With my husband still sick with a bad case of flu, I decided to still venture out to Brisbane.  My cousin, Robyn, dropped me off at Apollo Wharf ferry terminal and I caught a ferry to the city centre.  Going along the river you can see some amazing houses and with the sun shining and the blue skies, despite it being winter, it makes Brisbane seem a very desirable place to live. But it would be way too hot for me in the summer. 


Brisbane City skyline







Australia Zoo

We had seen a programme, back in the UK, about two tiger cubs called Spot and Stripe.  They lived at Australia Zoo so we were keen to include a visit to the zoo in the hope of seeing them.  Unfortunately we didn’t get to see those particular tigers but we did see some of their other tigers who they go into the enclosures with and they treat them like they are house cats.  Stroking them, giving them milk, and you can pay extra to either go on a walk with the tigers or to have a photo taken stroking one.  We didn’t pay the extra money for those experiences, I was nervous enough stroking the kangaroo!!  

Tigers at Australia Zoo

I really enjoyed our day there with my husband, cousin and her family.  The boys were really well behaved, despite it being a long day and we pretty much had got there when it opened and left just before closing. It was during half term but it didn’t feel too busy, it seemed like there was plenty of space and lots to see. We got to stroke a koala bear and kangaroos, so definitely a more hands on experience than I have had at other zoos.

Australia zoo


Sydney & Bondi Beach Tour

We decided to do the Hop On/Hop Off bus tour around Sydney, which included a separate bus tour of Bondi Beach.  Each tour takes around 90 minutes, although there isn’t much commentary but it is in quite a few languages. 

Selection of shots taken on the tour bus

I spotted this really cool building which I think is a lovely idea.

Green Building

I am not sure why people rave so much about Bondi Beach, we have seen much nicer beaches around Sydney.

Bondi beach



Blue Mountains National Park

It was about a 130km drive up to the Blue Mountains to see the three sisters and visit the National Park.  There was a cable car that took us down into the rain forest and we did a walk around the wooden footpaths and then walked down to a waterfall. We then took the scary train back up and Allistar took the other cable car that went across vertically and came back. It was a lot cooler temperatures in this area, but at least it was a sunny day.


Blue Mountains

World’s steepest train?

Me on the train, eyes closed and covered!



Home and Away Location!

We visited Palm Beach area and saw them filming a Home and Away scene!  We walked up the hill/steps and made our way up to the lighthouse. It was a bit of a trek uphill for my unfit legs but I was pleased I made it.  The view was pretty great from the top.

Barrenjoey Lighthouse and Palm Beach

View from Barrenjoey Lighthouse


Palm beach


Humpback Whale Watching off Manly Coast

Today I learnt that Southern Hemisphere humpback whales tend to have white(ish) sides/undersides, unlike the Northern Hemisphere ones.  I have seen humpbacks in Hawaii and Cape Cod and I never tire of seeing them.  This is the first time we have gone watching and not seen a series of breaches.  There was an adult and juvenile whale that kept coming up beside our boat.  We took a trip from Manly and it wasn’t too choppy.

Whale watching off the Manly coast


Australia Ku-Ring-Gai Chase National Park

I know a blog is supposed to have lots of words but I don’t want to end up with a backlog and a lot of the purpose of this blog is to remind myself what we did and provide a selection of photos for family to see, so here’s a short post about today.

My brother-in-law, Tony, was our expert guide for the day, with me being chauffeur.  Our day at the National Park including some terrible kangaroo photos, hey ho!

Ku-Ring-Gai Chase National Park

Kangaroos and view to Palm Beach area


Australia…our first few days

I am very behind wth my posts because of jet lag and nights out, so here is a brief selection of photos from our various days out.  

We caught the bus to Manly and then hopped on the ferry to Watson’s Bay.  We saw some whales offshore but too brief a glimpse for a photo.  Allistar obviously went for the beer taster at the 4 Pines Brewery pub.

A day trip to Sydney on the bus led us to walk through Sydney Botanical Gardens (which is free!)…

Sydney Botanical Gardens

At the bottom of the hill, when walking through the gardens, you find Sydney Opera House …which is not how I thought it was, it is 3 separate buildings and the tiles are just like bathroom type tiles.  Here is a selection of shots.

Sydney Opera House

And a small selection of photos of Harbour Bridge.

Sydney Harbour Bridge