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The Westcoast Connection Blog

Life Changing Experiences

Koalas and Kangaroos

G’Day from Flight 1421,

“We travel not to escape life, but for life to not escape us”- Sistle Maher

It’s wild to think about all we’ve done in such a short amount of time. As we sit on our flight from Sydney to Cairns, we’re excited for what we’ve still got left yet thankful for the memories we’ve created so far.

Sydney shared with us so many unforgettable experiences as only Australia’s largest city would… with historic landmarks, cultural city walking and some of the best views a group could ask for. But it’s none of those that kicked off our Australia experience as shortly after landing we found ourselves deep in the sport many love here so much, at a Rugby game. Our bus driver for the day, Peter, gave us a quick runabout on the rules of the game before we arrived at “Shark Park”, home of the Conrulla Sharks. Our timing couldn’t have been more perfect as the 4pm game time provided for a sunset backdrop on this local “darby”. Kyle and Tyler sat close to Peter to try and master the rules and learn the right times to cheer and give a much needed heckle to the visitors from down the road St. George.

Shortly after watching the home team triumph, we arrived in Darling Harbour, the iconic waterfront provided the backdrop for our hotel and our 3 night stay in Sydney. After our first “walkabout” we familiarized ourselves with the big city lights and settled away in our hotel for a good nights rest.

Day 2 provided our first look at two of the most recognizable landmarks in the world. It’s said, you remember 20% of what you see, but 70% of what you feel. As the sun rose over the harbor, we took our first steps onto the metal frames of Sydney Harbour Bridge. Our “bridgeclimb”, was a spectacle of it’s own, step by step, we climbed higher into the Sydney morning air. After 2 hours of climbing our panoramic views provided an awe-inspiring gaze that would resonate in our hearts forever. The breathtaking views of the ocean, the sprawling city and the endless historic beaches gave us our birds-eye view of much of what we were still to explore in the coming days in Sydney.

After lunch at The Rocks, where Tal, Sarah, Athena, Rylee and Noa picked up a pair of the Australian made UGGS, we were off to hit the main drag of Pitt and George Street. As we rounded out the afternoon at Circular Quay, we watched ferry after ferry shuttle passengers around the city from this water-based hub. Sam G and Matt, queried on how cool it would be to ferry not only to work, but to such a profound location like Sydney Harbour.

Our final day in Sydney was a walk through history mixed in with an experience that would never be forgotten. As we strolled with commuters through the streets of Sydney, we exited York street to a building that stands without any comparison. Sydney landmarks provide the definition for much of what the city is recognized for and with that, we arrived at the Sydney Opera house. Designed via competition in the 1960s, to date there is no answer to if its iconic roofs are meant to appear to be seashells or boat sails. Rylee and Sophie side with the sails while Austin leaned towards the Shell look. Overall, a pretty split decision among the group didn’t take away from our first steps inside this incredible building. As luck would have it, as we entered the main hall for a private view, the Sydney Symphony Orchestra was rehearsing for their evening performance. The sound was impeccable as this massive orchestra resonated heartfelt tunes to our ears.

As we concluded our opera house tour, Wharf 2 appeared in the distance, and after gathering aboard we departed through Sydney Harbour towards our next adventure Taronga Zoo. With the Sydney Bridge on our left and the Opera House on our right, Jack, Jax and Justin snapped photo after photos to capture memories to share with family and friends upon returning home. Arriving dockside at the Zoo we entered with an open mind to many creatures that would be new from any Zoo we’d visited before. A group trip to the Koala exhibit completed a check-list item for many group members. These sleepy bears even went for a walk so our cameras would have multiple angles to showcase their adorableness. A few hour later after seeing a few Kangaroo’s and Sam L seeing the famous Tapir, whom he had been clamoring over for days, we were back on the boat motoring back to the city.

With a quick change into evening garb, some sushi and a tip of the hat, we were off to a surprise. Earlier in the day, as a staff team we acquired tickets to see Ghost Stories inside the Sydney Opera House. This award winning production caught the eye of our group and was a once in a lifetime experience. Never to be forgotten, we actually saw a show inside the Sydney Opera house! As we settled into our ergonomic seats designed by an Orthopedic Surgeon, we laughed, screamed and gazed on at this wonderful show.

Sydney provided more opportunities to become the family and group that shapes travel. It’s a memory, a laugh or a photo that brings a group together, and there was no shortage of these here. As we near the final stages of our trip the list of experiences grows on as the friendships continue to transform more and more, into a sense of family.

-The Westcoast Blogger