Awesome Independent Stores in Sydney, Australia

Parlour X interior
Parlour X interior | © Tom Ferguson
Tom Smith

From the golden sands of Bondi Beach to the bohemian streets of Newtown, the Harbour City is stacked with brilliant bookshops, remarkable record stores, cracking clothes shops and beautiful boutiques. Check out these 10 independent stores around Sydney where you can go hunting for a bargain.

Did you know – Culture Trip now does bookable, small-group trips? Pick from authentic, immersive Epic Trips, compact and action-packed Mini Trips and sparkling, expansive Sailing Trips.

Parlour X

Parlour X exterior

This Oxford St institution bills itself as “the leading multi-brand luxury shopping destination in Australia”, but the building itself is as impressive as the clothes hanging on the racks — Parlour X fills the historic St Johns Church in Paddington, a landmark dating back to 1845. Chloé, Balenciaga, Comme Des Garçons, Fendi and Valentino are only a few of the high-end designers you’ll find on offer.

Jim and Jane

Jim + Jane interior

Annandale is one of Sydney’s most fashionable suburbs, and this independent clothing and homewares boutique suits the postcode perfectly. Owner Amber Barnes worked in the fashion industry before opening Jim and Jane, impressing her unique style on the diverse collection of items sourced from quality Australian and European designers.

Blue Spinach

Blue Spinach interior

You can’t miss Australia’s best consignment store — it occupies a striking blue building that lights up the streets of Darlinghurst, and has helped find new homes for pre-loved garments since 1996. Over those two decades, Blue Spinach has earned a serious reputation among bargain hunters searching for something a little more affordable than the threads hanging in the upmarket boutiques on nearby Oxford St.

Red Eye Records

Red Eye Records in Sydney

Perched just across the road from the shopping Mecca that is the Queen Victoria Building, Red Eye Records is one of Australia’s largest and oldest independent record stores. First opening its doors back in 1981, the store stocks an array of music merchandise that straddles a range of genres, eras and nations, but there’s a particular soft spot for local Australian artists.

Gertrude and Alice

Bondi is better known for its beach rather than its books, but Gertrude and Alice bucks the stereotype. Named after literary legends Gertrude Stein and Alice B Toklas, this bookshop and cafe on Hall St combines the unmistakable musk of books with the fragrant aroma of coffee, generating a charming atmosphere in its many nooks and crannies.

T Totaler

T Totaler interior

Married couple Amber and Paul Sutherland have scoured the globe for the last six years in search of the perfect cup of tea, visiting more than 30 countries and examining the world’s top crops. The product is sold in two stylish locations — one on King St in Newtown, the other in the Galeries at the city centre — brimming with quality loose-leaf teas, and also offering workshops for those who want to learn a little more about the craft.


Tuchuzy exterior

Located just a couple of blocks from the beachfront, these sibling men’s and women’s stores are quintessentially Bondi, blending laid-back beachwear with contemporary street style. Tuchuzy’s carefully curated collection showcases both emerging and established brands, including simple and modern staples from the in-house label, Chosen.

Egg Records

Egg Records interior

It’s no surprise that Sydney’s hipster heartland is also the best place in the city to find vintage vinyl, and Egg Records is one of Newtown’s most experienced music retailers. Sitting just off King St, this independent record store is brimming with new and used LPs, rare reissues, hard-to-find CDs, as well as classic movies, merchandise and memorabilia.

Potts Point Vintage

The star of the show known as Potts Point Vintage is owner Arnold Kieldgaard, who moved his eclectic second-hand store from the Blue Mountains to the inner-city four years ago. Arnold stocks a personality-packed collection of vintage men’s and women’s clothes, in particular wedding dresses, formal suits, luxury furs, leather accessories, as well as a wide range of fine china.

Better Read Than Dead

You won’t find better customer service anywhere in Sydney than at this King St book shop, whose friendly staff have been connecting Newtown locals with books to fall in love with for almost two decades. And once you’ve made your expertly recommended purchase at Better Read Than Dead, stroll down the block to the dog-filled Camperdown Memorial Rest Park where you can read your new book in the sunshine.

culture trip left arrow
 culture trip brand logo

Volcanic Iceland Epic Trip

meet our Local Insider


women sitting on iceberg


2 years.


It's the personal contact, the personal experiences. I love meeting people from all over the world... I really like getting to know everyone and feeling like I'm traveling with a group of friends.


I have so many places on my list, but I would really lobe to go to Africa. I consider myself an “adventure girl” and Africa feels like the ULTIMATE adventure!

culture trip logo letter c
group posing for picture on iceberg
group posing for picture on iceberg

Every CULTURE TRIP Small-group adventure is led by a Local Insider just like Hanna.

map of volcanic iceland trip destination points
culture trip brand logo
culture trip right arrow
landscape with balloons floating in the air


Connect with like-minded people on our premium trips curated by local insiders and with care for the world

Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.

Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.

Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.

Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.

We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.