A friendly and tucked-away little village close-ish to the city with great greenery that’s seen a swath of modern residential development in recent years.

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Summary: Close to major public amenities and arterial roads yet somehow still feeling “tucked away”, Botany to Sydney’s south-east retains a self-contained, village-style atmosphere despite being relatively close to Sydney city. It boasts the signature, slightly “beachy” elements of the Bayside region despite not having much of an actual beach, with its historic and mostly low-lying homes fringing an inner section that has had large blocks of modern apartments plonked in over recent years.

It’s home to a decent array of restaurants, cafes and amenities along its main dining strip along with the occasional cool and trendy cafe dotted throughout elsewhere, and also offers some truly massive and excellently-equipped slices of parkland to go with all the rest of its leafy greenery. Botany also plays host to a substantial array of businesses and warehouse-style workplaces, offering the potential to both live and work in the one spot. It’s an appealing suburb overall, with traffic/parking and a lack of rail connectivity its main glaring negatives.

Suburb Ratings:

Public Transport

Affordability (Rental)

Affordability (Buying)

Things to See/Do


Pet Friendliness

Key stats

Region: Southern Suburbs

Population: 11,000

Postcode: 2019

Ethnic Breakdown: English 20.1%, Australian 20.0%, Irish 8.7%, Scottish 5.3%, Chinese 5.1%

Time to CBD (Public Transport): 35 minutes

Time to CBD (Driving): 20 minutes

Nearest Train Station: Mascot

Highlights/attractions: Sir Joseph Banks Park, foreshore views, historic buildings

Ideal for: Families, professionals, retirees

Median property prices: House – $1,500,000, Apartment – $790,000

Median rental prices (per week): House – $780; Apartment – $600

Many aspects of Botany might be deceptive at first glance for those who aren’t overly familiar with the suburb.

There’s a tendency in Sydney to hear the name ‘Botany’ and immediately start to form mental images of ugly shipping containers and towering cranes, but in reality that’s an entirely different area that couldn’t be further from the reality of the suburb of Botany itself.

Botany Sydney

Botany sits on the “other” side of the M1 while still residing within the Bayside region in Sydney’s south, almost immediately adjacent to Sydney Airport.

While this might instantly start ringing some mental alarm bells regarding potential airport noise, Botany escapes any impact almost entirely due to flight paths largely avoiding the suburb on either side.

Botany small houses

As a result, Botany gains the benefit of highly convenient access to the airport without much of the negative impact and only some slight ambient noise; on the contrary, it’s largely a peaceful area as a whole – which is just a taste of what sets the scene for making this suburb an appealing place to live.

Its physical location is one of the obvious initial high points. Outside of access to the airport a mere 5 minutes away, Botany’s eastern leaning means it’s just a short trip to the beach at the likes of Maroubra (15-ish minute drive depending on traffic) while still only being potentially a ~20 minute drive into the Sydney CBD in off peak times.

Botany Roads

This is offset somewhat by the semi-nightmare that is Botany Road, which sees massive increases in traffic and congestion during commuting hours as the only main artery in and out.

It’s also compounded by the high volume of not only commuter cars but also trucks which frequently access Botany’s warehousing and light industrial businesses (as well as the Port) to make for a pretty packed and noisy slice of road.

For public transport users, while Botany has no passenger rail connections it does see a reasonably high volume of bus services. Hopping on the 307 bus easily connects through to Mascot Station in about 15 minutes, from which Central Station and the city is just a few stops (and less than 10 minutes) away, or you can simply take another route directly into the city itself.

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Its quantity of available bus services does drop off notably over weekends however.

Botany streets

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In terms of layout, Botany is quite an interesting mix of elements. While significant slices of the suburb are still taken up by a mix of business parks, warehousing and light industrial operations, it also manages to be highly leafy even among its “working class” areas, and blends in a somewhat beachy feel despite not having a physical beach.

Botany greenery

Its terrain is sandier underfoot, there are occasional sprinklings of palm trees lining multiple streets, and the breeziness of the sea air coming in from Botany Bay lends it an overall airy feel. It’s also salt-heavy, with the stronger winds often blowing in layers of salt that can coat things quite quickly.

