Saturday 22nd June
We said goodbye to our parents at the airport (I cried) and got on board our lovely Virgin Atlantic flight to Hong Kong. For me, this was 12 hours of catching up on films I’d missed – Captain Marvel, Aquaman, Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile to name a few. For Tom, this meant sleeping.
A short layover in Hong Kong meant no external exploring, before boarding our 9 hour flight to Sydney! Once again this was film time (with a little bit of sleep) for me, and mainly sleep for Tom!
Monday 24th June
Landing at 8am in Sydney, our taxi ride to the AirBnb arrived in the form of Holly, Tom’s old friend. Navigating through rush hour traffic was fuuuun.. We grabbed showers before heading back out for breakfast and to explore a bit of Sydney. Best way to stay awake through jet-lag? Visit the Sydney Opera House and Sydney Bridge!
We got back at about 4:45pm and by 5pm were asleep for our “1 hour” nap. I slept through 2 nap alarms and we didn’t wake until about 7am the next morning!
Tuesday 25th June
Tuesday was a day of going “we’re in Sydney”, “I’m so tired”. The mundane stuff had to be done so down to the local Aldi we went – food shopping and SIM cards were all we needed!
My favourite bit of this little trip was the awesome machine inside the supermarket – a fresh orange juice machine! It takes old, unsellable oranges and squeezes them into delicious juice. For only $4! Bargain!
Wednesday 26th June
Today was the day we started to break slightly free of the jet-lag! To celebrate we walked down to Bondi Beach and along a lovely coastal walk which took us to Bronte.
We have arrived in Australian winter so although it looks lovely and sunny from inside, once outside the cold wind reminds us it’s winter!
We saw lots of beautiful scenery on our walk, as well as some other beaches, but the highlight was on the way back. Out on the horizon we caught sight of some splashing and sea spray… whales! We could see their tails flicking up and every time they blew through their blowhole! It was awesome! This is the perfect time of year to see humpback whales around Sydney coast as they are migrating North to warmer waters.
Thursday 27th June
Feeling much better today we decided to have a wander around Sydney’s Botanical Gardens. It was really interesting and pretty; seeing the skyline of Sydney looming above the trees was surreal.
Spontaneously that evening we decided to treat ourselves and go to the nearest cinema to watch Rocketman (really great film).
Friday 28th June
I was very excited for today. A couple of years ago, I went to Cambodia where I met a lovely Aussie girl called Diana. Today, her and her boyfriend were travelling 6/7 hours from Dubbo to see us for the weekend! Perfect reunion!
Tom and I spent the morning washing our clothes, and making the flat clean and tidy.
Once they’d arrived and we’d had a good catch up, we went to Bondi beach to see the sunset! Dinner was then at a cool restaurant called Milky Lane – yummy burgers! We had a surprise guest at the table with us; due to the restaurant being an open front a cockroach flew in and joined us. This was swiftly removed – I am the Queen of scared by creepy-crawlies!
After dinner, we had some drinks before hopping in an Uber to Archie Brothers Cirque Electriq. It’s a warehouse in Alexandria full of arcade games, dodgems, bowling, and, my favourite, 2p machines! An hour later, $30 lighter and 4 arcade prizes later we headed home to bed. This is definitely on my list to visit again if we get the chance; I love the bright lights and smells of fun-fairs and arcades!
Saturday 29th June
All week I’ve been saying how I want to go in The Icebergs. These are 2 saltwater pools right on the edge of the coast in Bondi, open for winter swimming. This didn’t click in my brain – winter swimming…
Saturday morning the 4 of us ventured out for breakfast in the sunshine and cold wind. It was a pleasant day so off to the Icebergs we went!
I now fully appreciate why it has the name Icebergs – it is FREEZING! A balmy 22 degrees out of the water (didn’t feel like it with the wind..) and 18 degrees in the water. To me this didn’t sound too bad but once we’d tried to get in I realised how cold that actually was. I honestly think it took me about 20 mins to be submerged enough to go for a swim – it was a very gradual process. The locals were obviously well acclimatised as they jumped in and swam laps whereas I was contemplating getting out to hire a wetsuit…
Once we’d warmed up in the sauna (oooh lovely!) we jumped in the car and headed to Blacktown.
Here was a bucket list entry ticked off – a Drive-In Cinema! We reclined in Diana’s car and saw Toy Story 4 on the big screen, with the sound coming through the radio! It was a fab experience!
Sunday 30th June
Today was Diana and Grant’s last morning with us before they headed back to Dubbo (sad noises please). We ventured into Manly to have a nosey at the market – lovely jewelry, scrumptious looking food and artisan stalls were all down the street! They even sold rainbow bagels!
It was a lovely way to say goodbye, and I’m sure we’ll meet up again before our Aussie adventure is over!
Next time… Week 2!
Maritime Mu-sea-ums and Outback Adventures!