I must start this post with a slight apology, as there have been very few Living in Sydney posts in recent time. As mentioned in other posts I went home to England at the beginning of April, and then upon my return to Sydney I found myself plagued with all sorts of various bugs that rendered me housebound for a little while. However, despite my ear still playing up a little I’m not in pain any more and feel like I have a lot more life in my bones, so the Sydney adventures have resumed!
A week or so ago Sydney was subject to the worst storms Sydney has seen in about a decade. Great timing for me, right?! No matter what people say, do not believe the myth about Australia being hot all the time because it’s not! I can’t work out if we’re still in Autumn or have now progressed to Winter, but either way there is a definite chill in the air, even without the storms and especially at night! However, on Saturday 9 May we found ourselves blessed with glorious sunshine and temperatures around 20 degrees once more.
So naturally, I went to the beach!
Manly beach to be specific, accessed by ferry from Circular Quay. The ferry ride is one recommended by most Sydney tourist sites as it’s a great chance to see what Sydney Harbour has to offer, and on a gorgeous day such as this it’s not hard to see why…
I used my Opal card for the journey, which worked out to be $7.18 for a one way trip, although it is possible to buy single or return tickets but that does work out more expensive. I was a total nerd and managed to position myself at the gate at the wharf before it opened. I looked like a bit of a loser, but it meant I had first dibs on seats and so I charged upstairs and bagged a seat outside at the very front. I won’t pretend I was warm the entire time – and it was more than a little bit blustery so I looked like a crazed loon because I hadn’t tied my hair up – but the views were totally worth it!
Once I arrived at Manly I had no real agenda other than potter around, browse the shops, sit at the beach, indulge in an ice cream at some point and basically watch the world go by. So that’s exactly what I did! Almost immediately I was greeted by a cute little weekend market where everything just seemed to scream “BUY ME YOU NEED ME IN YOUR LIFE”! I’m proud to report my willpower remained intact and I resisted every single one of these, and made my way along the promenade leading to the beach.
Manly is easily one of my favourite places in Sydney – it’s full of great shops, everyone’s incredibly friendly and has a really cool vibe about it that I can’t find the words to describe or even put my finger on. If I had stuck to my original plan upon arriving here back in October it would have been Manly I’d have looked at living in. It’s just so chilled out, relaxed, friendly and beautiful – a beauty that was definitely enhanced by the gorgeous day we were blessed with…
It was great to simply sit on the steps, soak up the sun and watch the surfers as the surf got bigger and better throughout the day. There were even some people paddling and surfing on stand up paddle boards – something I watched in complete amazement as I couldn’t even use one of those things on the creek in Coffs Harbour which was a flat as a millpond! Others were tentatively paddling in the waves as the water seemed to be decidedly fresh, even if the sun was out! My absolutely favourite person in the water was this guy, who didn’t seem to let his lack of swimmers and inappropriate attire stop him from enjoying the waves!
He actually fell over shortly after I took this, but this didn’t seem to phase him either! Legend!
After a few hours of enjoying all that Manly had to offer and chatting to complete strangers on the steps I decided it was time to make my way back – via the ice cream shop obviously! I’m making it my personal mission to sample every flavour of ice cream Royal Copenhagen offer, and with ice cream shops aplenty around the beach there was ample opportunity to conquer another flavour! This was cookies and cream, a new favourite methinks!
The ferry ride back was as beautiful as it was on the way there, if not more so as the sun was beginning to set. It was definitely more cold too, leaving me to regret my decision somewhat to be an eager beaver once again and sit outside at the front again! However, I am British and therefore I I persevered and was rewarded with some rather lovely views of the Opera House, the Harbour Bridge and the now slightly-less-warm sunshine. A perfect end to a great day 🙂