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Bathers enjoy MacCallum Pool
Photograph: Destination NSW

How to make the most of the last week of Sydney's summer

The best ways to while away the final days of the city's shiniest season

By
Divya Venkataraman
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"I've got to get a girlfriend, just for the summer," said Black Books' Bernard Black. "She'll be a summery girl. She'll have hair. She'll have summery friends who know how to be outside. She'll play tennis and wear dresses and have bare feet, and in the autumn, I'll ditch her, because she's my summer girl!" 

For those of us, like Bernard, who fantasise about the balmy evenings and sun-drenched days of summer all year, time is running out. All those night swims, summer picnics and sunrise walks you wanted to go on? You've only got one week left to tick them off. Summer days are officially a hot commodity – here's how to make the most of the last of them. 

Dive into an ocean pool

When you can’t choose between the beach and a swimming pool, these rocky swimming spots have the best of both worlds. Dive in as the sun rises and you’ll have the salty baths to yourself, or wade in at high tide for a thrilling swell as waves crash against the walls: from Icebergs to Bronte to Avalon. Free

Drink Frosé your Way at a Barangaroo rooftop

The heyday of frosé (frozen rosé, for the uninitiated) continues. At this DIY frosé bar at Untied in Barangaroo, you can tailor your drink with fun toppings: sprinkle your knock-off drink with dried fruit and hibiscus, or go full kid-in-a-candy-store with sour worms and pink fairy floss. A big bonus? The rosé is bottomless. There's also the 'Fraperol', if you can't choose between the two trendy summer staples. $39 per person. 

Listen to live tunes and sip tequila at Opera Bar

See out summer this Sunday with live DJ beats and drinks, at the most quintessential Sydney view around. From 3-10pm at Opera Bar, Simon Caldwell, Kali, Lauren Hansom and Ayebatonye will be on the decks, and the Patrón tequila cocktails will be flowing. Free

Slurp oysters at Bondi's Pacific Club

Oysters smack of summer. Have a briny, seaside slurp on the cheap at the Pacific Club in Bondi, where one dozen oysters will set you back $1.50 each (as long as you buy a drink, too) until the end of summer. Pair with some Champagne for the classic experience, or grab a Spritz for some lightness to contrast with the bivalves' intense flavour. $1.50 each

Have a long, alfresco lunch

Yes, long, lazy meals are seasonless, but there's something about lunching outside while the weather's warm and the chilled tipples are flowing. Check out a list of the best places to eat outside – with a view, preferably – here. Variable price

Go for a post-work dip at one of the best beaches in Sydney

From tiny Eastern coves to harbour-view beaches to secluded shorelines nestled in national parks, you've got a lot of options when it comes to sun and sand and sea in Sydney. The sun still stays up until 7.30pm, and there's no better time for dip in this writer's humble opinion – just watch out for those sharks. Free

Have an adventure on one of Sydney's best walks

Marvel at our Emerald City from every angle on these great local walks. Amble along the Hermitage Foreshore, stretch those pins on the Barrenjoey peninsula or enjoy some steps in the city through the Royal Botanical Gardens. No matter where your feet take you, it's the perfect time of year for a stroll under the sun. Free.

Slice through the water in a kayak 

Book a guided tour if you're a newbie, or take to one of Sydney's pretty waterways all on your own if you're a seasoned kayaker – either way, it's a pretty stellar way to take in the city's sights. Check out our list of the best kayaking spots in Sydney. Variable price

Sip $5 drinks at this revamped Oxford Street rooftop

Sydney's got many a cool dive bar, but the summery thing to do is to take your drink above ground and take in a view of the surrounds. Try Oxford Street's recently refreshed Burdekin for cheap wines, beers and spirits, and pizzas for a tenner between 4-6pm on weekdays. Otherwise, try one of these other rooftop barsDrinks for $5; pizzas for $10.

Hop on a ferry ride

It's not all about the destination, as very wise people through time have been saying. You'll figure out what that means for real on a ferry trip in Sydney, whether you're cruising on the harbour, or watching the sights of the city swish past you as you make your way down the Parramatta River. From $6.12

Find a secret swimming hole to explore

Not ready to fight the rest of Sydney's population for towel space at a beach, but still want to cool off? Make a splash at one of these secluded swimming holes instead. They're just far enough away that the crowds won't follow you, but right by the city. 

Want more? Here are the best rooftop bars in Sydney right now.

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