Sydney, Australia (in all its glory)
Sydney, Sydney, Sydney…where do I begin? This place is beyond anything I ever imagined it would be. Australia, specifically, has always been on the top of my places to visit (knocked out of 1st place a few times). I couldn’t really tell you why I’ve always wanted to go…maybe the mystic of a far away land, good weather and kangaroos. I will tell you one thing, Sydney is by far one of my favorite places visited thus far.
Yes, the journey was quite long from LAX. Approximately 15 hours (yikes, I know). And yes, I was in coach…how dreadful, right? Wrong. Being that the seat next to me was unoccupied, really the next two seats but my row-mate took one, I was about to squeeze my 5'3ish self across the seats to catch some zZz’s. Can’t go wrong with the fetal position. On top of being fed every so often, there are hundreds of great movies to watch that you kinda just lose track of time. Needless to say, by the time I arrived in Sydney (two days later) at 7am, I was ready to explore. Thanks fetal position!
If there’s one thing I learned about Australia, it’s that they are a very trusting country. Going through customs simply meant handing over your papers. That’s it. You don’t have to worry about pickpocketing, unless they’re from out the country. Even that seems a bit far-fetched cause who’s paying money to travel to steal? But hey. Also, another prime example is if you’re at a cash only place and you simply don’t have it, it’s alright with them. They’ll tell you where the nearest ATM is, trusting that you’ll come back. Really.
I stayed in Bondi Junction the first three nights and that location was everything. Not only was I next to the train/bus station, I was right across the street from a Westfield Mall, within walking distance from Bondi Beach and only several stops away from other amazingness.
I ended up checking out The Bucket List at Bondi Beach, which was super dope. It’s mainly an outdoorsy chill spot, but you can sit inside if it’s too hot. It’s a great place to watch the sunset although it kinda sucked they were doing construction on the beach. So I really had a fenced up view, but all good. Good company, food and dranks were all I needed.
Bondi Beach is a must. I hung out on North Bondi, blending in with all the locals. To be there for sunset was cool but it didn’t capture the true beauty of the ocean like it did during the day.
At night, I ended up at The Soda Factory in Surry Hills to meet up with a friend. It’s an “American” bar with foods like mac and cheese (not that great). However, they had a live band who did fun cover songs. Side note: I was looking for Wi-Fi while I was there but everything was locked. Boo, I thought you had me?!
Then we headed to Ivy, a club. Walked in feeling like I was in Miami with the open air dance floor. Pretty awesome. Was definitely the spot to be on a Thursday night.
If you’re into art, definitely check out The Museum of Contemporary Art. Can’t say I loved all of the installments but they had some fun ones that left me feeling like a kid again.
Manly Beach was like visiting a cool little town. The beach was super wavy…great for surfers. Just felt like a huge hang out spot. Oh yeah, had some good fish at Mongers…whatever sauce that is that they dip their food/fries in, that ish is impeccable!
I could go on and on about how great Sydney is and to think I barely put a dent into this city. Do visit King’s Cross though. They say this area is kinda sketch since The Red Light District is there and all the things that come with that association…but when it comes down to it, Australia really has no crime. So you’re good.
This area has great bars. King’s Cross Hotel is dope AF, and no, it’s not a hotel. Australia has a tendency to attach “hotel” to the name of a bar…maybe to make it sound cool?
And while you’re down there, you MUST make a beeline to Messina. Goodness gracious that gelato is to die for. You’ll be waiting in a line outside to get in and once you’re in there, be prepared to order your gelato like you’re at the bar. It’s dark and they have music playing. Super, super lit. Anyway, when I sampled the coconut and lychee flavor, I was sold for life. Literally, life. I could go back just for that but I just found out they opened one in Vegas so…we’ll see.
Sydney is just spectacular. It’s a beautiful combination of all the great cities there are in this world (SF, LA, DC, Barcelona, etc.) and people. Everyone there looks like a model; it must be a requirement to live in Sydney. Most importantly, the culture is out of this world. The quality of life is so much better there that everyone is so nice and happy all the time…it really rubs off on you and just makes you wanna be a better person.
So go on, visit Sydney, be happy and enjoy life.