What a city. It has everything: beautiful beaches, amazing old and new architecture. It’s a lovely city to spend time in.
The modern history of Sydney started in 1788 when a fleet of British ships came in to the harbour. From then until 1900 Sydney was the capital of the British Colony of New South Wales. In 1900 it became the state capital.
Sydney was original named New Albion but the colony acquired the name Sydney after the British State Security Thomas Townsend Lord Sydney.
Today Sydney is Australia’s largest city and has played host to many international events, including the 2000 Summer Olympics.
Laurent and I spent a fun filled time in the city. The day we arrived it was late afternoon and we didn’t have time to start a full activity so we decided to just go for a walk. We headed towards the city centre and after walking through Hyde Park and the city we ended up turning a corner to see the Harbour Bridge and the Opera House. It was an amazing! Two of the most famous landmarks in the world right in front of us. We walked around circular quay and up the
steps to the Opera House. After taking loads of photos we headed back to the van for the night.
The next day we headed to a market in the Rocks. The Rocks is the oldest part of Sydney being the first European settlement in Australia, established by Captain Arthur Phillip of England in 1788 as a penal colony. Nowadays the Rocks is the home to lovely town houses, pubs, restaurants and hotels.
We didn’t want to make the same mistake we made in Melbourne - leaving the walking tour till the last day so that afternoon, after a picnic lunch we went and joined the tour. The tour showed us a lot of interesting places and explained a lot of history about the city. Both tours, Sydney and Melbourne, is definitely something that should be done. Sydney actually had two different tours. The city one and then a rock tour. We decided to do both so after a chocolate treat (it was Easter Saturday after all) we joined the second tour. Finding out some of the history of the oldest part of the city was fascinating. It finished quite late so we headed back to the van.
Sunday we spent at the beach. Not just any beach but the world famous Bondi Beach. We went to a market first and after looking round headed to the sand. Now I know this won’t be a popular comment but I don’t see why it’s such a famous place. It’s crowded, small and definitely not the best beach we have been to on our trip around Australia. Any way we spent the day there and I went for a walk around the town getting my self an ice cream in the process.
Not much was open Easter Monday and after a small walk around China Town we went to a very beautiful Chinese Friendship garden. We spent the whole afternoon in the garden. After we had looked around we sat next to the lake. It really was a lovely afternoon.
Now easter was over and everything had re-opened we spent the next day being very touristy. We went to Madame Tussauds and took selfies with world leaders and actors. It was great fun especially the added extras like the fancy dress clothes we could use for pictures. We then went to the Sea Life Centre and saw two
of the only five Dugongs. The centre have a male and female and feed them a lot of lettuce every 15 minutes. It may not at first glance look much like the mermaids you might have read about in myths and legends, but it’s thought that the legend of dugongs belonging to the Sirenia (the Greek word for mermaid) originated from delirious sailors who mistook the animals for seductive fishy-tailed females after too long out on the ocean. The common name, dugong, comes from a Malay word meaning 'lady of the sea'. In fact, dugongs are most closely related not to any other sea creature, but to elephants. Unfortunately part of the centre was shut for refurbishments so we decided to go to the Botanic Gardens and have another picnic. The Gardens were right next to the bay and the opera house, so the view was spectacular.
We decided it was time to walk the Harbour Bridge. I would have loved to have done the bridge climb, a trip up the arches and along the top of the bridge but with all things like that it’s a lot of money, so I had to make do with just walking
across the bridge. Which is still a pretty fantastic experience. The view towards the opera house, bay and city were spectacular. Once we reached North Sydney we caught a ferry back to circular quay and headed to Sydney Tower.
The tower was completed in 1981 and is 309m tall with the viewing platform being 268m. The tower is the second highest building in the Southern Hemisphere. When we arrived at the tower it was just before sunset so again we had worked it very well. We saw the city in the sun, then at sunset, then at night. The view was fantastic. We could see for miles in every direction.
The next couple of days we didn’t do as much, Laurent was shoe shopping, we visited a cathedral, had a library day - a day where we charge our laptops and other electronics and use the internet.
Sydney is a fantastic city and has so much to offer everyone.
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