And the Winner is… Sydney

We arrived in Sydney where the Indian summer continued to bless us with great weather. We stayed at Lakeside Sydney which is a great caravan park situated on the banks of Narrabeen Lakes in Sydney’s Northern beaches, maybe a hundred metres from North Narrabeen beach. It was great to get back in the water for a few waves as the downside to the epic weather was seriously small surf. Surfing North Narrabeen is sweet and sour, the waves are pretty bloody good for a beach break but there’s a lot of local rippers, young and old, and the localism is pretty full on. More on that later…

Loreta’s parents were due to arrive the day after we did so Loreta was up for an early start to pick them up from airport. After waiting at the airport for over an hour after their scheduled arrival time the penny dropped and Loreta realised that there had been a mix up and Joe n Cathy weren’t flying in until the next morning. Oh well nothing like doing things twice, so rinse and repeat, up early again the next day!

Joe and Cathy arrived safe and well…. eventually. It was great to catch up as it had been almost 4 months and I’m sure they missed us almost as much they missed the kids. After a couple of days hanging around the park, recovering from jet lag, chilling and generally catching up we decided to hit the tourist trail. First stop Circular Quay. After a long bus ride form North Narrabeen to Manly the boys thought the Manly Ferry was fantastic. Coming in to the harbour for the first time was pretty cool even though there was a thick smoke haze the Opera House and Sydney Harbour bridge were impressive to say the least.

Manly Ferry - Sydney Harbour, NSW
Manly Ferry – Sydney Harbour, NSW
Darling Harbour - Sydney Harbour, NSW
Darling Harbour – Sydney Harbour, NSW

I got sent on a wild goose chase trying to get my camera fixed, each store kept telling me to go to the the next, a few hundred metres or so up the road.  Eventually I gave up and headed back to Circular Quay but it meant I got to see a bit of the city so not all bad. By the time I got back everyone was starving so lunch at the Opera Bar was the go. What a great spot! I reckon we could handle hanging out, drinking, and eating there a bit more often.

Centrepoint Tower - Sydney, NSW
Centrepoint Tower – Sydney, NSW
Mama e Papa - Darling Harbour, Sydney, NSW
Mama e Papa – Darling Harbour, Sydney, NSW

This shot nearly got me evicted from the federal site that is Circular Quay. I thought I could sneak through the no access chain and climb a few flights of stairs to take some shots. Apparently I set of at least half a dozen alarms in doing so.

Circular Quay - Sydney, NSW
Circular Quay – Sydney, NSW
The Opera House - Sydney Harbour, NSW
The Opera House – Sydney Harbour, NSW
Giuseppe - Sydney Harbour, NSW
Giuseppe – Sydney Harbour, NSW
Harbour life - Sydney Harbour, NSW
Harbour life – Sydney Harbour, NSW

Joe and Cathy wanted to spend some more time in Manly so we tagged along too. We ate lunch at Crinitis, the food was fantastic, Joe reckoned it was the best pizza ever – Napolitana with anchovies. We walked the streets and malls and checked out Manly Beach, a beautiful part of this country!

Freshwater - Manly, NSW
Freshwater – Manly, NSW
Nonna e Nonno - Manly Beach, Sydney, NSW
Nonna e Nonno – Manly Beach, Sydney, NSW

In between tourist trips it was great just hanging out with Nonna and Nonno. The  boys loved it and I’m sure so did Joe and Cathy. The weather didn’t hold out forever so one rainy day we made the trek out to the Blue Mountains. We took in Wentworth Falls, then stopped for a picnic lunch at Gordon Falls. I convinced everyone to hike down the bottom of the track to view the Pool of Siloam. Only a mere 45 minutes return at medium grade. Turns out medium grade ain’t so easy when your 2, 3,or 70ish. Anyway Thomas and I continued on and were  amazed at the falls at the bottom of the very steep valley. I could have spent hours down there trying to get the perfect shot. We spent a while trying to get that shot, maybe not perfect but pretty damn good in my opinion. Last but not least we went to the  Three Sister’s lookout – breathtaking, even on a cold, windy and drizzly day, but well worth the look.

