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Hyde Park

An oasis of calm in Sydney's busy city centre, famed for its fig-lined avenues.

TravelCurious Tip

Hyde Park is a perfect place to rest your legs after a visit to the adjacent Australian Museum, which is the oldest in the country.

Hyde Park is the oldest public parkland in Australia. Occupying a full 40 acres in the middle of Sydney’s Central Business District, it is the ideal place to take a few hours’ break from a busy sightseeing schedule.


Pulling No Punches

Named after the original Hyde Park in London by Governor Macquarie in 1810, it has been a favourite with Sydneysiders for almost as long as the city has existed. In its early days, it was predominantly used as a sports ground, with rugby, cricket, quoits and hurling all being played here at various times of year, although the sportsmen were frequently forced to share their turf with the army, who used it to practise drill. One of the less savoury activities staged here was bareknuckle boxing. Often consisting of bouts between convicts organised by British Army officers, an intimidating precedent was set in 1814 when the very first fight lasted for no fewer than 56 rounds.


In Memoriam

Unsurprisingly, things have changed rather a lot in Hyde Park in the ensuing two hundred years. Its wide-open expanses are perfect for a picnic in the sun or a wander among the hundreds of leafy trees and pretty benches. The attractive centrepiece of the park is the Archibald Fountain. It consists of a dripping bronze Apollo surrounded by horses, dolphins and tortoises, and was donated to the city by J.F. Archibald in 1932 in honour of Australia’s efforts in France during WWI. Towards the south end of the park lies the Anzac Memorial, the most important war monument in Australia.


Nearby Attractions

See all attractions in Sydney
St Mary's Cathedral
Situated next to Hyde Park, St. Mary's is the most important church in Sydney - it's also the longest in Australia.
Royal Botanical Gardens
Covering almost 75 acres, Sydney's are celebrated as some of the best botanical gardens in the world.
Sydney Tower Eye
The tallest building in Sydney offers breathtaking 360 degree views of the city.
The Strand Arcade
This 19th century arcade is at the heart of downtown Sydney, and full of delightful boutique shops.
Sydney Town Hall
Built from local sandstone, Sydney's ornate town hall is a magnificent civic building.
State Library of NSW
Officially the oldest library in Australia, with a grand exterior to match its distinction.

Related Tours

Private Half Day Highlights of Sydney with local guide
You will start your tour at Circular Quay, famed as the main departure point for the city’s many ferries and also for the didgeridoo players close-by.  

Sydney Opera House

Your guide will lead you on a short walk to what is undoubtedly one of the highlights of the city: the iconic Sydney Opera House.  Set on a spit of land jutting out into Sydney Harbour, and opened in 1973 by Queen Elizabeth II, this centre for performing arts has won international acclaim for its style and beauty.  You will visit the outside the Sydney Opera House and take a look out at the magnificent panoramic view of the Sydney Harbour Bridge.

Downtown Sydney

Now heading inland, your guide will take you up Macquarie Street, stopping briefly to admire the State Library of New South Wales - the oldest public library in Australia.  At the end of Macquarie you’ll be faced by the lush greenery of Hyde Park, Sydney’s equivalent to Central Park in New York or the original Hyde Park in London.  Flanking one side of park is the imposing St. Mary’s Cathedral that is the current seat of the Archbishop of Sydney.

After a quick stop in the park, you’ll move across town through one of Sydney’s oldest shopping arcades, The Strand, before heading back to circular quay down high-rise George St.  This will be the perfect opportunity for your guide tell you the story of modern Sydney and how it has grown into the metropolis you see today.

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