There are a wide range of varieties of transport in and around the city including buses, trains and ferries. If you plan to do a lot of travelling around Sydney there are a number of leisure and tourist passes available, offering discounted and / or unlimited travel on Government buses, ferries and trains. You can also hire bikes to get around, which are a great option in busy traffic.
For information on transport in Sydney you can call 13 1500 daily between 6:00am - 10:00pm.
When you first arrive you won't have any problems getting from the airport. Bus 300 travels from the airport to Circular Quay and bus 350 travels to Kings Cross. The bus is the brightly painted yellow and green Airport Express. There are also a couple of door-to-door services, which are reasonable but must be booked at least 3 hours in advance.
Alternatively you can get a taxi, which although isn't expensive, costs more than the other means of transport. Several companies include ABC Ph: 132 522, Legion Ph: 131 451 and Taxis Combined Ph: 8332 8888. There are also plenty of taxis around the city both on land and in the water, which makes a really enjoyable way of travelling around Sydney. Water Taxis include Harbour Taxi Boats Ph: 9555 1155, Taxis Afloat Ph: 9955 3222, and Water Taxis Ph: 1300 300 925.
Buses run from the city to most of the suburbs generally from 5.00am until midnight. Although there is also a night service which runs from Town Hall Station, going to suburban stations. The main bust stops are on Argyle Street, Circular Quay, Railway Square, Wynyard Park and York Street. The majority of the buses leave the city via George and Castereagh Streets, entering via George and Elizabeth Streets.
There is also a tourist bus called the Sydney Explorer, which travels around the city stopping at 26 of Sydney's major tourist attractions. Buses start at 8.40am leaving from Circular Quay with the last trip following the whole circuit at 5.22pm, ending at 7.00pm. Like the bus stops, the buses are red offering a hop-on hop-off service. Alternatively you can stay on the bus for the full 1 hour 40 minutes, to gain an informative insight into Sydney. Tickets are available on the buses, and also include travel on other Sydney buses along the same route, until midnight of that day.
The Bondi and Bay Explorer offers travel between 9.15am and 6.15pm, leaving every 30 minutes from Circular Quay with the last service at 4.15pm. It runs a similar service to the Sydney Explorer, but travels to several coastal beaches and bays including Bondi Beach, Bronte Beach, Coogee Beach, Tamarama Beach and Watsons Bay. The Bondi and Bay Explorer is blue, and has matching blue bus stops. Like the Sydney Explorer you can stay on the bus for the whole 2 hour journey, and also use Sydney buses until midnight of the same day along the same route.
You can also purchase a dual ticket which allows you 2 days of unlimited travel on both the Sydney Explorer and the Bondi and Bay Explorer. (This includes any 2 days over a one week period). Tickets can be purchased once on the bus, although more information is available from Ph: 13 1500.
There are 7 city centre train stations, although not all trains stop at all stations except for Central Station. Trains run from 5.00am - midnight, with cheaper tickets after 9.00am on weekdays and also at weekends. Tickets vary in price, although you can buy a hopper for $5.40 during off-peak times, giving you unlimited travel in the central area. You can also get trains to Sydney's suburbs and coastal bays and beaches, as well as to the Blue Mountains, Central Coast and South Coast.
Sydney's Snazzy Ph: (02) 9660 5288 is a 24 hour service running from Central Station to Wentworth Park, with single journeys costing $2/3 and a day pass costing $6. Sydney also hosts a monorail Ph: (02) 9552 2288 which circles Darling Harbour and South West Sydney. It operates:
Monday: 7.00am - 10.00pm
Tuesday: 7.00am - 10.00pm
Wednesday: 7.00am - 10.00pm
Thursday: 7.00am - midnight
Friday: 7.00am - midnight
Saturday: 7.00am - midnight
Sunday: 8.00am - 10.00pm
The monorail hourney makes an enjoyable ride for $3 a single journey and $6 for a day pass, but isn't really an everyday means of transport unless you want to get to Darling Harbour.
Ferries are popular in Sydney so many have connecting bus services. Some ferries run from 6.00am until midnight, although the tourist ferries tend to run shorter hours. All ferries leave Circular Quay where you'll find an information board. You can also telephone Ph: (02) 9207 3166. These include Jetcats which travel to Manly, Rivercats which travel to Parramatta, Rocket Express Ph: (02) 9264 7377 travelling to the Casino and Darling Harbour, Hegarty's Ferries Ph: (02) 9206 1167 travelling to Kirribilli, Lavender Bay, McMahons Point and Milsons Point and Doyles Ferries Ph: (02) 9337 2007 leaving for Watsons Bay.
Sydney Transport also offers several weekly passes which work out cheaper if you are commuting or travelling frequently. The Sydney Pass offers 3,5 or 7 days of unlimited travel on buses, ferries and train travel within the inner-city area. There is also a ticket called the Travel Ten. You can purchase this either for travel on buses or ferries giving a discounted price for ten journeys. The passes are all different colours depending upon the area and distance that they cover. Check which will be the most appropriate to you travel arrangements when you buy your ticket at the newsagents or STA office.
The Orbital Network surrounding Sydney is made up of nine motorways connected by a number of main roads, expressways and freeways. All of the motorways charge a toll to use the roads. These include the Cross City Tunnel (Main Tunnel and Sir John Young Crescent), Eastern Distributor, Falcon Street Gateway, Lane Cove Tunnel, M2 (North Ryde and Pennant Hills Road), M4, M5, M7, Sydney Harbour Bridge and Sydney Harbour Tunnel.
Tolls at all of the motorways can be paid by ETag, with selected motorways allowing payment by EPass and / or offering Cash Booths. More information can be found on the Sydney Motorways website.
You can also get further travel information and contact numbers for the whole of New South Wales, from the New South Wales Travel Section.