Determined to explore a bit more of Sydney, Sam and I caught the ferry over to Manly. The harbour looked beautiful from the boat.
My phone died so I didn’t get any other photos! The beach we visited was very windy and we spent most of the time trying to get sand out of our eyes but it was nice to be by the sea again.
On December 29th a good friend from home came to Sydney; Alex Cook. It was so good to see him and meet his sister Jenny. We got some Thai food (I’m already missing it!) Then we went on the monorail around Sydney’s CBD. It really wasn’t worth it, a real waste of time! The windows were really bizarre to look out of and made your head feel funny.
We also checked out Sydney’s Chinatown.
In the evening we went to Cook’s hostel and chatted. It was so great to hang out and just chat with him, I hadn’t realized how much I’d missed him!
The following day we went to Sydney aquarium. We actually wore these hats the whole way around the aquarium.
We saw sharks, jellyfish, dugongs and even found Nemo!
On New Year’s Eve, it was bizarre getting ready very early for midnight but we had to get to the park at 5pm to get a good spot for the Sydney Harbour Bridge fireworks. There was a festival atmosphere in the park and we had a good little group sitting around waiting for the fireworks. The 9pm fireworks were amazing, mirrored either side of the bridge in the sky. The midnight fireworks were mind-blowing. Happy birthday, Mum for New Year’s Eve!
When the fireworks were over, it took us 3 hours to get home – there were 1.5 million people in the city that night and not enough transport!
On New Year’s Day, Sam, Alex and I went to Bondi beach. I swam a bit in the cold water and five minutes later the shark siren went off! Everyone on the beach stood up and looked at the water. Helicopters came and boats went looking for the shark. Apparently it was a great white!
The following day I went to visit some friends from Pai who live an hour north of Sydney on the Central Coast. The drive along the coast was beautiful and it was good to get out of the city.
Nathan and I walked through the bush “talk loudly so the snakes stay away” and had a look at some caves.
It was really hot walking through the bush so we went for a quick swim to cool down and as usual I attracted ALL the sand. I was a sand monster!
We met up with Andrew and they took me to MacMasters beach to teach me to surf. It was really hard and the waves were breaking too soon but I gave it a good go! I got wiped out so much and swallowed half of the sea but it was fun and the boys were impressed that I kept going.
We got a takeaway and hung out on the deck. It was really cool going to Kincumber and Avoca Beach and being in an actual house after so long in hostels!
I can totally see why New South Wales is named such; areas of it look so like Pembrokeshire!
When I got back from seeing the guys, Sam and I booked our flight to Melbourne for the following day (the same price for a 12 hour bus ride or an hour and a half flight… We chose the best option!), packed and got ready to leave. Sydney had it’s ups and downs but it did teach me two things; they have LOTS of varieties of M n Ms here in Australia and massive coke cans!