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Sydney Bridge Pylon Lookout Review

Fabulous views await those who dare to climb 200 stairs to the top of the Sydney Harbour Bridge Pylon Lookout.

An extremely affordable alternative to the popular Sydney Bridge Climb, the Sydney Harbour Bridge Pylon Lookout is the original scenic viewing point from this iconic structure.

Vies of the Opera House and Sydney City from Pylon Lookout.

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Sydney Pylon Lookout Review by John H

Looking directly at the main span of the Sydney Harbour Bridge from Pylon Lookout. Known as the original Sydney Lookout, the Pylon Lookout on the southern side of the Sydney Harbour Bridge has been open to the public since 1934, when Archer Whitford, an enterprising businessman, converted the pylon into a popular tourist venue.

That was just 2 years after the official opening on the iconic harbour bridge. Today it is still one of the most popular spots for viewing the beautiful harbour and city sights.

There has been periods when the Pylon Lookout has been closed to the public, such as during World War 2, when gun placements and anti-aircraft guns were installed, or during work such as in 2000 when work commenced on the Bridge Climb exhibition "Proud Arch".

It may now be overshadowed by the popular, but much more expensive "Bridge Climb", but does have quite a few advantages over the climb. If you want some fabulous photos of Sydney Harbour and the Opera House, this is the place to take them. You are not allowed to take anything on the bridge climb, let alone a camera, but the Pylon Lookout is one place that cameras are very welcome.

Image of Opera House and Circular Quay from Sydney Pylon Lookout. Another advantage is that the whole family can enjoy the views together, even taking smaller ones up the 200 steps to the lookout balcony. You don't have to book ahead or wait in queues, and there is no safety requirements. You can walk at your leisure and stay as long as it is open.

For under $10 for an adult, you can spend as much time at the lookout as you want. Ideal for getting those holiday snaps or more serious photography by keen amateurs, the Lookout also provides some of the fascinating history behind how and why the bridge was built. There is 3 levels to the Lookout with historic pictorial images showing the men who built the bridge, an audio-visual presentation where you can watch a short film featuring rare images taken during the construction of the Sydney Harbour Bridge, plus gift shop to take home a souvenir to remember your visit.

To get to the Bridge Pylon Lookout, take the Cumberland St steps from The Rocks area up to the bridge road, or the Milsons Point steps from the northern end. Just walking to the Pylon, you will have fabulous views of Sydney Harbour, yet being 89 meters above sea level once on the Pylon Lookout, the scenic views become magical. The admissions counter is located at the entrance on level one and the staff will direct you to the top Lookout level once you have paid the admission. On your way down, take the time to look at all the memorabilia on level one and watch the short film on the building of the bridge.

Panoramic view of Sydney Harbour looking towards Sydney Heads from Pylon Lookout. Is it worth the time and effort to climb all those stairs to the top on the Pylon Lookout?

Just look at our selection of photos taken at the lookout on a recent trip to Sydney. There's your answer!

Opening Times
Sydney Bridge Pylon Lookout is open from 10am to 5pm daily. (Closed Christmas Day)

Admission Prices
Adults (13 years and over) $9.50
Seniors with valid seniors card. $6.50
Children (8 to 12 years, inclusive) $4.00
Children (7 years and under) FREE
(Prices are valid to until 30 June 2011. Prices are subject to change without notice.)


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