Visiting Australia has always been on my list, so when my friends moved there it was a perfect excuse to go visit. Not only did I get to spend some quality time with them, I got to see some amazing spots in, and just outside Sydney. I visited in November (which is their spring) and the weather was just what I needed from our Seattle gray skies. I even missed the first snowfall while I was away!
There is so much to see there, and it just makes me want to go back and see more of their amazing country. Here are just a few of the highlights of my trip.
Australia is known for their gorgeous beaches, and I wasn’t about to miss them while I was there. The first weekend we headed out to Bondi Beach for the Sculpture by the Sea art walk. We walked the coastal walk to Coogee Beach and rewarded ourselves with a drink. :)
I spent a few nights out in Katoomba to see the Blue Mountains. What a beautiful place it is! The first day I took a short hike starting at Echo Point, looking out at the Three Sisters, then down the Giant Stairway, around Three Sisters Point, then up the Furber Steps. To finish the round trip, I walked along the Prince Henry Cliff Walk back to Echo Point. Whew!! It was close to 2,000 stairs. I must have been out of my mind. Thank goodness I had a massage scheduled afterwards. It was a real treat.
The second day out at the Blue Mountains I was able to tour two caves at the Jenolan Caves, which ended up being a little over 1,000 stairs. Who knew I would be doing a stair master workout in this trip? These caves were spectacular. They were also throwback lessons from Geology 101 class from our tour guides.
Royal National Park
We originally had intentions to hike to the Figure Eight Pool but once we arrived at the park the big giant sign that said “Figure Eight Pool – DANGEROUS SWELLS” deterred us. We didn’t want to get swept away into the ocean.
We ended up doing the Coast Track starting at Bundeena, to the Balconies, and finally reaching the Wedding Cake Rocks. This walk was absolutely gorgeous. The variance of the rock cliffs was amazing, and the views (despite being windy and cloudy) were gorgeous.
Carriageworks was more like a Saturday Farmers Market, whereas the Rocks Market had more art and collectibles. We had a great time checking out the vendors, slipping into some of the neighborhood shops, and breaking for tea and lammingtons. :)
The Melbourne Cup
My friend forewarned me about this event, so I brought a dress in advance. But once I arrived in Sydney I needed to find a fascinator to wear atop my head for this affair. We found one at the Rocks Market that was slightly pricey…but buying it from the sweetest lady who handcrafted it was well worth it. Who knew this soirée existed!
My last weekend, we day tripped out to Palm Beach. My neighbors back home gave me some tips…and it was well worth it! We had a beautiful lunch at The Boathouse on the water, then did a short hike up to the Barrenjoy Lighthouse to see the incredible view.
I didn’t do tons of shopping while I was in Sydney, but I did find three shops that were my favorite.
- Sorry Thanks I Love You carried some of the most beautiful local artists, and grabbed my attention by their simple display and layout.
- Uashmama makes handbags, accessories, and home goods out of washable paper. Yes…washable paper. See what I did with my Uashmama paper bags when I got home. :)
- On our way to find a bookstore, we stopped by this cute fabric and knitting shop. I picked up some adorable fabric that I can’t wait to craft into something amazing.
I can’t wait to go back to this lovely country to explore more!