About Sydney

The IBA welcomes you to Sydney in 2017

The 2017 IBA Annual Conference will be held in Sydney, Australia’s leading global city. Recognised internationally as a future-focused and innovative business centre, Sydney provides headquarters for almost 40 per cent of the top 500 Australian corporations.

The city combines natural beauty with buzzing urban villages and a city centre that’s home to some of the world’s most recognisable and iconic structures such as the Opera House and Sydney Harbour Bridge.

As one of the world’s most multicultural and connected cities, Sydney will be an ideal location for the largest and most prestigious event for international lawyers, providing an abundance of business and networking opportunities, as well as the chance to explore one of the most beautiful cities on Earth.    

Sydney is one of the world’s favourite destinations offering a diverse mix of culture, natural beauty and history. With a combination of sophistication, a cosmopolitan population and exuberant nightlife, the energy, spirit and optimism of the city is contagious.

Art galleries and museums

Sydney is home to many fascinating museums and vibrant art galleries, including the Art Gallery of NSW, the Museum of Contemporary Art Australia (MCA), the Australian Museum, The Rocks Discovery Museum and the Museum of Sydney. Visitors can view hundreds of classic and contemporary works of art, learn about the area’s indigenous heritage through archaeological artefacts and explore Sydney’s people, places and cultures through the ages.

City and coastal walks

Sydney has an abundance of public walks that trail around the city’s many bays, beaches, inlets and rivers – the perfect way to explore the city’s stunning natural environment at your own pace.

Discover for yourself why Bondi Beach is the famous home of Australian surf culture. Take a walk along the beach, watch the surfers in action or swim in the crystal clear waters.

For a true taste of Sydney, take an afternoon stroll along the coastal path that stretches from Bondi to Coogee, admiring the beautiful coastline and panoramic views.

Iconic attractions

As well as the famous and sparkling Darling Harbour, the location of the 2017 IBA Annual Conference, Sydney is home to many iconic landmarks. Experience Sydney Opera House – one of the world’s most creative and busiest performing arts centres, lose yourself in the lush grounds of the Royal Botanic Gardens, explore the art galleries, pubs and waterfront restaurants of Circular Quay and The Rocks, catch the ferry to Manly Beach or take the pedestrian walkway across the Sydney Harbour Bridge to capture the city skyline on camera.

If you have time to head slightly further afield then visit the spectacular Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area to experience bushwalks, natural attractions and wildlife. Or alternatively take a trip to Australia's most visited wine region, the Hunter Valley to visit one of the many wineries, vineyards or participate in a cellar door tasting experience. 

Facts and figures

Time zone

+11 hours GMT

Language

The official language of Australia is English.

Currency

Australia’s national currency is the Australian dollar, which comes in denominations of $5, $10, $20, $50 and $100 notes. Coins come in 5, 10, 20 and 50 cents and $1 and $2 denominations.

Visa

Unless you are an Australian or New Zealand citizen, you will need a visa to enter Australia. For the most up-to-date information about how to apply for a visa before arriving in Australia, visit the Australian Government Department of Immigration and Border Protection website.

Communications

Australia’s country code is +61.

Mobile phone network coverage is available across Australia and is plentiful in Sydney. If you are travelling to some remote areas of the country pre- or post-event, coverage may become limited.

Australian quarantine restrictions

Australia has strict quarantine and bio-security measures and the Australian Government Department of Agriculture is responsible for protecting Australia’s human, animal and plant health from overseas pests and diseases. You will see quarantine officers at all Australian international airports. On arrival, all luggage is inspected to ensure that no banned items are brought inside Australian borders. Before travelling to Australia, please ensure you are familiar with all prohibited items.

Getting around the city

Public transport

Sydney is a well connected city with a range of private and public transport options.

The Opal card system is an electronic ticketing system that was introduced on public transport in Sydney in 2014. The system has been implemented on ferries, trains and buses and will eventually replace paper ticketing.

Sydney trains

Sydney Trains offer one of the most cost-effective and reliable modes of transport around the city. The Sydney Trains network connects metropolitan and suburban Sydney, while the NSW Intercity Trains connect the Hunter, Central Coast, Blue Mountains, Southern Highlands and South Coast – all popular regions for pre- and post-event holidays. Visit the Sydney Trains website for more information.

Light rail

Light rail trams link Central Station and Sydney’s inner western suburbs, while also offering easy access for visitors looking to explore Chinatown, Darling Harbour, The Star and Sydney Fish Markets. Services are frequent, with the route between Central Station and The Star running 24 hours. Visit the Transport NSW website for more information.

Sydney Buses

Sydney Buses offer another quick, inexpensive way of travelling across the Sydney metropolitan area and into Parramatta and the West. Visit the Sydney Buses website for more information.

Taxis

Taxis are a convenient way to cover short to medium distances when you’re travelling around Sydney. Most taxi drivers accept payment by debit or credit card. Tipping is not required or expected, but rounding up a taxi fare to the next dollar is common.

Ferries

Ferry services across Sydney’s world-renowned harbour leave from the terminal at Circular Quay and travel to an array of destinations including Taronga Zoo and Darling Harbour, and suburbs such as Balmain, Kirribilli, Neutral Bay, Mosman and Rose Bay.

Services also travel to the northern reaches of the harbour to Manly and west along the Parramatta River. For more information visit the website.

Water taxis

In Sydney, you can also get around on a water taxi and travel across Sydney Harbour directly to a specified location. These small boats operate to and from any wharves or waterfront locations that have step access.

Free city shuttle bus

A free Sydney CBD shuttle bus (Route 555) operates every ten minutes on a circuit from Central Station to Circular Quay, along George and Elizabeth Streets. This is a great way to travel between Sydney’s attractions free-of-charge. The service operates from 0900-1530 on weekdays (with a late finish at 2100 on Thursday evenings) and from 0900-1800 on weekends.

Getting to and from the airport

An estimate of the options and costs from Sydney International Airport to the centre of Sydney.

Train

A$12.50 to $17

Airport shuttle bus

A$15 to $20

Taxi

A$45-55

Train services from Sydney Airport

An airport rail line operates from all City Circle stations to the domestic terminals (T2 and T3) and international terminal (T1).

There are 350 daily weekday services and in peak hours the train departs and arrives every eight minutes. Additionally, 160 services run every Saturday, Sunday and on public holidays. Visit the Airport Link website for more information.