would generally go for one of the many Thai restaurants on King’s Street, Newtown's main road. Most of the places are vegan/vegetarian and although I'm neither, I did get a little bit addicted to the fake duck, pak choi and rice $6 lunch boxes.
To walk off all this food, shop around! Newtown has lot to offer when it comes to retail therapy, whether it’s one the many vintage stores or young designers’ outlets, you will find everything you need to look like the Sydney hipster crowd.
Then head to the art gallery “Oh really?” on Enmore Road. Oh really? is a collective/magazine/gallery presenting the latest street artists around. They regularly organize openings and you could find yourself having a beer with artist Ears while nodding to some breakbeat. Check out what’s going on at ww.ohreallymagazine.com
Then it’s time to wind down. Head down for a cold long neck at The Court House (“The Courtie”) on Australia Street. Cheap drinks, a lovely beer garden decorated with fairy lights, a lively atmosphere and very important, a pool table.
Then move on for some cocktails on the Zanzibar Roof. You will find a cosy terrace and the staff there are always lovely (and not too shabby looking either).
If the schooners have gone straight to your head, then it’s time to go and pull some shapes on the dance floor. I have to say this is not in Newtown. On a Friday I’ll head to Mum at World Bar in Kings Cross to watch live music and listen to the latest indie-electro. Check the coming up MUM nights on MusicFeeds. On any other night check out Sydney promoters and all around cool kids UPTOOUR HIPS for the best nights in town (seriously).
And there you go, I can assure you this will be hell of a good day.
Now there is a lot more to discover by yourself in Newtown and around. But it would take way too long to tell you all about it and I have still things left to see myself. It’s alright; I’ll be back very soon. I’ll see you at The Courtie.
PS: If you were still to be hungry on your way home, stop by Saray’s on Enmore Road for a pite (also called Laknore) ,a filled bread from Kosovo with lemon juice on it. Delicious.
Cafe Sofia: 7 Swanson St Erskineville NSW 2043, +61(0)2 9519 1565
Oh Really? Gallery: 55 Enmore Rd Newtown, +61(0)401 919 624, www.ohreallymagazine.com
The Court House: 202 Australia Street Newtown, 2042, +61(0)29519 8273
World Bar: 24 Bayswater Road, Kings Cross, +61(0)2 9357 7700 www.theworldbar.com
Saray: 18 Enmore Rd, Newtown, 2042, +61 (0)2 9557 5310
Great old pub with al fresco seating (get there quick), great gourmet pizzas and tons of different rare Aussie beers - what more do you need?
The oldest pub in Sydney and one of the best. Established in 1841, this wonderful watering hole sits at the corner of Kent and Argyle Streets in the Rocks. Ideal for lunch - or a rejuvenating pint - during a walk around Sydney's most historic district. I recommend the pie and mash...
A traditional local Aussie pub - and with 24-hour opening you'll never need to leave! Forget the over-priced touristy restaurants at Darling Harbour and head to the 'PBH' for a $6 special, hours of fun on the video dukebox and plenty of well-priced alcohol! Prepare for sticky carpets though - this place is authentic!
Nearest metro station: Star City
Sydney's flashy modern bars are easy to find: chock full of beautiful people, but they can be a bit anaemic. Its old pubs are more interesting: try the Shakespeare, 200 Devonshire St, in Surry Hills. The pubs of Newtown are both gay-friendly and arty with a more local feel. If you're a homesick Brit go to the London Tavern, Underwood Street, Paddington.
Shakespeare, 200 Devonshire St, Surry Hills
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