The first time I did the walk I missed Bradley's Head. I was in a bit of a hurry and, in order to save time, tried to take the short cut but got lost and eventually found my way back on the trail. This time I deliberately aimed for the hisotric headland.
Fondest memory: There are some lovely vistas to be had, opening up between gaps in the eucalypts that are present all through the walk.
After that there's the history. In 1895 there were huts put here because a mine was going to happen but, fortunately, a meeting in Mosman led to the mine lease being rescinded due to a unanimous vote being cast by the citizens.
The headland gets its name from a Lt. William Bradley who was assisting Captain Hunter in early boat surveys of Sydney Harbour though the aborigines originally called it "Dalyungay" which roughly means "place of surveillance".
As I have mentioned on a transportation tip earlier, I love to walk, and why not? I've learned that some of the best places I have discovered have been while strolling along at a leisurely pace.
While you're exploring Sydney on foot stop and enjoy the many beautiful sights. You can also find some great little known spots to stop and watch the world go by, so why not just kick up your feet and take in this beautiful harbour city at your own pace?
Fondest memory: Just stopping at the harbour after a long walk and enjoying the beautiful city.
This tip may sound ridiculous, but as you are walking and crossing the streets here in Sydney, be mindful that Australia follows the driving rules of England.
Please look to the right and be careful as you walk across the streets. As a reminder, on the streets are painted directions to look to the right!!
When we first began thinking of visiting "Mrs. MacQuarie's Chair" and the Royal Botanic Gardens, I was perplexed to see that going to the end of Victoria Street, which seemed the logical direction, might not work. You see, Victoria kind of dead-ends up above the Wooloomooloo Bay area.
No worries, said Chris Bahr, owner of the Victoria Court Hotel. "Just take the stairs". Well.... I didn't see anything on my map about any stairs, but we took Chris at his word and headed down Victoria Street.
Voila! At the end of the street over on the left are "The McElhone Stairs", a long series of cement stairs leading down from Victoria Street to Cowper Wharf Road, which runs along Wooloomooloo Bay/Harbour.
During our time in Sydney, we made great use of the stairs, using it as our shortcut on walks to MacQuarie's Chair, The Domain, The Botanic Gardens, The Opera House and Harbour Bridge, the Circular Quay.... you get the idea. It became our favorite Aussie shortcut.
And, climbing all those steps numerous times each day certainly added to the fitness program. : )
Fondest memory: I remember making a remark, on about the ten thousandth time we walked the stairs, that went something like this..
"I wonder how many of these stairs there are?"
Bonnie says "120", matter-of-factly. So, if you ever have this question in Trivial Pursuit, there are 120 steps in the McElhone Stairs of Potts Point, Sydney.
Urban hiking is an important part of all our trips. By dumb luck, we stumbled across this guided walking tour. We recommend it for other urban hikers. (Not recommended for Children)
- Historic information is entertainingly told about disturbing events in Sydney's settlement years
- Photo Opportunity: Night shot of West Sydney as seen from Observatory Hill is impressive.
- Meet Other Travelers: At the conclusion of the tour, our guide gave each of us a pub voucher. It was fun swapping stories and re-living the tour.
Fondest memory: Before taking this tour, we had hiked through 'The Rocks' neighborhood of Sydney (daytime). Seeing this same area again at night, while hearing seamy tales of murder and intrigue was eye-opening and fun.
Maybe it's the weather or maybe it's the streets, i find Sydney city very comfortable to walk.
We walked from Central Railway Station to QVB, from there we walked to The Rocks, and further down is The Opera House.
So if you love exploring the city on foot, just keep walking!!!
We took a short ferry ride from Sydney to Watson's Bay, ate lunch in one of the local seafood restaurants and climbed the hill to overlook the town and harbor on the harbor side and the sheer steep rock cliffs on the Pacific Ocean side. We walked along the spectacular cliffs to the next bus stop where we caught the Bondi Explorer Bus to Bondi Beach. We spent the afternoon there and then took the bus back to Sydney past some more spectacular beaches, secluded coves and interesting villages.
