Surprisingly with the limited sleep I wake up feeling fairly refreshed and excited to explore Sydney. I devoured the free breakfast the hostel provides – a bowl of cornflakes and toast if you want it, chatted to some of the other backpackers staying, and then headed into the city to the free walking tour of the city which came highly recommended by Jade. I am staying right in central Sydney, so everything is close, with Hyde Park (yes they steal all our names) a 10min walk, 20 mins walk to Circluar Quay where the Opera house is located and 30mins to Darling harbour. I was tad early for the tour so I wandered down the street we were to meeting on, which was lined with a massive Gucci, Prada and other designer stores. The streets of the city are wide and lined with several storey high buildings, similar to the Oxford Street and Regents Street of London. The tour was absolutely fantastic, a great use of 3 hours (esp when compared to the 3hours it takes to watch the hobbit!) it is the perfect way to get your bearings around the city, see the main points of interest and learn the
history. In no particular order we saw the Town Hall, the oldest house, the rum hospital, old parliament, customs offices, the bank, the news studio, the Sydney tower, a bird memorial, the statue of Queen Victoria, the talking statue of Issac (Queen Victoria’s dog), the Art Museum, Circular Quay, an aboriginal hip hop didgeridoo player at the quay, and ended in ‘the rocks’, the oldest part of Sydney – walking under the Sydney harbour bridge and past the George pub. I am pretty sure there was more than this but the memory and my brain exceed its limit! There are three bizarre things I remembered from the tour however; the Sydney tower revolves and has a massive bucket of water in the top, to prevent it from swaying, there are a series of underground tunnel networks throughout the city – many of which are used for water storage due to water shortages and then periods of heavy rain and the George pub is notable for the following: offering the punters a free ale with everyone bought, the punters would then get so drunk they would pass out on the floor. They would then be rolled into the basement for the
Tried to make it as good as the one in Milton Keynes but it only lights up on the hour rather than blowing bubbles, making silly noises and a weird egg display!
night and shackled, in the morning they would be woken up early and sent to work on the ships. They were shackled so they could hardly refuse, but if they did, they were sent to the ship and dropped at sea!
Talked to many lovely people on the tour including a Swedish girl-Frida, several English couples who were on a month trip to Australia. After the tour ended, Frida and continued to sightsee in the city, locating the pedestrian entrance to the Sydney harbour bridge – a lot harder than you would think for such a massive bridge. We walked across the bridge, climbed the 200 steps in the viewing tower for amazing views over they Sydney Opera house and across the city. We also walked to the Opera house and took in the view. It was really nice to share the sightseeing with somebody who was equally excited about seeing these iconic landmarks as me.
We then wandered back through the city and headed back to our respective hostels, weary from the days walking and slightly sunburnt from being out in the blistering heat all day, even with regular applications of sun cream.
The evening I
headed to the supermarket just up from the hostel, bought some bits to cook with the next few evenings and cooked a big dinner of pasta and vegetables to fuel me up for tomorrow’s adventure.
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