Sydney has to be one of our favourite places to explore. While accommodation is always an issue, and the cities Caravan Parking is as scarce as hens teeth, one of the biggest advantages in Sydney is the Opal card… coupled with what is generally a affordable, usable and convenient public transport system. Yes… you can easily get around the vast city on the public network and with the use of one of the transit apps available for smart phones which links you via public transport, from where you are, to where you want to go.
We are back in Sydney again, and this time for a spell. It all began with one of our Grandies adventures with the Grandparents, us. We have a tradition in our family and that is when the Grandies reach the ripe age of 12 yrs, we make plans for them to join us in what is purely Grandparent time… at an Australian location of their choice, for a joint adventure and holiday. We have a lovely generous fistful of Grandies and keeping up with them is a entertainment in itself… and they are each reaching this milestone quickly in the last few years. We have explored Hobart, Sydney, Canberra, Perth, Cairns and even the Snowy’s with a Grandie in tow but it is clear that Sydney is becoming a favourite.
Each time we return to Sydney, which is after all our old home town, we rediscover old favourites, and find new attractions to explore. Each trip is planned with the singular Grandie in mind, their tastes and likes are taken into account, after all it is their holiday. And each trip brings delights and surprises for us along with favourites and adventures. On these trips they also learn a measure of independence, adventure and a little bit about their Grandparents and family history. It is a time that we really look forward to for sure, with such delights as explaining the historical meaning of Speakers Corner in the Domain is a special task as is bringing Sydney and our history to life for the next generation.
This trip began with Christmas, and a celebration on home ground for us. This Christmas was one of our ‘gather all people’ occasions which happen rarely enough these days but happen they do. We gathered around the Christmas fare, the family masonry oven in the back yard and the pizza dough… a real favourite for a cook-up along with some delightful baked fare. We chatted and talked and Chrissy was done and dusted with all the joys of a large family… and then the adventure began again.
Sydney in January is always a busy time and to slot right into the activities of the city is an easy thing to do. There are the old favourites including flashing the Opal card… taping on and off which for a interstate kid is a real delight as we have our ‘Grandie Opal Card’ at hand. But the destination is everything, and exploring the city is a real adventure.
First stop of course is the city, which we divided into experiences. Circular Quay is of course right up there with the grand view of the Sydney Harbour Bridge and the Opera House along with the harbour and from there we take the historic route, off to ‘The Rocks’ and a day of adventurous convict history with a splash of Maritime thrown in… or the military and settler route which begins in discovering the old tank stream, the remnant now found under the glorious colonial buildings of the old GPO and from there the Victoria Building and onto Hyde Park and the Domain along with the history of the Sydney town settlement in step, and some wonderful tales of the first nation which feature around the Botanical Gardens.
The shopping day is also not to be missed and taking the route from Central Station on the trams down to Haymarket and a favourite stop… Paddys Market. We then venture onto Cockle Bay or what is better known as Darling Harbour and the unique world of the City precinct. There are ferry trips we weave into our day as well coupled with such as the history of Pinchgut Island. A true favourite being a trip to Taronga Zoo and the delights of a full day visit, as well as the much loved run over to Manly Beach and the entertainments of Corso. It was after all here that Governor Phillip acknowledged the lore and authority of the Tribal Men when it is believed he came up against Pemulwuy, and with Bennelong, our first prominent tribal leaders. Governor Phillip was speared in an act of ‘payback’ on 7th Sept 1790 and it is forever a wonder to me why those looking to destroy and displace the true and traditional meaning of Australia day, don’t instead adopt this day in Sept as a celebration of Native title and authority. The three men were great Australian figures to be much admired for their understanding and leadership. Following is a short clip from Youtube noting the occasion.
Yep… Sydney is a grand adventure for sure and there are many other delights as well to be found in the museums and other attractions. This visit however we had a special adventure at the Powerhouse Museum.
They had a special event in animation and we became truly involved in the experience. Our Grandie explored the world of animation and got involved, as you do at the Powerhouse Museum, in colouring a picture of her younger brother. Once this pic was scanned it was animated and included in the moving display of 2D to 3D animation and what a delight it was. It was a real adventure… to become one of those special memories of the trip. Sydney… a great place to visit and a delight to take the family and kids as can be seen below in our video of the animation from the Powerhouse.
Jan is a Traveller and an Author. You can find out more about her books on travel on the page dedicated to Oldies at Large, where you will also find a list of her blog postings in topic.
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I hadn’t heard of ‘The spearing’ incident. Certainly worthy of discussion.
I’m quite sure you grandies boast about who has the best celebration of 12!
LOL … Ohhh they so do compare notes. Our first Grandie expedition was to Hobart, while the next was into Sydney. After they compared notes we had our ‘Hobart’ Grandie ask if she could join us on one of our Sydney visits and check out the sights. We do encourage our Grandies to ‘fly in – fly out’ on short holidays where ever we are so it has added advantages when they hit their mid-teens (at their own expense or their parents).
The ‘Grandie tip’ before this one was to the Snowy.. we are already hearing the Grandies whisper about ‘when are we going back that way’. We might plan a ‘self-funded’ Snowy trip for the group in a few years… Kids & Grandkids!