Sydney - The flight from Auckland to Sydney was very quick and easy. We arrived in the evening when it was dark and first impressions were not great, we had no idea where our hostel was or where we were going and after carrying our bags on the train we were tired and emotional! We finally found the hostel which wasn't the nicest and yet again they had messed up our reservation so luckily they gave us a double room for the same rate as a dorm room. After a good nights sleep we went on the ferry to Manly Beach, on the ferry we had a clear view of the whole harbour and could see the Sydney Opera House and the Harbour Bridge, it was so good to see after only seeing it in pictures! We had a look around the shops in Manly and stayed on the beach for a while before heading back to the harbour. We then did a huge supermarket shop, stocking us up for the next few weeks. We then had our first night out in Australia which was really good fun. The next day we went to the famous Bondi Beach which wasn't as spectacular as everyone made it out to be but it was still a really nice beach and packed full of people. We went to a travel agent and booked all our accomodation for the whole of the east coast, very satisfying! Later that day we met Olive's friend from work who we would be staying with for the next 3 days. Over the 3 days we went to Taronga Zoo where we saw Koala's and the longest snake in the world along with lots of other Aussie animals! The view from the zoo is known to be one of the best views in Sydney and it certainly lived up to it. We also spent lots of time on the beach and exploring the city. On our last night we saw Olive's uncle who took us to see Sydney at night which was amazing and the Harbour Bridge looked beautiful all lit up. We loved Sydney but we found it very expensive and were glad we were going somewhere slightly cheaper. On monday we got a 13 hour overnight bus to Byron Bay.
Byron Bay - Arriving at 8am we had some breakfast before heading down to the beach at what seemed like a very early hour! We were soon joined by the 4 other girls and had a lovely day on the beach. We stayed for 4 nights in Byron Bay and it has been really fun especially being in a big group even though we had heavy showers every afternoon without fail! We made friends with the lifeguards and they offered to take us up to the lighthouse in the evening so we could see the whole of Byron. We found out that it is the most eastern point of Australia and the light on top is the brightest mechanical light in the southern hemisphere. On our last day we body boarded and found that it wasn't as easy as doing it in Cornwall as the waves were so big and the current was so strong but we gave it a go! Once we came out of the water the lifeguards told us horrible stories about sharks and how a few weeks ago there were 13 big sharks spotted in shallow waters...thank god they didnt tell us before we went in! Today we are heading to Surfers Paradise as our next stop.