Hanging out around Sydney Harbour

We arrive in Sydney on Friday and walk out of the airport into a wall of dry heat. At 46 degrees celsius, it’s the hottest day on record. But that doesn’t stop us taking to the scorching pavements…

Copyright: Louise Ralph

I see a photo opportunity… a seagull poses in front of a giant, world-travelled rubber duck, the mascot for the Sydney Festival

It’s my real ‘new year’ and EB likes to make sure I grow old disgracefully.

This means my birthdays usually involve things like jumping out of a plane, driving a racing car, hanging doughnuts around an oil-slicked track at a defensive driving course, or whatever crazy thing EB can think of…and that I might actually agree to.

So far he hasn’t convinced me to go bungy jumping.

This year, we’re hitting the water for something a little more relaxing. So, after a scorcher on Friday, we’re up early to join our Sydney Harbour Kayaks eco-tour of Middle Harbour – and it’s 20 degrees cooler than yesterday. Of course.

Sydney Harbour is awe-inspiring, whether you’re walking around it, sitting beside it, driving over the Harbour Bridge, or taking a ferry ride. From a kayak, it takes on a whole new perspective.

We weave between moored yachts and cruisers and past affluent harbourside residences, glide past stunning sandstone formations and remnant bushland, and stop at a tiny secluded beach fringed with oyster-clad rocks.

The hours drift by too quickly and soon we’re taking on a fiesty headwind to make it back to the Spit. It’s so beautiful out on the water, even when it’s choppy, and we’d happily keep paddling all day…

Back to reality, and EB’s plan to do another section of Sydney’s stunning coastal walk is thwarted. Too much good wine and conversation with friends on Saturday night makes waking up at dawn the next day an impossibility.

Copyright: Louise Ralph

Balmoral Beach

Instead we have a lazy morning walking around Darling Harbour, before meeting up with family and heading to beautiful Balmoral Beach. The cool change evolves to threatening grey and we watch the sheets of rain cross the harbour towards us.

Soon everyone is scrambling for shelter and the beach is deserted, except for a couple of teenagers and a jogger who shakes off the rain as he splashes along the pathway.

We shake the rain off too and frock-up for dinner at the iconic (and rather posh) Bather’s Pavilion.

Mais oui, there are worse ways to welcome in another year… Bungy jumping springs to mind.

Copyright: Louise Ralph

The Bather’s Pavilion at Balmoral Beach

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...wrapping words around travel, business, life and writing adventures. View all posts by the dragonfly

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