|Today’s Distance: 0km||Total Distance: 1234.6km|
Today was a truly fantastic day in Sydney. Our goal today was to get from Cronulla in the south east to Manly in the north east of Sydney. We didn’t want to cycle through Sydney as that doesn’t sound like fun, so as always planned, we took public transport.
We walked the short distance from the hotel to the Cronulla train station. We had lots of little questions in our minds. Things like ‘will our bikes fit on the train with panniers?’; ‘will we have time to load our bikes on the train?’; ‘how does it all work?’. It couldn’t have been easier! We arrived at the station, bought our tickets (bikes travel free) and wandered through the mega wide gate to the platform. A train was waiting to depart in 15 minutes which gave us plenty of time to put the bikes on the train. They easily rolled on and off and the whole exercise was very easy.
The train went directly to Martin Place in the Sydney CBD. From there it was a short stroll through the Royal Botanic Gardens to the Opera House. We pushed our bikes past Circular Quay and took some photos from The Rocks side. We had a nice lunch then jumped on the Manly Ferry. Again it was easy getting on and off the ferry and there were even bike racks on the ferry.
We arrived in Manly at 2pm and walked through the bustling pedestrian mall called The Corso to the beach. Manly beach was a hive of activity with surfers, volleyball, walkers, rollerbladers, runners, bikers, kids, a large surf competition, and lots of youthful fun. We slowly biked along the beach to our motel, checked in and then headed straight back out to soak up the atmosphere. We watched the surf competition, strolled and ended up at a cool bar that faced the beach and had big cane chairs, funky music and Moa beer on tap. After a beer we headed back to the motel, got changed, and then took the ferry back to the city to watch Vivid Sydney. It was madness as there were lots of people on the ferry and thousands of people packing Opera House and Rocks areas.
Vivid Sydney was spectacular! Buildings and art installations are lit up with video and effects. See the video Will took below of the Museum of Contemporary Art building and the Opera House. After watching the displays we headed to The Rocks area and found a great classic old Australian pub called The Mercantile and had dinner while watching the Lions vs Reds rugby match. After the match we made our way back through the crowds to the ferry and headed back out to Manly. Today was a rare late night out on this trip.
Reflecting on the highlight of the day, we had difficulty pinpointing one event. We enjoyed taking the bikes on the train and ferry, youthful and vibrant Manly, spectacular Vivid Sydney, having a beer in great bars and watching a surf completion. Today was a memorable day in the great city Sydney, one of our favourites!