This post is a continuation of our holiday in July (and my last Through my Lens post).
Once we had found accommodation in Sydney (I will refrain from entertaining you with the details of THAT little episode) we sat on the bed in our room and discussed what we would do the following day.
The Tween and the Garden Gnome wanted to visit Bondi Beach. I didn’t really mind either way and was researching information on my phone about getting there. Our concierge (who was in the room making up a bed for the Tween) commented “Don’t even think about driving. Sundays are woeful for traffic”.
She suggested that we catch a bus to the Manly wharf and then a ferry into the city and a further bus to Bondi Beach.
We’re always up for an adventure, so we decided that this sounded the better option (and far less stressful for the GG’s navigator 😉 ).
Early Sunday morning, we dressed and headed to the bus stop a few minutes walk from our accommodation. We were assured that buses run quite regularly on the weekends and were hopeful that the concierge knew what she was talking about. During our walk, the Tween discovered that wearing shorts and a light top and jacket is not a good idea, even on a sunny winter’s day in Sydney, and began to turn blue as the wind whipped our hair around our faces.
Not long after arriving at the bus stop a bus came along and we asked the driver to let us know when we had to get off so we could access the Manly wharf. He didn’t seem suitably impressed about our request but reluctantly agreed to help us out.
The bus gradually filled to capacity and the Tween and the GG found themselves standing until we reached the termination point for this route. At which time, the driver called out to let us know that this is where we get off. As we were totally clueless about where to go, he pointed vaguely in the general direction of our intended destination and we set off.
After a short walk, we stood across from the ferry wharf and waited for the traffic lights to change in order to let us cross. Whilst waiting, we stood as close as possible to the outdoor heaters of a restaurant on the corner until the little green man of the traffic signal beckoned us to venture from the warmth and proceed.
The wind was blowing quite hard off the water and straight through our jackets. The Tween was beginning to turn into an iceberg.
Luck was with us as we found an Aldi store on the wharf and purchased a pair of tights and jeans for the walking icicle. Eschewing the jeans, she decided to put the tights on under her shorts instead. 😀 😉
Once the necessities of comfort and warmth were taken care of, we purchased an all-day public transport ticket for each of us (less than $15 in total) and took our place to wait for the next half-hourly ferry to Circular Quay.
When the ferry disembarked I was amazed at how many people there were. I fully expect that on weekdays there are hundreds of people but was totally amazed at just how busy public transport in Sydney was on a Sunday.
We took a seat on the outside of the ferry and sat as much as possible out of the wind. (Unfortunately, the lady next to us thought it would be a good idea to groom her dog and didn’t realise that the wind was blowing right at us so we arrived in Circular Quay covered in dog hair 😦 )
I don’t think I’ve ever come into the Quay from Manly and it offered a different perspective of the harbour to us. I was quite taken by this lighthouse and what appears to be a gun turret on the heads.
History tells us that a Japanese submarine was sunk in the harbour itself during WWII so I guess that explains the turret.
As we neared the quay, we were surrounded by sailing boats and the sound of the horns of other ferries as the boats played chicken across their bows.
It was exhilarating to watch and photograph.
I’ll put some other photos of the first leg of the day’s journey into a gallery for you.
Please note: These photos are very low res format and as such they may look a little pixelated when enlarged.