4 Traditions Only Sydneysiders Can Understand

Hannah Lewis

Sydney is home to an incredibly diverse population who have come from all over the world to live in this great city. But despite the incredible range of customs and ways of life in the city, there are still some traditions that hold true for any Sydney-sider.

The first swim of the summer

Sydney is home to some of the best beaches in Australia but there is a long period throughout the year where the once packed beaches become a ghost town. After a long, cold winter, Sydney-Siders can’t wait to alleviate themselves from their coats and boots and jump into the ocean. The first swim of the summer is always a memorable one and marks the beginning of many months to come of having fun in the sun.

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Going OTB (or not)

Sydney is a sprawling city, split by its world famous harbour. An amazing city in almost every respect, where it falls short is in its awful traffic. As such people never want to leave where they live, and have even coined the term OTB, which refers to ‘over the bridge’. People will rarely go OTB and will make a huge deal about it when they go. From an outsider’s perspective it may be hard to understand, but OTB avoidance is a real thing. If you’re visiting Sydney and your friend won’t come and see you, don’t be offended; it’s just what we do, or more accurately, what we don’t do.

Mardi Gras

Sydney is lucky enough to be home to one of Australia’s most famous events, the Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras. Although there are many people who come to Sydney to walk and participate in the parade, the week leading up to it is something that only Sydney people get to see. There is a huge influx of LGBTQ people into the city, which makes the place buzz in anticipation. The Mardi Gras is world famous for a reason and should be put on everyone’s bucket list.

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Commuting to work, and loving it

Usually the commute to work is the bane of most people’s existence around the world. From the jam packed Tube in London through to the dirty subways of New York City, getting to and from work is never usually the highlight of the day, unless you live in Sydney. This harbour city is blessed with beautiful blue water and a huge network of ferries gliding across the water, getting people from A to B. With the sea breeze in your hair and stunning views it is hard not to be in a good mood going to work. Some of the best routes to take are from Manly to Circular Quay which has a café2 and wifi on board, or Rose Bay to the city which takes only 15 minutes, definitely beating the traffic and bus.

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