Sightseeing Sydney…

The Cliffs of Watsons Bay...

For our next few days, having seen most of what the city centre itself had to offer us quite quickly, we decided it was high time to hit the many beaches and coastal walks that Sydney has to offer. There really is very few cities in the world I’ve been to where literally a 15-minute drive from the city centre can take you to some of the most spectacular beaches you’ve ever seen so we definitely needed to make the most of it. Next day, we headed out to Manly, taking in the sights of the beaches and the coastline, wandering around before finally sitting down on the sand and enjoying it all. Manly is about a half hour ferry ride from the city centre and in many ways, the ferry ride is an attraction in itself as we bobbed back and forth staring out at the various little ports and moorings dotted around Sydney. The next day, having quite enjoyed Manly the previous day and hoping to find somewhere similar, if a little less crowded, we decided to head out to Watsons Bay, on the other side from Manly and with cliffs seemingly so sheer that only recently someone threw their (ex) wife off the side – hmm. Anyway, like Manly, Watsons Bay was also a short ferry ride from the city centre and after arriving, wondering where these cliffs were and then finding them as much by accident than anything else, we spent some time wandering around taking in the views from the cliffs, before retiring to a nearby fish and chip shop. With time still very much on our side, we decided to try and find one of my favourite places back in the city – Krispy Kreme.

 

Want a Krispy Kreme?

Krispy Kreme is an international chain of doughnut shops that seems to have originated in the US and is famous for three-hour plus waiting times to be served on opening day wherever they open up shop. Notwithstanding that, there was one such outlet very close to my former apartment in KL – so close in fact that I dragged pretty much anyone and everyone there at some point for some original glazed and a coffee. So, after much searching around Central Station, we eventually found the Krispy Kreme and despite my best intentions to just buy a box of six, a special offer ended up with me buying…24. That’s right, I wanted just 6, and I’m still not entirely sure how it happened but I ended up walking away with two boxes of 12 each. And for the rest of the evening, and much of the next day, I subsisted on a diet of purely donuts and little else. Donuts in hand, we decided to catch one more ferry ride for the day and check out Sydney’s Luna Park, seemingly an old amusement park in the Coney Island-style the entrance of which has a neon-lit face with a wide open mouth that you walk through. The only thing is, really the mouth should have been closed if that was possible, as we’d entered and walked no further than 10 metres only to discover that the whole park was closed due to a private function.

 

The famous...

The next morning, we returned back to the same area as Luna Park to walk across Sydney’s famous Harbour Bridge. If you’re feeling particularly daring, you can certainly walk up the railings right to the very top of the bridge and take in the views all across Sydney, but we weren’t that daring and it looked extremely expensive to do. So, as I say, instead we just walked across the bridge. There’s obviously been some high-profile suicides or murders, whatever, that have meant that walking the bridge has become about as much fun as walking the Cliffs of Moher back home; i.e., hardly any fun at all. The bridge is completely enclosed by fencing right up over your head and even taking pictures out across the harbour isn’t as easy as I’d have liked. But presuming you’re just there for the view, then it’s well worth the walk.From there, we wandered across into South Sydney (if that’s the right term for it), heading back towards The Rocks, where we’d sort of started life in Sydney, and where I picked up one of the most delicious steak sandwiches I may ever have. Continuing on through the laneways and further down towards the harbour, we wondered, with our time in Sydney beginning to come to an end, was there time once more just to see if something we’d missed was still open so we could say we’d definitely ticked everything off the list…

 

Luna Park...open at last...

As it happened, Luna Park was open this time around and we walked in, smelling the candy floss and the ice cream, before despairing at the prices of all the attractions! Luna Park certainly isn’t the biggest theme park of all time, that’s for sure, but it’s quite fun in a quirky sort of way. Time however for us, was wearing thin, and with an appointment with some of Anna’s friends later on in the evening, we stopped only briefly enough to take in the sights of the park, contemplate buying an ice cream and leave quickly in the direction of the North Sydney train station. The great thing about our trip to Sydney and something that made the whole thing really great was that we had a whole variety of people to meet up with (although my friend in particular was nowhere to be seen unfortunately), which we were grateful for as we dined on delicious Vietnamese food and drunk some BYO wine (yes, restaurants work like that in Australia it seems)! The next morning, since we’d been exceptionally active in the previous couple of days, came a cropper with nobody moving until well past the middle of the day, as you might have expected. We considered heading to Palm Beach, the supposedly iconic beach featured in Home & Away, but with the bus going there only at the most awkward of times and returning at even more awkward times, it was more ‘Away’ and less of the ‘Home’. So, we settled, quite literally, for somewhere more in the middle and headed for another beach on the way instead…

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