Day 50- Wed 27th As you can imagine we were really tired as we arrived in Sydney at Central Station. We got the underground train to Kings Cross, Sydney also has a lot of things named after places in Britain, and walked to our apartment. We were staying at the Rosyln Gardens, we had struggled to find anywhere as the Mardi Gras was this weekend and everywhere was filling up. The receptionist was an absolute nightmare, he was so rude to us even though he had messed up our booking, We were now in an apartment that was meant for three people but they were trying to fit the four of us in with an extra fold up bed. He apparently was doing us a favour as we would have been staying in a mildew ridden room if we had kept our original booking. We didnt really do a great deal today except use the free wireless access to organise our lives! We managed to book a trip to the Blue Mountains and pretty much all our accomodation for the next two weeks. Lisa and Vicky made pizzas in our little kitchenette and we just chilled out. Day 51- Thurs 28th We had a nice lie in today and then headed towards Circular Quay on the train. Angie had stayed in the apartment as she had seen all the tourist bits in Sydney before. It was tipping it down with rain as we walked around the harbour. We saw the ferries that take you around all the different parts of Sydney and there was also a huge cruise ship docked in the harbour. We went to the Sydney Opera House and had a look around but it was not enjoyable as we were soaked. The bridge was also near and we took lots of photos. To get out of the rain we went to the Museum of Contemporary Art and saw two free exhibitions. One was abstract art and the other was aboriginal drawings. The rain had cleared so we went to an area known as 'The Rocks'. We found out that its just an area that has old buildings dotted around and we were shown a walk that we could do to see all the different buildings. We walked up to the Observatory but it was closed. We still got some great views over the city and the bridge was really near although we could find the point where you could get onto it. Some of the buildings were in the business district and we looked like such tourists in our rain macs as everyone was suited and booted. We went back to the apartment, Angie and I made macaroni cheese which i must say was delicious! Day 52- Fri 29th Today we checked out of Roslyn Gardens and luckily that horrible man was nt on reception but it was a nice lady who apologised for his rudeness. We got a cab to Bondi Beach as it was just as costly to get the train. We were staying in Surfside Hostel which was right near the beach. We were early so had to wait a while before we could check in. We were put in a 8 bed dorm and Angie and i had to share a double bunk. The room was filthy and the carpet was damp as the room has been flooded the other day. The other people in the room had been there for months so the stuff was everywhere and it absolutely stunk. The sheets we were given were stained so it definitely meant we were using our sleeping liners. We got the bus to Bondi Junction which had a huge shopping centre. We bought fairy outfits to wear to the Mardi Gras parade tomorrow. We got ready to go out in the filthy bathroom and headed to a lovely place called Bondi Iceberg which was a member's only club that had a really nice restaurant. It was surprisingly inexpensive and we all got a steak dinner for $10. We went back to the hostel to sleep but it was not to be. The night was eventful to say the least with people coming and going in our room. Day 53 - Sat 1st Mardi Gras Day!! Before the parade this evening we wanted to go back into Sydney to spend a bit more time sight seeing. We got the bus from Bondi Beach all the way into central and got off at Circular Quay. It took a while but i think it was because of the parade today so there was a bit of extra traffic. Angie stayed near the Quay whilst we went for a walk over the bridge. We got to one of the pylons and it was only $10 dollars to climb to the top which was a bit different to the $100 it cost to walk over the arch of the bridge. From the top of the pylon we got some amazing photos, it was a nice sunny day so we could see really far. Around the pylon there were displays of information about the building of the bridge and its history. We went back to meet Angie and ran for the ferry that would take us around to Darling Harbour. The ferries were really cool, green and yellow, and got us to the harbour quickly. The harbour was new and quite built up, there were bars and restaurants all around its edges and there were lots of people milling around. We had a cheap lunch in one of the restaurants near to the Maritime Museum, the museum had a naval ship and an old fashioned 'pirate' ship docked in the harbour. It was getting late so we rushed back to our hostel to get ready for the parade, we had such a laugh putting on our colourful and glittering make up and dressing up as fairies. We had to get the bus and train back into town but luckily we were not the only ones dressed up, people seemed to be in all sorts of outfits but mainly as bright and flourecent as possible. We tried to get as near to Oxford Street as we could but there were so many people lining the streets ready for the parade. We found a spot that was about half way through the floats so we did get to see quite a few. There were all sorts of people on the floats, many were from the forces or religious backgrounds, stating their support for gay people. The best one was the Ikea float which had fake snow and a large number of dancers following it. After the parade we found a pub which so happened to be doing karoke that night! We put our names down for singing 'Stop' by the Spice Girls and after a while we were called out to go on stage. It was really funny shouting out the Spice Girls to a crowd of gay people, i think they loved us! We also managed a rendition of Bewitched's 'C'est la Vie' which was hysterical. What is more funny is the fact we won a prize for our karoke, $30 to spend at the bar!! We must have talent! We had a few issues getting back to Bondi that night, all the cabs wouldnt take us but we found the night bus which seemed to be running regularly even at 4am. Just as we stepped on the bus it started to tip down with rain, it didnt spoil our day though. Day 54- Sun 2nd We were a bit delicate this morning so we went for the best cure for a hangover...a huge fry up at a local cafe. We then did the coastal walk to Coogie Beach. It took us a while but we saw some great views along the way. There was even a man who had tried to live on the cliff and had a make shift tent out of plastic sheets and general rubbish. Apparently the council were trying to get him moved as he was an 'eyesore'. Coogie beach was not as busy as Bondi but it was just as nice. We found a nice chinese to have dinner and then went back to our dreaded hostel for the last time. Day 55- Mon 3rd We left surfside today (thank the lord) and got the bus all the way into town again. We checked in at Home hostel which was not meant to be very nice but our room was ok it just needed a bit of a tidy. The room was empty when we got there but it looked like we were sharing with two other guys. We didnt stay long before we made our way to the Quay to get the ferry over to Manly. This was a beach north of Sydney which took only half an hour on the ferry to get to. It was a lovely town and the beach was gorgeous. There was a strong rip so only surfers could go in the sea but there was a small section of the beach that was flagged as a safe area to swim. We sunbathed all afternoon and then found a nice sea food restaurant to have dinner. It was quite late before we got the ferry back to Home which was conveniently near Central Station.We had an early start tomorrow as we were taking a trip to the Blue Mountains.