So this is Sydney from the plane… I was a bit shocked at just how big it is… the city goes on for ever.

From the airport we jumped on the sky train into the centre as the very big old railway station was minutes from our hostel.

My husband loves to walk and explore, which is pretty much what we did straight away…

I love the mix of old buildings right next to glossy skyscrapers.

The Circular Quay and Rocks area are so good for shopping…

This bookshop was a stand out place, I had to pull myself out I certainly did not have room in my bags for books, or the weight allowance on the flights!

We found an amazing little market here too where we managed to get presents for our Mum’s and Gran all at once (beautiful handmade jewelery) and this mini cupcake which I couldn’t resist.

Swooning over Gucci bicycles… if only…

And as ever the Louis Vuitton window displays were very fun, this store had animals made from bags, the duck was cute but the croc was huge.

More lovely old houses near The Rocks.

And lots of big old churches.

We even went on a bus tour one cloudy day, which was fun for me to see all the city and get my bearings.

The famous Kings Cross Coca Cola sign is very cool…

Iconic, at night.

I really fell in love with the old Victorian Sydney houses in the centre. So pretty. Kind of a mix of English and American styles – which is how Australia feels to me in general.

We visited the fish market – a must do if you like seafood. See my full post here

We also visited the city’s own Hyde Park… which is teeny compared to ours!

You must visit the Queen Victoria Building… the shopping is pretty good around here but it’s the building itself that is worth seeing. So beautiful.

And the Christmas tree was so amazing… it reached from the top to the bottom of the building.

 
Stained glass and beautiful floor details…


We also ate dinner at the Westfield Tower, as a wedding present from one of Adam’s best men which was amazing. The tower spins round very slowly so you get a 360 degree view of the city.

I recommend splashing out on drinks here.

Thanks Nick!


Our last few days in the city were glorious sunshine that made us want to stay forever.

 
We left the same way we arrived, by train then plane. And off to New Zealand!

And so ends our whistle stop tour of Sydney… Next week I am getting too New Zealand!

Back to Australia’s best feature (maybe?) the beaches… there are tons of amazing near Sydney and I only saw a handful.

This is Bondi, which I didn’t love but there are lots of nice bars and cafes and restaurants nearby it’s probably very much the place to be seen.

There are so many sea pools in Australia, I think mostly because the sea isn’t always safe to swim in for multiple reasons, from stories about jellyfish, sharks and waves I can understand the need to stay out.

The walk from Bondi to Coogee is definitely something you should do if you visit Sydney, the walk is easy you cannot get lost and you see lots of beaches…

The waves were pretty strong in the AM, there were several people knocked into the pool by this big one…

The path takes you through this graveyard.

I don’t know what this beach is called but there were tons of BBQ’s and pavilions and children’s play parks around it and it was nice and sheltered and mini. A really nice beach.

The other thing I loved about the walk is looking at all the amazing beach houses.

There was a big sailing club at one cove, so many boats.

Then Coogee which I think was my favourite beach in Sydney, and everyone elses. It was very busy.

Another outdoor pool…

The amazing Chish and Fips

 

The amin attraction is Sydney, my good friend Johnny Fash lives here… which is why we kept coming back to this beach… this is the view from his apartment block roof. Jealous much?

The amazing curry he cooked for us…

 
Hmmm this post was a dangerous one to write, all I can think of now is getting back on a plane so I can lie on that beach again!

So the last stop in Australia was Sydney… we stayed right in the centre very near to the water and I ha so much fun exploring the city with my Husband as he had lived there before he knew all the best sites and even remembered how to get from place to place. Handy indeed.

Darling Harbour is pretty special, a huge expanse of water full of huge yachts and hotels and so many chic bars and restaurants it’s crazy.

We spent a lot of time here, sometimes nipping here in the AM to get coffee and breakfast, or a slice in the afternoon sunshine and on our very last night we had drinks in a bar attached to a brewery before we moved on.

There’s also a lovely area of brand new bars and restaurants and a Japanese Tea Garden just before you reach the harbour that’s also very nice.

I had the best hot chocolate here, it came in three parts; a cookie, a chocolate seahorse and finally the hot chocolate. So delicious, and surprisingly needed one chilly evening.

The sight you all want to see when you visit; the Sydney Harbour Bridge. I highly recommend jumping on a harbour cruise to see it at its best and go on a sunny day.



And of course the Opera House… I have to say I wasn’t that impressed from the water… but up close, again in the sunshine the articheture against the Australian blue sky it really is amazing.

It’s also pretty at night, this is the view from dinner one night near an area called The Rocks.

 
Right next to the Opera House are the botanical gardens, and they are beautiful… and so big. It took us a couple of trips to see it properly due to timeings and I am glad we went back.

It’s SO green.

 

And chock full of super old trees.


Government House looks suitably grand.


They were gearing up for New Year when we visited and the Mayor hold a mini festival for children every year… this was the stage. The set up looked so much fun.

There are also great views to the city…

 
It really is worth a good explore, we went on New Years Day and a lots of it was closed but we got to wander around the grounds.

And see the HUGE fruit bats… so cute but kinda scary… I walked quite fast under those trees! See them?

We also found this place… amazing. If I lived in Sydney I would so join…

One more of the two together… we arrived in Sydney to cloudy skies and saw a lots of sights on our first full day against them, but when the sun came out we went back and I am glad we did because now this is my resounding memory of the city.
 

 I have so much more to show you of Sydney, part two coming tomorrow!