Sydney vs Melbourne – A Definitive Guide to Which Is Better?


Australia is remarkably diverse in its essence. Its resplendent beauty reflects through the native culture, geographical disposition and urbanised cities. Sydney and Melbourne are two of the many gems studded in its glorious crown. Both the cities depict a different side of the rare Aussie culture and spirit. The Sydney Vs Melbourne debate has been raging for quite long. Here’s a quick overview and a definitive guide to the two cities which will hopefully give a direction to which city is better.  

Picturesque views

Sydney has forever been the iconic city of Australia. The legendary Sydney Opera House and the Harbour bridge have been reminiscent of the effervescent Oz culture. The picturesque beaches of Sydney have another story to tell, one that reminds you of sun, sand sea waves and adventure.

sydney relocation guide

The Bondi beach, Copacabana, Bronte, and Avalon are great picnic spots. The sparkling Sydney Tower gives 360 degree views to the city’s gorgeous harbour fronts and landmarks. Need we say more about this beautiful city?

Melbourne scores a little lower than Sydney here. The Eureka tower does justice to Melbourne’s skyline by giving panoramic views of the city but it somehow lacks the charm of the Sydney Tower.

melbourne relocation guide

The city is synonymous with food, music, shopping and art shows. The laneways of Melbourne offer the best in bar culture, a thriving art scene and restaurants.

Weather vows

Sydney’s weather is delightful. The summers are sunny and breezy, just perfect to enjoy with family and friends. The winters are comfortably calm and cosy being on a little warmer side. Even the rainy season isn’t rough on you. The city has clear blue skies throughout the year.

sydney during summer

Much like the British weather, Melbourne’s climate has always been unpredictable. It can get sunny and breezy in a day and then suddenly the rain gods start smiling at you. Melbourne’s fantastically close to Antarctica.

beach during summer in melbourne

It is the meeting point of the crazy cold air from Antarctica which crosses path with the warm desert air. This mix of opposite climatic cultures makes for the city’s weather frenzy.

Accommodation scene

Sydney being the landmark city of Australia, it has rather expensive accommodation. The average amount of rent for a one bedroom apartment in Sydney is 2,643 AUS$ while a two bedroom apartment is priced at around 4,000 AUS$.

sydney serviced apartments

Melbourne has a laid back vibe which can be seen in the style of living followed by its people. Accomodation in Melbourne has cheaper rent rates. A single bedroom apartment is around 1,700 AUS$ and a double bedroom apartment is about 2,000 AUS$.

Food culture

Sydney is a sprawling city with an expansive skyline and picturesque harbour fronts. It scores a little lower than Melbourne in its food culture. It is difficult to find affordable grub in this part of Australia.

Sydney central food court

The Central Business District (CBD) is a great place to grab Chinese, Vietnamese and Korean delights. Harris park has Indian restaurants, Haberfield is famous for Italian, and Auburn has a lot Turkish cuisine on offer.

restaurants in Melbourne

It’s not difficult to find cheap and delectable street food in Melbourne. The CBD is bursting at the seams with great restaurants. For affordable Chinese dishes try the Victoria Street and Richmond, for Spanish treats its Fitzroy, for good Lebanese food Brunswick is great, for Italian Carlton has great restaurants, the Queen Victoria market and the Chinatown are all great places to grab a quick bite.

Cost of Living

There is a huge difference in the in the cost of living in Melbourne and Sydney. Living in Sydney has a extravagant charm and it is well reflected in the lifestyle of its people. Cost of living in Sydney for a single person is around 1,500 AUS$ pm. Depending on your lifestyle and the amount of earnings it can go a few notches higher than that. If you add it annually it will easily add up to 20,000 AUS$ with a little added extra costs here and there.

melbourne serviced apartments

Melbourne is relatively cheaper than Sydney. Stats show both food and housing are around 20% cheaper in Melbourne. Public transport is cheap here and so is food. Needless to say, the harbour city is way expensive than Melbourne and the latter beats the former in affordability.