Monday, July 11, 2016

Australia!!!! The vacation of a life time! Day 1.....

Ever since I was little, as long ago as I can remember, I made a promise to my mom that one day I would take her to Australia.  Every time we had a hard day or needed a laugh we would talk about our dream vacation.  This year, 2016, at 34 years old, I was finally able to make that promise to my mom come true!  We were able to take almost a whole month off and go to Australia!  I can't hardly believe it happened myself.  

We started actually planning it a year ago.  I told her that all our tax money was going to go towards our vacation.  She laughed and said ok.  Then it all started.  I had to update my passport and apply for our Australian visas.  Once that was done it was basically set in stone that we were going to Australia.  My promise, and dream, was finally coming true!

With tickets bought, packing lists made, and everything set to go we started on our crazy STRESS FREE adventure.  (Even though the beginning was a little hectic for Mom)

We arrived in Sydney around 7am our first day.  This made for a VERY long day as we couldn't check in to our hotel until around 3pm. We took a taxi from the airport to our hotel.  It cost us a bit of money but was totally worth it.  Below are my first 4 pictures I took on this trip from the back of the taxi.

When we got to the hotel the staff was very helpful.  They let us keep our luggage in their storage room and we were able to just walk around exhausted but extremely excited!  Our hotel was actually in a really great spot.  We stayed at the Travelodge on Philip Street, right close to Hyde Park.  Our hotel wasn't the best but it sure could have been a lot worse.  It was an excellent location to everything and the perfect spot for us to start out our journey.

After we dropped our bags we started walking.  We were starving since we had just gotten of the plane and our time was all out of wack so we stopped to eat.  This is what is known as a grilled ham and cheese (for breakfast).  Totally NOT what I was expecting it to be LOL

After we ate we went on to Hyde Park.  This park was HUGE and had the most beautiful water fountain in the center.  The picture below is the direction we walked into the fountain area.  To our left was St. Mary Cathedral which was so beautiful, the right was downtown (literally) and straight ahead was just a long walking path covered by super tall trees.  My favorite part had to have been the Ibis running around.  What is an Ibis?  It's a white and black bird, one I had never seen before and they were everywhere here.  It is now my favorite bird of all time (although it is loud and annoying at times).

After Hyde Park we did a small walk through of St. Mary's Cathedral.  This church was so beautiful.  It comes a close second to Notre Dame in my opinion.  And it was so peaceful and quiet to just walk around looking at all the stain glass and everything else in the church.

All of this exploring only took about 2 hours so far.  Needless to say we had a LONG way to go before we could check into our hotel.  We decided to walk downtown and out towards Darling Harbour.  It was only about a 15 minute walk (mostly downhill) so it wasn't bad at all.  Of course there was a pee stop needed and we couldn't help but go in here and use their restroom.....

Along the way to the harbour we happened across the Queen Victoria building which was full of high end shopping and little eateries.

The skyscrapers were huge and reminded me a little of downtown Denver.

Once we got to Darling Harbour we had to find our way down to the water (which took us a little but) and find another place for a pee stop (which also took some time) but in all, this place was exactly how I was hoping it would be.  Just calm, friendly, clean, and amazing!

After walking FOREVER we decided to jump on the double decker bus.  We bought a 48 hour pass so that way we would be able to see all Sydney had to offer in the first two days we were there.  I'm glad we bought the pass as I'm not sure Mom and I could have survived the whole walk back up the hill to the hotel.

Jumping on the double decker at Darling Harbour we were headed to The Rocks area and got to see the Sydney Bridge for the first time.  I'll never forget that feeling.  It was so unreal that we were sitting there underneath it and then turning the corner to see the Opera House, it was a dream come true and I really could NOT believe I was sitting there, with the most important woman in my whole life by my side, on a bus, in Sydney, AUSTRALIA!!!!

The double decker took us around and made several stops to pick up people and drop people off.  They stopped for a good 15 minutes or so to change drivers and we were off again to see a lot of new destinations around Sydney.  We got to see where the cruise ship docks (just in case I ever do a cruise to Australia!) and the huge Coca-Cola sign.  Everything in Australia is Coke.  They had very little Pepsi stuff and only a Mountain Dew energy drink.  They had no iced tea and their coffee reminded me so much of Italy.  The architecture around this part of Sydney was breathtaking.  We even got to see the ships in the Navy yard.

The last little bit we did on the bus before it took us back to our hotel was drive right by the Opera House.  I had the biggest grin on my face the whole time, as did Mom, and again, I truly could not believe my dream had come true!

So there you have it, Day 1 in Australia......a very LONG and very tiring day but the perfect start to such an amazing once in a lifetime vacation for my Mom and I.  Days 2 and beyond will be done as I can get them finished so please make sure you stay tuned and look for them.

To end this post I'm going to attach a few of the edited photos I have from Day 1, I hope you enjoy them :)

~Till Next Time~


MJJ said...

How absolutely amazing!!! I am so glad you and your mom got to experience this together. What a blessing. As always, beautiful photos!!

Cassandra NightThunder said...

Thanks :) Day 2 and beyond to be posted soon!

Cara said...

I'm really glad to read you finally were able to visit Australia, and with your mother, too! What an experience to take in. The photos were stunning, it all looked surreal. Take it all in as much as you can. I look forward to the next set of photos and I hope you get around to visiting other places such as Melbourne, which is more diverse.

Cara @ Sydney Short Term Rentals

Cassandra NightThunder said...

Cara - so glad you left a message! I've been able to post 17 days of our vacation so far, it was the trip of a life time and I absolutely LOVE Australia! How could I not, it's the perfect vacation spot with so much to do and see! Please make sure you stop and check out the rest of the days, we didn't get to Melbourne but that's on the list for trip #2 :)