6th November 2016 – Max Temp: 25°C
Today we did the Sydney Harbour Bridge Climb which was absolutely amazing! Definitely one off of my bucket list! The bridge climb has been open since 1998 and has had nearly 4 million visitors since. It costs so much to keep the bridge maintained so the govement had often talked of taking it down. However because it has become such a world icon and brings tourists from all over the globe they descided not to. A new tunnel is being built underneath to deal with the amount of traffic!
We started by suiting up and using a simulator so we were used to the safety equipment and had experience with the steep ladders. We then started on our journey to the top! We were with a small group of people (So they called us the V.I.Ps) who were really friendly and it meant that we got more time up on the bridge because there wasn’t many people around!
The view from the bridge was amazing, I don’t think there is anywhere else in Sydney you will get such an uninterrupted image of the Sydney Opera House and the city. I could’ve stayed up there all day!
Our instructors name was Kevin who was wonderful. He was born in Switzerland, learnt English in Ireland and is now officially an Australian. He was such a friendly and cool guy with a very interesting accent! He explained how he had made the hard decision to leave his family back in Europe for Australia but he loves being here. He definitely made the bridge climb for us, a genuinely nice guy.
We ended up buying all of our photos and videos, as we know we will probably not be here again! I’m so glad we got to take part, definitely one of the best activities I have ever done.
This afternoon Pete met up with his cousin Chris for a beer which was really nice for them to catch up in such an amazing city. This evening we went into Cockle Bay Wharf, DH where we discovered a hidden gem called Hunter Barrel which is essentially a (very expensive) steak house. Genuinely one of the best steaks I have ever had so I would definitely recommend this restaurant. We took a liking to a bottle of red called ‘Zeppelin’ which was made in the Barossa Valley, SA. I’m sure we will return here again in February!
We’ve had a super busy few days so today we started off slow with a picnic in the Royal Botanic Garden which is located next to the Sydney Opera House. Pete tried some Nutella Zumbarons which he said were very nice! Then we went on to explore…
We finally reached Macquaries Point which has a lovely view of the Opera House and Harbour Bridge. So it was a good chance to get some nice personal photos of Sydney.
We then made our way back to the CBD via the Botanic Gardens passing the garden pond which had eels and jumping fish in it, which was quite funny to watch!
We decided to walk back to our hotel today past the CBD, Martin Place and on to Darling Harbour! So we didn’t rest as much as we thought we would!
This evening we made our way to Westfield to have dinner at the Sydney Skydeck Tower which is the tallest building in Sydney and the second tallest observation deck in the Southern Hemisphere at 1014ft tall. It has 360 degree views of the city and slowly revolves whilst you dine.
We selected the buffet option and we both tried Kangeroo and Emu! The Emu was absolutely horrible and the Kangeroo was only slightly better so I don’t reckon we will be trying them again. But we did have amazing views of our home (Darling Harbour) which made up for it!
On the way back to the hotel I spoke to a street artist who even gave us some of his art for free. Probably preferred it to a lot of the paintings at the art galleries.
8th December 2016 – Max Temp: 29°C
Today we made our way across the Harbour to Sydneys Taronga Zoo. It is currently celebrating its 100th birthday and it definitely reflected in the parks atmosphere! I finally got close up to a Koala, it was so cute and sleeping obviously.
We were allowed in the Wallaby, Kangeroo and Emu enclosure which was pretty scary but also amazing. The animals were allowed to run or walk past us freely which was really cool. My favourites where the Wallabys whereas Pete took a liking to the Emus and got incredibly close to them. It definitely doesn’t feel like a Zoo at all here, a much more free experience for the aminals and tourists.
We also got to see Bandicoots, Possums, and Tasmanian Devils running around which was really cool as we haven’t seen these aminals before! There is also an amazing view of Sydney from most of Taronga, maybe that’s why the animals seem happier here!
We stayed to watch the Seal Show which was so funny, it did remind me a little bit of Seaworld, Orlando. The seals are so intelligent and really engage with the audience especially when you are sat in the Splash Zone (which of course we did). The show highlighted the importance of fish stock in the sea and helping to keep the Ocean clean to protect the future of all sea life.
Finally we made our way back to the exit using the Taronga Zoo Sky Safari. The Sky Safari uses gondalas to fly you over the whole Zoo from entrance to exit getting amazing views of Sydney and the park itself.
At the beginning of the day we weren’t sure whether we were going to bother going to Taronga but I’m so glad we did, it’s so much more than a typical Zoo!
Tonight we had dinner on a Sydney Harbour dinner cruise on the Sydney 2000!
We departed from King St Wharf at 19:30 and were treated with champagne on departure! (Not bad, I could get used to this!) We had a delicious three course dinner whilst sailing around Sydney Harbour past the Bridge, Opera House and city skyline.
After dinner we made our way up to the top deck where we had beautiful views of Sydney at night.
It was perfect, then all of a sudden it started to get really windy. If you look at the clouds you can tell a storm was brewing. It almost looks like a painting. Before we knew it, it was raining, thundering and lightning! Our first storm in Australia and we happened to be on a boat, we definitely won’t be forgetting this night!
9th November 2016 – Max Temp: 26°C
Today we headed to Coogee to do the 6km walk from Coogee Beach to Bondi Beach over cliff edges and beautiful bays.
Over the steep cliff tops we had amazing views of beautiful beaches such as this one at Bronte.
Bondi is beautiful and was worth the walk in the heat. Golden sands and clear water as a warm welcome. We stopped for fruit smoothies at a seafront cafe called Surfish. Pete had one called SeaMist and mine was called a Summer Hammer. Very fruity and very delicious.
We both went for a dip in the sea but the waves and the current were so strong it was hard to stay still and I went flying along the surface. Was quite funny as we stayed shallow but it’s easy to see how people get carried off.
Morning of 10th December 2016
As it’s our last morning in Sydney we took a stroll around Darling Harbour to say goodbye until February.
Our time in Sydney had come to an end, at least for now. We have both found a love for what has become our new favourite city. I genuinely think this week has been the best week of my life so far, very grateful.