We arrived in Sydney Wednesday morning and checked into our accomodations, The Royal Exhibition Hotel. That’s when we realized it was less of a hotel and more of a bar with rooms on top of it. We literally had to walk behind the bar and through a “staff only” door to get to our room. That’s when my lack of researching became pretty apparent. The location was very convenient, right in the heart of Surry Hills and directly across the street from Central Station, so we decided to forgive the slight stale beer smell.
The manager at the hotel suggested a cafe nearby while we waited for our room to be ready. We walked down the street to Cook and Archie’s for lattes and breakfast. The cafe was adorable and everything on the menu looked delicious, but I chose the Haloumi stack. It included several Aussie staples; avocado on toast, haloumi, poached egg and Dukkah. I’m getting hungry again just thinking about it.
After checking in and cleaning ourselves up a bit, we headed toward toward Circular Quay to catch the ferry to the zoo. It wasn’t a short walk, but after sitting on a plane for 22 hours Caroline was ready to move her legs. At Circular Quay we bought our Zoo Pass (ferry and zoo entry combined) and walked around the Opera House while we waited on our boat.
The ferry ride to Taronga Zoo was only ten minutes but provided some great views of the Sydney Harbour Bridge and Sydney Opera House.
We spent about three hours at the zoo taking in the animals and the vistas. That place is HUGE so we picked and chose what we cared about seeing. Our favorite were the lemurs, who love to cuddle and hug each other. We took the ferry back into town, did some shopping and headed back to the hotel. We met fellow Aussie blogger and former Katy resident, Abby from Abby’s Roads, for dinner at Botega. The place was hopping even on a Wednesday night which was a testament to how good the food was. We were bad bloggers and did not get any pictures of our food or each other but a wonderful (and delicious) night was had by all.
After our big first day we had a little sleep in and got a late start to the day. We got dressed, headed out for brekky at Gallery Cafe and scarfed down a wrap before hoping in a cab to the Coastal Walk.
Since it was already almost noon when we started to head to the coast we decided to cut off the first couple legs and start at Clovelly Beach. I have talked about it here and here, but this really is my favorite walk ever. The views are just unreal. The walk ends at Bondi Beach, where we walked around, enjoyed the best lunch ever at Bill’s (discussed here) before ending the afternoon laying on the beach. The weather was absolutely perfect and we couldn’t stop commenting on how amazing the day had been. We cleaned up at our bar/hotel and had a delicious italian dinner at Franco Franco in Surry Hills. I really love that neighborhood and am so glad we got to stay there. After dinner we caught a bus to The Rocks where we did some wandering and enjoyed a nightcap on the rooftop bar of The Glenmore Hotel. It was standing room only so we were just creeping by this pole the whole night. I actually told Caroline we were “working the pole” before realizing that would imply an entirely different type of night. Whoops.
The Glenmore has amazing 360 degree views of the Harbour, so it was the perfect place to end our whirlwind 48 hour trip to Sydney.