Tag Archives: Sydney Harbour

Oasis in the Eastern Suburbs

When a sunny, summers day arrives in Sydney it is all too easy to head to one of the city’s stunning beaches. Problem is that often, the rest of Sydney has the same idea as you. You end up struggling to lay claim to your own piece of sand and often find yourself wedged between families with crying children getting sand in their eyes, teens playing ‘stacks-on’swearing and joking around and groups of lobster coloured backpackers baking themselves in the sun. That is only after you have had to park in the next suburb and struggle with your beach bag, umbrella/sun-tent etc on the long walk through the back streets from the car to the beach.

What if there was an alternative? What if there were an oasis in the Eastern suburbs, away from the hoards, that offered lush, green grounds and gardens to lay your picnic blanket with plenty of shady trees to relax to the sounds of the surrounding birdlife? What if there were farm animals for the kids and on-site coffee for the adults? What if there were soft, grassy hills to roll down and all of this was just a stones throw away from a harbour beach where you could loll about in the water dreaming of what life might be like if you lived in one of the harbour side mansions dotting the shoreline.

Well, there is, and you can. Continue reading Oasis in the Eastern Suburbs

A-Z of Picnic Spots in Sydney

You know the feeling, a sunny weekend comes along and you are left scrambling for where to go for a picnic to get out and enjoy the sunshine. Well, here is my A-Z list that you can bookmark for just those weekends so that you can find the perfect spot for any type of picnic experience you are looking for. Continue reading A-Z of Picnic Spots in Sydney

A Staycation in Mosman

As much as you try to recreate the feel of travel in your own city, when you have to return home the holiday is over and you return to the same chores and routine you had when you set off for the day. There is something special about spending the weekend away from home- even if you are really still only down the road.

So, when my brother and his family asked us to house-sit (more specifically dog-sit) their place in Mosman, we saw it as an opportunity for a mini staycation. Housesitting is a great inexpensive way to get a mini-holiday with all the the conveniences of home including toys and kitchen basics, and all for the price of walking and feeding the dog!

11700819_10153346633580791_1321883799109532615_n-2
Sunrise overlooking North Head

Continue reading A Staycation in Mosman

5 Ways to Experience Indigenous Culture in Sydney

For me, travelling has always been an opportunity to experience and learn about other cultures. In Australia, we are lucky to have one of the world’s oldest continuing Indigenous cultures but many Australians are still discovering the beauty of our very own vibrant Aboriginal cultures.

NAIDOC Week is an annual celebration of both Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and will take place 5th – 12th July. Here are my top 5 things to do in NAIDOC Week in Sydney to experience and celebrate Australia’s first people, their culture and the importance of keeping their traditions alive today. Continue reading 5 Ways to Experience Indigenous Culture in Sydney

Sunny Spring Days North & South of the Bridge

Sunny Spring days in Sydney are made for being harbour side. Whether it be a family picnic in a park or a casual lunch and a few drinks by the water with friends, Sydney Harbour is one of the best places to be.

After a friend’s wedding at Hunters Hill Sailing Club, we returned last Sunday for a family picnic at Clarkes Point Reserve. Clarkes Point Reserve sits on the harbour’s edge opposite Cockatoo Island. It is easily accessible by car and there is plenty of parking only a short walk to the picnic ground. Alternatively, it is only a short 15 minute walk from the Woolwich Ferry Wharf. Continue reading Sunny Spring Days North & South of the Bridge

A Day as Tourists in Circular Quay

Festivals and events are great, but sometimes we forget the great free entertainment available in Sydney all year round.

Last Friday, the girls and I headed into Circular Quay on the train. The girls love public transport- and the simple joy (from a child’s point of view anyway!) of watching people coming and going and the scenery whizzing past. The train journey itself becomes part of the adventure.

WP-Circular-Quay-with-cruise-ship-bridge-quays-and-Sydney-Opera-House-620x256

It is only a short walk from Circular Quay station to the Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA). The MCA often has kids activities that I have heard are great, but today we just wanted to check out the art. Entry is free but if you stop by the front desk on your way in they will give you a fun worksheet for kids to use as they work their way through the gallery. The sheet is designed for Primary School aged kids but I could easily talk my four year old through it to help focus her attention. It has fun activities like challenges to write down all how many images of birds they see etc.

1016413_10152719898790791_882414622625401498_n

There is such a wide variety of art at the MCA from paintings to mixed media, sculpture from found objects to audio visual pieces. The girls loved exploring and were constantly pulling me from one piece to another and pointing out their favourites.

10675516_10152720583790791_8065033718772935119_n      10387234_10152720583840791_3344615621603715385_n

One of Sydney’s best kept secrets is the MCA Cafe & Sculpture Terrace – normally it has uninterrupted views of the Sydney Opera House and the Sydney Harbour Bridge, although we had to settle for just the Bridge on our visit as a large cruise liner was docked at the Overseas Passenger Terminal. The food is very reasonably priced and it is the perfect spot to take a break in a very relaxed atmosphere.

10408908_840652662632010_432644736857460822_n

Another hot tip is the MCA Gift Shop – it has great gifts for adults and kids alike, much of which you don’t tend to see in a lot of other stores. You can even shop online.

We left the MCA with our minds and our tummies full and began the walk around to the Sydney Opera House in the Sydney sunshine There are always a range of buskers dotted along the Circular Quay boardwalk. The girls were fascinated all the street entertainers, from the silver statue who moved when someone threw their coins in the hat to the talented artist creating detailed and realistic chalk drawings and, of course, the aboriginal music group with their digeridoos. For a few coins we were entertained for a good hour.

The Sydney Opera House is such a great, iconic building and it captures the imagination of young and old. My husband and I got engaged near the Northern Forecourt of the Opera House so it holds a special place in our hearts. We now own a tile on the tallest sail of the Opera House thanks to a recent Own Our House fundraising campaign – you can check out the view from our tile here. My four year old especially loves visiting the Opera House and exploring inside and out so we did just that, climbing the stairs up to check out the view across to the Sydney Harbour Bridge.

10710516_10152720583650791_6836226645452500636_n

After a quick ice-cream to cool down we board a ferry to Darling Harbour. A ferry ride is always a source of excitement for the girls and we quickly seek out prime position on an outside seat so we can enjoy watching all the activity out on the water. The ferry’s route takes us under the Sydney Harbour Bridge and past Luna Park‘s smiling face and fun-park rides. After much begging, I agree to taking the girls to Luna Park ‘one day’. We get off the ferry at the Maritime Museum and wander over to the Pyrmont Bay Light Rail stop for the journey home.

IMG_0034

So: three modes of Sydney public transport, one world class modern art museum, some great street entertainment, a wander around one of the world’s most iconic buildings and we easily filled a full day of activities for two small kids at a very minimal cost. Thank you Sydney!

Exercise, a Good Deed & a Tour of Goat Island

Sometimes I have to pinch myself how lucky I am to live and work in a city as beautiful as Sydney. I am also extremely blessed to work in a role that supports big business to make a positive difference in the community.

Some days, my job is an absolute pleasure… and this was one of those days. Together with a passionate group of colleagues I volunteered my time to support Landcare Australia– a national network of thousands of locally-based community groups who care for the natural resources of our country.

Continue reading Exercise, a Good Deed & a Tour of Goat Island