Two Nights In Sydney

circular quayIn July 2011 we spent an all to brief period in Sydney staying at Hotel Blue by the water in the wonderfully named suburb of Wooloomooloo, the hotel was as expected lovely and the location perfect for walking to the Opera House and the Royal Botanical Gardens.  We selected the hotel as it was within walking distance of the Opera House and neither my partner or myself had ever visited the Circular Quay.

Walking through the Royal Botanical Gardens we couldn’t but notice that just about everyone in the Sydney CBD goes jogging and exercising in the park during their lunch break.  I mean it was like everyone in Sydney was out for the day exercising, its a great thing to get our exercising in the city.  We come from Perth and you see the occasional runner by the Swan River in Perth city but no where near as many as in Sydney!

Sydney CBD

We got very lucky with the weather as it was cool but sunny and cloudless and spent an entire day just walking around the central business district, shopping area, the park and café strip adjacent to the hotel.  Two days is not enough time to really get to know the city but it was just intended to be a brief stop over on the way to our Tasmanian Road Trip. We took a Water Taxi and toured around Darling Harbour for a couple of hours before heading to the restaurant area in Circular Quay where we found an authentic Thai restaurant.

On our second and final evening in Sydney we had dinner at an Asian Food Fair in Hyde Park after scaling the dizzying heights of Sydney Tower and having one of the most disturbing experiences of my life.  I don’t like heights and I never have, even when I was a boy all the other kids could climb higher in our neighbourhood trees than I dared.  However, I believe in confronting your fears and overcoming them, well, at least I used to believe that.  Now I embrace my fear of heights and keep my feet firmly anchored to terra firma.

Sydney Tower

Sydney Tower has 2 observation decks, the first being a fully enclosed viewing platform that you can walk around getting a 360 degree of Sydney and Darling Harbour. You are perfectly enclosed in air conditioned comfort surrounded by 3cm thick unbreakable safety glass, like a womb with a view.  The second and most sinister platform is situated above and protrudes out into space and the engineers, who must be well versed in the dark arts, elected to build the platform almost entirely from transparent Perspex and left it open to the air!  You must don a blue clown suit and stow all objects that may fall in your pockets and you cant carry a camera out, the tour/safety guide will take photos for you and you must wear a safety harness that attaches to a guide rail on the platform.

Steeling myself and keeping my tears of fear under control we stepped through the door out into space and were met with exceptional views of the Darling Harbour and the famous Harbour Bridge.   It was disconcerting to say the least to look down at your feet and see the people and cars hundreds of metres below.  It was an experience and one that I highly recommend but not for the faint of heart and not one I will be repeating!

About Peter

Walkabout Editor and Writer and the administrator of the Walkabout Travel Network, Peter says "All these pages are yours, use them wisely and use them in peace!" We think Peter watches far too many movies!

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