Visiting Warwick Farm and Greater Sydney – A City Guide
A suburban alternative to bustling central Sydney, Warwick Farm lets you discover another side to this cosmopolitan city. In West Sydney you can dine out on international cuisine, visit some of Australia’s oldest settlements, explore acres of parkland and still get to important business areas. And of course, the famous Warwick Farm Racecourse is right on your doorstep.
Warwick Farm: city layout
Located roughly halfway between Sydney CBD and the Blue Mountains National Park, Warwick Farm has one foot in the city and one in the country. Spread along the banks of Georges River, it’s sandwiched between affluent Chipping Norton and multicultural Cabramatta.
The main Hume Highway connects Warwick Farm to Sydney city centre, and the T2 and T3 train lines provide links to well-known attractions such as Darling Harbour and The Rocks in around an hour. The T5 line will take you north to Parramatta CBD, or south to Campbelltown.
Sydney Airport (SYD) is only 30-minutes’ drive away. Further out of town, the walking trails and picnic areas of the Western Sydney Parklands mark a gradual end to urban areas.
Top Attractions in and around Warwick Farm
Close to the city but set in natural bushland, Warwick Farm Racecourse is where thoroughbred horse racing meets a relaxed day out. Many families choose to watch the horses sprint by while enjoying a leisurely picnic.
A trip by RiverCat ferry up Parramatta River from Sydney Harbour is a special way to explore. You can stop off to view Sydney Olympic Park’s stadiums and sporting facilities, which also host international live music and entertainment events. At Parramatta, you can discover Old Government House, surrounded by parkland and kept furnished as it was in the 1820s for the governors of New South Wales.
The concierge recommends…
● The stalls at Warwick Farm Trackside Market sell produce fresh from local farms. It’s held at Childs Park in Chipping Norton every Saturday morning, and you can grill your purchases on a public barbecue for a proper Aussie afternoon.
● Getting to gateway towns in Blue Mountains takes 40 minutes by car and you can reach the heart of the park by train from Central station via Parramatta. Once you’re there, you can hike through Eucalyptus forests, along sandstone gorges and past thundering waterfalls.
● Get some serious thrills, and seriously soaked, at Wet ‘n’ Wild Sydney. The water park is filled with adrenaline-pumping slides, or if you prefer something more gentle you can drift along Boomerang Bay’s lazy river.
Hotels in Warwick Farm and Western Sydney
Life in leafy Warwick Farm goes at a slower pace, making accommodation in Greater Sydney a more laid-back option. You can still reach iconic sights like Sydney Harbour Bridge and the Royal Botanic Gardens easily by road or rail. A hotel in Warwick Farm lets you get away from it all in tranquil parks, and is only a short journey from the sights and sounds of the Australian bush.
Neighbouring Cabramatta has become a popular foodie destination, home to Thai, Vietnamese and Chinese restaurants run by the resident East Asian community.
Nearby Parramatta is an important business district. Hotels in Parramatta’s lively CBD are close to shopping malls, restaurants, cafés and bars. International sporting and entertainment events at Sydney Olympic Park are a short trip away down Parramatta River.
Eating Out around Warwick Farm
In Sydney’s colourful metropolis, eating out is an international journey. The abundant fresh produce available and proximity to the sea help put the city’s dining scene at the cutting edge of modern cuisine.
If you need to fuel a busy day, make for Ristretto & Co near Liverpool Plaza for brunch, where you can sit in the courtyard munching on flawlessly poached eggs, sipping a flat white or fresh-pressed juice. Gigino in Fairfield serves authentic wood-fired pizzas and Italian home-cooked specials. In Cabramatta you can taste East Asian delicacies from pho to pad thai.
You can discover Sydney’s suburbs one bite at a time on a Gourmet Safari. On these walking tours you might see bread being baked, taste unusual delicacies like Croatian bureks or visit a Turkish spice emporium.
The chef recommends...
● Cabramatta is all about pho, Vietnamese noodles, thinly sliced beef or chicken and fresh herbs in an aromatic broth. The beef special at unassuming Pho Tau Bay is a Sydney favourite.
● Yum cha or dim sum. Order a plate of these delicious filled, steamed dumplings at Cabramatta’s Iron Chef Chinese Seafood Restaurant.
