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12 Things to Know BEFORE Visiting the Sydney Tower Eye +Our Honest Review

12 Things to Know BEFORE Visiting the Sydney Tower Eye +Our Honest Review

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If you want epic views of Sydney, then the Sydney Tower Eye is the place to go. It’s the tallest structure in Sydney, and it’s also one of the most famous and recognizable buildings in the city – after the Opera House, of course! 

As an Australian, I’ve visited Sydney many times and always have so much fun. Bailey and I love taking city tours here or exploring nearby areas on a day trip. However, one of the best ways to see the city from above is by visiting the Sydney Tower Eye. You’ll have an aerial view of the whole metropolitan area along with the Sydney Harbour.

However, there’s more to do up here than just gaze at the stunning vistas. When we went, we learned you can also grab a drink or indulge in a gourmet meal, and there’s even an open-air Skywalk around the edge of the tower. Overall, visiting the tower felt like a whole experience, and we think it’s one of the best things to do in Sydney

While we absolutely loved our trip to the tower, there were some things we wish we knew ahead of time. That’s exactly why we’ve written this guide containing everything you need to know before visiting the Sydney Tower Eye. Read on so you can be prepared and enjoy those beautiful views to the fullest. 

Don’t have time to read the full article? The Sydney Tower Eye is a fantastic way to take stunning city views. To bypass lines and avoid paying extra for a same-day ticket, we recommend buying a Sydney Tower Eye ticket in advance!

1. About the Sydney Tower Eye

Views out the window of Sydney Tower at Sydney CBD
Just magical!
Hyde Park as seen from Sydney Tower
Looking down at Hyde Park!

The Sydney Tower was designed back in the late 1960s. It was officially opened to the public in September 1981, and in 1998 a lighting rod was added to the top, making it 309 meters (1,014 feet) tall. It’s the second tallest observation tower in the Southern Hemisphere, after the Auckland Sky Tower in New Zealand. However, the Sydney Tower’s observation deck itself is actually higher!

The Sydney Tower Eye is the observation deck on the fourth level of the tower. It’s an indoor observation deck that offers 360-degree views of Sydney. I can confirm that it’s the best way to get aerial views of Sydney – except, perhaps, with a helicopter tour

When at the Sydney Tower Eye, there are powerful binoculars that you can use to zero in on your favorite areas of the city. We loved using these binoculars to check out some of the most interesting parts of the skyline and famous buildings. There are also interactive displays that teach you about Sydney and its most famous landmarks. And finally, there’s a 4D cinema experience at the end of the tour. 

The tower is located right in the city center, on the corner of Pitt Street Mall and Market Street. You can easily walk there, or if you’re coming from further out, then the St. James station is just 2 minutes away. You access the Sydney Tower Eye via the Westfield shopping mall at the base of the tower; you’ll find the ticket kiosk and elevator on Level 5.

2. How much does the Sydney Tower Eye cost?

Bailey poses for a photo at the sign at the entrance of the Sydney Tower Eye in Sydney, Australia
At the entrance!

On weekdays, tickets for the Sydney Tower Eye cost $27 AUD for adults and $20 AUD for kids (ages 3-12). Weekend tickets cost $38 AUD for adults and $30 AUD for kids. Infants (ages 0-2) can go up for free with their parents. Same-day tickets tend to be a few dollars more, so it’s worth booking in advance if you can.

This is general admission only, so you’ll have to pay extra for the dining experiences, but we’ll get to that later!

3. Do you need to purchase tickets in advance?

St Mary's Cathedral as seen from the Sydney Tower,
St Mary’s Cathedral as seen from the Sydney Tower!

No, not really, but it does make getting through the entrance a lot easier. We booked our tickets in advance, and we breezed past the groups lining up to purchase theirs.

It doesn’t cost any extra to book your tickets in advance, so you may as well get them online and save yourself the hassle of waiting. Plus, same-day tickets often cost a few dollars more, so you’ll actually be saving yourself some money.

If you want to do the Skywalk or enjoy the Skyfeast or Infinity dining experiences, then you should book at least a few days beforehand. These experiences are really popular things to do in Sydney, and numbers are limited, so they book up fast. If you’re curious about what these are, don’t worry – we’ll discuss these Sydney Tower activities in more detail further down!

Related Read: Another Australian city I recommend visiting is my hometown of Perth! To learn why, read about my favorite things to do in Perth.

4. When is the best time to visit the Sydney Tower Eye?

Sydney Harbour from the Sydney Eye Tower
Sydney Harbour!

