Visiting the charming suburb Glebe in Sydney is worth it. In fact you will probably want to make it two or more visits!! I did.
Glebe is one of Sydney’s oldest suburbs dating back to the 1820’s. It has over 20 heritage-listed buildings, including rows of 19th century terrace houses, beautiful Victorian homes and worker cottages.
Although I had been to Glebe before to visit an interesting market held each Saturday, I wanted to explore this area and find more gems.
An example of some of the homes in Glebe dating back many years. Fortunately they have been preserved. This does not mean Glebe doesn’t have modern homes. Visit the Foreshore for examples modern buildings in Glebe. You will also be treated to spectacular city views.
GLEBE POINT ROAD
The most interesting road in Glebe is Glebe Point Road.
Despite being so close to the city, Glebe has a small ‘villiage-y’ feel. If it was not for the high-rise buildings in the CBD peeping out here and there, you’d think you were far from a bustling city like Sydney.
The road is lined with old buildings dating back to the 1900’s and filled with quaint, many locally owned shops. When last did you see a grocer on the street corner? I’m used to large shopping centres. My favourite was the beautiful fruit and vegetable shop with friendly staff beckoning me in. If I lived in Glebe I would be an ardent “local is lekker” (South African saying for ‘local is great’) supporter.
According to Google, there are over 40 restaurants, 20 cafes and 10 pubs and bars. What’s so fascinating is that each one is so different. Here you will find eateries such as Lebanese, Japanese, Mexican and Irish and even Ethiopian. The coffee shops are awesome and if my body could handle caffeine overload, I’d visit each and everyone of them.
Detours in and out side streets paid off when I found several well-preserved worker cottages, Victorian Terrace houses and street art.
Streets lined with quirky shops, boutiques, coffee shops and a huge choice of retaurants.
Above : Town Hall
Left : Post Office
Below Left : Abbey
Top Right : St Johns
Bottom Right : Fire Station
PARKS AND GARDENS
One of the things I love about Sydney is their numerous of parks and gardens. Glebe has it’s fair share.
This was the most fascinating. In the middle of the park is a small brick, rather obscure building known as “The Wireless House”.
At one time a wireless was expensive, and few could afford one. Back in 1934 the Wireless House provided radio broadcasts to the local community. Just imagine crowds of people gathered around the little building listening to the radio!! During the depression hordes of men would gather around the wireless to listen out for reports of available work.
Apparently, you can listen to programmes at the Wireless House on your phone using free wi-fi. However, I am so technology disabled I had no idea how to do this. Maybe I should google on my wi-fi like everyone else to find out how!!
What a change compared to today with everyone connected to the world through wi-fi and staring at their phones. I somehow think I would prefer to wander to a park, meet my friends and listen to a radio programme in the warm sunshine under beautiful trees. Oh – those were the days.
Next to the University of Sydney is picturesque Victoria Park. Surrounding Lake Northam are beautiful shady trees and dotted around are interesting buildings dating back to the 19th century. It is obviously where residents of Glebe and students go to enjoy the peace and pleasure of nature. It’s also a beautiful spot to enjoy a picnic lunch.
It’s interesting to note that Victoria Park Public swimming pool is also located here, and looked very popular when I wandered past.
Glebe Foreshore Parks
I enjoyed exploring Glebe so much I ran out of time to visit the Foreshore which needs piles of time to appreciate it. I’ve left this for another post as I have to say, this is one of my favourite spots in Sydney.
BOOK SHOPS – THE BEST FOR LAST
I’ve saved the best for last – two wonderful books shops right next to each other. Both were so inviting, and I could not resist spending a good few hours browsing in both of them.
For me Sappho Books, Café and Bar was the best. I think it is purely because they have a delightful Café which transforms into a Wine Bar in the evenings. Even though Glebe is well known for its many marvellous coffee shops, I always seem to end up at Sapphos.
The evenings have a special magic where it is evident that locals hanghout – but a new face like mine is made to feel welcomed. One Thursday night after late night shopping we popped in for a glass of wine. Enjoying great live music and vibey ambience, I didn’t want to leave.
Glebe – Worth a visit (or maybe two?) – YES, YES, YES
Glebe is a vibrant interesting suburb and is well worth visiting and exploring. During my visit to Sydney this year I found myself making any excuse to ‘pop’ in whether to shop, drink a glass of wine, find a second-hand book or just people watch. Don’t forget the market every Saturday morning.
To plan your visit consider visiting ‘Travel with Joanne’ for more information and help you plan your visit.