We have been in Sydney for 48 hours – it is hard to believe that this will be our last stop on this adventure! We arrived later than planned as we had a delay leaving Melbourne while they fixed a communication issue on the plane – not a big deal in our minds, but glad they take having a working plane seriously.
As usual our home, the last of the 7 that we had planned on this trip, is a gem. We are in the Glebe/Annandale neighbourhood – easily accessible by public transit to the waterfront and from the airport via Uber (less than $40 to get the four of us to the house).
As soon as we arrived we got our bags into our rooms and headed out for a vietnamese dinner with old friends from Canada that now call Australia home. It was great to get caught up and to enjoy a meal together – thank you friends for making time!
Our first full day included breakfast at the Drop, just a short walk from our house, which was an amazing way to start the day. A couple of smoothie bowls for Gen & Rebecca, a bacon and egg roll (with caramelized onions and amazing sauce) for myself, and then Jonah tackled the Jaffle – a toastie consisting of cream cheese, mixed berries and white chocolate. Of course the coffee and fresh juices helped round out the breakfast – even took a flat white to go it was so good… and went back this morning for takeaway coffee.
Then it was off to Darling Harbour for a look around the waterfront. We managed to find the Australian Maritime Museum (free entry) which had a great history of immigration, the pearl industry, solo sailing around the world, as well as several exhibits you would need to pay to enter. We also enjoyed strolling through the outdoor area where they had a submarine, tall ship, and other vessels on display. There is an amazing array of architectural styles on display in the harbour.
We also found our way to the playground, billed as great for kids & teenagers. As you can see, our ‘kids’ managed to enjoy a few moments on the equipment. We then found an escape room – yes another one – which we managed to complete in 36 minutes + 15 minutes in time penalties as we were stuck on the last clue… it was a good one. It helps doing a few of these as we are getting better at understanding and decoding the clues.
This morning we woke up for what we thought would be our ‘Sydney Picture Day’ as we were heading down to the Circular Quay for a day of exploring. At this location you get to see both the Sydney Bridge and the Opera House, as well as enjoy a neighbourhood known as The Rocks, and if you are so inclined – a wander in the botanical gardens. We were right – it was a perfect day for this adventure with temperatures around 24C and blue sky (with a few perfect clouds). After breakfast we jumped on public transit and headed out for a 10:30am arrival at the quay. We walked along the quay opposite to the opera house to get the ‘view’ and were not disappointed. The walk took us to the Pylon Lookout, a much less expensive alternative to the bridge climb, which provided us with a magnificent view of the opera house, harbour and bridge. Up and down 200 stairs and then to the Friday Foodie Market – food stalls on one of the streets near the exit of our lookout made for a perfect transition to our afternoon. We managed pizza, pulled pork on a bun, and Japanese pancakes – a great lunch. A wander around the old alleys and streets to pop into a few stores before grabbing some ice cream before we boarded Captain Cooks harbour highlight cruise. The 75 minute cruise was the perfect way to see the harbour and get some history as we passed by various landmarks.
Post cruise we headed up the opera house side of the quay to grab a cold drink at the Opera Bar – we had heard it was a great spot to see the sun go down before returning home for dinner. We wandered around the opera house – an amazing use of the space as it is a public area that can be enjoyed without going to a show. We also learned that the opera house budget was $8M and it was constructed for $102M – not quite sure how they missed by that much – but it is definitely an iconic building. A great day, lots of walking, and some tired feet now that we are back home.