Any time of year, as long as you choose a clear day. If possible, it’s best to go early in the morning or late in the afternoon to avoid the crowds – there tends to be a midday rush. The sunset is also a really nice time to go. It will be busy, but the epic views will be totally worth it! 

5. Is the Sydney Tower Eye open all year round?

Yes! It’s open 365 days a year, so you can go anytime. It’s one of Sydney’s best year-round attractions and an excellent activity if you want to escape the cold this winter!

6. What are the Sydney Tower Eye hours?

The Sydney Tower Eye is open from 10 am until 8 pm every day. Bear in mind that the last entry is at 7 pm. When you book your tickets in advance, you can choose the entry time you prefer. The hours tend to stay consistent all year round – but if you’re planning on buying a ticket at the door, it’s worth double-checking on the official website before you go. 

7. What can you see from the Sydney Tower Eye?

Views out the windows at Sydney Eye Tower
Views out the windows at Sydney Eye Tower

So much! It’s a 360-degree observation deck, so you can see the entire city. On a clear day, you can even see as far as the Blue Mountains (which you can visit on a tour from Sydney!). 

In some areas of the Tower Eye, you can also see the Sydney Harbour Bridge, but unfortunately, the Opera House is blocked by other buildings. We were a bit disappointed by this, but even without the Opera House, we still thought the view was fantastic! With that said, you can see the Sydney Opera House from the Skywalk!

8. What else is there at the Sydney Tower Eye?

Skyfeast at Sydney Tower

A meal with a view at Skyfeast at Sydney Tower
Photo credit: Skyfeast at Sydney Tower
Views out the window of Sydney as seen from the Sydney Tower Eye, Australia
What a view!

Skyfeast is one of Sydney’s most unique dining experiences. It’s a revolving restaurant where you get stunning views of the city while you enjoy a buffet lunch or dinner. This is the more casual of the two dining experiences at the Sydney Tower Eye. 

There are a ton of options for each course. For starters, you can choose from fresh seafood, delicious Italian antipasti, and seasonal salads for starters, while you’ve got tons of Mediterranean and Asian options for mains. There’s also a dessert bar, and you get a complimentary beer or glass of wine to boot. 

But the best part of all is the views you get as the restaurant revolves. You get 360-degree views of the city without even having to move a muscle! 

You can choose from a range of time slots (between 12-9 pm) to enjoy lunch or dinner, and you’re guaranteed to get a window table. The Skyfeast costs $105 AUD for adults from Monday to Thursday and $120 AUD from Friday to Sunday. Meanwhile, kids eat for $45 AUD, regardless of what day it is. The buffet lasts for 1.5 hours, which is the perfect amount of time to enjoy a leisurely meal with a view!

However, you’ll need to buy your Sydney Tower Eye tickets separately – Skyfeast is an additional cost. Since it’s a popular experience, I also recommend booking your Skyfeast meal well in advance.

Why We Book Tours with Viator

Viator is a trusted online booking system for tours around the world! We almost always book our tours using Viator for a couple of reasons:

  • Free cancellation on most tours – Most of the tours on Viator allow you to cancel and get a full refund up to 24 hours in advance. This is handy in case plans change, or if booking an outdoor activity, the weather forecast is looking grim.
  • Reserve now and pay later – You can secure your spot on some of the most popular tours well in advance and not pay until closer to the day of the tour.
  • Pay in your chosen currency – Avoid costly international transaction fees by choosing to pay in your home currency.
  • Peace of mind – When booking with tour operators you find in person on the street or in small booking offices, you are often promised one thing and given another. This online platform holds tour operators accountable with a written description of inclusions as well as the opportunity for customers to leave reviews.

Check out the Viator website here! Or, read our complete Viator review to learn more about what we think about Viator.

Infinity at Sydney Tower

Infinity at Sydney Tower
Photo credit: Infinity at Sydney Tower
Sydney CBD seen from the Sydney Tower at sunset
I could stare for hours!

The Skyfeast is awesome, but if you’re looking for a gourmet meal with a serious view, then treat yourself to the Infinity experience! We think that this would be such a great way to celebrate an anniversary or a birthday or to end your trip to Sydney on a high note! 

If you opt for Infinity, you’ll enjoy gourmet French-Australian cuisine, and there are a couple of different options available. You can do a 3-course meal for $140 AUD or 4 courses for $155 AUD per person. 

Meanwhile, the ultimate option is the 6-course tasting menu, which guarantees you a window seat and takes you on a real culinary journey. At around $220-$240 AUD per person, this is a little on the pricey side, but it’s sure to be an unforgettable dining experience! 

