Sydney Transport, Buses, Rail & Ferries.
Sydney has a
comprehensive public transport system which encompasses train, bus and
ferry. There are a number of tickets available which allow you to mix and
match the different types of transport to your heart's content.
efficient way of travelling from Kingsford Smith Airport (Sydney's
international gateway) to the City is with the Airport Express. It is the
only scheduled bus service from the airport and departs every 10 minutes
to and from Central railway station, and every 20 minutes to and from
Kings Cross. It will drop you at one of a number of key stops, including
the Town Hall, Circular Quay and Potts Point, and runs 365 days a year
from 0500 to 2300. A return fare will cost you AUS$ 10 and children go for
AUS$ 5. There is a family ticket available for AUS$ 25, and all tickets
are valid for two months from the date of purchase. There is no extra
charge for baggage, and you can spot the buses easily as they are painted
green and yellow, rather than the usual blue and white.
selection of cars are available to hire through any of Sydney's many
car-hire companies including Hertz, Avis & Budget.
are plenty of Taxis within Sydney, and if you prefer to get dropped
directly at your door, the fare should set you back around AUS$ 25-30.
Make sure that your driver knows where your hotel is before you commence
the city's biggest boon is the train network which runs underground
through the city so you get a fast and direct route to your destination.
Of most use to you if you are staying in and around the CBD, is the "City
Circle" which links key stations around the city area. Trains run every
few minutes and this is the quickest way of getting from one place to
another. There is a lot more to the "CityRail" network than just the
stations in the CBD though: it stretches all the way from Katoomba in the
Blue Mountains, over to Bondi Junction in the east, from where you can
take the 380 bus down the legendary Bondi Beach. The line actually runs a
little way further than that already, stretching out towards the seafront
at Bondi, though as with all great civil engineering schemes this was
abandoned midway through construction on the grounds of cost. There are
fresh plans to complete this line, though local residents who fear an even
greater deluge of tourists to their beloved beach, have other ideas.
Central you can also go north to Newcastle via Chatswood and Hornsby, and
south to Bornaderry (Nowra) via Sutherland and Helensburgh. If you want to
use the network, check out the CityRail Map. Quick and efficient as the
train network is, the lines do not service either the northern or southern
beaches, nor does it have stops in key areas like Glebe. For these
destinations you will need to navigate the STA bus network.
all bus services throughout the world this will involve working out where
to catch your service, and, sometimes more importantly, where to get off!
Most services tie in with the railway stations at Circular Quay, Wynyard,
Town Hall and Central (Railway Square), and then make their way in and out
of the city via George, Elizabeth and Castlereagh Streets. Some stops
require you to hail the bus down, so if you are unsure make sure the
driver knows that you want to get on.
are two ways of paying - either in cash (drivers always appreciate the
correct change), or you can purchase a multiple trip ticket from one of
the numerous outlets (newsagents, railway stations etc) all over the city
and suburbs. These are dipped in the green ticket readers that are on
either side of the bus as you get on. Make sure that your ticket doesn't
get bent or saturated in one of Sydney's downpours; drivers and fellow
passengers alike become upset at the sight of a reader which has become
jammed by a papier mache ticket.
run frequently between 5am and midnight, and there is a limited night bus
service to fill in the gap in between. Catch these buses from Town Hall
Station on George Street, just by the QVB and cinemas. Normal bus fares
apply, and you can use season and multi-ride tickets on these services. If
you are planning to catch a Nightrider bus, it is worth checking with the
STA Buses first, so as to avoid being stranded for hours on end.
a more majestic trip to the city, and an unparalleled view of the harbour,
Sydney Ferries are a must. Less crowded than the trains and buses, they
operate from Circular Quay, and are just one indicator of Sydney putting
its world reknowned harbour to good use. The ferry routes that
Sydneysiders use for the purposes of commuting run regularly between 6am
and midnight, whilst those which service tourist attractions have a more
limited service. With the suburbs sprawling out along the banks of the
Harbour, there is no shortage of destinations, from inner-harbour areas
like Kirribilli and Neutral Bay, a route that gives a ducks eye view of
Kirribilli House, the official residence of the Australian Prime Minister,
to Darling Harbour, Parramatta and Taronga Zoo.
ferry is also the most sensible way of getting to the ever popular Manly
on the North Shore, and all ferries will give you picture postcard views
of the majestic Harbour Bridge and legendary Opera House. Water Taxis are
available, calling at the various wharfs along the harbour - try Harbour
Taxi Boats on 9555 1155.
also sports a monorail system which was built with much local opposition,
launched with a great fanfare, and may yet be dismantled as the City looks
at its transport needs in the new millennium. The main problem with the
monorail is that it is of little use to Sydneysiders as they go about
their business, and is at best a bit of a novelty for visitors. Granted,
it does provide a link from the CBD to the newly developed Darling Harbour
area, but Sydney is not a huge place and a good healthy walk would be just
as good. Needless to say, the sight of the futuristic train zipping along
George Street is usually enough to persuade most people that the 10 minute
round trip is worth being given a fair go, if only because it is there for
buses, ferries and trains are brought together under a very useful season
ticket option which takes the guise of a "Travel Ten" (10 trips on the
buses), Red Weekly tickets, Blue Weekly tickets, and many other colours of
the rainbow weekly tickets. Check out the options with the STA's website
at http://www.sta.nsw.gov.au/sb.tickets.html to see which is best suited
to your purposes. These cards save you money and mean that you don't have
to buy a ticket for every journey.