● At The Bakery’s King in Bankstown you can enjoy sweet and sticky Lebanese baklawa, filo pastry cakes filled with honey and chopped nuts, accompanied by an Arabic coffee.
● If only meat will do, the juicy steaks at the Black Angus Grill in Parramatta are all Australian, and aged for at least 21 days.
Shopping in West Sydney
From tiny but lively local markets to some of the biggest shopping centres in the country, you’ll have no trouble finding an unusual souvenir or a pair of designer heels in Sydney.
A hunt for exclusive top-end designers leads to Sydney CBD, Potts Point and Double Bay. If you prefer quirky boutiques and trawling for vintage dresses, then head for trendy Newtown and Surry Hills, just west of the centre.
Best for shopping in Greater Sydney
● At Liverpool Night Markets, held quarterly off Macquarie Street, you’ll find hand-made trinkets and delicious street food from Thai curry to Jamaican jerk chicken. Unusual entertainment like medieval fighting demonstrations adds to the fun family atmosphere.
● The huge Westfield Parramatta shopping mall houses popular high-street stores, cinemas and food courts, so you can shop all day before catching an evening blockbuster.
● In Eveleigh, April and December’s Finders Keepers market occupies a huge open warehouse filled with stalls. Independent designers sell one-of-a-kind gifts like customised bicycle bells or modern minimalist porcelain.
Culture & Nightlife in Western Sydney
In the evenings, Sydney theatres like Riverside Parramatta present high-quality dance, music and drama performances. The major venues at Sydney Olympic Park host international touring musicians and bands.
Nightlife around Warwick Farm is geared towards eating out, with cuisine ranging from Middle-Eastern to Vietnamese. For busier bars and clubs, take a jaunt to Newtown, popular with students and creative types for tiny, characterful cocktail bars like The Corridor or craft breweries like Young Henry’s. The cocktail bars and eateries in Parramatta CBD are buzzing throughout the week. Head there in October for the Parramatta Lanes street food festival and Parramasala, celebrating Indian culture in all its forms.
Early colonials first settled in Greater Sydney in search of farmland. You can travel back in time at the Elizabeth Farm living museum, where the recreated farmstead, house and garden reveal what life in New South Wales was like in the 1800s.
Entertainment in Greater Sydney
● Casula Powerhouse Arts Centre is a multifunctional cultural space. Most exhibitions are free, and there are regular theatre performances and children’s workshops too.
● An hour from Warwick Farm by train, the iconic Sydney Opera House offers everything from dance performances to symphonic concerts and even yoga sessions.
● The open-air Wine Deck at Port Bar and Restaurant overlooks Parramatta River. It’s a great place to relax with a Blueberry Mojito after a long day of business or sightseeing.
Leisure in Warwick Farm and surrounding areas
In Sydney you’re never short of things to do. Staying beyond the inner city suburbs means you can enjoy natural open spaces while still having access to the heart of the action.
Hire a bike to cycle along the Cabramatta Creek Trail or venture out to Western Sydney Parklands, both great spots for picnics and barbecues. Spend a whole day and include activities like horse riding at Sydney Equestrian Centre. Visit Treetops Adventure Park to clamber through the forest canopy on high ropes and whizz down zip wires.
Australia’s great love of sport is no secret. You can book tickets for world-class football and rugby union at ANZ Stadium or netball, hockey and Aussie Rules Football in the Olympic Park. Entry to Warwick Farm’s mid-week horse-racing meetings is free. Rugby league is a Sydney obsession, and Pirtek Stadium is home to the local Parramatta Eels, with matches several times a month.
Things to do outdoors in Sydney
● Greater Sydney is home to numerous golf courses. Cabramatta and Liverpool both welcome visitors and you can book a round online.
● Pedal along cycleways or do some urban bird spotting at Chipping Norton Lake wildlife reserve.
● Beach lovers head to Coogee’s relaxed sandy strip, lined with bars and restaurants. The Bondi to Coogee Coastal walk leads you past peaceful Bronte, a favourite with surfers, and Clovelly’s child-friendly saltwater pools.
● Penrith Whitewater Stadium, once a venue for the Sydney Olympics, is a man-made rafting and kayaking course that offers action-packed thrills for any level of experience.