Everything you need to know about living, studying and working in Sydney Australia II

Being alone, buying a radio

For those going away to Syd right now, its winter, it gets cold for Singaporeans not used to it and the day gets dark early.

Make sure you have friends, people you can talk to, otherwise you may find yourself crying in a dark corner when the sun goes down and there is nothing to do, no friends to talk to or things to do after dark.

Its not all parties (they can be decadent esp when your parents have a spent a fortune sponsoring you) but say you are a Xtian, get a study group, be a bit thick skinned and get yourself invited to a house group, gathering, anything that tkaes your mind off the cold dark nights.

The best thing you can have is a small and cheap pocket radio, so there is always noise in your house. msn or skpye your friends back home, buy a cheap camera, start a blog.
"Hello" phone cards are cheap and reliable, if you buy them from Chinatown shops its cheaper.

Oz can be fun, but somethings when the home sick feeling sets in you need some help.

Things to do in Sydney, keep busy so you don't feel lonely

1)Watson bay. I think there is a Doyle fish and chip there; Go up to the cliff, feel the wind and ocean. Often feel that human is so small when up there.

2)Double bay, for the famous gelato. You will suddenly find yourself in another asian country.

3)Walk along double bay.... get inspired by those nice houses and shops
4)Coogee beach, just to wonder around and relax
5)Manly, best to walk with an ice cream
6)State library.
7)The Malay-Chinese take away eatery. Look for Mr Woon.
8)Walked from china town to martin plc, just love walking and will find diff combinations of routes
perhaps you could come up with a matrix on diff combinations of routes
9)Some times also walked from martin plc all the way up to the rocks
10)Sydney fish market, go early for the real experience
11)syd is a nice plc for tracking too 12)Drive up north to Bryron's bay
13)musical or ballet performaces
14)china town. lots of asians love to go there to feel the familiarity.

15)lots of nice small restuarants, esp those run by italian, greek etc... nice cosy

Weekend trips

A cheap train ticket away and you can see some nice sights:

- Woy Woy, nice for picnics and the Kuringai National Park is nearby.
--- good fish and chip shops there

- Blue Mts of course - if you have a whole bunch, its cheaper to drive, but weekends can be crowded

- Royal National Park

- Bondi and many of the other beaches

- Taronga zoo

- Milson's point has nice places to sit and have a picnic

- Berowa falls

- Kangaroo valley

- Jenolan caves

There are heaps of state parks which do not require entrance fees for cars, gather a few friends and explore!
Food to treat yourself

When you get a bit more $$ or want to buy your GF a meal:

Sydney's top 10 restaurants, according to The Los Angeles Times:

Sailor's Thai - The Rocks.

bill's - Darlinghurst.

Fish Face Restaurant & Sushi Bar - Darlinghurst.

Tetsuya's - Sydney, city. (v v expensive and exclusive - good place to propose)

Longrain - Surry Hills.

Marque Restaurant - Surry Hills.

Billy Kwong - Surry Hills.

Spice I Am - Surry Hills. (ok price, not for ambience)

The Book Kitchen - Surry Hills.

The Boathouse on Blackwattle Bay - Glebe.

Pier Restaurant - Rose Bay.

Sean's Panaroma - Bondi Beach.

Icebergs on Bondi Beach - Bondi Beach.


1) Ayam Goreng 99

2) Ayam Goreng Jakarta

3) Ratu Sari

4) Can't remember but on the same stretch as Ayam Goreng 99

5) Can't remember but on the same stretch as Westpac opposite IGA at Kingsford

6) Jimbaran - but a bit expensive

Nasi Uduk Special, coconut steamed rice with dried beef, shredded omelette, fried onion with chili
peanut sauce and kerupuk prawn crackers at Indonesian restaurant, Ubud.
Photo: Marco del Grande
Related coverage
* Heat streets

