5 Great Sydney Harbour Cruise Experiences

Sydney Harbour Cruises

There is something really special about being out on Sydney Harbour. You see Sydney in a new light from the deck of a boat. Whether you’re a traveller new to Sydney’s shores, or a proud local, exploring the harbour is a lovely way to spend a few hours and walk away feeling refreshed. With a wide range of cruises available, there’s no excuse not to climb aboard!

Check out these five great Sydney Harbour cruise experiences below and see which one suits you best.

Sydney Harbour Sunset Dinner Cruise

Sunset from a Sydney Harbour Cruise a perfect experience

It’s been a long while since I have taken a dinner cruise on Sydney Harbour, but if you are here for a short visit, it’s a lovely way to spend the evening. Several operators offer dinner cruises on Sydney Harbour and to be honest there is nothing nicer than sipping a glass of champagne while you watch the harbour go from day to night. Both Captain Cook and Majestic have dinner cruises which include a casual meal with unlimited wine, beer and soft drinks. Book a window seat for front row views of cityscape sparkling as you enjoy your dinner.

Tall Ship Cruise

Step back in time on board the authentic 1850s tall ship. Imagine you are sailing into Sydney harbour with new goods for the colony.  I joined one of these tours last year with a bunch of colleagues, and we had a ball.  The crew on board are happy to explain how they sail the boat and you can even pay a little extra for a climb the mast experience.  Our Captain told us a little about the history of Sydney and our two-hour cruise was a perfect way to see the harbour for the first time or as a local appreciating how lucky we are.  We took the afternoon sunset cruise that included drinks and some nibbles.  Highly recommended.

Sydney Harbour High Tea Cruise

High teas are so popular right now for special occasions, but they are also a lovely way to catch up with friends or give your feet a rest after a long day of sightseeing.  We recently took a high tea cruise with Captain Cook and while it was not quite the luxury experience that you might find in one of Sydney’s 5-star hotels it was an enjoyable way to see the harbour if you are considering a harbour cruise and the views from the dining area were fantastic.

Cabaret Dinner Cruise

Sydney Caberet Cruise paddleboat Sydney Harbour Cruise Experiences

You might have noticed an old-time paddle wheeler cruising up and down the harbour.  If you like entertainment with your meal, this one will be right up your alley. A cabaret dinner cruise includes a gourmet three-course meal and a dazzling one-hour international cabaret show on this classic paddleboat. The show is performed by world-class singers, dancers with vibrant costumes harking back to the good old days when cabaret was king.

Seafood Buffet Lunch Cruise

Get the full Sydney experience on a seafood buffet lunch cruise as you feast on prawns, oysters and more while you travel around the harbour. Learn more about the Emerald City from the experienced onboard staff offering interesting commentary throughout the journey.  Once you have finished lunch, you still have plenty of time to snap the harbours icons

These days Sydney is the starting point of lots of great longer cruises you might want to check out these cruise deals once you get your sea legs! There seems to be a cruise in port every day heading off to explore different parts of the world.

Have you taken a harbour cruise?  I would love to hear which one you recommend. 

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  1. We’re planing a trip to Australia & have 2 days in Sydney. Thinking of a sunset cruise. Can we do as a walk up or should we book? We have 2 days in Sydney & loads to cram in. Would pre booking save time or are the walk up queues short or fast moving? Any advice gratefully received thanks.

    • I would probably prebook if it is Christmas/New Year period but otherwise you can usually just walk up. Perhaps just book online that morning when you can see what the weather is like.

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