Thursday, 15th November – Sydney

Last full day in Australia. Boo! 🙁 It has, however, been an absolute blast. So many different experiences.

Awoke to a reasonably sunny and warmish morning, so decided to try the much-lauded Coogee to Bondi walk along the eastern coast of Sydney Harbour. This entailed getting to grips with the Sydney public transport system which, given the state of the roads around here was not at all easy.

Having consulted the hitherto reliable Google Maps for the journey out to Coogee, which involved a change of buses, we obediently waited on one side of the road for the first bus to arrive. However, another bus with a completely different number stopped on the opposite side of the road, showing Coogee as its destination. We shot across the road to board this bus and, after an interchange with a very surly driver who spoke very little English, we parted with a small sum for the fare to take us all the way there with no changes. Result.

Set off on the walk in bright and warm sunshine. By the time we got about halfway round, the weather was closing in and it was blowing a real hooly. It actually started to drizzle, so we took refuge in a restaurant recommended by a friend of Jean’s – the RSL Club. Thank you, Jan Follett! Absolutely top tip.

I know we weren’t seeing it at its best, but in our opinion, it wasn’t a particularly spectacular walk, despite all the hype. Nice enough, for sure, and we were glad we did it, despite the rotten weather.

Coogee Beach
Bondi Beach – at least I’ve seen it!

We were very fortunate on the way back to Circular Quay, as we tried to board a prepay-only bus – you use an Opal card, similar to the Oyster card in London. Of course, we had nothing like this, so the driver had every reason to refuse us entry. However, he asked us how long we were staying in Sydney and we replied, quite truthfully, that this was our last day. He let us stay on the bus for free all the way back to Circular Quay. Another result.
Once there, we decided to board the ferry to Manly Bay straightaway, otherwise we would never have been able to do both things in the time we had available. The trip was particularly noteworthy for its view of the Sydney skyline, but it’s a great ride anyway.
Wandered about Manly for a short while, which is very nice. Found time for a hot chocolate (Jean) and a red wine (me) before we got the ferry back again. Much choppier this time.
Both missions well and truly accomplished.
Back to the hotel to complete our packing before departure to Sydney Airport at sparrowfart tomorrow for our flight to Auckland.
New Zealand, here we come!

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