We took an overnight bus from Melbourne to Sydney- an eight hour journey with ‘Firefly’- which at $60 was nearly half as cheap as the greyhound.
We arrived into Sydney Central at about 6am and waited for a train to take us 25 minutes down to Rockdale, where we would meet Fifa- a family friend who had gratefully offered up some accommodation in her home for the next week.
We used Fifa’s place as a base to travel in and out of the city and meet some friends from back home and University who were residing in the city.
We had a lot of fun catching up with people we hadn’t seen in a few years and getting involved in the whole Australia Day shenanigans.
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26th January- the biggest excuse for Australian’s to get tanked up.
We got a lift in with Fifa to Balmain- the place that we had stayed on our family visit to Sydney 6 years ago. From here we caught the ferry which went under the Harbour Bridge and past the Opera House to Circulay Quay- a journey that normally would take 20 minutes or so, but due to the processions of boats in the harbour, took closer to an hour- That being said it was a lot of fun being involved and a part of the celebrations on the water- where all shapes and sizes of boats were dressed up to look as Australian as possible. Even a, no doubt drunk, man in an inflatable lilo was trying to get involved- only to be collared by the sea police.
We spent most of the day with our mates around Circular Quay, where queues of dressed up kangaroos and ozzies in those outback hats had flocked to the bars- we too obliged. Everyone was in good spirits and celebrating- from the party in the harbour- to an air flyby complete with parachutes with large Ozzie flags.
In the evening we headed to Bondi and once again the partying continued and my memory of the day further faded- you get the idea.
The Harbour around Sydney is stunning. By far our favourite area around Sydney was the Botanical gardens, which show off all of Sydney’s famous landmarks in one viewport. There really aren’t many places better to chill out and relax; We spent many a day having lunch in the gardens as we explored the different regions and districts that Sydney has to offer.
The Opera House bar was an understandably popular choice of waterhole and food-stop for anyone in the area- The bar to the side of the Opera house and overlooking the Harbour Bridge, always had a band or soloist playing to accompany the view. We enjoyed it there, but as with most of the bars and restaurants on the harbour, it was bloody expensive!
When we weren’t out drinking in Sydney, we would normally head down to the beaches- Bondi being the number one spot.
But we did make an effort to see as much as we could from within the city itself and took our time in exploring the central districts.
As mentioned at the start, we had a hell of a lot of fun in Sydney meeting up with our mates. We are hugely thankful for Fifa for helping us out whenever we needed her- it certainly made Sydney a lot more manageable and cost effective!! Up next, New Zealand, can’t wait!!