Packing List: Sydney

Nothing can ruin a vacation like getting to your epic destination and realizing you forgot an essential item. 

Read on: Sydney Travel Guide

Here is a list of things you may consider taking with you on your next trip to Australia. This packing list should be used only as a general guide. You don't have to take every item on this list - use your best judgement to determine what you will need and try to pack light. It will definitely help you along the way.

P.S. Click on any of the pictures or links to shop exactly what I use when I travel. Especially if you are an Amazon Prime member!


I always try and do every trip with a carry on only. Not only is it lighter and easier to travel alone but I save time not having to wait in lines to check my bag and pick up my bag after a flight. You'll be surprised just how much stuff can fit in a carry on!

I travel with an Away carry on and LOVE IT. You can see my review of it here. These are a little pricey but I still recommend them. I have linked Amazon brand similar bags below.

A quick note on packing light: To help pack as light as possible I try and bring clothes that serve multiple purposes. A maxi skirt that can be work over a bathing suit as a cover-up and also be worn with my heels for a nicer dinner. I also pack the same general colors throughout my bag so that everything matches easily.


Obviously, you will want to look at the weather before heading out to Australia. The good news is Sydney’s a great option for tourists and adventurers year-round. The city experiences (sometimes over) 300 sunny days each year! Don't forget that everything is opposite in the Southern Hemisphere. January is the hottest month, with temperature averaging 73ºF and July is the coldest month, with an average temperature of 55ºF. In general, though the days are pretty hot and you'll want some tanks, shorts, and bathing suits.

Read on: Best things to do in Sydney

Bathing Suit

Bondi Beach is one of the best beaches in the world and will probably be on your list. This means you'll want to pack lots of bathing suits for your trip to Sydney. I personally love one pieces because it means I can indulge in the delicious food and drinks all around Sydney without worrying too much.

Cover ups

Being a hot city, Sydney is very casual and many people walk around in beach cover ups that double as trendy dresses. A super easy way to look cute and put together is by wearing a maxi skirt on top of a plain one piece. There are also so many super cute dresses these days that are technically cover-ups.

Read on: How to visit Sydney on a budget

Casual Shorts and T-shirts

You'll want a great pair of shorts and lots of breathable shirts. Especially for walking around. It gets hot in Sydney! Make sure to drink lots of water, you shouldn’t underestimate how hot it gets. Also make sure you have breathable cottons or something that wicks away moisture.

Sundresses and Going out dresses

Dress up or down in Sydney, it's up to you. 

Read on: Best Restaurants, Bars, and Pubs in Sydney

Other clothing essentials

  • Underwear, bras, and socks

  • Pajamas

  • Belts, scarves, jewelry and other accessories

  • Athletic wear (sports bras, workout pants)

  • Straw Beach Hat

  • Sunglasses


  • Purse

    • I always opt for a cross-body bag. It makes it harder to steal (or forget places)

Best Shoes For Traveling Australia

Depending on how light you pack, you'll want a versatile shoe. When exploring Sydney I was walking an average of 8 miles a day! On any trip though, I'll pack three pairs of shoes in my carry on: sandals, light-weight sneakers, and nude heels.

Like I said above, I try and pack everything in the same color scheme so that I match effortlessly. For sneakers, I don't mind if they are black - they hide dirt better anyway, also black sneakers match leggings and a sweatshirt, my normal plane attire. They have to be lightweight though! Look for sneakers that are mesh on top, this will help fit them in your bag.

For heels, I always carry with me the ones I linked below. A low heel helps me walk in them easily and (more importantly) fit into my bag without much effort.

As for sandals, I always opt for ones that have the smallest heel possible. I also like them to have a clasp around the ankle, for me it makes them easier to walk in.  

Toiletries, Medication, Personal Items

Don't forget that if you're only bringing a carry on all of these will have to miniature sized. Also, when it comes to toiletries - the less you pack the better. Anything you don't bring can easily be bought abroad. Often times for cheaper than in the states!

For example, when I recently went to Tulum Mexico my travel sized toothpaste ran out. I went to a store and a full sized Colgate bottle was less than a dollar! (In the states, that same bottle is $3-something.)

  • Ear Plugs

    • Why is this first you ask? Because it is the most important thing that should be in your toiletry bag. I can't even tell you how many times I have been SO THANKFUL I had earplugs on me.

  • Hairbrush or comb

    • Some of you are going to think I'm crazy but I literally travel with the tiny brush I've linked and posted a picture of. I've found normal brushes take up way too much room and having a tiny one is totally fine. Especially for short trips

  • Shampoo/Conditioner/Body Wash

    • If I know I'm staying at a nice hotel I only pack Conditioner to save room. Shampoo and body wash at hotels work perfectly fine for me. Also, stop buying those mini bottles of brand name shampoo. They are so expensive. Buy reusable bottles and fill them up before you go.

Things I don't ever pack and simply buy (or ask the front desk) if I need them:

  • Nail file/clippers

  • Tweezers

  • Shampoo/Body Wash (I wrote about why above!)

  • Aloe Vera (I try and apply sunscreen so I don't need it but if you do get a bad burn you can simply buy it while you're there)


My full list of travel gear, that I take on every trip can be found here.

Scuba Diving Camera Equipment

If you want to take photos underwater make sure you have the right equipment. For the best photos use a Go Pro - but make sure you have a red filter all your photos will come out super blue. You can also put your phone in a waterproof case.

Read on: The most instagrammable spots in Sydney

Money and Documents

  • Cash

  • Credit and/or debit cards

  • Passport

  • Drivers license

  • Airline tickets, hotel reservation and car rental info

    • I use an app called Tripit to store all my travel itinerary information.

One last thing... even though researching ahead of time is great, I definitely recommend bringing a guidebook along with you. Here are some books I recommend...

And of course, if you have any questions DO NOT hesitate to reach out to me via Instagram, Twitter, or just shoot me an email tessajuliette at gmail dot com

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This post was made in collaboration with Gear Hungry