Sydney Opera House

Sydney Opera House, Australia

Sydney Opera House, Australia

My travels don’t usually linger too long in cities, but Sydney is an inviting, international center for arriving and departing flights, and I enjoyed it on four different occasions.  The Opera House is impressive from inside and out; you can explore it without spending a penny, and admire it up close or from a harbour boat.


Although it’s name indicates it is one venue only, this iconic building is actually a performance facility for numerous organizations and performances. Construction began in 1959 with an original budget of $7 million.  The architect was a Danish man, Jorn Utzon, who resigned from the project in 1966.  It was completed in 1973, costing $102 million, and formally opened by Queen Elizabeth II.


The largest section of the Opera House, the Concert Hall, is host to the Sydney Symphony Orchestra, the Opera, and other concert presenters.  It has over 2,600 seats and boasts the Grand Organ with 10,000 pipes.  There is also another large performance theater with 1,500 seats, several other smaller theaters, a multi-purpose room, and recording studio.  In addition, large, open foyers are used for social functions and conferences.  Cafes, restaurants, and bars are also on the site.

Front Approach, including plaza and front steps

Front Approach, including plaza and front steps


When I visited Sydney it was not the opera season, but for a small ticket price we went to a singing performance in a small theater.  Typical of Australia, the atmosphere was very casual.  Inside it was a very busy place, with tourists and locals alike.  You can also buy a guided tour.  I imagine the acoustics in the big Concert Hall are superb, as they were in the small theater I attended.  Indoors there were high, curved ceilings, spacious open areas as well as intimate spaces, dazzling harbour views, and an ultra modern theme.


Sydney Opera House, Australia

Sydney Opera House, Australia

The Harbour is bustling with boat tours, commuter boats, and pleasure craft.


The expansive Royal Botanic Gardens are within walking distance, the Taronga Zoo is accessible by boat from this harbour, and there is plenty of shopping and touring to do around the harbour and downtown.  But the problem is the Outback is calling!  There are kangaroos, echidnas, parrots, and koalas to find, and the Great Barrier Reef is oh so near….   Cheers mate!

Sydney Opera House and Harbour Bridge

Sydney Opera House and Harbour Bridge


Photo credit:  Athena Alexander


39 thoughts on “Sydney Opera House

  1. I enjoy viewing these beautiful photos of the Opera House. I had no idea about the inside layouts of this building.Thank you for the description of this magnificent architecture, Jet. 🙂

  2. My daughter spent a college semester studying in Sydney and my favorite photo of her is with the Opera House in the background. I believe she even attended a Ballet there. Unique piece of architecture and interesting history on it’s construction.

    • I like that imaginative idea, Nan, and totally agree. Apparently there was a great deal of difficulty in the construction phase, but I am so glad they persevered and created this beautiful performance site for all to enjoy. Thanks for your visit today! 😀

    • Well it was your beautiful and recent Botanic Garden post that reminded me of other delights in Sydney, so thank you Joanne! It is a unique place and one that rests happily in my memories always. Have a great week Joanne! 😀

    • That final photo with the sailboat was taken while we were on a “breakfast tea” public boat tour. We cruised around the harbor listening and observing while we drank tea and Sampled Australian tea cakes. I know you and your husband will love it there, Sue. Thanks so much! 😀

  3. Beautiful post! Thank you for such valuable information. I hope I’ll get to visit it one day. Australia is definitely on my list 🙂 Have a lovely day!! x

  4. A real masterpiece in Modern Architecture dear Jet!Striking photo series,Athena has so competently captured the magnificence of the imposing construction and your accounts brought me so close to it!
    I suppose it has become a symbol for Sydney,it’s a breathtaking landmark!The Royal Botanic Gardens and he Great Barrier Reef sound interesting too!Thank you so much for showing me around,I enjoyed every minute of the tour!Have a wonderful and creative Tuesday my dearest friend 🙂 ✿ xxx

    • I so appreciate your enjoyment in this Sydney post, dear Doda. Sometime I will feature the Botanic Gardens in a separate post, as they are really spectacular. Both times I have landed in Sydney it was at dawn so we would stow our luggage with the concierge and then hang out in the Gardens until late afternoon check-in, so I have spent many glorious hours there too. 😀 😀

  5. I enjoyed Sydney with some friends back in the 90’s on my way home from a stint in SE Asia. I do hope to go back with my whole family one day and visit those friends again. Sydney and the surrounding areas are wonderful places to explore. Thank you for sharing, Jet.

    • Oh yes, there is so much to do and see in and around that wonderful city. Thanks so much for your comment, Shannon, I’m glad you enjoyed the post and that it brought back good memories for you. 😀

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