Fondest memory: PHOTO: THE BLUE MOUNTAINS NEAR WENTWORTH FALLS. THE BLUE MOUNTAINS ARE ACTUALLY PLATEAUS (THE GRAND CANYON WITH TREES) COVERED WITH EUCALYPTUS TREES WHICH GIVE OFF A FINE OIL MIST THAT COLORS THE HAZE A DEEP BLUE.
Exploring Sydney Harbor, Walking around "The Rocks," shopping at the Queen Victoria Building, attending service at St. Andrew's Cathedral and getting a tour of the beautiful Cathedral after the service; exploring the sights and food of Darling Harbor including the incredible Maritime Museum, the Chinese Gardens and the restored barque James Craig; and (not to be missed) taking a tour to the Blue Mountains.
Take a stroll up George Street and possibly stop in at Centrepoint.
George Street began as a bush track dating back to the First Fleet. It was originally called High Street. In 1810 Governor Macquairie renamed it in honor of King George III.
Macquarie Street: Some of the best preserved buildings and monuments to Sydney's European past.
Start at the Hyde Park end at the Archibald Fountain then move onto the Hyde Park Barracks (great restaurant plus excellent Museum detailing convict past), then to the Mint (has a great cafe), St James's Church, Parliament House (the oldest parliament in Australia and open to visitors).
Then explore the grand builkdings along the length of the street right down to the Harbour and the Sydney Opera House. Make sure you see the Chief Secretary's Building on the left and you head towards the Harbour. One of the grandest buildings in Sydney with exceptional stonework.
Also the Intercontinental Hotel on the opposite corner which was onece the Treasury Building and diagonally opposite the Conservatorium which wasonce the stable for the Governor's horses (this is currently under renovation).
Also make a detour to the Botanic Gardens along the way and check out the mock tudor Government House ehich used to be the residence of the NSW Governor but is now open to the public as a 'People's House'. Check out the crazy aqua interiors and the exquisite view from the gardens across the harbour.
Favorite thing: explore the very cosmopolitan Oxford Street - which runs all the way from the corner of Hyde Park to Bondi Junction (the picture is of a section in Bondi Junction). If you're easily offended - you might wish to skip it as there are some 'interesting' shops that I personally didn't venture into! However, the stretch near the city centre is a great place to go for nightlife, there's an arthouse cinema and some nice cafes too.
Favorite thing: Wander round Circular Quay (not actually circular these days) and the Rocks area (the two are next to each other). Here's a picture of the famous Harbour Bridge taken from Circular Quay.
Favorite thing: Everything is accessible quite easily in Sydney, which allows the visitor to adapt quickly. Although the atmosphere is very enjoyable, some hectic can be felt between the residents during the weekdays. The Sundays, on the other hand, are relaxed and leisure-oriented. On weekends there is a good opportunity to visit the street fair in the Rocks, one just have to avoid the souvenirs. Besides lots of must-see attractions like Darling Harbour, Harbour Bridge, Opera House, The Rocks, Aquarium, etc., there are also a lot of places to relax and really enjoy the life. On a sunny day you may want to lay down in the grass of the popular Royal Botanic Gardens or on a more romantic hill by the Sydney Observatory. A good option to spend a half of a day is also a visit to Taronga Zoo, reachable by a ferry from the famous Circular Quay; ferries and catamarans start from there to a number of various destinations, including the Olympic Park.
Walk around the city, even without any specific destination.
Fondest memory: The view I saw when I was on top of the Sydney Harbour Bridge. The scene of the sunset over the Sydney Harbour Bridge and Sydney Opera House. Also, just an relaxing afternoon in the Royal Botanic Gardens reading and enjoy the sunshine.
Take the evening 'haunted sites' walking tour around The Rocks and the Harbour bridge.
Fondest memory: I guess the reason why I like Sydney so much is because it is almost exactly like San Diego. Same weather, similar geography and nightlife, etc.
My own personal best memories of Sydney involve the time I spent singing with the Sydney Harmony Chorus, the 90-man barbershop chorus in Sydney.
Explore the city by walking around... even if it causes aching feet... see Oxford Street, see Royal Botanical Garden (but don't forget to leave before it closes down... I had to be picked up by one of the park-rangers, shame on me...)
Fondest memory: Nothing special.... just the feeling I get everytime I remember my first visit to the city and to Australia generally