- Posted June 19, 2014 by
This iReport is part of an assignment:
Summer skies around the globe
Going to Sydney? Good On Ya.
First stop- get thee to Bondi! Bondi Beach is an absolute must see. Not only is it one of the most famous beaches in the world (it was the beach volleyball location for the Summer Olympics) but it’s also one of the prettiest. Every time I hit Sydney, I make a sojourn over to Bondi to walk along the shore, ramble through the local shops, and take a short hike north to seek my little secret perch overlooking the beautifully ragged coast unimpeded. To get there, look north while on the beach and you will see a golf course up on the hill. Follow the beach road heading that way til you pass the main bus terminal. Not too much further, you will see a bus stop to your left. To your right, there will be a staircase seemingly to nowhere. Take it. It leads you to a green belt area where some locals walk their dogs and such. From here head straight over toward the sea. You will have to hoof it quickly across the golf course. Not too fast though, you may just fall right off into the ocean. Not good.
The last time I was there, I sat and watched as a pod of whales slowly made their way out to sea. It was simply magical. Oh, but before you head up on such a hike, you should fuel up on a good old fashioned Australian breakfast, or “brekky,” as they call it. You can find many great places to enjoy one, and Bondi does it right.
Ever since my first foray into an Aussie brekky, I have been fond of beans on toast! So now that you are full and have had a nice eye full of Bondi beauty, let’s get back to town!
Sydney is most definitely a great walking city. So much to see. I recommend a few choice attractions. First, you MUST take a walk across the Sydney Harbor Bridge! Don’t argue with me. GO! One of my most cherished memories is taking a morning jog across the bridge on a foggy morning. As the sun rises higher, it burns away the mist, slowly revealing the peaks of the Opera House rising like talons out of the bay. Breathtaking. Imagine seeing it from this perch:
Now get back over the bridge and prepare yourself for some serious shopping at Paddy’s Markets (http://www.paddysmarkets.com.au/). You will find hundreds of bargain stalls selling everything you can think of. This is where you will find lots of goodies for the friends back home. Paddy’s is smack dab in the heart of Chinatown as well, so be sure and grab some dim sum or yum cha while you are there.
You will need to spend a day walking all around the Royal Botanical Gardens (http://www.rbgsyd.nsw.gov.au/welcome/royal_botanic_garden). Here you will enjoy great views of downtown as well as the view of the bridge and the opera house seen at the beginning of this blog. Be sure to hang out around sunset to see the flying foxes zipping through the air and a cockatoo or two shouting at them. Kinda freaky, but cool.
You will undoubtedly spend plenty of time wandering all around Circular Quay (http://www.sydney.com.au/quay.htm) and the Opera House (http://www.sydneyoperahouse.com). Dining around there is a nice idea, but I recommend getting out of the touristy area for that. You will find plenty of great places nearby over at one of my favorite areas, The Rocks; not a long walk at all. 2 of my faves over that way fight for the title of the oldest pub in Sydney. I like them both! So check out the Lord Nelson Brewery Hotel (http://www.lordnelsonbrewery.com/) and the Hero Of Waterloo (http://heroofwaterloo.com.au). You will not be disappointed at either. Although, you can get a Cellar Ghost Tour over at the Waterloo. Just sayin…
If you are able, I highly recommend taking a sailboat out on the harbor, like the Maverick Adventurer does…