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Sunday, February 12, 2017

From Sydney to Melbourne

Wow. This is the only word I can use to describe my last few days. Our schedule has been jam packed, each day even better than the last.

I set a goal to post every day and if not, at least every other day. Talk about easier said than done. Bare with me, I'm currently posting this one from my mobile phone as I did not bring my laptop to my most recent adventure.

Where I last left you, I had finally arrived to Sydney. My first day was nothing short of amazing. Brunch, beaches, BYOW, doesn't get much better than that.

On Friday, February 10th, Sage, Ali, and I set out to get our tourist on while Hannah returned to work. After taking the ferry to Circular Quay, we enjoyed an amazing breakfast by the Harbor Bridge. The thing about Sydney is there is always a view to take in. Everywhere I look, one more stunning than the last one I saw. This city is truly beautiful.

When it comes to the breakfast spot we selected, talk about delicious views and drinks.

After we finished breakfast, we set out to see the legendary Sydney Opera House. As expected, it was filled with tourists snapping pictures. We did venture inside but didn't see too much as we decided against purchasing a ticket.

The real views were down the path to the right of the Opera House. After walking a little bit further, we were able to take some pictures showcasing the whole structure. If it's your first time visiting Sydney, this is always a must, no matter how touristy you feel.

We set out for the rest of our day with no real plan in sight. We ventured to The Rocks area where we enjoyed a drink at a brand new brewery. Of course, of all the places close by, we picked the one without public WiFi.

We visited the Glenmore, a rooftop venue with--you guessed it--spectacular views. With the heat we were experiencing, we decided to take it easy here for a few hours.

We had dinner that evening at a lovely pub called The Shakespeare. With a group of Hannah's work friends, we were able to enjoy dinner in a private room with a very historical feel. Overall, the food was fantastic--we split fish and chips, margarita pizza, and nachos (typical American food mixed in with something a little less predictable.)

Saturday the 11th was our hottest day yet. With temperatures pushing 106 degrees Fahrenheit, our only option was to visit another beach. This time, we went to the iconic Bondi Beach. This was much different from Balmoral as it was very packed--to be expected. The waves were quite intense. With bodies being pushed at you in every direction, we could call this my workout for the day.

We were able to sneak in some souvenir shopping and smoothies before heading home.

Now this is where I was the most excited. Given that we are staying with Hannah, we are truly getting to see sights that some may never get to experience. One of Hannah's friends from school had a birthday picnic at Clarke's Point. My words won't even do it justice, so I'll just provide pictures and let you make your own descriptions.

This place was radiating with beauty. When the sunset began, we had to embrace the moment and took tons of pictures.

This was a place we never would have found without Hannah and her friends. For those looking for a quiet evening, perhaps with a picnic and some wine, go here! This was by far one of my favorite moments from the trip.

While the picnic was amazing, we totally forgot that we had a flight at 6:00am on Sunday morning--whoops. After a groggy wake-up call at 3:30am, we made it to the airport and we're off to explore a new city.

What took me most by surprise was how much cooler it currently is in Melbourne. It is only about an hour flight from Sydney and still on the coast. With some dreary weather and temperatures in the 60s and 70s, this city is vastly different from the first few days we spent in Australia.

Luckily, there is a delicious Vietnamese place downstairs near our building. You can never go wrong with a bowl of beef pho.

Our first destination after lunch was the Rooftop Cinema. A bar with a beautiful view of the city that doubles as a movie theater during the summer nights. Drinks are a bit pricey but the views are always worth it for those who have never been to Melbourne.

I think what we do best is wander around without a real plan. We walked along the river, stopped for street performers and pictures. We capped off our night with some double cheeseburgers and brews before heading back for an early evening. Early morning flights certainly take it out of you when traveling. Now that we're familiar with the city--and luckily realized how close we are to everything--we set a plan for the next few days.

Looking forward to seeing what else Melbourne has in store for us. Then on Wednesday, it's off to Auckland, New Zealand, which I could not be more excited for.


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