During the week, Infinity is only available in the evening, and you can make a booking between 5:30 pm and 9 pm, depending on which option you choose. Depending on the time of your dinner, you’ll either see the sunset or enjoy views of Sydney lit up at night – or possibly even both. 

There’s also a 2-course lunch available on the weekends for $95 AUD. This is the way to go if you’re visiting Sydney on a budget but still want to enjoy a meal in the sky! 

Whatever option you choose, the food is gourmet and à la carte. Starters include things like rock oysters and trout sashimi, while mains include lamb with veggies or a flavorful miso eggplant dish. And, of course, you should definitely leave room for dessert!

There’s a minimum of two per booking, and it makes an excellent romantic date night as well! All the food and gorgeous views are covered, but alcoholic beverages cost extra. If you want to toast with a glass of champagne or a cocktail, plan to spend extra. And just a heads up: the dress code is smart casual.

Once again, this experience doesn’t cover entry to the actual tower, so make sure to buy your Sydney Tower Eye tickets separately. I’d also recommend securing your Infinity experience in advance – they often sell out!

Related Read: For another incredible dining experience, check out a Sydney Harbour dinner cruise! We share everything you need to know before booking one, plus our top cruise recommendations!

Bar 83 at Sydney Tower

Lounge at Bar 83 at Sydney Tower
Lounge at Bar 83 at Sydney Tower
Bailey and Daniel at Bar 83 at Sydney Tower, Australia
Bar 83!

Sydney is full of great bars, but only this one is 250 meters (820 feet) above the city! After all, it’s called Bar 83 for a reason – it’s 83 floors up! And with floor-to-ceiling windows and great craft cocktails, we think that this is the ultimate spot to enjoy a drink with a view.

They make amazing seasonal spritzes, tequila cocktails, and mocktails, among others. You can order bar food from Infinity, the Tower’s fancy Australian-French spot that we talked about above. We saw some Wagyu beef sliders go by that looked to die for. They also sometimes have live DJs playing until late on Friday and Saturday nights, so you can really get a full experience here!

There is a minimum purchase of $30 AUD at Bar 83, and reservations are advised. You could always try your luck as a walk-in, but if you really want to have drinks here, then we strongly recommend booking in advance. And if you want guaranteed window seats, you can purchase a food and drink package for $160 AUD per pair.

They require a smart casual dress code, so make sure to avoid sandals. The whole venue is smoke-free, and anyone under 17 must be with an adult and isn’t allowed to stay past 7 pm.

Sydney SKYWALK at Sydney Tower Eye

Sydney SKYWALK at Sydney Tower Eye 
Photo credit: Sydney SKYWALK at Sydney Tower Eye 

The Sydney Tower Eye observation deck is indoors and offers awesome 360-degree views. But to take it up a notch with completely unobstructed views of the city, you can get your adrenaline pumping with the Skywalk. You’ll be harnessed in and feel the breeze on your face as you walk around the edge of the Sydney Tower Eye on a glass floor platform. This experience will definitely get your heart racing! 

You and your group will be led by a guide who will give you plenty of commentary on what you’re seeing (and encourage you if you get a little nervous). You’ll see the city from every angle, and the views are absolutely insane – even better than they are from the indoor observation deck! This is the only way to spot the famous Opera House from up here too.

The Skywalk lasts for an hour and costs $89 AUD for adults and $64 AUD for kids (ages 10-15). Just a heads up for families: there is a minimum age requirement of 10 years old. This price includes admission to the indoor observation deck as well, which you can access before and after the tour. It’s such a cool way to see Sydney, and we think it’s a pretty good deal, too. 

Just like the Sydney Tower Eye, the Skywalk is available 365 days per year, although occasionally, it may close due to extreme weather. You can purchase these tickets for the Skywalk online in advance.

9. What facilities are at the Sydney Tower Eye? 

Sydney Tower Eye Gift shop in Sydney, Australia
Sydney Tower Eye gift shop in Sydney, Australia

The Sydney Tower Eye has free WiFi for guests, so you can upload your photos to Instagram straight away! There are also toilets and baby-changing facilities, and there’s a small gift shop near the entrance to the tower, inside the Westfield shopping center below. There are also two restaurants and a bar. 

If you do the Skywalk experience, there are also lockers where you can store your personal items. 

