The first people to inhabit the area now known as Sydney were indigenous Australians having migrated from northern Australia and before that from southeast Asia.
Radiocarbon dating suggests human activity first started to occur in the Sydney area from around 30,735 years ago.
Since convict transportation ended in the mid-19th century, the city has transformed from a colonial outpost into a major global cultural and economic centre.
Its natural features include Sydney Harbour, the Royal National Park, and the Royal Botanic Gardens.
Man-made attractions such as the Sydney Opera House, Sydney Tower and the Sydney Harbour Bridge are also well known to international visitors.
The principal language groups were Darug, Guringai, and Dharawal.
The earliest Europeans to visit the area noted that the indigenous people were conducting activities such as camping and fishing, using trees for bark and food, collecting shells, and cooking fish.
The earliest British settlers called them Eora people.
"Eora" is the term the indigenous population used to explain their origins upon first contact with the British. Prior to the arrival of the British there were 4,000 to 8,000 native people in Sydney from as many as 29 different clans.