We decided that Australia Day 2015 was a good option for us to return to Sydney as a family. It had been just over 2 years since we returned home to Melbourne from Sydney and the kids were keen to see some friends they haven’t seen in a while. Craig and I also took the opportunity to go on a hot air balloon ride with Balloon Aloft that I had won in a competition in the Australian Travellers Magazine. We stayed at the Waldorf Drummoyne Serviced Apartments, which is close to public transport and not far from the CBD.
If you’re going to be anywhere in Australia on Australia Day, Sydney is a great place to be. We decided to head into the city to see what was happening. Even though we lived in Sydney for 2 years, this is something we didn’t get round to doing so I was keen to check it out. Unfortunately we would not be able to stay until the fireworks as our flight back to Melbourne was scheduled for 9.50pm and we had to drop the hire car back to the airport at 8pm. I always use vroomvroomvroom.com.au as I find them really competitively priced. There are also plenty of awesome weekend trips from Sydney if you do decided to get a hire car.
Going into the city on public transport is really cheap and when you get there all the entertainment is free. Unfortunately this year the weather was very poor and it drizzled all day. No heavy rain just a light drizzle all day. It did put a dampener on the day though and probably kept the crowds to a minimum. Sydney’s not quite the same with out the beautiful blue sky over the harbour.
We caught the train to Circular Quay and when we got off, headed around to The Rocks. All the streets had been cordoned off to traffic and there were stalls selling street food and market products. There were also various stages set up around the area with bands playing. Caelan loves music and was happy to stand and watch the bands for a little while. We bought some corn on the cob and stood and watched one of the bands and there was quite a few people doing the same thing. Due to the weather, there was not as many people as expected but there was still enough people around.
The Rocks is located on the western side of Circular Quay, opposite the Opera House and dates back to the colony’s formation in 1788. We had a walk around the area located above The Rocks where the foundations of the original houses still stand. The kids were interested in looking at the size of the old homes and were pointing out were the chimneys would have been back in the day. I on the other hand was attempting to take arty photos of the Opera House and Harbour Bridge. Craig loves history so him and the kids were having fun looking at all the ruins!
We then headed round to the Sydney Opera House to have a look and for what ever reason the kids wanted to touch it! Security was pretty tight around the area in light of the terrorist activities in December. The Opera House was all blocked off for a big Australia Day concert on the forecourt and we were only able to walk around it. There were well known Australian acts playing but it was a ticketed event including Jessica Mauboy, Justice Crew, Sheppard, The Veronica’s, James Morrison and Guy Sebastian.
We stopped for a couple of beers at the Opera Bar and to let one of the showers pass over. Craig and I had a couple of beers and the kids had a juice and a bowl of chips. It would have been the perfect place to sit for the afternoon and wait for the fireworks that night. The Opera Bar is one of my favourite bars in Sydney and such a great spot when the sun is out. It has perfect views of the Harbour Bridge and with the Opera House right behind you, its what Sydney is all about.
It really was a shame about the weather and we left early as the drizzle turned into rain. There were 3 P&O cruise ships sitting in the harbour and the old green ferries were going in and out from Circular Quay. It doesn’t matter where you’re from, you can’t disagree with the fact the Sydney Harbour is a very beautiful sight. Rain, hail or shine!
Sydney’s a great city to visit with kids, Darling Harbour has some great things for kids including Madam Tussard’s, Taronga Zoo is one of the prettiest zoo’s in the world, who wouldn’t love to do the Sydney Harbour Bridge climb and if you want to explore a little further afield, head down to Palm Beach where Home & Away is filmed, lovingly known as Summer Bay.
What’s your favourite thing about Sydney? Leave me a message in the comments box below and whilst you’re there subscribe to receive our updates directly to your email address.