Have you ever gone to a place and be overwhelmed that you’re actually there?
That’s how I felt in Sydney. There’s a few places in my life where I’ve felt overwhelmed by being there. Taking a helicopter over Manhattan, visiting Vegas for the first time, Dubai. Sydney was one of those places. Purely because you see photos of places like the Sydney Opera House and Bondi Beach all the time from the other side of the world, especially now with social media. So to see these places in real life, with my own eyes was surreal!
I actually stayed pretty much on Bondi Beach in a place called The Village. If the beach is what you’re looking for then this is a good, relatively inexpensive place to stay. It’s basic, but you really just need somewhere to sleep and shower! I tell you, waking up each day, strolling 3 minutes down the road and ending up on Bondi Beach is amazing!
On my first day in Sydney I had to do all the touristy stuff. See the Harbour Bridge, see the Opera House, dodge the insane seagulls that will literally hover at your table and try to eat your food. All the fun stuff. I’m lucky that my friend Shane moved to Sydney literally the month before I got there, so he was a great tour guide. Brace yourself for a million tourists down around the Opera House, it’s no joke!
Having seen the Opera House at dusk, we decide to go to the local Glenmore Hotel (you can take the Irish out of Ireland), because they have a roof top bar that you can see a lot of the city, and Opera House at night from. Was great actually getting the chance to catch up with Shane and not stuck to my camera taking photos and videos of every thing I saw from every angle for a few hours. Honestly I don’t know how people hang out with me anymore when I’m away.
One thing I was repeatedly told to do was the Bondi to Coogee walk. Word of warning which I feel no one told me, it does take a few hours. Maybe I was told, but promptly forgot… The point is, give yourself a morning to do this, get to Coogee (or Bondi if you’re doing the walk in reverse), have a coffee, chill out, and then head back. Or take a taxi like I did, no judgement here. It really is a gorgeous walk, and having a Mexican Lemonade when I got to Coogee Pavilion was the perfect way to relax afterwards.
I met with Shane and basically crashed his after work drinks with his colleagues later that evening. I don’t know how the whole thing escalated, but we ended up in a bar, eating Mary’s burgers (which I have had an insatiable craving for ever since) and listening to jazz at 1am. Baring in mind this was a Monday night for them. Not that it mattered to me, I was busy being a professional lazy ass.
I have to say, I found a lot of the restaurants around Bondi to be really good! I feel like sometimes, restaurants near beaches are so average because they know people will come and eat there regardless. Whereas in Bondi, there were a few places I would definitely go back to. Number one on the list is definitely Harry’s where I had their ricotta hotcake with blueberries… Holy crap. It was amazing. And so pretty. Enough-edible-flowers-to-make-a-flower-arrangement, pretty. Honourable mention to Bills, Le Paris Go and Taqiza!
I think one of the best things I did when I was in Sydney was go to the Museum of Contemporary Art. I went to an incredible exhibit there called Pipilotti Rist. Unfortunately it’s last day was yesterday! It was such a brilliant exhibit, really immersive and totally impressive. If you ever get the chance to see some of her work, please do! It’s incredible. And the light show is one of the best I’ve ever seen!
If you’re planning a trip to Australia, then I know Sydney is probably on your list. It’s a big city and can take a while to get around, so keep that in mind. I’ve obviously only seen a small part of Sydney having had a flying five day visit. But it’s a brilliant city. There’s so much to see and do, and let’s be honest, eat (still dreaming about the burgers). If you’re interested in any of the places that I went to, I have them all saved here in my Google Map for you to view whenever you need them. Enjoy!