6 of the Best - The Globehunters Guide to Bars in Sydney

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Sydney is certainly a great place to hit the town and there is no shortage of bars to choose from. The majority of Sydney’s bars are found in and around The Rocks – to the north of Haymarket in the centre of the city – and the surrounding areas. There you’ll find dozens of weird and wonderful establishments where you can sink the tipple of your choice. Just don’t try them all in the same night!

Mojo Record Bar – Tucked away in a York Street basement, Mojo Record Bar avoids the lift music that sometimes blights commercial cocktail bars and instead plays indie classics from the likes of The Smiths and The Stones Roses. The bar is fronted by a record store with the cosy and atmospheric bar below. There is a variety of creative cocktails and Australian craft beers to try whilst you browse over 7,000 imported LPs from the US.

Best for: an alternative soundtrack
Try: a ‘Fools Gold’

theloft – This is where the famous faces of Sydney come to be seen. It’s also home to ‘The Greatest Cocktail Ever Sold’ which combines vodka, POM Wonderful and Prosecco. Enjoy the rooftop views over Sydney with a cocktail or a seafood snack; you can even pop in for a very British high tea. Make sure you pack some smart clothes though; flip-flops and shorts are not looked upon favourably.

Best for: celebrity spotting
Try: the wonderfully named Billy Connolly Cooler

sydney bars
The fantastic view from the popular Opera Bar

Opera Bar – This almost made the cut for its view alone, but it has more to offer than just fantastic vistas of the iconic Sydney Opera House and Harbour Bridge. There’s a modern Australian menu to enjoy along with an extensive drinks list. Don’t be misled by the name; it’s actually a pretty casual affair with food orders placed at the bar. Plus, it’s popular with the locals as well as the tourists, which is always a good sign.

Best for: a relaxing drink with a view
Try: Opera bar’s own pale ale

Button Bar – It can often be tricky finding things as a tourist and this Sydney bar is certainly a challenge. Hidden away behind an unmarked wooden door on Foveaux Street in the Surry Hills area, the wood-panelled Button Bar serves up a dizzying array of cocktails and spirits sound tracked by blues and rock n roll. With over 40 varieties of whiskey and an imaginative cocktail menu the only thing to worry about once you’ve found the place is finding your way back to your hotel.

Best for: exploring new territory
Try: a Howlin’ Wolf cocktail

sydney bars
One more of these and that's your lot at Absinthe Salon

Absinthe Salon – Tucked away in a terrace in Surry Hills, the Absinthe Salon is something a bit special. Serving only various varieties of the powerful green spirit (including absinthe beer and absinthe coffee), the Absinthe Salon is exquisitely decorated and run by extremely knowledgeable staff. The menu is helpfully ordered so that it increases in strength, with 75% proof varieties on the third page. Perhaps unsurprisingly there is a three drink limit.

Best for: experienced drinkers
Try: starting from page one of the menu

Palmer and Co – There are a few speak-easy style bars to choose from in Sydney and Palmer and Co gets the nod because of its impressively late 5am licence. There’s impressive attention to detail all-round; from the cocktail waitresses and bartenders dressed like they’ve just stepped out of the 1920s, to the pictures of bootleggers and other prohibition era renegades on the walls. As you’d expect, the imaginative cocktails are meticulously prepared.

Best for: staying out late
Try: a Hollywood sour

Why not book cheap flights to Sydney with Globehunters and experience Sydney’s bars for yourself?


  1. Sydney is abuzz with fun and frolic! Age no bar! Everyone is elevated here.

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