Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Sydney or Bust


Thursday 13 Feb- Sunday 16 Feb

We have been all over!!

We left the Sunshine Coast and picked up our car in Brisbane. After a tiny mishap (we got on the motorway (as they say here) and realized we’d left half our bags in the rental car parking lot!! :P), we were on our way.

We drove to Byron Bay—a little bohemian town on the coast, well known for surfing and its hip atmosphere. We lucked out with a beautiful campsite right by the beach. The sand here is squeaky!! I’ve never experienced squeaky sand!! The sand is so fine that a little squeak squeak is emitted as you walk. The moon was nearly full and we greeted its rising on the beach. We could hear the waves at night and it was beautiful and warm. The campground was also overrun with turkeys!!

Byron Bay



This fascinates me

Camp Beach



Jerk



When we woke in the morning, we saw people putting tarps over their tents and we realized the forecast must be for rain.

And rain it did!! It poured!! We drove and drove through sweeping rain all along the coastal waterway. Again with the comparisons---but it reminded us SO much of the Gulf Coast of America. The towns were a bit worn and weather beaten. The land was swampy and wet. Prawns (shrimp) were for sale along roadside stands. Shrimp kabob, shrimp gumbo, cocktail shrimp, BBQ shrimp, shrimp salad… ;)

Our destination was Coff’s Harbour and a campground recommended by our friend Matt (who we met in Fiji). Matt had actually given us a terrific itinerary for our trip to Sydney.

The Coff’s Harbour campsite was very modern and comfortable with the beach just across the road. We walked in the rain to see the waves crashing. Luckily, the campground had an enclosed and lit common area; we were able to access the internet and cook dinner.


Modern bounce pad :D


I taught Preston to play Yahtzee in the tent and we slept to the pitter patter of rain.

The next day we drove to Halliday Point, another beachside campground. It was quite deserted. Our tent was nestled under the trees that lined the beach. The rain continued to mist all around us. Preston braved surfing, while I spent time reading in the tent.

Deserted









Birds in our campsite



A short break in the rain allowed us to take a walk on the beach. The rain came back and we continued our yahtzee game and enjoyed our cheap boxed wine under the shelter of the tent.

We drove into Sydney in the pouring rain. We had a moment of panic, because there was no way to enter the city without going through a toll…but we didn’t have a toll pass and there was nowhere to pay cash. Fortunately, I discovered you can buy a temporary virtual pass online, which can be backdated 3 days. Visitor tip for Sydney, that is.

We headed directly for Bondi (BON-DIE) Beach. We arrived to incredible wind and rain. I could hardly walk to the toilet!! I was being blown sideways. Umbrellas all around were turning inside out. Preston was determined to surf this famous spot…so he was off into the churning ocean and I huddled in the car to stay dry. Amazingly, the beach had free wifi :D


Doin it


We found our hotel in the neighborhood of Wooloomooloo. That’s a lot of o’s ;) It was a cozy little place near the water. We took a stroll through the rain to the Botanical Gardens and down to Circular Quay to see the iconic Opera House.















Jacque and Matt, our friends from Fiji, kindly met us for dinner in North Sydney. We had a feast of amazing Thai food and it was wonderful after so many camp dinners!!




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