Looking for a caffeine hit before you tread the cobblestone laneways of the Rocks? Then pop into one of these 10 great coffee spots dotted around the charming harbourside neighbourhood.
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.
The Fine Food Store
Kendall Lane is the oldest alleyway in the Rocks, and it’s home to one of the historic suburb’s favourite cafes. The Fine Food Store sources its own beans then roasts all its coffee in-house, experimenting with a rotating menu of single-origin brews. You can also look forward to a fresh breakfast, brunch and lunch menu plus a selection of wine and beer, all within a quintessentially Sydney laneway setting.
Destinations Unlocked:Let our travel expert Stefano help you find your perfect Culture trip
Looking for an expert's perspective?Uncover my top 3 recommended places from each continent on the map.
1. GuatemalaAn express adventure for those with limited time off. Prepare yourself incredible experiences. You will hike a volcano, visit mayan temples and witness a ceremony and take in beautiful colonial Antigua.
2. BelizeA quick trip not too far away for those seeking a relaxing mini break. You will have plenty of free time to relax but also some awesome activities to experience the rainforest and the caribbean sea.
3. MexicoAn exciting mini trip exploring the lesser known colonial towns of central Mexico. This is hte perfect trip for someone with limited time off and still wants to turn on explorer mode and do something different.
1. EcuadorA remarkable 8 days adventure through the Andes and the Amazon rainforest. The best choice for adventure seekers wishing to visit the 2 most iconic areas of South America, in only 1 week and no flights.
2. PeruAn alternative itinerary to classic Peru, from Cusco to Arequipa. This itinerary is great combination of highlights Cusco and Machu Picchu with the lesser known Arequipa and Colca Canyon.
1. ItalyThe ultimate Italian experience from the vibrant streets of Naples to the breathtaking sceneries of the Amalfi Coast followed by Matera and down to Puglia with its golden beaches, intense flavours and fascinating destinations.
2. ScotlandEmbark on this great adventure starting from London all the way to Scotland with a true Scottish experience made of breathtaking sceneries, whisky tasting and ..lots of fun! Ideal for train lovers and explorers.
3. PortugalA wonderful train journey around Portugal, from the romantic city of Porto to the Douro Valley, to the beautiful Aveiro all the way to Lisbon and Sintra. The perfect trip to train, culinary and culture lovers.
1. South KoreaDiscover incredible temples, mountains and modern cities on this 10 day adventure. This trip is perfect for those seeking immersion in the cuisine, culture and natural wonders of South Korea.
2. ThailandFrom Bankgok to Angkor Wat to Ho Chi Minh City and everything in between - adventure through the heart of South-East Asia. Taste the delights, see history brought to life and unwind on a Mekong River cruise.
3. Sri LankaA fantastic adventure that showcases Sri Lanka's fantastic landscapes, wildlife and flavours. With 3 epic rail journeys, 3 UNESCO heritage sites and time to relax, this trip has loads to offer at a great price
1. MoroccoAn epic journey across Morocco: from Casablanca to Marrakech, through the blue city of Chefchaouen to the wonders of the desert and deep to the High Atlas Mountains - this trip has it all! Ideal for true explorers!
2. EgyptFrom Cairo to Aswan, this trip brings the land of the pharaohs to life. You'll visit the Pyramids, Valley of the Kings and Luxor Temple and cruise down the Nile in style. This is the perfect way to explore Egypt.
The corridors of the Museum of Contemporary Art overflow with one of Australia’s top collections of modern masterpieces, but the view from the MCA Cafe is every bit as good. Located on the rooftop of the waterfront Art Deco building, this museum eatery boasts panoramic vistas of Sydney Harbour and the Opera House across Circular Quay — and this winter, the cafe is serving a special Chinese menu in alignment with their exhibition on contemporary Chinese artist Sun Xun.
Roasting beans sourced exclusively from Indonesia at their St Peters cafe since 2011, Aslan opened a second store in the heart of Sydney in June 2018, bringing their passion for South-East Asian coffee into the Rocks. Aslan’s stylish new espresso bar showcases single origin brews from around the Indonesian Archipelago — Java, Sulawesi and Sumatra — alongside an inventive brunch menu plus cupping sessions and workshops for true coffee nerds.
The Tea Cosy
Sure, the Tea Cosy is more of a teahouse than a coffee shop, but this Rocks institution is too good to leave off this list. We’re talking hand-made tea cosies that adorn every loose-leaf pot, delicate old cups and saucers, the family recipe used for the home-made scones, and a 180-year-old heritage-listed building that oozes the character of the neighbourhood.
La Renaissance Patisserie and Cafe
First opened by a French-trained pâtissier way back in 1974 before moving into its current digs in the Rocks on Bastille Day in 1992, La Ren is a landmark within the Rocks. And the building itself — constructed by an Irish highway robber in 1842, before being converted into a cosy courtyard and coffee shop by the current tenants — is almost as gorgeous as the inventive pastries on display.
Sticking with the French theme, Creperie Suzette is just a one-minute walk around the corner from La Ren, and dishes up an equally delectable taste of Paris in the heart of the Rocks. Found at the Harbour Rocks Hotel on Harrington St, the creperie serves sweet and savoury crepes and galettes with their Double Roasters single origin blend.
Guylian Belgian Chocolate Cafe
Pop across the border into Belgium at Guylian, situated just next door to La Ren. The Belgian chocolate cafe is all about indulgence — desserts, choccies, cakes, truffles, waffles, and any number of other mouth-watering sweets go down a treat with one of Guylian’s signature hot chocolates or one of their fragrant coffees.
The Rocks Cafe
Pass the elegant green and gold facade on George St to enter one of the Rocks’ classiest cafes, with a variety of indoor and outdoor dining spaces to enjoy the unique atmosphere of the area. The Rocks Cafe is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and offers an upmarket menu made up of modern Australian and European cuisine, as well as consistent cups of coffee.
This bustling cafe in the Clocktower Shopping Centre in Harrington St is one of best spots in the Rocks for a quick coffee, served Italian-style alongside home-made paninis, pastas, soups, salads and treats. Danieli also stocks their own blends of beans — original, fair trade organic and decaf — sourced by owner Ron Danieli, who comes from a family of Roman roasters.
Located at the gateway to the Rocks and occupying the Old Bushells Tea Factory, Brew combines the old and the new, harnessing the vibe of its historic surrounds but serving up a positively modern coffee experience. The coffee is quick, the food is Greek and Mediterranean inspired, and the venue also hosts events and offers catering services.
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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!
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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.