The one with Sydney, Part I

Back to reality, yall! I was ready to sleep in my own bed (and see Barr), but was sad to leave such a fun ten days behind me. I have a slew of pictures, stories, and itinerary/activity ideas for those of you interested in visiting Sydney and/or Adelaide/South Australia wine country. If you are in this part of the world, I recommend both trips! 🙂

So you got a quick sneak peek into our Blanton weekend o’ fun in Sydney, but my next two posts will outline our activities and where we ate (duh) – along with lots of pics (again, duh). So without further ado…

I arrived on Thursday morning (Barr was slated to arrive later in the evening) into Sydney to gorgeous weather. It had been a bit chillier in Perth so the 70F temps were a welcome change! Our hotel was in an area of the city called the Rocks, which is basically one of the more historic areas of Sydney and also is nearby to the Opera House and Harbor Bridge — I really loved the location! Being close to Circular Quay was huge, and being able to see the bridge and Opera House from our hotel was a big plus!

Neighborhood map of Sydney (via Lonely Planet)

Even though I am still on my no sugar plan, I did deviate a bit during my trip – you only live once, right? Multiple folks and guide books recommended Adriano Zumbo’s patisserie and his famous macarons – obviously I was on board, and they didnt disappoint – the flavors are so unique; I limited myself to just one (rudy grapefruit and jasmine flavor), but they all looked amazing 🙂

I walked around the Rocks after my treat to work off the treat, and stumbled onto a great little late lunch spot called the Fine Food Store, where they had plenty of gluten free sandwich (Aussie speak = toasties) options – not to mention some great coffee, which was much needed after my 5AM flight! 

Barr arrived later that evening and we promptly hit the hay as we had an early morning ahead of us: we had a Sydney Fish Market behind the scenes tour bright and early at 6:45AM! I wish I could have taken some more pictures inside the fish market, but during the bidding process and within the actual market with all the seafood, photography is prohibited.

Barr rocking our fluorescent orange tour vest

Barr rocking our fluorescent orange tour vest

But watching the folks bidding upwards of thousands of dollars on large or rare fish was pretty cool! The tour itself was also a treat – our guide walked us down by the auction and through the different crates of exotic (and not so exotic) seafood, teaching us little tidbits about the fishing process, recipes, and other interesting information along the way.

One big crab

One big crab

One of my favorite parts of the tour was watching a chef take a giant tuna, fresh from the auction, carve it up within two minutes, and get to try a small bite of the fresh, raw tuna:

This became...

This became…

THIS! Nom nom nom - freshest sushi I ever did have!

…THIS! Nom nom nom – freshest sushi I ever did have!

After the tour, we grabbed a quick breakfast at Bill’s in Surrey Hills – I wish I had been “that person” and taken pictures of our food, but I was remiss. Suffice it to say that should you ever find yourself in Sydney, run – dont walk to Bill’s!

Bummer that Barr had to go off to work after breakfast, but I had the plan to head to the world famous Taronga Zoo. You can drive to the zoo, but I would recommend taking the ferry. I grabbed the express ferry from Circular Quay straight to the zoo. You can buy a ferry ticket in combination with a zoo ticket – couldnt be easier! Not to mention the views looking back on the city from the water en route to the zoo are breathtaking. The zoo itself is nice enough, but the views from zoo are what make it so special. As you can see:

En route to the Taronga Zoo

En route to the Taronga Zoo via the ferry

The Sydney Opera House from the ferry

The Sydney Opera House from the ferry

Giraffe in the foreground; Sydney in the background

Giraffe in the foreground; Sydney in the background


Beautiful Sydney

And of course, some of the animals:

Koala bear, snoozing

Koala, snoozing

Kangaroo, snoozing

Kangaroo, snoozing

Penguin, swimming (just for Mike and Mema!)

Penguin, swimming (just for Mike and Mema!)

Friday was the day of the selfie (Lou - the ellies say HAY!)

Friday was the day of the selfie (Lou – the ellies say HAY!)

More selfies en route back to the city

More selfies en route back to the city – no shame

A friend had said that if you’re in Sydney and can catch a performance at the Sydney Opera House, do it – so we did 🙂

The Sydney Opera House in all her glory

The Sydney Opera House in all her glory

Miraculously enough, it was a performance that I (and even Barr! Bless him – such a trooper) were super excited about: Beethoven’s Emperor (Concerto no. 5). (Side story: growing up, my parents read this super cute story to my sister and I called Beethoven Lives Upstairs; I still remember that book to this day and educated my sweet husband on some of the biographical points of Beethoven’s life from recalling that story). Sadly, I only got one shot of the inside of the performance, but hearing Beethoven performed in the Sydney Opera House is a memory I will cherish forever.

photo 51

Prior to the performance, we grabbed a drink at the Opera Bar, which is adjacent to the opera house. I had done a run earlier in the afternoon by the strip of restaurants/bar, including Opera Bar, and it was packed all day and night. There was a little live band playing some fun music and the cocktails went down a treat. And of course, the view of the opera house and Harbor Bridge were pretty cool!

So there you have it – our first two days in Sydney: pretty packed, and we wouldnt have changed a thing! Stay tuned tomorrow for the final two days of the Sydney trip 🙂 Until next time…

5 responses to “The one with Sydney, Part I

  1. Emily Aragona

    Catching up on your blog and your Sydney posts remind me of our trip there a few years back-seriously one of my fave cities ever. Thanks for jogging my mind on some awesome memories!! I swear I can recognize photos of Bondi beach anywhere 🙂
    Enjoy all those travels, hugs to you both!!

    • Emily!! Your comment made both Barr and I smile 🙂 🙂 We loved Sydney too (how could you not??) Maybe once youre little one is big enough, you’d be down for another trip down under? Well miss you and Arin in August, but cant wait to hear about your new addition xoxo

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