This past week has definitely flown by and we cannot believe that the Australian part of our adventure has come to an end. We have had a lot of fun experiencing adventure and culture in the cities of Cairns and Sydney.
We embraced the native aboriginal population by visiting the Tjapuki culture center where we watched a musical performance. Jacob, Noah, Ethan, Alex and Mykah jumped right in with the dancers and joined the performance. They were such naturals they could have been a part of the tribe! We even had the opportunity to paint our own boomerangs and learn proper technique. Yes, it is true. Boomerangs come right back to where you throw them (sometimes). We can’t wait to show you our new skills when we return.
To wrap up our time in Cairns we drove up the mountains to the Tully River for a wild whitewater rafting ride. With names like “The Maze” and “Birth Canal”, these grade 4 Rapids were exciting, thrilling, and definitely a highlight for all. Before heading to our final Australian destination, we had a nice relaxing beach day to take in our last breaths of tropical air as we headed south.
As we flew into our final destination of Sydney and saw the famous Sydney Opera House sitting in the harbor, we knew this city would have a lot to offer. Jared was able to capture the city’s beauty with his great photographer’s eye from his seat on the plane.
Sydney has a lot of great sites that give unique views of the city. The first stop we took was to the top of the Sydney tower. The Sydney tower is similar to the CN tower in Toronto and the Sears Tower in Chicago in that it offers spectacular views from the top floor. Jenna spotted a firework show while we were on the top of the tower. Looking down at fireworks is a different kind of view and strangely makes the fireworks look small. Putting all fears aside, the next day we strapped into cables and climbed to the top of the Sydney Harbour bridge. We were split into 4 different groups to make our way to the top. Dylann, Ethan, and Alex bravely conquered their fears as they were the leaders of the line for their groups. The views from the top were truly spectacular.
The metropolitan area of Sydney gave us a chance to recover from our outdoor adventures and a chance to appreciate culture. We had a wonderful tour of the Sydney Opera House. While we were touring one of the theaters we peeked in on a Russian orchestra practicing. Our tour guide told us that there is a 10% chance a tour group can catch a live practice. It looks like we got lucky because we got to enjoy this rare but entertaining treat.
Even though it was a little chilly, we ventured to the famous Manly and Bondi beaches to watch the surfers, check out the shops, and enjoy the brisk beach air. Carly, Georgie, Mykah, Katie, Jacob, Alex, and Noah even purchased the famed Australian animal onesies and pranced around the beach towns in their new outfits without any worries.
One last stop we made was to visit the site of the 2000 Summer Olympic Games. We even had the opportunity to run onto the field with pump up music like Olympians. We visited the podiums and proudly stood on top as we each accepted our gold medals.
Sadly, we say goodbye to Australia and our Australia-only friends who were only joining us for this portion of the trip. We had such a great time with each of them and hope that they all made long lasting memories and friendships. They will all certainly be missed.
The next time you hear from us we will be saying Aloha from Honolulu!
– The Westcoast Blogger