10. Is the Sydney Tower Eye wheelchair-friendly?

The Sydney Harbour Bridge as seen from the Sydney Sky Tower
The Sydney Harbour Bridge, as seen from the Sydney Tower Eye

Yes, it is. The Sydney Tower is totally wheelchair accessible, and there are wheelchairs available to borrow from guest services on a first-come, first-served basis. There are accessible toilets, and wheelchair users may be allowed to bring a companion with them if they need extra assistance. 

11. Is the Sydney Tower Eye worth it?

Views from the Sydney Tower Eye at sunset
As the sun sets, the views are spectacular!

Yes, the view is absolutely insane, and we think that the cost is totally worth it for the experience. I loved my time up there and would 100% go again. The views of Sydney are unparalleled, and I really do think it’s one of the best things to do in the city.

Related Read: Another worthwhile experience in Australia is taking a Rottnest Island tour! This island is just off Perth and full of cute quokkas, history, and gorgeous scenery. 

12. Hot Local Tips

Food and drinks at a window seat at Bar 83 at Sydney Tower
Food and drinks by the window at Bar 83
Bailey with a glass of wine at Bar 83 Sydney Eye Tower
Cheers!

If you made it to the end of the blog, then congratulations! You get a special treat: our hot local tips. We’ve got a couple of pieces of insider info to help you get the most for your money and maximize your time at the top of the Sydney Tower Eye. 

Use the Sydney attractions pass

The Sydney attractions pass is an awesome way to save money on sightseeing in the city. It’s basically a combo pass that covers your entry to 2, 3, or 4 of the city’s best attractions. 

You choose how many attractions you want your pass to cover, and you get to choose from the following four options:

The pass is valid for 60 days, no matter which level you choose. We love the fact that it’s valid for so long because it means you don’t have to rush and can take your sightseeing at your own pace. We opted for the 3 attraction pass on Viator and loved our experience. Everything from buying the ticket to booking our time slots for each activity was a breeze.

I always recommend using Viator when possible because I’ve had such positive experiences on this site. However, the 2 and 4 activity passes aren’t always available through Viator. If that’s the case, they can be purchased through the Sky Tower’s website (prices are the same).

Sightseeing passes can be a really great way to save money, and we like that the Sydney one keeps things nice and simple. It’s really easy to use and cost-effective, especially in an expensive city like Sydney. The 2 attraction pass costs $65 AUD, the 3 attraction pass is $75 AUD, or it’s $85 AUD to cover all four attractions.

To save money and see more sights, book the Sydney attractions pass right here!

Get the view for free

If you’re partial to a cocktail, then you can actually get the view from the Sydney Tower for free by visiting Bar 83. Unlike the Skyfeast or Infinity restaurants, the bar is completely separate from the observation deck, and you even access it via a different elevator. 

However, you do need to spend a minimum of $30 AUD per person at the bar in order to visit. It’s not really free, but you get to spend your money on drinks instead of an admission ticket and enjoy a drink with a view, so we think this is a great hack! 

But again, you should definitely make a reservation so you don’t miss out!

Other Things to do While You’re in Sydney

Bailey smiles at the camera while the helicopter pilot fly's over Sydney
So much fun!
Bailey enjoys the view of the Sydney Harbour Bridge inside the Sydney Opera House on a tour
Views from inside the Sydney Opera House!

Sydney is a city full of exciting things to do and see, so you’re going to want to fill your schedule while visiting this iconic city. Below are a few of our favorite activities that you should consider adding to your Sydney itinerary:

  • Helicopter Ride – Sydney is a beautiful city; there is just no doubt about it! And if you can’t get enough aerial views, take a helicopter tour! We did this helicopter ride the last time we were in the city, and it was incredible! We got the most amazing views of the bridge and Opera House, not to mention the beautiful coastline. And to top it off, we even saw whales!
  • Visit Manly Beach and/or Bondi Beach – There are some pretty amazing beaches right in Sydney, so you should definitely plan for a beach day (or three!). Manly Beach is one of our favorites and you can easily get there via the public ferry. Or, head to the famous Bondi Beach! Once there, you can do the walk to Bronte or Coogee Beaches – they are both also stunning!
  • Tour the Sydney Opera House – Did you even visit Sydney if you didn’t go to the Opera House?! You can walk around for free, but if you want to see the inside, then you’ll have to join a guided tour of the Opera House or buy tickets to a show. We did this guided tour and found it super interesting! They took us to all of the different theatres, and we learned all about the history of the building – all for only $42 AUD!
  • Day Trip to the Blue Mountains – The Blue Mountains is a beautiful wilderness area where you can enjoy hiking, waterfalls, mountain views, and charming local towns. It’s about an hour’s drive and makes for a great day trip from Sydney or even a weekend getaway. This Blue Mountains day full-day tour would be our top choice as it includes a gourmet lunch, Scenic World, the wildlife park, as well as a cruise! Plus the 3,400 5-star reviews are pretty reassuring that it’s an excellent tour!
  • Explore Darling Harbour – One of our favorite areas in Sydney is Darling Harbour, which features more restaurants, bars, and cafes than I can count! Plus, almost everything is waterfront! Here, you can enjoy the Chinese Garden of Friendship or walk across the Pyrmont Bridge. You can also visit popular attractions like Madame Tussauds, the SeaLife Aquarium, and Wildlife Sydney Zoo (which are all included on the Sydney Attractions Pass!).

