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Slightly Behind

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Hi Everyone!

I'm sorry that I've fallen behind on my Sydney postings. Something came up that I had to tend to. I will be posting more soon. Thanks for reading, and again...sorry for the delay. 

Sunrise over Sydney Harbour (part one)

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Hands down, Sydney, Australia is one of my top 5 favorite cities around the world. Having been to Sydney before, I was certainly excited to be going back to this beautiful and thriving city that boasts such a diverse palette of life, culture and energy. It would be impossible for me to write everything that there is to do and see in Sydney, that is why there are many books on the subject. It's always humorous to me when I get emails from readers who remind me of the thousands of things I forgot to mention about their country or city, such as underwater basket weaving workshops and nymph hunting trips through the enchanted forests. Sadly, I just can't do it all. However, I am going to try to give you a visual and written sample of what I saw on this particular trip and hope that it inspires you go to there someday if you haven't had the chance. This is only part one of multiple posts that I will be writing on Sydney, so check back each week.

Sydney, Australia Harbour

I thought the best thing to do was to start off with a post on Sydney Harbour at sunrise. I love to be out on the water and the bay around this city is absolutely breathtaking, no matter what time of the day you're viewing it. However, the golden sunrise seems to add something special while the buildings and trees creep out from behind their shadows.

Sydney, Australia Harbour

Sydney has a wonderful skyline, along with other famous landmarks that are recognizable around the world. As I have explained in previous posts, it is quite common for people to think that Australia is merely outback and wildlife, but this is far from the case. Sydney, is a rather large city that spreads out over many miles. You can't walk it all, and it takes days to explore. There are lots of hills, trees, scenic views and modern development that keeps this city in the world's top destinations. I will show you many more photos in upcoming posts.

Sydney Opera House

The most famous, or I should say "recognizable" landmark in this city is the "Sydney Opera House". It's unique architecture has been the subject of multiple photographs and articles since it's creation. What surprises many people is that it's construction began in 1959. The design was such that it's been timeless ever since. My purpose here is not to give everyone a history lesson, so I will  mainly just point out some interesting facts here and there.

Sydney Opera House

As I began to write about earlier, Sydney is not in a dry desert climate, but a city that sits by the ocean and enjoys endless fresh breezes, along with enough moisture in the air to create a humid environment. I wouldn't ever say that the weather is uncomfortable, but it can get hot during the summer months. I've been there in Spring, Summer and Fall, and the seasons do tend to be defined.

Sydney, Australia Harbour

One of my favorite views is of the Sydney Harbour bridge, which was opened in 1932. According to Guinness World Records, it's the widest long-span bridge in the world. You can view this bridge from many places around the waterfront, and it sits right across from the Opera House. I find the design to have that structural appeal of something that has been grandfathered down to us, that retains it's historical value, but can stand strong among the best of bridges in the world. There's an aged feel to it visually, yet it's endurance is a testament to it's well designed architecture.

Sydney. Australia Harbour

As you can see, the rising sun just brings this beauty to life. It's easy to sit here for a long while and just stare. The accessible wharf provides a place to walk up and get great views, along with being able to see it from the water if you're out on a boat or Ferry.

Sydney Harbour Bridge

Various buildings along the wharf are also quite beautiful. There is a mixture of both old and new architecture that fits quite well together. It is clear that the city has put some thought into it's layout and has pride in what it presents. These buildings never look out of date.

Sydney Harbour wharf

Many cruise ships come into the Harbour and port right here at the dock. This dock sits across from the Opera House as well and obviously provides some great views. The port building was designed well and gives convenient access to downtown. There is also an ATM machine there if you need one. You can actually walk from the pier to downtown, but depending on where you're staying, it's generally best to take a cab. My experience with cab drivers in Sydney has been good over the years, and I didn't find them overly expensive. In fact, the drivers were always quite friendly and honest.

Sydney Harbour Port

A number of lucky individuals get the opportunity to live right at the waterfront. I can't begin to tell you how jealous I am, nor would I even attempt to guess how incredibly expensive a flat in one of these buildings might cost. After living in San Francisco so many years, I know how unobtainable waterfront property can be.

Sydney, Australia Harbour

It's great how one side of the Harbour is filled with large skyscrapers, and the other side has almost a quaint feel to it, as if it was a small fishing village. The bay just wraps around for miles in both directions and blends into other towns. Most of these places are accessible by the various Ferries, buses and trains. I talk a little more about that in future posts.

Sydney, Australia Harbour

There is a small theme park that sits right across the bay, it's called "Luna Park". You can see it from the wharf. I've actually never been to it, but it provides slightly creepy imagery that reminds of something out of a Stephen King novel. Mind you, it's been there for many years and seems to thrive with locals and tourists alike. You should see it light up at night.

Luna Park on the Sydney Harbour

If you want a close up view of the bridge, you can walk underneath it on that side as well. Not only is the bridge a sight to see, but you can actually climb up to the top of it on a guided tour. Certainly not for everyone, but if you have an adventurous spirit, then go for it. They say it's amazing if you're not afraid of heights.

Sydney Harbour bridge

I took a number of photos of the bridge, so I hope you don't mind me sticking a few in this post. The picture above will you give a better perspective of where Luna Park is.

Sydney Harbour 

On the wharf, there is a place where you can buy tickets for the various harbour cruises. Captain Cooke Cruises seems to be one of the more popular companies, even though they are not the only choice, and not the cheapest way to get out on the water. Many people take the Ferry across to the Zoo as well. I will show more pictures of the wharf later on to give you an idea of where to buy tickets.

Sydney Harbour

This is not a long post, but just a short introduction with some sunrise pictures that I hope you enjoy. I will be posting more on Sydney each week.

Sydney Harbour Bridge

There are a few more pictures of the harbour in my Flickr photo album HERE.

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