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Circular Quay

Flanked by the Opera House and Harbour Bridge, Sydney’s transportation hub is one of the prettiest terminals in the world.

Circular Quay is situated in the small inlet of Sydney Cove, the official landing site of the First Fleet. Scottish political reformer Thomas Muir once had a cottage here, and for decades it was the city’s main shipping port. Today, it’s best known as the place to catch one of Sydney's iconic ferries, which travel all over the harbor. It’s also a great spot to take in incredible views of the Sydney Harbour Bridge and the Opera House.

Circular Quay is Sydney’s outdoor answer to New York City’s bustling Grand Central Station. As well as the ferry terminal, it has one of Sydney's busiest train stations and a bus interchange. The central location and views of the Sydney Opera House and Harbour Bridge ensure that this hub is always buzzing with commuters and tourists. It’s also a focal point on New Year’s Eve, when crowds pack the area to watch the annual fireworks display.

The area is home to Sydney’s Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA) and the Customs House. Art buffs will love the MCA, which underwent a major refurbishment in 2012. It’s open daily and entry is free; some touring exhibitions may attract a fee.

At the Customs House and explore the library and exhibitions, or relax with a coffee. Don’t miss the grand atrium and staircase, and the impressive scale model of Sydney, displayed under the glass floor on the ground level. Keep an eye out for the ghost of convict David O’Connor, who was hanged on the site in 1790. Rumor has it, he walks the halls of the building offering rum to unsuspecting visitors!

Harbor cruises operate regularly out of Circular Quay’s cruise terminal. For something romantic, book a sunset dinner cruise from jetty number 6. One of the most inexpensive ways to see the harbor is to catch the Manly Ferry, an unforgettable 60-minute round trip.

Located just north of downtown on Sydney Cove, Circular Quay is best accessed via public transport or on foot.

Life is either a daring adventure or nothing at all, so why not embark on some new and exciting experiences?

Start off your trip to Circular Quay by trying out some of these activities:

Got a few spare moments? Head to our Circular Quay things to do page for a full list of activities.


Guide to Exploring Circular Quay


Map

Top Hotel Deals

See all 3,934 properties near Circular Quay
Four Seasons Hotel Sydney £119
Four Seasons Hotel Sydney

Four Seasons Hotel Sydney

199 George St., Sydney, NSW
     
    5.0 out of 5.0 Stars

    This family-friendly Sydney hotel is located in the historical district, just steps away from Circular Quay and Museum of Contemporary Art. The Rocks Markets and Sydney Opera House are also within 15 minutes. Sydney Circular Quay Station is only a 3-minute walk and Wynyard Station is 7 minutes.

    Oaks Sydney Goldsbrough Suites £53
    Oaks Sydney Goldsbrough Suites

    Oaks Sydney Goldsbrough Suites

    243 Pyrmont Street, Darling Harbour, Pyrmont, NSW
       
      4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

      This apartment building is located in Pyrmont (Darling Harbour), close to International Convention Centre Sydney, Harbourside and Chinese Garden of Friendship. Also nearby are Australian National Maritime Museum and Chinatown Night Market.

      Pullman Quay Grand Sydney Harbour £167
      Pullman Quay Grand Sydney Harbour

      Pullman Quay Grand Sydney Harbour

      61 Macquarie Street, Sydney, NSW
         
        5.0 out of 5.0 Stars

        Located in Sydney Central Business District, this luxury hotel is steps away from Circular Quay, Customs House and Government House. Sydney Opera House and Museum of Sydney are also within 5 minutes. Sydney Circular Quay Station is only a 4-minute walk and Martin Place Station is 11 minutes.

        Rydges Sydney Harbour £81
        Rydges Sydney Harbour

        Rydges Sydney Harbour

        55 George Street, The Rocks, NSW
           
          4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

          Located in Sydney Central Business District, this hotel is steps away from The Rocks Markets, Circular Quay and Overseas Passenger Terminal. Sydney Harbour Bridge and Sydney Opera House are also within 15 minutes. Sydney Circular Quay Station is 7 minutes by foot and Wynyard Station is 12 minutes.

          Harbour Rocks Hotel Sydney MGallery £129
          Harbour Rocks Hotel Sydney MGallery

          Harbour Rocks Hotel Sydney MGallery

          34-52 Harrington Street, The Rocks, NSW
             
            5.0 out of 5.0 Stars

            Located in Sydney Central Business District, this luxury hotel is steps away from Circular Quay, Museum of Contemporary Art and The Rocks Markets. Overseas Passenger Terminal and Sydney Observatory are also within 5 minutes. Wynyard Station is 9 minutes by foot and Sydney Circular Quay Station is 5 minutes.

            The Sebel Quay West Suites Sydney £140
            The Sebel Quay West Suites Sydney

            The Sebel Quay West Suites Sydney

            98 Gloucester Street, The Rocks, NSW
               
              5.0 out of 5.0 Stars

              Located in Sydney Central Business District, this luxury aparthotel is within a 5-minute walk of Circular Quay and Museum of Contemporary Art. The Rocks Markets and Sydney Observatory are also within 10 minutes. Wynyard Station is 6 minutes by foot and Sydney Circular Quay Station is 6 minutes.

              Shangri-La Hotel, Sydney £151
              Shangri-La Hotel, Sydney

              Shangri-La Hotel, Sydney

              176 Cumberland Street, The Rocks, NSW
                 
                5.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                Located in Sydney Central Business District, this luxury hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Museum of Contemporary Art and Circular Quay. The Rocks Markets and Sydney Observatory are also within 10 minutes. Wynyard Station is 6 minutes by foot and Sydney Circular Quay Station is 7 minutes.

                Park Hyatt Sydney £594
                Park Hyatt Sydney

                Park Hyatt Sydney

                7 Hickson Road, The Rocks, NSW
                   
                  5.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                  This family-friendly The Rocks hotel is located on the boardwalk, steps away from The Rocks Markets, Circular Quay and Overseas Passenger Terminal. Sydney Harbour Bridge and Sydney Opera House are also within 1 mile (2 km). Sydney Circular Quay Station is 9 minutes by foot and Wynyard Station is 14 minutes.