Personally I always like to find out some particulars and peculiars about a city. Factual and subjective, relevant and useless, it’s all interesting for me.
Here are 25 things you did not know about Sydney:
1. In Sydney, like in the whole of Australia, it’s all about sports (cricket and rugby in particular) and not so much about culture. Artists and intellectuals sometimes complain about Aussies being so superficial.
2. There are two women for every man. I have been told that that results in women being extremely ‘easy’ -if you catch my drift- and dressing quite extreme. As in: ultra short skirts/shorts, showing a lot of cleavage. And I mean really a lot. And yes, I do see that kind of dressing every day in the city.
3. One fifth of the entire population of Australia lives in Sydney: 4 million people.
4. More than 30% of Sydney’s inhabitants were born overseas.
5. One in eight people in Sydney is over 65 years old.
6. Inhabitants of Sydney are called Sydneysiders.
7. Sydney has the biggest gay community in the world after San Francisco, some claim. That ranking is debatable, but there is no doubt that Sydney has a large gay community. The yearly gay Mardi Grass is a huge fiesta.
8. 63% of the Aussies is overweight. Strolling through the streets of Sydney I am amazed by the number of really ‘big’ people that I see. I guess it’s similar to the situation in the USA.
9. Sydney is the fifth most expensive city in the world. (Singapore is number 1, by the way.). I am a bit surprised about this fact, I must admit. Food, drinks and alcohol e.g. are not expensive, in my opinion.
10. Bars and clubs close at 2 am. And bar-hopping is not allowed after 11 pm. Meaning that you can stay in the bar that you are in after 11 till closing time, but once you go out, you cannot enter another bar. So better make sure that you are in the bar or club of your preference at 10.45 pm or so. And stay there!
11. Pubs are generally called hotels. Hotels, to confuse things, are also called hotels;-).
12. A liquor store is called a bottle shop or an off license.
13. Sydney is very hilly. Many streets and lanes have a strong descent or crescent. Can be pretty hard and tiring, when walking or biking uphill.
14. There is a big coffee culture. Yay! Lots of cute, hip cafe’s with good baristas.
15. Iced coffee may not be what you think it is, so be sure to verify that first.
16. The number of homeless beggars that you come across in the city, and the state they are in, is disturbing. (More about that in a separate post, coming soon.)
17. They drive here like the British, so LOOK RIGHT when you cross the street! And don’t forget to look LEFT right after that, of course;-)!
18. Locals do NOT wear UGG’s outdoors, even not when it is cold, although you can buy them on every street corner. And indeed, I saw only one (Asian) girl in UGG’s in 14 days.
19. It IS normal, on the other hand, to walk barefoot. And I did see that with my own eyes, although not a lot. A lot more near the beach, like in Bondi, which comes as no surprise.
20. Aussies don’t jaywalk. So you better not do that either, I guess.
21. Taxi drivers do NOT always know the way. It’s advisable to have a clue yourself. Or have your smartphone with GPS at hand;-).
22. The Australian accent and pronunciation is giving me a lot of trouble. Maybe one get’s more familiar over time, like we did in Singapore. On top of the accent, Aussies have the tendency to shorten words. Like so:
swimsuit=cozzie or cossie
23. Bandicoots are the squirrels of Sydney. Having said that, I cannot claim to have seen any myself.
24. Most beaches in Sydney have picnic shelters. electric barbecues, play areas, change rooms, toilets, and kiosks. Some even have free sunblock stations. Very cool!
Sydney has more than 70 beaches, by the way, and the water temperature is nice from november to may for sure.
25. The Harbour Bridge is nicknamed The Coathanger.
Which of the above facts and trivia surprised you most or spoke the most to you? Or did you know all 25 already? I didn’t.