Sydney or Melbourne?

Old Feb 3, 19, 8:24 pm
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Sydney or Melbourne?

Either one 3 days on the ground but 4 nights starting at 8am.

First time in the country. Really leaning towards Melbourne because of the Great Ocean Road drive.

I prefer scenic views and a little more nature over the city but love great dining options.

Thoughts?
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Old Feb 3, 19, 9:02 pm
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Be prepared for some opinions to be presented, MEL and SYD have quite a rivalry.

First the 'pros' for Sydney. Sydney has more 'wow' factor IMO, the harbour is quite the iconic Australian sight. Sydney has better intra-city beaches. You can take nice ferry rides. You can take a train from the airport to the city.

Melbourne has a better restaurant scene, no doubt. It's a more interesting city to get to know, lots of hidden gems and surprises. Better coffee. It's a nice city just to be in. I think Melbourne is 'prettier' than Sydney on average, with loads of parks, etc. But it doesn't have a major attraction that is the equivalent of Sydney Harbour.

Outside the city, Melbourne has Phillip Island, the GOR, Yarra Valley, and the Australian Alps. Sydney has Hunter Valley and the Blue Mountains. Respectively, I think Melbourne wins here.
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Old Feb 3, 19, 9:12 pm
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Do the grand pacific drive instead?

personally I donít care for either city so donít have a horse in this race
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Old Feb 3, 19, 9:38 pm
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I love Melbourne but Sydney wins hands down. Sure you can quibble over who has better coffee and fine dining but in the end nothing trumps the Harbour. For your nature fix you can takes ferries and bushwalks around the Harbour or the beaches (check out the Spit to Many walk, and Bondi to Bronte). Hunter Valley and Blue Mountains are also options.

(Also, weather.)
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Old Feb 3, 19, 9:50 pm
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When are you planning on coming?

Sydney is good for the first time visitor to Oz, provided you are within Ĺ mile of the water. Goes downhill fast after that distance.

Getting out of the city (~100 miles) Melbourne, Victoria has far more to offer as above. The GOR publicity/propaganda machine works well

Sydney has more rainy days.

Originally Posted by nancypants View Post
Personally I don’t care for either city so don’t have a horse in this race
The Melbourne Cup (Cup week) is a far better horse race than the Sydney Cup
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Old Feb 3, 19, 9:55 pm
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Originally Posted by nancypants View Post
personally I donít care for either city
+1
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Old Feb 3, 19, 10:54 pm
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Sydney has the harbour and the Blue Mountains if you want nature, but Grand Pacific Drive is nothing on the GOR . The differences in dining and coffee are massively overstated by our southern brothers. About the only thing Melbourne has a real edge over Sydney in is live music.
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Old Feb 4, 19, 12:29 am
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Originally Posted by bensyd View Post
The differences in dining and coffee are massively overstated by our southern brothers. About the only thing Melbourne has a real edge over Sydney in is live music.
I think the Melbourne dining scene is properly rated above Sydney. But both cities offer enough great dining to fill a short trip, so it is probably overrated for tourists or short stays.

One thing that is painfully annoying about Sydney is the lockout laws and lack of quality small drinking venues. Not for everyone, but even as I get older I still want to grab a late drink here and there.
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Old Feb 4, 19, 6:57 am
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Originally Posted by Mwenenzi View Post
When are you planning on coming?

Sydney is good for the first time visitor to Oz, provided you are within Ĺ mile of the water. Goes downhill fast after that distance.

Getting out of the city (~100 miles) Melbourne, Victoria has far more to offer as above. The GOR publicity/propaganda machine works well

Sydney has more rainy days.


The Melbourne Cup (Cup week) is a far better horse race than the Sydney Cup
I'm coming this weekend. It is my first visit. I think I am just going to default to Sydney even though I feel it should probably be Melbourne. You all have till 11pm to convince me otherwise! (24 hour window where I can cancel my ticket). I'm going to be flying out of here on Thursday. Get there Saturday at 8am. Leaving Tuesday at 11:20a.m. Pricing was the same for both flights about $720. Great pricing. I'll leave Melbourne for the next trip and make it all about the drive.
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Old Feb 4, 19, 7:38 am
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Originally Posted by CPMaverick View Post
I think the Melbourne dining scene is properly rated above Sydney. But both cities offer enough great dining to fill a short trip, so it is probably overrated for tourists or short stays.

One thing that is painfully annoying about Sydney is the lockout laws and lack of quality small drinking venues. Not for everyone, but even as I get older I still want to grab a late drink here and there.
While Iím absolutely against the lockout laws letís not forget they only cover a small part of the city which is more the business area rather than the best areas for food/drinks. Also if youíre struggling for good small bars in Sydney you either havenít visited for some time or you havenít done your research as Sydney really is quite good in that space these days. If you are going to be in Sydney and looking for suggestions post up what you like and Iím sure a few of us can give some suggestions that would pleasantly surprise you.
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Old Feb 4, 19, 7:55 am
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Melbourne is generally somewhat cheaper in terms of hotel rates, meal costs, etc. It also seems more real to me, with fewer tourists. Still, Sydney is iconic.

Three days is not enough time for either one.
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Old Feb 4, 19, 12:53 pm
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Originally Posted by skyccord View Post
I'm coming this weekend. It is my first visit. I think I am just going to default to Sydney even though I feel it should probably be Melbourne. You all have till 11pm to convince me otherwise! (24 hour window where I can cancel my ticket). I'm going to be flying out of here on Thursday. Get there Saturday at 8am. Leaving Tuesday at 11:20a.m. Pricing was the same for both flights about $720. Great pricing. I'll leave Melbourne for the next trip and make it all about the drive.
For a first visit to Australia Sydney will be good. Easy to spend few days around the city & harbour. Get an Opal public transport ticket at the airport. Look at post 6 in the Oz Fest thread.

Hope you have the ETA sorted out. Au Government web site link --> Australian Electronic Travel Authority AUD$20. For passports holders from Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Hong Kong (SAR PRC), Japan, Malaysia, Singapore, South Korea and United States. Beware of non government 3rd party look-a-like web sites that charge more, often found with a browser web search.

Last edited by Mwenenzi; Feb 4, 19 at 1:35 pm Reason: added post 6 link
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Old Feb 4, 19, 12:57 pm
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Originally Posted by MSPeconomist View Post
Melbourne is generally somewhat cheaper in terms of hotel rates, meal costs, etc. It also seems more real to me, with fewer tourists. Still, Sydney is iconic.

Three days is not enough time for either one.
Second this.
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Old Feb 4, 19, 12:58 pm
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Originally Posted by secondsoprano View Post
I love Melbourne but Sydney wins hands down. Sure you can quibble over who has better coffee and fine dining but in the end nothing trumps the Harbour. For your nature fix you can takes ferries and bushwalks around the Harbour or the beaches (check out the Spit to Many walk, and Bondi to Bronte). Hunter Valley and Blue Mountains are also options.

(Also, weather.)
As an ex Melburnian living in Syd I agree. Huge wow factor in Syd. I'd choose syd.

i never get the fascination of the GOR
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Old Feb 4, 19, 1:44 pm
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Not even close, go Sydney. I find only Australians seem to be impressed by Melbourne. For Americans, it's a smaller San Francisco with mildly better weather, somewhat fewer homeless, and no pretty bay.
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