My first impression of Sydney was one of frustration at its seeming lack of a real highway: One that either didn’t have stop lights on it, or that went around the city. Once I saw a map of the city, I realized why that was: too many harbors and bays.
We were staying at an Airbnb in Collaroy, part of the North Beaches area, so had to drive through the city to get there. It was a minimum 40 minutes drive to any of the sights, however; the view from the house was spectacular and the family was super-friendly. The girls liked using the game room (ping pong, pool, air hockey, etc.), and took advantage of their large collection of Barbie DVDs!
Once I had a few days there, my impression of Sydney started to change. It reminded me of London, Canada with all of it’s trees and brick houses. It is also very sprawled out, like Calgary. Then again, at 4.3 million people, it’s the population of New Zealand in one city.
On our first day, we explored the Sea Life Aquarium, walked through the Botanical Gardens to the Opera House, and took a Harbour Cruise, which the girls slept through. We tried to stay for the fireworks at Darling Harbour, but it was very windy and started to drizzle, so we left.
The Opera House is large close up, but looks miniature from afar, given all the tall buildings around it. We didn’t take a tour, as two performances were already on and another area was closed for a music function.
The second day we spent at the Taronga Zoo. It sprinkled a little bit, but for the most part was rain free. You definitely need a full day to cover the whole zoo. We made it through all except the lemur area and part of the kids trail. The girls got to touch a snake and lizard in the reptile area. We definitely got lots of walking in on this day.
On Our last day we went to Manly Beach. I couldn’t get over the colors there. The sand was such a different color from the white sand of Galu Beach in Kenya and the water was definitely much colder!
All in all we enjoyed our time in Sydney, but definitely could have used a few more days there.