Botany Palm Trees

Many of its older, low-rise homes also follow the same fibro “beach shack” style construction as well and lend to a relaxed vibe; coupled with its handful of trendy cafes dotted throughout, and it leads to a semi-escapist and secluded atmosphere among its older ring of fringing, lower-density residential streets.

Botany Beach Shacks

These contrast with some of the newer areas of Botany quite significantly.

Batches of both understated little villa complexes along with an array of gorgeously-designed upper tier variants offering terrace-style living have been added to help diversify Botany’s housing profile.

It’s particularly evident along areas such as William Street where elements incorporating latticework and fountains sit alongside overhanging leafy streets and convenient nearby bus stops.

Botany Terraces

Elsewhere, hefty portions of Botany have started to be more overly-modernised and gentrified, with multiple older buildings replaced by mid-rise apartment block developments and strips of fairly sterile townhouses.

It’s an atmosphere of being “Wolli Creek-ified” that is very counter to the older parts of what is actually a very historic suburb.

These sprawling apartment complexes are still growing/being completed and taking up more and more of Botany every day, while adding yet more congestion to Botany Road and other feeder streets as a result.

Botany Apartments

Several reminders of Botany’s ample history do remain, however, and combine to add an extra sense of character to parts of its streetscape.

Historic churches dating back well over 100 years combine with a number of other heritage-listed service buildings that are still in use today to make things far more interesting and atmospheric than many of your other average, generic Sydney suburbs.

Botany Church

Standouts include the lovely Victorian stylings of its Town Hall and Council Chambers building, its post office on Banksia Street, and even the Old Sir Joseph Banks Hotel that remains in remarkably good condition.

These mingle alongside Botany’s present-day array of services and restaurants to offer the best of old and new side by side.

Botany Historic Buildings

The bulk of Botany’s day to day shopping and dining sit in a concentrated strip along the northern slice of Botany Road and are quite well fleshed-out.

It’s home to an impressive array of local cafes, bakeries and little restaurants which combine with major hotels in the Captain Cook Hotel and Waterworks Hotel to make for a pretty lively scene for a mid-sized suburb.

Add in an IGA, fresh produce market and a number of essential services such as medical, chemists and others, and most daily-needs type amenities are well covered here.

Botany Road

The only drawback to dining in this area is that it sits right alongside Botany Road’s busy sections, meaning both road noise and parking can be an issue for actually enjoying the dining experience. It’s also lacking in more general retail and bigger-box opportunities; fortunately the trip across to Westfield Eastgardens lies just a short 10-ish minute drive away.

To its credit, Botany also does offer other smatterings of one-off cafes and standalone restaurants elsewhere throughout the suburb; locals like Botannix and the Banksia Street Cafe provide enjoyable alternatives in some of its back streets, for example.

Botany Cafes

The overall level of greenery throughout Botany is also likewise impressive. Its streets are leafy, and it’s home to several impressive parks and reserves that range from large (Garnet Jackson Reserve with its great barbecue and picnic amenities, Booralee Park and its nice and roomy collection of fields and sporting facilities) to the ridiculously large Sir Joseph Banks Park.

Botany Parks

Sir Joseph Banks Park is one of the biggest and most comprehensive foreshore parks in all of Sydney, and is stacked with absolutely everything both adults and families with kids alike could want in a public park space.

The park extends for a huge area down towards the waterfront along Foreshore Road and offers ample parking, a large wetlands area teeming with geese and other water birds, excellent play areas for the kids, tons of shade without being overly manicured, basketball courts… it even has a dedicated Fenced Dog Park area for the furry friends. Definitely “up there” for the title of most underrated park in Sydney.

Botany Big Park 1

This borders directly on to the small-yet-enjoyable Botany Golf Course, which offers a neat 9 holes kept in good condition and a tidy little clubhouse for enjoying a drink thereafter.

Botany Golf Course

Follow the track from within the park and cross the foot bridge over Foreshore Road, and you’ll be able to take in views across to Port Botany and the runway at Sydney Airport as well.

Cycling tracks and a boat ramp also exist here, providing further potential activities for those interested in enjoying more of the outdoors.

