Tourist-friendly it remains, but the big news out of The Rocks is that it's no longer off-limits to locals. A higher concentration on fine grain creativity has enriched this historic part of Sydney and today its famous cobblestones regularly come alive for visitors of all ages and tastes.
There's still high-class restaurants, historic pubs, curio shops selling Australiana and rustic cafes galore but now local artisans also sell their independent wares from pop-up shops, troubadours busk from corners and burlesque performers set up their red-light delights in the many alleyways and coves.
Community gatherings are also plentiful hereabouts – the Rocks' Friday night markets are thriving and street festivals devoted to music, coffee, beer, light installations and more activate throughout the year. It's now common for culture vultures hitting the nearby Opera House and Walsh Bay theatres to wet their whistles, fill their bellies and fuel their conversations in The Rocks before and after shows. And why not? With zillion dollar views across the Harbour, ferry, bus and train connections close by and surprises around every corner, The Rocks is rocking once more.
The Rocks highlights
The best restaurants in The Rocks
The best bars in The Rocks
Some other venues in The Rocks
The Rocks Discovery Museum
The Rocks Discovery Museum draws on the Sydney Harbour Foreshore Authority's unique archival collection and tells the exciting story of the Rocks from the...
Sydney architect Bruce Dellit was only 31 when he won the 1930 competition to design this beautiful grey-pink granite memorial to the Australian and New...
This organisation, which was founded in 1906, represents the interests of arts and crafts in New South Wales. The gallery, which exhibits and sells arts and...
Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA)
Once the administration offices of the Maritime Services Board, this waterside museum was overhauled head to toe (well, almost) in 2011 and re-opened in...
The best hotels in The Rocks
What's on in The Rocks
Experience a live one-on-one opera experience for free at the MCA
Lights on Later
Spend Thursdays up late and arty at the MCA