The largest and oldest city in Australia, Sydney, is the capital of the state of New South Wales. With the iconic Sydney Opera House and Sydney Harbour Bridge, Sydney is bustling with water activates for the tourist and adventurous traveller alike. Travellers on a budget will find excellent cheap Sydney hotels nearby for the beach holiday of a lifetime.
Water skiing, wakeboarding, jet boats, scuba diving, whale viewing and, of course, surfing is just a few of the many water sports available in and around Sydney. Surfing is the main attraction and there are several places in Sydney that offer surfing lessons like the Manly Surf Guide, Sydney North Surfing School in Palm Beach and Mojo Surf in Byron Bay. Look for a place that offer fully qualified surf instructors as well as provide surf boards and wet suits, visitors will usually get at least four hours of instruction to make them ready for surfing by themselves. Some lessons are given on the most famous beach in Australia, Bondi Beach where group and private lessons are available, but a small group lesson is inexpensive and will teach the essentials for beginners to start surfing. The timing for surfing lessons depend on the tide, so visitors need to reconfirm any lesson times 24 hours in advance.
At Oceanworld Manly at Manly Beach, travellers can dive with sharks, turtles and stingrays among other ocean animals, suitable for first time divers and experienced SCUBA divers. The introductory shark dive has a dive course with expert instructors in the morning and fantastic diving in the afternoon. There is also an advance dive for certified SCRBA divers. All the equipment needed is provided for this truly unique experience. Take the Manly ferry, which is inexpensive, from Sydney Harbour to Manly Beach and get a tour of the harbour included. Whilst you are at Manly Beach, why not rent some kayaks and travel up and down the coast with fantastic views of the city. Go to the smaller nearby secluded beaches for a swim or picnic and spend the hours at your own pace.
If getting fully wet is not your thing, you can take a wild ride around Sydney Harbour in a jet boat. More fun than a theme park ride, there are fish-tail manoeuvres and 270-degree spins. These rides offer great views of the harbour when they stop for a few minutes so travellers can catch their breath. Rides from 35 to 50 minutes are worth the cost. Visitors are picked up and dropped off at most hotels.
If you are keen on trying out water sports why not look up some guidebooks beforehand, any good book store or library will offer some; these are cheap and easy to carry for anyone not taking electronic devices on their travels. Travellers on a budget can seek out the best prices in advance before choosing your activity.
For those participating in water sports in Sydney, including simply swimming, there are some safety precautions recommended:
- Most major beaches have netting to prevent sharks from cruising along the beaches and shark attacks are extremely rare, but if a siren sounds, get out of the water quickly.
- If you are drinking alcohol, be sure to stay out of the sea as swimming when drunk is the cause of many rescues from the water
Keep your valuables in a safe place that certified activity schools usually have or with a family member or friend when participating in water activities.
- If you are unwell or unfit in any way always inform your instructor beforehand as some of these activities can be quite strenuous and are not suitable for everyone.
Australia and especially Sydney is famous for beautiful, sandy beaches and fantastic water sports. It can all be enjoyed at very low cost for backpackers and people travelling on a budget.