Botany Port

The majority of the rest of Botany is taken up by a mixture of large warehouse-style companies, car dealers and panel beaters, government service centres and various manufacturers and distributors.

Some large pockets of these areas are mostly strips with unappealing industrial warehousing, and a lot of litter and rubbish strewn around; thankfully the “mess” is mostly isolated to just these areas as the rest of the suburb is well-kept and demonstrates a lot of cleanliness and house pride.

Botany Warehouses

One of the bonuses of the presence of these businesses however is that Botany actually provides quite a lot of opportunity for intra-suburb jobs.

The ideal scenario of being able to live and work in the same suburb and not having to battle a painful daily commute is a possibility that not too many non-ugly suburbs in Sydney can offer, yet it’s a realistic prospect here.

Botany business park

It’s also a highly appealing suburb for families in general. Largely safe with a low 0.08% per capita crime rate that places it firmly within the bottom quarter of Sydney’s suburbs, Botany’s good assortment of parks and playgrounds combine with choices of standard and Catholic schools to be largely self-contained as a family suburb.

Botany Schools

In addition, the Botany Aquatic Centre is a historic spot for aquatic activity which offers a nice variety of outdoor pools and shaded areas that’s a great place both for exercise or simply to cool off during its opening period over the warmer months.

It’s got a roomy grass area for non-swimmers, and BBQ facilities to help make it much more than “just a pool complex” as well.

Botany Aquatic Centre

Botany’s other, largely residential areas range anywhere from simply pleasant to quite upmarket overall.

They’re generally quite quiet the further back you get from Botany Road, and many of them are higher-end historic brick homes or large modern builds on big blocks and with driveways that run a substantial way back.

A fair number of its older fibro homes do lack off-street parking, however, and combined with its narrow streets the result can be finicky.

Botany big houses

With the new apartment developments added to these older builds, Botany now offers a very solid range of choice of home types.

Villas, townhouses, high-density apartment blocks and freestanding houses are all fairly evenly represented, while there are still a handful of legacy older red-brick unit blocks for the cheaper side of things as well.

“Botany is a fairly unique suburb in that it offers a lot of little “taster” elements of many other places all in one pretty compact package.”

In terms of property prices, Botany isn’t as ridiculously expensive as some of the elite suburbs further east in Sydney, but it’s still fairly pricey and rates higher than average.

Botany old apartments

Freestanding home prices clock in at around the $1.5 million mark at time of writing, while its apartment supply hovers around a median of just under the $800k range for a 2 bedroom unit.

Renting also isn’t cheap, and is again significantly above the Sydney median at around $600 per week for a 2 bedder.

The Verdict

Botany is a fairly unique suburb in that it offers a lot of little “taster” elements of many other places all in one pretty compact package. It’s fairly self-contained and provides a lot of what you could need or want on a daily basis or on weekends without having to go elsewhere – its dining and drinking scene is solid in terms of both cafes and pubs, its waterfront aspect is decent without being stunning, its parks are great, and its amenities are diverse enough to get by as well.

The traffic, road and parking situations are its main blind spot, as getting in and out can be a chore and can make a trip to other parts of Sydney longer than you’d think given its otherwise pretty central location. For those who can both live and work here, you’ve basically “won” the Sydney game and that will not be too much of a negative factor.

Its proximity to the airport is handy, as is its bus connectivity through to the city, and the rest of the Eastern and South Eastern suburbs of Sydney are eclectic and just a stone’s throw away, which can help keep things interesting when venturing out as well. It’s lacking in retail and shopping, but it’s not too much of a trip away to address these needs when required either.

Botany’s streetscape and overall atmosphere are largely relaxed and friendly outside of Botany Road’s hectic strip, it’s packed with a ton of nice houses and well-kept gardens, and its historic elements are charming as well.

The new additions of its massive apartment complexes provide more flexible and affordable housing options for some, while adding more stress to its infrastructure and can either be a positive or negative depending on which side of the coin you fall.

It’s a little expensive given some of its issues, but not overly so, and Botany overall represents a pretty solid balance between the “East” and “other” of Sydney with plenty to keep residents and visitors alike occupied.

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