We arrived in Sydney on the 23rd after a 7hr coach journey. We came in via the Sydney Harbour Bridge, which was a nice way to introduce us to the city. We were both shattered but we dumped our bags at the hostel and went out to meet my friends who have a flat near Bondi Beach. We caught the train and I called my friend for directions while we were sat in the carriage. It turns out that he just happened to be on the same train -COINCIDENCE NO.1.
We had a little party which lasted until 4am. There was about ten of us, so it was good to be around more familiar faces.
The next day (christmas eve) we awoke on the floor of my friend's flat (I managed to sleep on top of a volley ball somehow) and were feeling a little rough to say the least. Steph and I decided to check out Bondi while we were there. The beach itself was very nice - the sand was soft and white, and the surf was good - but the surrounding area was less impressive given the fact that we were at one of the most famous beaches in the world.
Later on we caught a bus back so that we could go down to the harbour to see the bridge and Opera House. We didn't know which stop to get off so we just jumped off at a random one. I called my friend again to see where he was, he said he was at work with EF. The bus stop that we jumped off at was directly outside his offices - COINCIDENCE NO.2.
Both bridge and Opera House are pretty impressive seen in the flesh - particularly the bridge, which I didn't expect to be so big. We agreed to come back when we were feeling a little more touristy though.
We spent Christmas eve in Bondi again. Whilst sat in a Bavarian beer bar a girl approached my friend Jack and I and said "bet you don't remember me, do you?". Although we hadn't seen her in ten years we both did remember her. She went to the same school as us in Torquay and was in some of our classes. Out of all the bars in all the world...COINCIDENCE NO.3.
That night we were all dressed in something close to Santa attire - shades and flip-flops included - and we were accompanied by an elf for good measure. We had a big cheer when we walked into a bar on the main strip and were given a VIP table with free drinks. Result.
Christmas morning we again found ourselves on the floor in the flat. This time we popped to the hostel early and met the rest of the guys at Bronte Beach later - Santa suits and all - for champagne and a BBQ. Us boys were given a telling off by one of the life guards for skipping into the sea, holding hands whilst still wearing the Santa suits. Bah, humbug! Our human santa pyramid was a sight to behold too.
We played cricket, ate steak and sausages and body surfed in the sea. Not your usual Christmas Day, but it was brilliant.
On Boxing Day Steph and I recuperated. We hadn't had a good sleep in four days so we didn't do anything to strenuous.
A couple of days later we visited the Sydney Aquarium, which didn't compare to others we have seen, but we went as a big group so it was a good laugh.
We took the ferry over to Manly for another beach day. Very nice place but the ferry ride back stole the show. We caught it just before sunset and the views over the harbour were stunning!
On New Years Eve we went to Bradleys Head - a good 20mins drive from the city centre. It is the
perfect vantage point to see the fireworks over the harbour. The boys didn't miss another opportunity to dress up. This time we did characters from the film Anchorman. We looked terrible.
The view was awesome and the city lights spilled into the harbour as literally thousands of boats and yachts filled every possible space. The midnight fireworks did not disappoint and we're sure you will catch the highlights on television. It was amazing and well worth the trip.