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Sydney - Day 1

After a good nights sleep it was lovely to wake up to a Norwich away victory. Even better was the view from our Hotel room when we pulled back the curtains to find the Harbour Bridge, Opera House and City Skyline.

Today we enjoyed the Holiday Inn breakfast before setting out on foot to take a circular route to The Rocks.

We went first to Hyde Park and saw the ANZAC memorial. It still amuses us how many places, buildings and roads take their names from the UK. One day last week it gave us great pleasure when we drove through Balclutha which had a Norfolk Street, Cromer Street, Lowestoft Street and Hasborough Street (spelt like that) all off the main road.

After this we headed to the Royal Botanical Gardens. Although it was cloudy the temperature was already mid 20's and so we stopped to get Karen a cup of tea in their nice outdoor cafe. We then marched on to Mrs Macquaries Chair with its splendid views over the Harbour Bridge and Opera House.

Eventually we reached the Opera House where we took the obligatory photos and I ran up the many steps to touch the iconic tiles on the roof. It wasn't until our first visit that I had realised that roof is just covered with your normal run of the mill white ceramic tiles.

By now we were getting hungry and looked around Circular Quay to get something to eat. However we balked at the tourist prices and decided instead to head to The Glenmore pub for a drink. We knew The Glenmore from previous visits as it was just outside the start/finish for the Harbour Bridge climb that we had completed twice before. This pub is just your typical Aussie traditional pub but the location is quite cool and the name of course means so much having been born and bred in Glenmore Gardens back in Norwich.

It was here that I decided to have my first 'schooner' of Cider since 2016. Since I have become much more careful with my food/drink intake, cider is one of the things I have chosen to cut out. I had however vowed to myself that I would have one again in The Glenmore if we ever went there and jolly nice it was too.

We then wandered slowly around the busy Rocks Sunday market. The sun was now out as we meandered through the stalls. Lunch of Caesar salad was then taken at one of the small cafes in The Rocks.

By now Karen's foot was getting sore so we slowed down somewhat and then decided to get the train back to the Hotel. We purchased a couple of their transport Opal cards and made the easy journey back to our Hotel.

This evening we went out to a local Italian restaurant that is very highly rated on Trip Advisor and deservedly so. The only downside was that it was down an alleyway that we had to reach by walking through one of the last seedy parts of Kings Cross. Karen was not comfortable doing so, but it was worth it.

It is interesting that this is our third visit to Sydney and neither of us are getting the 'wow' factor so far this time. It is still lovely, but the first two times the place really did take my breathe away with some of the iconic buildings. Now they haven't changed so it must be me. Is it because I have been to more places, or have I been away from home too long this time, or am I just getting older and less excitable? We did both agree that it had a totally different feeling to it than NZ. Today it felt like a big City back home. Somehow bigger and brasher than NZ. Still beyond comprehension that we are here and so far away from home and everyone.

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