Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Australia Trip Day 6: Blue Mountains

I had no idea why I was so tired in the morning and I was asleep on the tour bus. It took us nearly an hour to reach Darling Harbour to change to another tour bus because there was an accident at the Harbour Bridge which caused massive traffic jam. It cut short our tour time at the Blue Mountains but well, shit happens.

We traveled across Harbour Bridge and there is actually a pedestrian lane. I will remember this and walk across this on my next visit to Sydney. Hehe.. The tour guide is very good. His accent is not as 'sticky' as the tour guide we had in Darwin so it was much easier to understand. He shared a lot of information right from the history of Australia as a nation, the places we were visiting, and even Australia native animals. Well done!

We had a toilet stop at the city of Leura. It would be nice to walk around to take photos there but we only had limited time for toilet so too bad. We then reached the Scenic World Blue Mountains and we only had about 1.5 hours. It was not enough to experience this place to the fullest. From the drop off point, we took the Scenic Skyway which runs every 10 minutes. Bleah.. I should have done a 5 minute walk to the lookout point for some pictures and taking the next skyway. I thought of returning but time simply did not permit so I missed the lookout altogether.

The Scenic Skyway should me amazing if it was not so crowded. The floor in the middle turns transparent to allow us to see what is beneath. On the right is Katoomba Falls (which was not amazing due to lack of rain this year) and on the left is the Jamison Valley and the Three Sisters. Sadly when it is so crowded, you can only choose one to see depending on where you stand. There is an alternative way on foot if you do not want to ride the Skyway. I would like to experience that in the future :(

We then continued with the Scenic Railway which is the steepest incline railway in the world to reach the bottom of the valley. It is really steep and I was almost standing on my feet (and minimal contact between my butt and the seat) during the ride but sadly the ride was too short. The railway goes back up again without turning which means if we take it to go up, it is moving in opposite direction from the way we sit. Will be interesting to experience that too.
The railway track
At the bottom, there are a few routes to walk but because of the time, we could only choose the 5 minutes walk before reaching the Scenic Cableway for the journey back up for lunch. This will be one place that I will revisit as I have not experienced it to the fullest. However, I have to warn you that the Three Sisters look too small from the various lookout points so you will not get photos as nice as those you see of the rocks online.

I spent too much camwhoring and we decided to skip the next destination to Waradah Aboriginal Centre. Luckily the tour allowed us to do that by making a return trip 30 minutes later after the first departure from Scenic World in case people need more time there. I am not disappointed skipping it but I definitely am disappointed to miss the photo taking opportunity at the Echo Point which is outside the Centre. Sian.. Really need come back to Blue Mountains sia.. Despite being called Blue Mountains and the weather forecast predicted 27 deg C, it was freaking hot. I must be looking like an idiot wearing jeans and long sleeve hoodie while outer tourists were wearing sleeveless top and short. So yeah, just something to take note.

My dream of petting koala and wallaby is fulfilled in the next trip to Featherdale Wildlife Park. Koalas are so lazy but cute and the staff were very helpful in taking photos. The wallabies are also extremely friendly as they are roaming around freely in the park. The one I took photo with was happily lying on the ground totally not bothered by me stroking it. I bought kangaroo/wallaby food but I could not find animals to feed so I decided to just leave it somewhere. Gone is my dream of feeding a wallaby and to take a picture :( I did not know that further down, there is another opportunity to feed. There was no food to buy near there although there were so many wallabies running around. Sian.. I also got very angry with my sister who missed the opportunity to take picture of me with 4 wallabies lining up. I was so irritated when she kept saying she was scared of them. I was the one posing near the animals so why was she the one being scared. Haiz...
Definitely must come back here!
Cute but lazy koalas
Cute wallaby which is not bothered by the humans
Oh ya, I almost forgot about Tasmanian Devil. It looks nothing like the Looney Tunes character but it is really devilish. I wanted to take a photo and it was running and getting ready to jump over the fence.. hii... I decided to run away. I also did not manage to see dingo.

It was almost rush hour on our way back to Sydney so to prevent that, the tour organiser is very smart to arrange a ferry ride across Paramatta River to reach Sydney. The ferry terminal is near Sydney Olympics compound so we got to see and pass it by. I would not say I really enjoy the ride as I could not take picture. My sister and my mum wanted to sit comfortably in aircon inside the ferry :( And I was already too excited to meet my friend later on. Hehe..

The ferry ride allowed us to alight at either Circular Quay (where the Opera House is) or at the Darling Harbour. We chose Circular Quay. My mum wanted to take picture with the Opera House again hoping for better pictures as the sun had moved to the west. Well, I am glad I was happy with yesterday's photos. Although it was more shiny in the morning, there was very few tourists.

I met my friend and his wife at the hotel and had a dinner paid by him. Hehe.. Shame on me. Lol.. Anyway the soba was rather terrible. It was great catching up with him. We were quite close in secondary school and then we sort of lost contact. In 2009, he was trying to get into NUS (he did not manage and hence he did his masters in Seoul eventually) at that time. Our plan to meet failed because I was too busy but we ended up meeting unexpectedly at LT27 bus stop before my lecture. I ended up skipping my lecture to chit chat with him at the bus stop. Lol. I did not take a picture to remember that occasion. Our meet up this time was rather unplanned to so I definitely would want to take a picture. I asked someone at the hotel lobby and I got a blur picture. Sigh.. Why?? Why?? Why?? :(

I was very full but I realised there was a Starbucks just across the hotel so I forced myself to give it a try. The menu is not as much as the Starbucks in Singapore but the matcha taste is definitely more generous. I also realised that Capitol Theatre is just across the hotel which means that the hotel is also very near to Paddy's Market. When we took the light rail yesterday, the journey felt quite long.

I can finally relax now. Tomorrow we will be flying to Melbourne and with my uncle there, everything will be taken care of. No more stress of finding directions and deciding itineraries. Hehe...

No comments: