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Published: March 5th 2010
Our first few days in Ozzie were ridiculously hot (high 30's), a great and sweaty start to the 10 weeks we have here. We couldn't believe how busy Sydney felt, think it must have been the result of living in a capital city with only a 400,000 population for the last year! We'd come at a great time, as on our first night we saw the Chinese New year parade and a short film festival in the park. There was also some of the build up to the Mardi Gras parade, which is Sydney’s second biggest event of the year after New Years Eve... We spent our first few days looking around the city, taking in the amazing opera house, harbor bridge and all of the city centre parks. We saw hundreds of large bats which were pretty amazing, although all the locals probably though we were very strange staring into the trees for hours!
After a couple of days in the city, we ventured out to the suburbs and did the Coogee to Bondi walk, a costal track between two of Sydney’s most beautiful beaches. The following day we decided to go back and spend a day on the
world famous Bondi beach. We had a great day in the water and soaking up the sun, and could definately see the appeal of Bondi's waves and golden sand.
After just over a week in Sydney, we caught the train inland to the Blue Mountains for a couple of days. The guide book said that it may be a little cooler there, but we were shocked that the temperature had plummeted to 10°c as we got off the train. We decided a hop-on-hop-off bus would be the best way to see everything in one day. Our first stop was an 'easy' bushwalk to the Leura Cascades. It was definately not the easiest of walks, and Julia’s new trainers were definately not the walking boots that she should have had. Lucky that it was cold or we would have been wearing flip-flops (jandals for you NZ readers). Anyway, the walk was beautiful and the views over the valley were just breathtaking. Our next stop was the Three Sisters, a very unique rock formation standing above the rainforest. We walked on to one of the Sisters via some very steep steps...again an amazing view. Our final stop was Scenic World, where
we caught the steepest funicular railway in the world (52°) down the valley. It was a bit like being on a really slow rollercoaster, very cool though. At the bottom we did another bush walk where we saw the remains of coal mines and some really noisy birds. We caught a cablecar to the top where there were loads of wild parrots and were given some seeds to hand feed them. It was so cool and something you don't get to do everyday.
After our exhausting day in the Blue Mountains we caught the train back to Sydney via Fetherdale Wildlife Park. There we saw Koalas, hundreds of Australian birds, a saltwater croc and some gorgeous kangaroos and wallabies. The park was really good as it was very interactive, with lots of the animals roaming freely out of cages. We had an awesome day meeting the local wildlife and it was a great end to our time in and around Sydney.
Were heading up the East Coast now, next stop is Newcastle. Keep you updated soon.
Dan & Julia
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