I studied abroad in Sydney at the University of Sydney for about 6 months. Although, I will definitely be going back quite often (because I have fallen in love with this place) I will mostly share my outlook as an abroad student! 

here is my unofficial Sydney study abroad guide  ūüôā

Home, getting around, school, logistics

HOME: I lived in the QueenMary building. I highly recommend this living situation. It’s very social (as there are over 800 students that live there), but you get the privacy of having your own room. There is a giant communal kitchen where everyone cooks and most students living there are international so it’s interesting to see what everyone is cooking. Also it’s a 10 minute walk from campus, huge plus 

GETTING AROUND: pick up an Opal card from a 7/11 store and you can get around just about anywhere using the bus or train. I found it helpful to use the iPhone maps app and Tripview to figure out where I was going. Also you can load money onto your card directly from the Opal application. If you are an exchange student you can apply for a subsidized card to make every trip cheaper! Uber is also an option if you need to get somewhere faster. 

SCHOOL: I attended University of Sydney and loved it so much! I mostly had classes on Tuesdays and Thursdays so that I had the freedom to travel Thursday night through Tuesday morning. The majority of my classes were mostly international students because I took international classes like “Learning in the outdoors” and “Sports and culture”, which I highly recommend both of those! The grading system is totally different than it is in America, but they explain that to you at orientation, so don’t freak if you get a 65% on an exam, because it’s wrong! 

LOGISTICS: for my cell phone service I got a Vodafone SIM card, which was a pain to cancel, but I didn’t have an international plan so it was my only option. It’s what most people did, unless they kept their American number. I arrived in Sydney in July and I thought it was going to be warm and sunny. I had a tank top and shorts when I landed and I was FREEZING. July is the beginning of their winter. It started getting warmer in October, so pack smart ūüôā

LINGO: some of my favorite words were: Keen (down), Brekkie (breakfast), How you going (how are you?), Rocket (arugula), Goon bag (cheap wine bag), Trackie dacks (tracksuit pants)

MARKETS: Coles (equivalent to Ralphs), Aldi (maybe a Vons), Harris Farms (cross between a Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods), Wools Worths (Woolies, like a Ralphs). All of these were located in the Broadway shopping center near University of Sydney. Also there is a Coles pretty much everywhere you go

ORGANIC MARKETS: lots of options at Harris Farms, Dr. Earth in Newtown (they have juices, smoothies, and food too), Taste Organic Enmore (have lots of discounted food that imperfect), Naked Foods bulk store, and Alfalfa House Community Co-op (there’s even an opportunity to work there for discounts). Also, nothing beats the farmers markets. I LOVED the Bondi Farmers Market and the Marrickville Markets. 

Adventures, things to do

Bondi to Coggee Walk 

Manly Beach 

Bondi Icebergs (I think its $7 for the day)

Curl Curl beach and Dee Why

Spit to Manly Walk (one of my favs)

Royal National Park (HIGHLY recommend the Figure 8 pools hike, check the tides before you go.There is a direct 2 hour train that takes you there)

Blue Mountains National Park: so many hikes. There is a 3 hour train ride that takes you directly there. Some of my favorite hikes were the Grand Canyon, 1000 steps, and Three Sisters

Hunter Valley Wine Tour (SO FUN)


Glebe Markets (every Saturday in Glebe. I have bought some of my favorite second hand clothing pieces from there)

Victoria Park: soak up the sun between classes

Newtown: FAVORITE town. super funky. lots of good food places and fun bars

The Rocks by Circular Quay 

Take the Ferry to Manly or anywhere (best at Sunset)

Chinese Friendship Garden 

Royal Botanical Gardens: peaceful place to eat lunch 

See something at the Opera House

Explore Surry Hills: cute town, has a Barry’s Bootcamp, and lots of yummy healthy cafes

Watch the sunrise at Bondi Beach ~magical 

Luna Park 


The Ivy (Thursday nights)

Scary Canery (silent discos on Tuesdays)

Golden Sheaf (Wednesday). Theres even a free bus that takes you from Sheaf to World Bar

Side Bar (kinda weird vibe, but fun on Mondays, sometimes)

Coogee Pavilion (poppin’ on Sundays)

Oxford Street (Oxford Art Factory has lots of fun themed events, check Facebook)

Clique Bar at Circular Quay (Saturday)

Marley Bar Newtown (live music, fun on Fridays)

Soda Factory (Saturday)

Sash by day, Sash by night (I never went but apparently it’s only open on Sundays. Check Facebook)

Moral of the story~~ there is nightlife every single night in Sydney and it’s so fun!


One of my favorite parts of Australia. Everything is just more aesthetically pleasing and more colorful. Also there are more healthy options everywhere you go. Some general notes: you don’t need to tip, Zomato is the “yelp” app in Australia, and you usually pay at the front of the restaurant so don’t be confused if you are sitting for a while waiting for your check. Lord of the Fries is a fast food chain located everywhere and it is vegan. Uber eats and Delivero are the common food delivery apps (there is no postmates). Also make sure to try Loving Earth chocolate, Tim Tams, and exotic fruit¬†



Lentils for Everyone (donation based, vegan food, they even host events like yoga classes)

Gelato Blue (vegan gelato)

Mr. Yeeros (falafel)


Bare Naked Bowls (açaí, smoothies, pastries)

El Camino (taco Tuesday)


Pure Wholefoods (obsessed with this place)

The Hold (so many vegan burger options)

Manly Health Foods

Acai Brothers (ehhhhh)



Vida Surf Shop Cafe


Green Dream (best salad happy hour)

Chachas ice cream (amazing and they have food)


Conscious Feast (sooo good)


Cali Press (juices, açaí, smoothies)

Preach Cafe


Om Vegan Kitchen 

Shift Eatery

Nutie Donuts (vegan desserts and food)


Gathered Kitchen (super yummy)

Sappho Books Cafe 


360 bar (make a reservation at the bar because the restaurant is very lux $$)

Sake (sushi)

El Camino (taco Tuesday)