Deceptively good - North Narrabeen, Sydney, NSW
Deceptively good – North Narrabeen, Sydney, NSW
Somewhere over the - North Narrabeen, Sydney, NSW
Somewhere over the – North Narrabeen, Sydney, NSW
Pot of gold - North Narrabeen, Sydney, NSW
Pot of gold – North Narrabeen, Sydney, NSW
La Famiglia - Wentworth Falls, The Blue Mountains, NSW
La Famiglia – Wentworth Falls, The Blue Mountains, NSW
Love ya Mum - Wentworth Falls, The Blue Mountains, NSW
Love ya Mum – Wentworth Falls, The Blue Mountains, NSW
Peek a boo - Leura, The Blue Mountains, NSW
Peek a boo – Leura, The Blue Mountains, NSW
Bats in the cave - Leura, The Blue Mountains, NSW
Bats in the cave – Leura, The Blue Mountains, NSW
Sentinels - Leura, The Blue Mountains, NSW
Sentinels – Leura, The Blue Mountains, NSW
Pool of Siloam - Leura, Blue Mountains, NSW
Pool of Siloam – Leura, Blue Mountains, NSW
I got it - Leura, The Blue Mountains, NSW
I got it – Leura, The Blue Mountains, NSW
Me too - Leura, The Blue Mountains, NSW
Me too – Leura, The Blue Mountains, NSW
Le Tre Sorella - The Blue Mountains, Katoomba, NSW
Le Tre Sorella – The Blue Mountains, Katoomba, NSW
The Three Sisters - The Blue Mountains, Katoomba, NSW
The Three Sisters – The Blue Mountains, Katoomba, NSW

 

Mountain Goats - Blue Mountains, Sydney, NSW
Mountain Goats – Blue Mountains, Sydney, NSW

Joe and Cathy left for their Tasmanian holiday, then it was time for us to hang at Sydney’s northern beaches.  I caught a few waves  with cousin x who “moved in” to the caravan for a week or so and we all just hung out at the beach, chilled, ate and drank way too much good food and wine.

Little Avalon - Avalon, Sydney, NSW
Little Avalon – Avalon, Sydney, NSW
Giant Sandwich Reef - Avalon, Sydney, NSW
Giant Sandwich Reef – Avalon, Sydney, NSW

Oh and I nearly forgot I got old. 40! Where did that come from? We celebrated at the Sands Narrabeen and had a few drinks for all of you, our family and friends. A few days later another cousin Simone and her daughter India flew in to town and we all caught up for some more belated, hilarious Birthday celebrations.

Naughty forty - The Sands Narrabeen, Sydney, NSW
Naughty forty – The Sands Narrabeen, Sydney, NSW
Party time - The Sands Narrabeen, Sydney, NSW
Party time – The Sands Narrabeen, Sydney, NSW
Can I see Mummy? - The Sands Narrabeen, Sydney, NSW
Can I see Mummy? – The Sands Narrabeen, Sydney, NSW
Like Father like Son - The Sands Narrabeen, Sydney, NSW
Like Father like Son – The Sands Narrabeen, Sydney, NSW
Cousins - North Narrabeen, Sydney, NSW
Cousins – North Narrabeen, Sydney, NSW

We spent one of our remaining few days in Sydney at Taronga Zoo which is a must. The kids loved it, especially the seal show. On the way our Hema Navigator took us on one of its “shortcuts” through the back lanes of Middle Head to avoid the centre of Mosman. A million and one turns left and right were starting to get a little frustrating but then we ended up with a fantastic view out over the Sydney Heads. One of the joys of traveling in an unfamiliar place, when you stumble across something like that!

Two long necks thanks mate - Taronga Park Zoo, Sydney, NSW
Two long necks thanks mate – Taronga Park Zoo, Sydney, NSW
Showtime - Taronga Park Zoo, Sydney, NSW
Showtime – Taronga Park Zoo, Sydney, NSW
Bird or Pineapple - Taronga Park Zoo, Sydney, NSW
Bird or Pineapple – Taronga Park Zoo, Sydney, NSW
Icons - Taronga Park Zoo, Sydney, NSW
Icons – Taronga Park Zoo, Sydney, NSW
Sydney sails - Taronga Park Zoo, Sydney, NSW
Sydney sails – Taronga Park Zoo, Sydney, NSW
Not a bad spot for picnic lunch - Taronga Park Zoo, Sydney, NSW
Not a bad spot for picnic lunch – Taronga Park Zoo, Sydney, NSW
Silverback - Taronga Park Zoo, Sydney, NSW
Silverback – Taronga Park Zoo, Sydney, NSW
Best seat in the house - Taronga Park Zoo, Sydney, NSW
Best seat in the house – Taronga Park Zoo, Sydney, NSW
Cheeky Monkey - Taronga Park Zoo, Sydney, NSW
Cheeky Monkey – Taronga Park Zoo, Sydney, NSW
Komodo - Taronga Park Zoo, Sydney, NSW
Komodo – Taronga Park Zoo, Sydney, NSW
The Heads - Sydney Harbour, NSW
The Heads – Sydney Harbour, NSW

Till next time, Caio TLTD

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