Existing Member?

American on Walkabout

42 Wallaby Way, Sydney

AUSTRALIA | Tuesday, 21 July 2015 | Views [535]

I spent the first few days of my Australian adventure in the beautiful city of Sydney. To my dissappointment, I was informed very soon after my arrival that there was no Wallaby Way in Sydney. Clearly, someone is missing out on making a lot of money off of tourists. However, this was probably the only dissappointment I experienced in the three days I spent there.

 Our travel group stayed in the YHA hostel in the historical Rocks District which was originally where all of Britain's convicts were kept when Australia was formed as a penal colony. The hostel was built on an archeological site that used to be home to some of the convicts. Pretty cool. The hostel also had amazing views of the Sydney Opera House and the Harbor Bridge from the roof.

After the short program orientation, we went on a walking tour of the city. Highlights included beautiful views of the harbor, the Royal Botanic Gardens which actually hosted 2 castels (somehow originally intended to prevent the French from attacking), and the Rum Hospital. The fun fact I learned about the Rum Hospital is that the name comes from the fact that convicts were paid in rum to build the hospital because Australia didn't have any form of money then.

When the tour finished, I peeked into the lobby of the Sydney Opera House, just to say I've been in it and then ventured over to the Museum of Modern Art until dinner at the hostel. Later, a couple others and I rounded out the day with a pint at what claimed to be Australia's oldest pub.


Day 2 was a super busy day. We got up early and took a bus first to the Featherdale Wildlife Park, then to the Blue Mountains Scenic World Katoomba, and lastly to the Waradah Aboriginal Experience Center.

At the wildlife park, I got to pet kangaroos, wallabies, a koala, and saw countless other animals truly iconic to Australia. We hiked in Katoomba for about an hour and a half and I'll admit it was absolutely freezing when we were at the top of the trail. It was supposedly -5 degrees Celsius, the lowest temperatures Sydney has seen in 15 years as I was told. Nonetheless, the hike was still beuatiful with gorgeous views of the Three Sisters rock formation and a very friendly and informative trail guide.  Getting back to the top of the trail was quite an adventure though since we took the world's steepest railway back up. Since I'm slightly afraid of heights, this was rather terrifying. We sat backwards on a series of benches enclosed overtop with a few bars on top to hold on to. It was so steep that I was literally staring straight down as we ascended backwards. I'm pretty sure my heart was still pounding from that by the time we arrived at the Waradah Aboriginal Experience Center. Once there, we painted our own boomerangs and then sat for didgeridoo and Corroboree dancing demonstrations. It was really interesting to learn a bit more about the Aboriginal people and makes me excited for the Aboriginal studies classes I plan to take while I'm here. 

After a long day up in the Blue Mountains, we returned for dinner at The Establishment, which turned out to be a fancier place than we were all dressed for. Oh well, the food was good and at least our whole group was all in the same boat. I went to bed pretty soon after dinner since I was exhausted, ending day 2 in Sydney.


The morning of day 3 was primarily taken up by more orientation meetings that while useful, weren't the most exciting. But we had free time for the rest of the afternoon which a few of the other girls from the program and I used to sort out our Australian phones and walk to Chinatown for an amazing lunch and walk around the city. We ended our last day in Sydney with a lovely dinner cruise around the harbor with decent food, a couple of drinks, and wonderful company before packing up for the move to Brisbane.

Tags: australia, sydney harbor, sydney opera house, walking tour


About stephmonahan

Bushwalking Mt Coot-tha

Follow Me

Where I've been

Photo Galleries

My trip journals

See all my tags 



Travel Answers about Australia

Do you have a travel question? Ask other World Nomads.