If you’re someone who is more “live to eat”, rather than “eat to live”, the prospect of travelling to Sydney on a backpacker budget might be creating a feeling of unease in your insatiable stomach.
Yes, Sydney is glitzy and glamorous, with trendy new restaurants and bars opening up every weekend, but you don’t have to confine yourself to living off the free hostel brekkies and bags of Goon just because you’re on a budget.
How, you say? Read on, my hungry friend.
There’s nothing better than getting your hands round a big juicy burger after a day of sightseeing. Sydney is full of trendy hipster restaurants offering their own take on the American classic, but there’s no need to fork out a day’s budget on it either. If you’re in the Newtown area check out Mary’s – it’s a locals’ favourite, with craft beers and tasty burgers at around $14. Chur Burger in Surry Hills offers a big juicy grilled beef burger for a tenner, and for some proper Sydney seafood, check out the $7 fish burger at Out of the Blue Fish & Chip Shop. Failing all that, there’s always Macca’s…
Sydney has some great veggie restaurants, partly because of its close proximity with Asia. To fill up on your five a day, hunt down Govindas in Darlinghurst. This bohemian Sydney institution is essentially a restaurant-cum-cinema-cum-yoga-studio, with a cracking vegetarian buffet at around $22 (about £11). It’s a pretty great deal, especially when you can get a buffet plus cinema package, and chill out with some world cinema afterwards.
Thai Food in Chinatown
Forget Chinatown, get yourself down to Thaitown. Head to Haymarket to explore all the Thai, Chinese and other Asian restaurants competing for your dollar. This is a great place to grab a cheap noodle soup or some snackable wantons. Our fave is Chat Thai, where you can grab a tasty Pad Thai to go for under $10*.
So you tried to fill up on the free hostel breakfast before you left, but all that walking/surfing/tanning has got your belly grumbling. If you’re in Bondi, make your way to The Traditional Chip Shop for chips with gravy or curry sauce, just like you’d get on your 3am stumble home from a night out back in Blighty. If you’re in the centre, pop into Westfield Sydney, to get a ‘haute dog’ from Snag Stand. This cheap but gourmet hot dog will have you sorted.
About to run out of dosh? Time to dine alfresco. Do what the Aussies do best: get your drinks on ice, pick up some meat from the market and light up a barbie on one of Sydney’s public beaches. There are plenty of places that you can set up a barbecue for free. Our top spots include Manly Beach, North Bondi Beach and Centennial Park (technically not a beach but it’s big enough to spread out and there’s shade!).