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Nicknamed the Harbor City for its large natural harbor, Sydney is consistently ranked as one of the world’s most livable cities. A high ranking world city, Sydney has hosted the 2000 Summer Olympics and the finals of the 2003 Rugby World Cup, along with many other international and regional events. When visiting Sydney, you will find two of the most iconic structures on Earth – the Sydney Opera House and the Sydney Harbor Bridge.
The Sydney metro area is surrounded by national parks, a natural harbor, and beautiful beaches. The city center is home to government and finance, attractions, restaurants, and shopping. The Rocks, a neighborhood west of downtown, is a cosmopolitan area, and the first colonial village of Sydney. Step over to Darling harbor for a day of leisure or a night of entertainment.
One third of Sydney’s population was born overseas, making it a very international city. This fact permeates its culture, and is evident in its many fine art galleries, museums, and festivals, most especially the Sydney festival, which is a month long celebration of art, music, and theatre, that rocks the whole city.
Sydney is the financial and economic center of Australia. Since 1980, the economy has shifted from manufacturing to service and information sectors, like most major metropolises. The city itself produces 25% of the country’s total GDP, and most large Australian businesses are based out of Sydney. Its largest economic sectors are property/business services, retail, manufacturing, and health and community services. Tourism plays a large role as well. In 2004, Sydney received nearly 8 million domestic visitors and 2.5 million international tourists.