As one of the world's most renowned buildings the Sydney Opera House needs little introduction. It should certainly make your must see list. By must see, we mean up close, as you really do need to see it up close to appreciate the immense size and amazing design.
Prominently located on the tip of Bennelong Point, the striking modern expressionist design of the Sydney Opera House is visible from many vantage points. The structure sits on top of 588 concrete piers and has a footprint of 4.4 acres.
Construction of Sydney Opera House in Sydney took over 14 years to complete. In 1957 a design by Danish Architect Jorn Utzon won the design competition for the new venue. Construction began in 1959 and was pushed forward by political pressures before proper engineering and drawings had been completed. This and other unexpected complications caused numerous setbacks in time and money. In 1965 Utzon had a falling out with the newly elected Premier and his Minister of Public Works (who were unsympathetic towards the project) over procedures and the refusal to pay his fees ultimately resulting in his resignation and leaving the country in 1966. In 1999 the Sydney Opera House Trust had reached out to Utzon and appointed him a design consultant for future work inside the Opera House. The Utzon room which was completely redesigned by Utzon was named in his honour.
The Sydney Opera House is far more than just it's namesake. It actually contains at total of 7 venues - 2 large and 5 smaller. The largest is the Concert Hall which seats and audience of 2679 and is home to the Sydney Symphony Orchestra. Next is the Opera Theatre - a 1507 seat proscenium style that is home to Opera Australia and the Australia Ballet. Smaller venues include the 544 seat Drama Theatre, the 398 seat Playhouse and the Studio with a capacity of 400. There are 2 other multipurpose venues.
If you are unable to take in a show at the Opera House you can still enjoy one of the numerous restaurants or bars, check out the souvenier shop or go on a guided tour. Otherwise you can just enjoy seeing the architectural details and impressive design from up close while enjoying the outstanding views from the grounds. You will also want to see the neighbouring Government House and Royal Botanic Gardens that are immediately south.
Cost: Free to explore the grounds. Admission charges apply to tours and performances. Earlybird tours are available at a reduced price if you book them online. See website for details.
Hours: Hours vary by event. Earlybird tours begin at 9:00am. See website for details.
Website: Sydney Opera House
Address: Sydney Opera House, Sydney
Nearby attractions: Royal Botanic Gardens, Government House, Customs House, Justice and Police Museum, and Museum of Sydney
|Getting There on Transit|
|Monorail / Train / Bus||Station||Walking Time|
|Monorail||City Centre||25 minutes or bus + 10 minutes|
|Train or Ferry||Circular Quay Station||10 minutes|
By Monorail and Bus: Exit at City Centre Station and go left (north) then right on Market Street, then left on Elizabeth Street to the bus stop. Take any #300 series bus OTHER THAN 308, 311, 327 ,343 or 391 north on Elizabeth Street and get off at Circular Quay. Enter the Quay and walk east and then north along the harbourfront (10 minutes). Note: this is a prepay zone for buses so you must purchase your ticket prior to boarding.
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