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Published: January 19th 2008
G'day to everyone from Melbourne, Victoria!
It's been a while since the last entry and a lot has happened here since then. We've spent xmas on the beach, driven from Adelaide to Wollongong, camped in a city centre, spent NewYear'sEve(NYE) in Sydney's botanical gardens facing the opera house and the harbour bridge, been to the Blue Mountains, driven from Sydney to Melbourne via the Grampians, the Great Ocean Rd, Mornington Peninsula and Philip Island(where world's smallest penguins live) and spent time in Melbourne by been to the great sporting event of Australian Open!
To make it a bit easier to read this we'll write this entry in pieces Starting from xmas day and our time in Sydney and its surroundings.
Like you can imagine a xmas in Oz is quite different for a Finn and it certainly was. We spent xmas day on the beach close to Adelaide. Our ride cancelled on us and we were stuck in Adelaide and made the most of it. Having a beer in a bar right next to the beach wearing a xmas hat is something you cant do too often and we overly enjoyd it 😊 (pictures of this can be
found in the last blog)
We found 2 german girls who were driving to Sydney and we hopped into their car and took a quick scenic drive through SA, NSW and VIC. We left early Thu morning and arrived at Wollongong Fri @ Noon. Now a little bit about town. It's about 80kms south of Sydney, known for its beaches and harbour and a fairly vivid night scene. It has ONLY 2 backpackers, which tend to be fully booked around peak season(a thing we have noticed a bit too often lately...). But We have to say the best backpackers we have stayed in was in this little nice town. Wollongong Backpackers Keiraleagh
is a hostel that we recommend every traveller that is tired of the big hostels where people just come to drink and make loud noise. The family that runs it has lived in the house for 17years and they know how to take care of there family, because everyone in the house is part of it. They were fully booked but we had a tent and they let us camp in their back yard which for us was a life saver.
In Sydney we were to
a pleasant surprise. D*lux budget hotel we were staying in was well beyond our expectations. We were smack in the middle of Kings Cross. The room had an ensuite and a fridge. Very luxurious for us 2. My mom who arrived the same day didnt see the fuss we made about it, but then again she hasnt stayed in multiple backpackers and such. My friend Ossi, whose name amuses most aussies, wasnt impressed by it either. He came a day later. On Sunday we had group of 4 to travel with, really weird for us two but nice again for a change.
On Sunday we went to Darling Harbour, a nice harbour with lots of activities including many nice pubs and an Aquarium. We did the latter and spent the evening in a good pub drinking beer and wine 😊 Now we've seen a lot of animals here in Oz but the sight of a platypus in the aquarium was something we were so glad about. It was sooooo cute as it just swam and swam back and forth. There were other water creatures but it was the platypus that stole the show.
Monday was NYE and we
had plans. We were set to go to the Botanical Gardens with our picnic set. We set out after noon and didnt realise we were already late. People had come as early as 5am to get a good spot... So we got a crappy spot seeing the opera through trees. We didnt mind, we had a jolly good day in the sun(not a cloud in sight the entire day) and enjoying beer, wine, vodka and some food too 😉 Mum tried her best following our example or actually showing us how to do it all and nearly dozed off @ the stroke of midnight but she pulled it off and Im proud of her 😊 After midnight we wondered back to Kings Cross put mum into bed and the three of us headed out to party!
Tuesday was Bondi beach time! As how we managed to get out of bed before noon I dont know but we did and off we went to Bondi beach. The swell was higher than I expected it to be and it turned out to be a good work out for me and Ossi. After hours spent in the beach we went to have
some thai food and back to Kings Cross.
Wednesday was scubadiving for mum and Ossi and some more beach time for us two in Manly this time. I guess they enjoyd it eventhough the water wasnt too clear to see anything because of the swell. We took the ferry back to Sydney after they were done and headed back to Kings Cross and had a good dinner.
Thursday was shopping and OperaHouse day. We headed to Paddy's Market and spent time there and in the Queen Victoria Mall. Then we took a ferry from Darling Harbour to Circular Quay and walked around the Opera House and had dinner facing the Harbour Bridge.
Friday we rented a car headed to the Blue Mountains. It was quite spectacular scenery and a lot of finnish people there as well. We took a skyrail as we did in Kuranda in far north Queensland and enjoyd the scenery. We hiked a little and saw the Three Sisters and drove to a distant lookout to have a view of a perfect canyon filled with trees. It was like watching Grand Canyon with a green blanket. It was pretty cool. On the way back
we made a couple of bad turns and I ended up bumping our rental into another car. Fortunately the speeds were low and the only damage was to our license plate.
On Sat we said goodbye to Ossi and started our RoadTrip with Mum to Melbourne with a couple of detours 😊 On that on the next blog.
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