Where to Stay in Sydney

Get the best views of Sydney at Four Seasons Hotel Sydney, Australia
Photo credit: Four Seasons Hotel Sydney

If you’re planning a trip to Sydney, you’re going to need a place to stay. Luckily Sydney has a huge variety of accommodations to fit every budget. If you’re overwhelmed with where to start, check out our top picks for places to stay, from luxury rooms to budget-friendly hostels. We’ve got you covered!

Four Seasons Hotel Sydney – $$$

For stunning views of Sydney Harbour and the iconic Opera House, book a room at the Four Seasons Hotel Sydney. You’ll have unobstructed views of the city from the comfort of your room. The hotel is located in the city center within the historic Rocks neighborhood – nice and close to lots of activities and restaurants. It’s also just a 15-minute walk to the Sydney Tower Eye.

Rooms here start at $400-$500 AUD per night and can be reserved with Booking.com.

Meriton Suites Kent Street Sydney – $$

Stay right in the heart of Sydney in a modern luxury apartment at Meriton Suites Kent Street. The suites are air-conditioned and have laundry facilities, and either a kitchenette or full kitchen to make longer stays more comfortable. You’ll also have access to an indoor swimming pool, fitness center, and hot tub. Plus, these apartments are just a 10-minute walk to the Sydney Tower Eye.

These full apartments are $230 AUD nightly when booked in advance with Booking.com.

Sydney Harbour YHA – $

For a hostel with a view, head to the rooftop terrace at the Sydney Harbour YHA. Located in the historic Rocks district, you’ll have amazing views of the harbor and be within walking distance of all the major sights. It’s also about a 20-minute walk to the Sydney Tower Eye. You can opt for a shared dorm room or a private room here. There’s a communal kitchen, TV lounge, billiards, and a 24/7 reception desk.

Dorm rooms are around $70 AUD nightly and private rooms are more around the $180 AUD mark. You can check for the best rates and book on either Booking.com or Hostelworld.com.

Don’t get Caught without Travel Insurance!

We never travel without travel insurance! We’ve had a few instances during our travels when one of us has ended up in the hospital, and travel insurance has saved us thousands of dollars over the years!

SafetyWing is our go-to insurance, we both have policies with them whenever we travel.

They offer travel medical insurance that’s super affordable (only $45 USD per 4 weeks!)The only thing to note is that the insurance must be purchased once you’ve left your home country – we typically buy it as soon as we land at the airport.  

We’ve personally used SafetyWing for many different trips, and we’ve been reimbursed for countless expenses when we’ve fallen ill. SafetyWing even covered our flights back to Canada in full when the pandemic first happened (when last-minute flights before the borders closed were super expensive!) While most travel insurance companies left people stranded, SafetyWing fully reimbursed us for our last-minute, pricey flights!

Also, because it is so affordable, there really is no excuse not to take out a policy. Check prices and get a quote online here with SafetyWing (you can even take out a policy if you’re already traveling!)

Thanks for reading!

Daniel and Bailey take a selfie during a Sydney opera house Tour in sydney, Australia
Thanks for reading!

The Sydney Tower Eye is an awesome place to see the city from above. And as we discovered, that’s not the only thing you can do here! We hope this guide has helped you plan your trip to the tower. Whether you get your adrenaline pumping on the Skywalk or enjoy a relaxing meal with panoramic views, you’re sure to have a wonderful time!

This landmark is just one of the many places we’ve discovered on our travels. To learn more, read our other blogs about Australia. We’ve also written about the nearby countries of Fiji and New Zealand. Below, we’ve also linked to some related articles that might come in handy.

10 Things to Know BEFORE Booking a Walking Tour in Sydney, Australia

35 BEST Things to do in Darwin, Australia

12 Best Tours in Perth, Australia – from a Local!

17 Things to KNOW before Visiting Kakadu National Park, Australia