We arrived in Sydney International Airport at around 7am. It was much chillier and windier outside the airport than the 17 degrees I was expecting. We rode the tour bus directly for the City Tour since we could not check in until the afternoon. This is my second time in Sydney. My first time was a very cold winter back in July 2001.
Our first stop was Bondi Beach. Since it is still early and very cold, there were very few people there. The sand was quite fine and soft to touch.
Our next stop was a flat hill in the exclusive Vaucluse district called Dudley Page. And this was where we first saw the treasures of Sydney Harbor: the Bridge and the Opera House.
We then drove onto Macquarie's Point where we again took in the exhilarating views of the Harbor. In a hidden corner of this area was the rocky ledge called Mrs. Macquarie's Chair, where supposedly the bored wife of Gov. Macquarie spent her time reading or sketching views.
We were then brought to the Sydney Opera House itself for some more picture taking. I used that time to buy myself tickets to a performance scheduled for the next day (review of that play to follow.)
We then passed by the Rocks area to eat in a Thai (!) restaurant. After that, we went back to the hotel (the Rydges Capitol Square Hotel) to check in. After checking in, we walked down along the main George St. seeing the imposing Parliament Building and the very ornate mall called the Queen Victoria Building.
Dinner was a Chinese restaurant (again !) in Chinatown. After that, we all walked to nearby Darling Harbor. The night views there were breath-taking. I bought an expensive ($6 per scoop) cone of fantastic Black Forest ice cream at Lindt with rich dark chocolate and whole cherries. Great first day!
View from Dudley Page
View from Mrs. Macquarie's Point
Mrs. Macquaries Chair
Capitol Square Hotel
Darling Harbor at Night