As mentioned in the last post, I was up before the sun thanks to the wonderful joy that is jet lag. I think all the girls in my dorm hated me when I started getting ready for the day at 4:30am, but I couldn’t fall back asleep no matter how hard I tried.
I took the bus to Coogee, a cute beach town south of Sydney, where I started the Coogee to Bondi coastal walk. It was amazing. I know I toss the word amazing around like it’s nothing but this time I mean AMAZING! Incredible! I honestly felt like I was going to cry because it was so beautiful….lol. I think that has something to do with the fact that I didn’t have anyone there to gush over the beauty with and all that happiness and excitement bottled up inside of me in the form of tears. But don’t worry, no tears were actually shed, although I’m sure I looked like an idiot smiling to myself the whole time. It was really something! Around every corner was a beautiful cove where bright blue waves splashed the shore and crashed on the rocks. In between each bay I walked through lush green canopies and palm trees and it felt like I was in heaven. I have no idea how long the walk actually took because I had to stop every few minutes to gawk at the sights and snap a million pictures that will never do it justice.
I arrived at my destination of Bondi Beach with a full heart and tired feet. The famous beach is huge and stretches on far longer than I expected it to. Of course, I saw the iceberg pools which Bondi is known for and snapped some pictures for Mart who, when I said I was going to Australia, wouldn’t stop asking if I would see “that pool by the ocean”. Well Mart, I did. Just for you!
I came upon what I would later discover to be one of maaaany acai bowl places along the beach and paid too much money for one. It was delicious, of course, but way overpriced, as everything here seems to be. I enjoyed it nonetheless (and also enjoyed the free wifi).
I then walked along the beach forever. Not kidding, I walked back and forth so many times today because I couldn’t decide where to go, or maybe I just didn’t know where I was going. Not complaining though, it is a lovely beach and I got to watch as it got busier and busier as the day went on. When I first arrived at around 9am, there was a fair amount of people out but nothing compared to how many there were when I left at 1.
I relaxed on the beach for about an hour and watched people surf before deciding to explore some more. The beach town of Bondi itself is very nice and very hip. There is an aesthetically pleasing “insta-worthy” cafe on every corner. No, that is an understatement. It pretty much consists ONLY of cute cafes and restaurants.
For lunch, I knew I had to pay a visit to Speedos Cafe, a spot that many of the Australian vegan youtubers I watch have recommended for their tasty vegan options. I didn’t intend on paying $20 for pancakes but it happened and my tummy is happy. Plus I would have had major regrets if I didn’t try it, so I can now move on from my day in Bondi with no guilt.
One last highlight from the day is the fact that I got myself home using a real map and no access to technology, even after getting on a bus that didn’t take me where I thought it would. As a rather directionally challenged individual, I was very pleased with myself for recognizing street names and actually knowing which direction I needed to take. I made it back to my hostel feeling very accomplished and very intelligent, naturally.
All in all, I am loving Sydney. I didn’t think I would be a huge fan as I’m not usually much of a city girl and would rather see all the quaint beachside towns, but I was pleasantly surprised with this one. It is still a big dirty city that has it’s not so nice parts, but with the ocean surrounding it, the palm trees lining the streets, the old architecture, and the lush parks sprinkled throughout it, Sydney is what I would call a tropical New York, and I quite like it. It is definitely a plus that quiet beach towns like Coogee and Bondi (maybe not so quiet on a sunny Saturday, but definitely don’t have that busy city feel) are only 20 minutes away. I’ve heard it called the “London in the sun” and I have to agree, although I like my tropical New York description better so I’m gonna stick with that.
Nighttime is the hardest for me so far as a solo traveler since I don’t feel comfortable walking around outside at night (it’s a little bit sketchy after dark around here) and everyone in my dorm room is still out so I can’t try to socialize in my room. I am also nervous to go to the lounge and just sit beside some random people because… come on, that would be a little weird, wouldn’t it?? I know we’re all traveling and open to meeting new people but I would just feel weird randomly approaching people and trying to join their conversation. Oh well, maybe tomorrow will be the night I hit up the lounge. (No promises)
That is all for day two! My feet and back are killing me, yes I am an old grandma, but I am content and ready for another day of sun! (Cue La La Land soundtrack)