Yes, we know, the Sydney Opera House and the Harbour Bridge is what has made our home famous across the globe, and by all means they are not sites you want to miss, however they are not all that makes Sydney, Sydney! Locals don’t always dine on the harbour of an evening, or spend free afternoons sharing Bondi beach with the world. So, if you want to see the real Sydney, here are a few places to start!

On a typical summer day, beaches are always packed, so try somewhere a little different like Karloo Pools. To reach the pools, you have to follow a bush track from Heathcoat station for about an hour and fifteen minutes. It is quite the hike and you will need to pack proper walking shoes and water, but the end result is rewarding. Located in a gully, the crisp, clean waters of the pools are the perfect way to escape warm afternoon and endless crowds of people.

Bondi road is home to a lot of organic stores and wine bars as well a seemingly unfitting, yet amazing, store known as Yellow Bungalow.  If you love vintage furniture, beautiful screen prints, collect old novels or cameras, then this is not a store to miss. Unlike a lot of vintage stores, Yellow Bungalow is organized and not over crowded with bits and bops, making sure you leave with only quality items you really want. On top of this, they also make a mean coffee (translation: awesome coffee)!

After you have found somewhere to swim and shop, you will most definitely want to find something amazing to eat. When it comes to food, everyone is looking for something different. When it comes to finding somewhere perfect for the moment, then the best place to look is a local blog. Keeping up to date, and sampling every hidden café, bars and every cuisine, the blog is easy to navigate and very insightful!

The best way to explore Sydney on your own schedule is with a car hire. Check out Alpha Car Hire for great deals or give them a call on 1300 22 74 73.