There’s no denying the Roman Empire’s 1,000-year existence is a fascinating part of history, but it turns out a sizeable percentage of men think about it A LOT. The latest trend making the rounds on social media is asking any man in your life how often they think about the Roman Empire. The hashtag #RomanEmpire now has over a billion views, so even if you weren’t thinking about it before, you probably are now. If you’re one of those who spends a lot of time obsessing over the great civilisation, we’ve put together a list of places in Sydney you should visit to fuel your love for it. Check them out below.
1. Paddington Reservoir Gardens
Located in the inner Sydney suburb of Paddington, this heritage-listed garden is one of Sydney’s true hidden gems. The sunken garden will remind you of the ancient Baths of Caracalla in Rome complete with leafy gardens filled with subtropical plants and wide boardwalks. Comprising two levels, the gardens were built from 1864 to 1866 and opened in its present form in 2009, showcasing an interesting blend of new and ancient architecture. Entry to the garden is completely free. Get more information about the Paddington Reservoir Gardens here. The City of Sydney website recommends hanging around until after sunset to enjoy the minute details of the garden.
2. Queen Victoria Building
The Queen Victoria Building is easily one of Sydney’s most recognisable and photogenic public spaces. The heritage-listed, late-nineteenth-century building’s most distinct characteristics are reminiscent of Roman buildings with elaborate Romanesque architecture chosen for the grand building when it was built in 1898. Over the years it’s seen some remodelling but the essence remains intact. Today you can shop at the QVB, enjoy a meal or simply admire the palatial space. Read all about its history here.
This bed and breakfast is located just a 45-minute drive from Sydney and looks strikingly like a medieval-style Italian village. There are four charming villas at the venue with cobbled alleyways, lush gardens and a swimming pool. You won’t be hankering for a European holiday once you discover this unique and immersive accommodation. Watch out for the attention to detail in the decor, there’s terracotta roof tiles, a red Vespa and all the Mediterranean vibes. Read all about it here and book a spot if you’re planning a visit.
4. Sydney Observatory
The Sydney Observatory is a heritage-listed meteorological station which also happens to be the first observatory built in Sydney in 1788. Although small in size, the sandstone building boasts an Italianate style of architecture with its towering stone walls and classical design. It’s also one of the best place star-gazing sites in Sydney. Read more about Australia’s oldest observatory here.
Leichhardt is literally known as Little Italy so you really can’t go wrong with this one. In this buzzy inner Sydney suburb, you’ll find a number of cafes and restaurants dishing out the best Italian food from woodfired pizzas to coffee to handmade pasta. There’s even an entire street festival dedicated to the local heritage. Read all about it here.