Ayam Goreng Jakarta
Check the fading names on the outer wall for a lesson in Indonesian dining vocabulary. These days
the specialty is grilled marinated chicken, Jakarta-style, served under fading red lanterns in the
little front courtyard.
275 Anzac Parade, Kingsford, 9663 4430.
Ayam Goreng 99
A perennial favourite, with rudimentary service, grilled and fried chicken several ways, plus all
sort of interesting deep-fried offal bits. The sambal (house-made chilli relish) is wicked.
464 Anzac Parade, Kingsford, 9697 0030.
An oldie but a goodie, famous for its rendang and sayur asem (tamarind soup). Friendly,
old-fashioned service.
151 Avoca Street, Randwick, 9398 6990.
Melting rendang, flakey martabak and signature ayam goreng kalasan anugrah (deep-fried marinated
chicken with palm sugar). Try the spiced milkfish (bandeng duri lunak) and ikan tim bumbu kuning (a
whole steamed fish with a thick turmeric sauce and fresh turmeric leaves).
129 Avoca Street, Randwick, 9398 8555.
Pempek Clovelly
Specialises in fish cakes (pempek) in a variety of styles with a feisty chilli-vinegar sambal. Also
does martabak (savoury and sweet) and some noodle dishes. Low-key, insider kind of place that closes
early (8pm) most nights.
198 Anzac Parade, Kensington, 9697 0009.
Noodle (bakmi) heaven, always full, good value, very tasty. The full range of Indonesian fast food,
including bakso (meat balls) in soup or fried.
319 Anzac Parade, Kingsford, 9697 0788.
Pondok Buyung
Another no-frills eatery serving West Sumatran or "Padang" fare - three dishes on rice from the bain
marie. Rendang, tempeh (fermented tofu) and offal dishes a specialty.
124 Anzac Parade, Kensington, 9663 2296.
Ratu Sari
Smiling service, fabulous ikan pepes (fish steamed in banana leaves) and ikan goreng (fried fish
served with heaps of smoky housemade sambal). Fiery salads include asinan penganten (cooked vegies
topped with shrimp-paste sauce) and pecal with a gorgeous peanut sauce. Cool down with an es cendol
(shaved ice) dessert.
470 Anzac Parade, Kingsford, 9662 8788.
The pick for decor and ambience, always busy (book first) and great for roll-your-own duck pancakes
(Peking style), lumpia (crisp spring rolls filled with prawn), chicken and fish with balado (chilli
and tomato) sauce and nasi uduk (pictured) (coconut rice with beef, egg and lashings of peanut
584 Anzac Parade, Kingsford, 9344 4961.

Tea time and gelato

Recommended afternoon tea at Bygone Beautys corner of Grose and Megalong Streets, Leura.

De Luca Cremeria - for gelato - 106 Norton St, Liechardt. Gelato made from scratch!!!

Another gelato place:

Bar Italia in Liechardt, where the Italians are, next to a Civic Video


Possibly the best prawn mee in Sydney. Anyone who finds a better one post here . Laksa is decent too though tastes kinda like curry chicken noodle. Can try laksa and Hainan chicken rice at Baba too, its at Grace Hotel. Only open 11.30-3 though.

Ayam Goreng 99 mentioned earlier is damn good too. Chilli sedap..

Other decent (in my opinion) local style food can be found at basement of Imperial Arcade and also at unilodge foodcourt and Golden Fang opposite the road from unilodge.

Get the premium policy medical insurance which covers dental, which is v expensive.


Do keep a full well recorded excel file of your contents, bring as little as possible, there isn't a lot of room if you stay in a hostel or rented room, most things can be bought there, even Chinese food and chilli

State in black and white about the delivery methods - is it door to door, handling fees, GST (exempt for students if you fill up the proper forms and the item is > 6mths old)

I used this company back from Oz before:


Other companies friends have used:


Sea shipping is cheaper, but takes longer and if the item is perishable, then it may not survive.

Enjoying the winter - ski!

Although those fresh out of SG into the Aussie winter might find it awful, actually Oz winters are relatively mild compare to many other countries.

This year is exceptional and do wear more, but when you get used to it, you get a chance to use those fashionable jackets, coats etc you never get to in SG.

Plus there is skiing!

Join a cheapo trip from STA in August or September to Snowy Mts and try it out!

At least you have done it once in your life

But beware of ankle injuries and make sure you can sustain squats or your train your thighs first. Not much fun if you can't make it after the first hour.

Balmoral Boatshed Kiosk Cafe                 
Around Town
Cuisine CAFE
 Hours Daily 8am-6pm in summer; 8am-5pm in winter
 Address 2 The Esplanade
 Location Balmoral Beach, Around Town
 Transportation Ferry to Taronga Zoo, then bus to Balmoral Beach
 Phone 02/9968 4412

A real find, this beautiful rustic cafe is right on the water beside the dinghies and sailing craft of the wooden Balmoral Boatshed (located to the far right of the central beach as you look at the water). It's a heavenly place for enjoying a breakfast muffin or a ham-and-cheese croissant while basking in the sun. This place is popular with families on weekend mornings, so if you hate kids, find another place.

