Our organised trip to the Blue Mountains was definitely one of the highlights of our Australia trip. Recommended to me by a friend when I very first arrived, I was determined to make sure I saw the three sisters before I left (I’d actually already seen them once when I was six and had a very vague memory which I wanted to update too!). Leaving at 7am, once again from right outside the YHA (win), the Blue Mountains are about an hour and a half outside of Sydney so we had plenty of time to do all of our sightseeing. Being the cheapies that we are, we opted to take our own lunch and didn’t pay for the Scenic World pass, choosing to walk the Furber steps down to the valley instead.
This turned out to be an excellent decision. Not only did it mean we made some lovely pals with the other few members of the group who had also chosen to do the same, but we also got to see the forest and katoomba falls much more up close and personal, both of which are stunning (not to mention we saved $40, woohoo).
At the bottom of the walk, we had a bit of a wander around the rainforest before taking the railway up to the top again. The steepest railway incline in the world, it was one of the few memories I remembered vividly as a six year old. No wonder, it would have been terrifying!
From here our driver Terry, who probably deserves a post all to himself he was such a legend (one story included bringing up a kangaroo called Max and feeding him beer), took us up to Echo Point lookout. Once again, lots of people had opted to go for an aboriginal programme here at extra cost, but we decided to walk down to the first sister instead. The views were pretty spectacular, the vertigo maybe not so much.
After another classy ALDI ensemble for lunch, we made the drive back towards Featherdale Wildlife Park for the afternoon. All I can say is: SO MUCH FUN. I was disappointed we hadn’t had chance to visit Taronga Zoo the day before, but this was completely made up for by all the lovely Aussie animals that greeted us on arrival. As we visited in the afternoon (most tour groups go in the morning) the animals were all pretty happy to see us and I got to see as many Australian critters as my heart desired – including a koala! I may not be six any longer, but my love of all things furry has not changed one bit.
Dragging myself away from the animals, our tour concluded with an evening boat cruise down the Parramatta River and back into the Circular Quays. The houses surrounding the river are tourist sights in themselves, with celebrities such as Cate Blanchett numbering amongst the lucky owners. Pulling into the Quays, a huge cruise liner had just pulled in, making for more photo opportunities.
And how to end such a fun day? Dinner in Chinatown with the lovely friends that we had made on the tour. Unfortunately, to all of our disappointment, the dingo puppies couldn’t make it…
Over and out Amigos,