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March 20, 2011

Riding the HO HO and Living the Beach Life

Day 3 (Wednesday Dec 29) - Hop On Hop Off, Bondi Beach

Today was our first hot and sunny day in Sydney.  We decided that we would be buying our Hop On Hop Off bus tickets today.  The Hop On Hop Off (or more affectionately known to us as the HO HO) is a double-decker tourist bus that takes you around the city.  A narrative describes the different sites you see.  You can buy a ticket and get on and off as many times as you want for 24 hours.  We decided today was the day we would conquer it.  Lucky for us the first stop was Circular Quay, about two blocks from our hotel.  We got to see different sites such as The Sydney Opera House, Sydney Harbour Bridge, Darling Harbour, Circular Quay, Town Hall, The Rocks, St Mary's Cathedral, Hyde Park, Kings Cross (the red light district), Sydney Fish Market, and many others.  We didn't expect to stay on as long as we did but we rode the entire ride all the way through.  We went home for lunch and changed into our beach gear.  I discovered that I left my swimsuits state side after emptying my suitcases and turning my bedroom upside down.

Since the HO HO also has a Bondi Beach route, we decided to take the bus to Bondi in the late afternoon.  Unfortunately we couldn't figure our exactly where the bus picked up.  We ended up taking a regular bus out there instead.  You never realize it until you get there but the beaches are all a good 30 minutes away from downtown Sydney.  We got there around 4pm.  We sat on the beach a little and of course Melissa pushed me into the water when a wave was coming and I got all wet.  We had our first experience with take away (aka take out) fish and chips.  Then we went shopping along the boardwalk with the soul purpose of finding Rachel a new swimsuit.  I got one and we decided to head back to the city.  Unfortunately so did everyone else. We had a bad experience trying to get on the bus.  Melissa, Mom, and I all got on but the driver would not let Adam and Dad on.  We eventually made it back all safe and sound but it was quite the crisis at the time.

Day 4 (Thursday Dec 30) - Coastal Walk, Bondi to Cooge


Today was another nice day (sunny and warm).  We decided to do the coastal walk from Bondi Beach to Cooge.  We made our way back out to Bondi Beach.  After lathering up with sunscreen we headed out.  Our first stop was Mackenzie's Beach.  We kept on walking and soaking in the views and our next beach was Tamarama Beach.  We were pretty hot at this point so decided to stop and take a dip.  Mom decided to stay back with the bags in the shade.  Melissa, Adam, Dad, and I went into the ocean.  You always forget how much you hate the taste of salt water until it gets in your mouth.  We also got to experience baths.  They are smaller sheltered pools of salt water where the little children learn to swim.  Baths are my new favorite and I wish I lived on the beach just so I could swim in one every day!  Our next stop was Bronte Beach.  We stayed here for lunch.



After Bronte, we headed off toward Covelly.  This beach was a little different than the rest. There was a lot of pavement and it reminded me of a public outdoor pool except the water was obviously the ocean.  This half of the walk after lunch was very hot and there wasn't as much of a chance to dip in the ocean.  The next point of interest was the Waverly Cemetery.  This cemetery boasts some of the most expensive plots with the best views.  After the cemetery we finally hit Cooge.  We stopped at a Beach Bar to get some refreshments before laying out on the beach.  After a long day in the sun it was nice to head home for an early night.

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