Blogs from Sydney, New South Wales, Australia, Oceania


Oceania » Australia » New South Wales » Sydney November 9th 2021

The Bondi to Manly Walk is a coastal and harbour-side walking track between Australia’s two most famous surf beaches, Bondi Beach and Manly Beach. I have not been able to join Elizabeth on all sections of the walk but was glad to be able to join her on the 10th section she had made starting at Shark Beach and yes that is a shark net in the photo. The entire length of the Walk is 80km and today’s section was mostly on bush walking tracks with magnificent views of Sydney’s centre, the Opera House & Sydney Bridge. We passed two interesting looking properties which are currently unoccupied. Elizabeth gave information about the properties as well as the link to the walks website which shows the entire route. Greycliffe House - The wealthy pastoralist and explorer John ... read more

Oceania » Australia » New South Wales » Sydney » Harbourside July 16th 2021

While I do not attend so many classical music concerts lately, I had enjoyed my visits to some of the world's most famous concert halls. These would include: Royal Albert Hall in London, the Walt Disney Concert Hall in LA, Wiener Musikverein in Vienna, the Bolshoi in Moscow, the Mariinsky in St. Petersburg, Carnegie Hall in NYC, Sydney Opera House, and the Hungarian State Opera House in Budapest. In no particular order, here are a few of my thoughts and experiences. My first real concert, other than the old San Francisco Opera House (before Davies Hall) was at Royal Albert Hall in London. We had to queue around the building for hours ahead of the concert. So, I found some friendly Aussies with beer and a deck of cards! The performance, which was both long and ... read more
London's Royal Albert Hall
Sydney Opera House

Oceania » Australia » New South Wales » Sydney July 6th 2021

Manly Dam The Manly Dam Walk is a beautiful 7.3 km circuit trail in Manly Dam Reserve that is still a bit of a hidden gem. Surrounded by 377 hectares of native bushland, Manly Dam Reserve is known as the largest freshwater lake in Sydney. The lake, also referred to as Manly Reservoir, was created as a result of the damming of Curl Curl Creek (now Manly Creek) with the aim to provide water for the local area. The Dam was constructed in 1892 and had an initial height of 11m. After several increases, the dam wall ultimately reached its current height of 35 meters. Our heygo guide lives in Manly and takes this walk on a regular basis. Wonderful to have this on her doorstep.... read more

Oceania » Australia » New South Wales » Sydney » Hurstville July 2nd 2021

Hello everyone! I just wanted to let you all know that Noel and I made it home safe and sound last Sunday night and we were very happy that James and Andrew were able to come and collect us from the airport now that Sydney is back in lockdown. Everyone was pleased to see us, but Matt's girlfriend was the happiest, because now she doesn't have to clean up after my sons any more. Anyone with sons will know that "boy" clean is not "girl" clean and poor Shae had to do extra work to make the place acceptable for her to live in. She even told me that after 8 weeks of staying/cleaning at my place, she doesn't want a big house anymore and doesn't want lots of kids anymore either! Thanks for looking after ... read more
Cable Beach
Gantheaume Point
Cable Beach sunset

Oceania » Australia » New South Wales » Sydney June 30th 2021

On our virtual walk today was to Freshwater Beach, wedged between two headlands, Freshwater is a short walk north from Manly. A coastal walk further north will take you to Curl Curl Beach. Swimming at Freshwater Beach started back in the early 1900s when campers would holiday close to the beach. A small creek running out the north end of the beach provided fresh water for the campers and gave the beach its name. Freshwater's unique claim to fame is that this is where surfboard riding was popularised in Australia by Hawaiian "Duke" Kahanamoku. Duke famously carved a board from a piece of local timber and demonstrated surfing for an enthralled crowd on 10 January 1915. A life-size statue of Duke Kahanamoku on the northern headland commemorates the historic day. The Park and mosaics are also ... read more

Oceania » Australia » New South Wales » Sydney June 16th 2021

The tour started in the China Town district of Sydney, it was early morning so was pretty quiet but there were some restaurants open preparing dumplings for that all important breakfast. On the walls of the Novotel hotel is a 10 storey high portrait of Aboriginal elder Jenny Munro. We then approached Darling Square with an amazing building Created by Kengo Kuma, this library called The Exchange has 20,000 meters of ribbons of wood wrapped around which Kuma arranged in "a dynamic and exciting manner" to offer passersby glimpses of activity inside. Two more interesting architectural buildings came into view, Frank Gehry designed the headquarters of UTS Business School, the Dr Chau Chak Wing Building. The first with its undulating brickwork reminded me a little of some of the Gaudi buildings in Barcelona. The second with ... read more

Oceania » Australia » New South Wales » Sydney » Hurstville April 24th 2021

Just letting you all know that Noel and I are meant to be flying in to Perth on the 4th of May for another 8 week travel adventure. Subject to Covid-19 NOT ruining another holiday, we will be Airbnb-ing in South Perth for a week before picking up our 6 berth motorhome for 6 weeks, followed by 5 nights with great friends, Lesley and Michael, in Broome. If you prefer not to receive my blog posts please send me a quick reply to this message and I will delete your email from my list of subscribers. Thank you all and please pray for lockdowns to be over before May 4!!! xxx... read more

Oceania » Australia » New South Wales » Sydney March 13th 2021 13th March - Sunrise & exploring at Avoca Beach The 1.7-kilometre long beach stretches between two sandstone headlands. The name Avoca is Celtic for “great estuary” or “where the river meets the sea” and the town was named by the first resident John Moore. (No relation, haha) It was 7am and the sun was coming up as the surfers and the rescue patrol were out preparing for the day ahead. Our guide just kept the camera rolling so we could hear the sound of the sea lapping against the shore and further out creating waves for the surfers. We walked to the end of the beach where weathered crater like rock pools appeared. With the blue grey colour in the rock & surrounding surface of orange & red it was like a tapestry. Our guide ... read more

Oceania » Australia » New South Wales » Sydney February 26th 2021 26th February - Hidden secrets 40 miles from Sydney Another early morning virtual trip but this was one I didn’t want to miss, a hike through the wilderness with our virtual guide Matt. As a child he would roam the area overlooking Barranco Valley, but did not say the exact location as he didn’t want it to become known and the area be ruined with visitors. He acknowledged the indigenous people who for years had lived in the area. We saw all type of flora and fauna, mostly gum trees and banksia. Termites, spiders, lizards, mosquitoes all added to the atmosphere but I was glad I was sitting in the armchair viewing on screen. Our guide had a particular passion for Grass Trees - Many species have an amazing ability to survive fire. A fire ... read more

Oceania » Australia » New South Wales » Sydney December 20th 2020

Fires like the Apocalypse threatened my Aussie backyard from August 2019 to February 2020...the East Coast on fire like never before. Over 18 million hectares were burnt in the Australian bushfire season 2019–2020...all states affected. As of mid-January 2020 according to media reports, 5,900 buildings were destroyed including over 2,800 homes. In addition to 33 human fatalities including 9 firefighters, conservative estimates, based on NSW and Victoria only, project losses of over one billion mammals, birds and reptiles combined. This excludes insects, the loss of which has been reported to be in the hundreds of billions...flora & fauna habitat scorched, killed and laid bare. The Bureau of Meteorology noted in its January 2020 Statement that, ‘The extensive and long-lived fires appear to be the largest in scale in the modern record in New South Wales, while ... read more
As Oz burns
While our backs were turned
Better to mask than be sorry

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