Sydney Harbour Bridge, Australia (with Map & Photos)

The Sydney Harbour Bridge or Sydney Bridge is one of the two most famous monuments in the city and is located next to the symbol of the city, the Sydney Opera House. In this post you will find a little more information before you visit it.

Sydney Harbour Bridge
Sydney Harbour Bridge

History of the Sydney Harbour Bridge

Construction of the Sydney Harbour Bridge began in 1926 and was completed in 1932. The foundations are 12 meters deep and the anchor tunnels 36 meters long. The arch spans up to 503 meters supporting the weight of the entire roof. The platform is 59 meters above sea level and was built from the center out. Known as “the Coat Rack”, the Sydney Bridge took 8 years to build. As a curiosity, I will tell you that its pieces were built where the Luna Park amusement park is now located.

At the time, the construction was an engineering feat and an economic feat since it linked the north and south directly without having to turn around or take a ferry.

Sydney Harbour Bridge
Sydney Harbour Bridge

What to do on the Sydney Harbour Bridge?

The bridge from below

Some of the ferries that ply the bay go under the bridge and past the Opera House. These ferries are those that visit Cockatoo Island, Balmain or Parramatta. The best places to see the Sydney Harbour Bridge are as follows:

  • The Rocks and Circular Quay from where you can admire it with a beer in hand.
  • Royal Botanic Garden to observe the harbour and the Sydney Opera House sitting on the grass and relaxing.
  • Milsons Point: This is the other side. To see it from a different angle you can go up to the Luna Park Ferris wheel.
  • Sydney North Olympic Pool from where you will see the bridge while swimming.

Pylon Lookout

Recommended for all visitors to the city, is the Pylon Lookout. There are 200 steps that will take you 87 meters above sea level. From up there you will have wonderful views of the entire city and Sydney Harbour. Inside the Lookout is a fascinating display of how it was built.

Pedestrian walkway

You can't visit the Sydney Harbour Bridge and not cross it! If you walk through it you will have a unique view of the Opera House, the Royal Botanic Gardens and the bay. On the other side of the bridge you will see the lush port. If you want to do it faster you can rent a bike. You can board the walkway from Cumberland St, The Rocks or Milsons Point Station.


The Bridge Climb offers 4 options to climb the Sydney Harbour Bridge and all of them offer spectacular panoramic views. There are walks through the big arch of 3 hours but also of 1 hour and a half through the lower arch. Prices are between $200 AUD and $400 AUD. More information on the Bridge Climb.

Climb to the bridge

To get good views from the bridge, you have to pay to go up to see all of Sydney Harbour; otherwise, pay to climb to the top of the pylon for unrestricted views of the eastern part of the harbour.

Curiosities about the Sydney Harbour Bridge

  • The Sydney Bridge was built by 1,400 workers, of whom 16 died during construction.
  • To paint it, 80,000 liters of paint are needed for each layer.
  • Paul Hogan (Crocodile Dundee) worked as a painter on the bridge.
  • The cost of the Sydney Harbour Bridge was 6.25 million Australian pounds ($13.5 AUD million).
  • The first toll for a car was 6 pence.
  • Annual maintenance costs are $5 AUD million.
  • It is estimated that up to 150,000 cars cross it daily.

Sydney Harbour Bridge Map