So you’re in Surry Hills with less than an hour to spare? Don’t let the tight time limit stop you from seeing some of the cultural, edible and natural attractions of this flourishing inner-Sydney suburb. Read on and you’ll discover there are plenty of things to do in Surry Hills in under an hour.

1. Surry Hills Shopping

Surry Hills Shopping

Image source: James Horan; Destination NSW

It’s not just the Markets. Surry Hills is a top destination for shopping in general. If you’ve got some free time and a little cash to spare, head to Elizabeth Street and Crown Street for everything from op shops and music stores to hip fashion boutiques.

2. Surry Hills Fashion

Surry Hills Fashion

Image source: James Horan; Destination NSW

Following on from the shopping, Surry Hills is a top destination for women’s fashion, with local designers and some impressive boutique shops. Pop in and take a look.

3. Surry Hills Bars

Surry Hills Bars

Image source: James Horan; Destination NSW

Grab a quick drink at one of Surry Hills’ many bars, whatever your taste? Want a cocktail in a pirate-themed bar? How about some Japanese sake or a quiet drink somewhere cosy and intimate? In Surry Hills you can have any of those options.

4. Surry Hills Dining

Surry Hills Dining

Image source: James Horan; Destination NSW

Foreign food? Vegan food? Fine dining? You don’t have to head into the CBD to sample some of the best dining that Sydney has to offer. Just grab a meal at one of the many excellent restaurants in Surry Hills. If you’re really in a hurry, Bourke Street Bakery is a beloved, blogged-about bakery experience known for gourmet sausage rolls, succulent sourdough and unique sweets.

5. Surry Hills Markets

Surry Hills Markets

Image source: James Horan; Destination NSW

If you’re in town on the first Saturday of the month, you’re in luck: the Surry Hills Markets is in full swing on Shannon Reserve. Drop in for a short visit to pick up some vintage fashion, second-hand and colourful local handmade goods.

6. Prince Alfred Park

Prince Alfred Park

Image source: FotoSleuth

Prince Alfred Park is a relaxing inner-city green space intersecting Cleveland and Chalmers Street. It has a swimming pool, children’s playground, outdoor gym and tennis and basketball courts. The perfect place to take a short walk or swim when you need to unwind.

7. Catmosphere Cafe

Catmosphere Cafe

Image source:  Catmosphere Cat Cafe

You’ve probably heard of cat cafes, but have you spent time in Sydney’s first space cat café? Make some new feline friends in this outer space-themed cat café, which includes a café area plus two separate cat rooms. If aliens are going to come to Earth, they might as well be cats! 

8. Karaoke


Image source: Goros

It doesn’t take very long to belt out your favourite song. And best of all, it’s a lot of fun! Drop into one of Surry Hills’ karaoke bars like Goros, where you can also enjoy Japanese food and arcade games, or Ding Dong Dang, with its moody dark rooms and UV paint.

9. Go For a Walk

Go For a Walk

Image source: Destination NSW

If you only have a really short time to spare, simply take a wander down one of the many interesting streets in Surry Hills. Check out the buildings in Foveaux Street, many of which used to be old terrace houses. Take a walk down tree-lined Bourke Street for some old-fashioned houses and pubs and shops.

10. Darlinghurst


Image source: Daniel Boud, Destination NSW

The home of the strikingly coloured bright pink and blue T2 building, Darlinghurst is a funky, vibrant inner-Sydney area with its own host of attractions just a roughly 20-minute walk from Surry Hills. With restored pubs, hip shops, nightclubs, art galleries and live music, this suburb is a worthy destination all in its own right. But start with Surry Hills and get ready to explore the rest of Sydney from there.

Further Reading

10 Things to do for couples in Surry Hills

8 Happy hour spots in Sydney on Fridays

9 Fun romantic things to do in Sydney for couples

10 Unusual things to do in Sydney