The Old Coffee Shop
Around Town
 Cuisine CAFE
 Hours Mon-Fri 7:30am-5pm, Sat 8:30am-5pm, Sun 10:30am-4pm
 Location Ground floor, The Strand Arcade, Around Town
 Transportation CityRail: Town Hall
 Phone 02/9231 3002

 Sydney's oldest coffee shop opened in the Victorian Strand Arcade in 1891. The shop may or may not serve Sydney's best java, but the old-world feel of the place and the sugary snacks, cakes, and pastries make up for it. It's a good place to take a break from shopping and sightseeing.

Sushi Roll Sushi/Japanese Near Town Hall
Cuisine                  SUSHI
Hours                  Mon-Wed and Sat 8am-7pm, Thurs 8am-10pm, Sun 10am-6pm
Address                  Sydney Central Plaza
Location                  Downstairs in the food hall next to Grace Brothers dept. store on Pitt Street Mall, Near Town Hall
Phone                  02/9233 5561
Prices                  Sushi rolls A$1.70 (US$1.10) each
Credit Cards                  Not accepted
 Sushi Roll

The fresh, simple food at this bargain-basement takeout is a healthy alternative to the greasy edibles with which many travelers end up satisfying their hunger. A large range of sushi and nori rolls peek out from behind the counter if you turn up at lunchtime, and you can eat at the tables opposite. The gourmet sandwiches and meals served up by other establishments in the food court here make it a good stopover after a morning's shopping and sightseeing.

Supreme View Café Cafe                  Near Town Hall
Cuisine                  CAFE
Hours                  Mon-Fri 7am-5pm
Address                  Level 14. Law Courts Bldg., 184 Phillip St
Location                  Queens Square, Near Town Hall
Phone                  02/9230 8224
Prices                  Main courses A$8-A$13 (US$5.20-US$8.45); coffee and cake A$5 (US$3.25)
Credit Cards                  Cash only
 Supreme View Café

If you happen to be in the city center, then this fabulous, largely undiscovered restaurant/cafe is a must for the great value food and absolutely fantastic views reaching over Hyde Park and even to the harbor. It's very large inside, has panoramic windows, and serves meals from the counter. Breakfasts are hearty and include bacon and eggs, omelets, and cereals. It's particularly handy if you are staying in the lower Oxford street area. All day dishes include the likes of sandwiches, Caesar salad, homemade pies, pastas, and lasagna. Even if you're not hungry it's well worth popping in for a coffee.
According to the manager, about half the tourists who visit Sydney visit this little place in the heart of The Rocks. That's not surprising considering it offers simple but satisfying food at around half the price you'd expect to pay in such a tourist precinct. The interior is uninspiring, but out the back there's a pleasant leafy courtyard. Among the offerings are focaccia sandwiches, hearty soups, salads, burgers, lasagna, chili con carne, and beef curry.

Cuisine CAFE
Hours Sun-Thurs 5am-midnight, Fri-Sat 5am-3am
Address 83 George St
Location The Rocks, In the Rocks
Transportation CityRail, bus or ferry: Circular Quay
Phone 02/9241 3644
 Prices Main courses A$3-$7 (U.S.$1.95-$4.55)
Credit Cards AE

The Gumnut Café

 Hours Daily 8am-5pm; Thurs-Sat until 10:30pm
 Address 28 Harrington St
 Location The Rocks, In the Rocks
 Transportation CityRail, bus, or ferry: Circular Quay
 Phone 02/9247 9591
 Prices Main courses A$8.50-A$14 (US$5.50-US$9.10)
 Credit Cards AE, DC, MC, V

A hearty lunch in a courtyard shaded from the sun by giant umbrellas--ah, heaven. With a great location in the heart of The Rocks, this 1890 sandstone cottage restaurant also has an extensive indoor seating area, so it's a perfect place to take a break from all that sightseeing. On weekends live jazz sets the mood. The breakfast specials (A$8.50/US$5.50) are popular with guests from surrounding hotels, while at lunchtime it's bustling with tourists and local office workers. Lunchtime blackboard specials cost A$11 (US$7.15). More regular fare includes the disappointing Ploughman's Lunch (why spoil a traditional English meal of bread, cheese, and pickles by limiting the bread and adding unappealing vegetables and salad?), the better chicken and leek pies, and good pasta and noodle dishes. Filling Turkish sandwiches cost between A$7.70 and A$9 (US$5-US$5.85). The courtyard is heated in winter, making it quite cozy. It's BYO with no corkage fee.



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