Ah Sydney, my second home. An utter diamond of a city thrusting up out of the East coast of Australia. My heart flutters with endless possibilities every time I visit. It has a wonderful night life, fabulous shopping, a great art scene that just keeps growing and a steady bustle of people. There is no such thing as a quiet Tuesday night at the Pub in this town, it is always in party mode. At this time of year there are fireworks going off around the Harbor every night of the week.
Some days however when I'm in town I crave a slower pace. Here are some of my most loved relaxing adventures in this crazy hustle bustle town.
If you havent visited Sydney before I highly recommend doing what the locals do & catch a Ferry from Circular Quay to Watsons Bay. Not only will you see the gorgeous Harbor from the water but also some of the most enviable real estate in the Southern Hemisphere. Hop off at Watsons Bay and grab some Fish & Chips from Doyles. Doyles is an institution in its own right and incredibly popular so you have the option of dining in the pricey Restaurant or from the Cafe on the Jetty. Pick a shady spot in the Park overlooking the Harbor to sit and you have officially found the best relaxing spot to while away a few hours.
If you have a whole day or weekend to spare I recommend escaping the the city entirely via hire car & head to the Blue Mountains. It is a bit of a long trip but its well worth the effort. It will provide you with spectacular views, quaint small towns that serve you a high tea style afternoon tea and the lush national parks filled with hiking trails.
But to be honest, if you truly want to do what the locals love you need to hit the beach. Sydney has the best beach culture in Australia. Being quite fair in complexion I've always had to avoid the dangers of the Aussie Sun which meant a whole lot of slip, slop and slap. I had never been much of a beach babe preferring to keep out of the sun until I lived in Sydney.
There is a beach or cove close by to most suburbs and the locals are fiercely proud of their sandy spot. Bondi and Manly are the main beach attractions (& well worth checking out) but I prefer the secluded spots. My personal favourite sandy bum spot is Camp Cove. Nestled in between limestone cliffs just inside the Harbor entrance you can swim in the water without being pounded into the sand by strong waves. Lots of history (Captain Cook camped here when he first discovered the Harbor) and the walk there is as much fun as being at the beach.
I love Sydney's hustle and bustle. But if you are caught up in it all and feeling quite stressed it really doesnt take much to step away from the rat race pace. All you need is your bathers, a ferry ticket and a sense of adventure and you can be suddenly a million miles away.