Longhornmaniac
Topic Author
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Attention Sydneysiders!

Wed Apr 21, 2010 1:23 am

Hehe,

Now that I've got your attention, I am in need of your assistance.

I will be in Sydney for almost two full days arriving in the mid-afternoon of May 13th, before leaving on the 1 pm departure to LAX on May 15th.

I would really like to see some of what Sydney has to offer, even if it's at its most basic. Opera House, Bondi, Harbour Bridge etc...

Can anyone suggest a really easy way to do all of that (maybe a tour or something), that wouldn't involve paying exorbitant amounts of money?

Furthermore, any good recommendations on places to stay (I'm all for places near the airport...lest we forget what website we're on!) that also aren't too expensive (I'm talking less than A$150, ideally)? Nearer to the city and the happenings would also work.

Finally, I'd love to meet up with some of you guys, perhaps for an afternoon of plane spotting at Kingsford-Smith, or maybe a bite to eat. If anyone is interested, let me know!

Cheers,
Cameron

Edit: I can't spell.

[Edited 2010-04-20 18:50:52]
Cheers,
Cameron
 
signol
Posts: 2652
Joined: Tue Oct 30, 2007 5:18 pm

RE: Attention Sydneysiders!

Wed Apr 21, 2010 1:47 am

A day pass for the transit network is A$20, whereas a week pass for the inner area most used by tourists including Bondi is A$41. These are valid as far as the airport but you need to pay a supplement if you take the train to the airport (you can still use the bus).

There is also a free bus around the city centre / Circular Quay area:
http://www.sydneybuses.info/free-cbd-shuttle.htm

There are also two hop on hop off tours. These cost A$40 for a 24h ticket, valid on both routes and normal busses.
http://www.sydneybuses.info/tourist-services/sydney-explorer.htm

Hope this helps.

signol
Flights booked: NWI-AMS-JNB-DUR, JNB-AMS-NWI
 
Kent350787
Posts: 855
Joined: Wed May 28, 2008 12:06 am

RE: Attention Sydneysiders!

Wed Apr 21, 2010 1:47 am

Quoting Longhornmaniac (Thread starter):
Oprah House

Freudian slip there? I don't know that she's even visited the Opera House? And Bondi isn't Bondai....

I don't know of anyone who runs a tour that covers it all - but you're probably better asking visitors the question rather than locals. I someone does it, you'd be paying a premium for the service.

Bondi - there are many tours, as well as a government bus service that covers all the beaches and bays which is reasonably inexpensive (Bondi is a bit ho-hum, IMHO).

Opera House tours can be booked on its website at www.sydneyoperahouse.com, which also offers a couple of linked tours. Sydney BridgeClimb is probably best booked on its website too.

Hotels - the Stamford at Mascot has the best view of the Airport, but is above your price range. Formule1 is the cheapest (and almost adjacent to the business apron), but pretty awful. If you really want close to the airport, the Ibis is probably best in your price range.

If you're by yourself, the train from the CBD to the terminal is probably the simplest option and opens up many more accommodation possibilities nearer what you want to see (www.wotif.com is a good local engine to use for deals). Unfortunately spotting is a little difficult by public transport, but locals may pitch in - and have their own forum if you google....

Kent
 
Longhornmaniac
Topic Author
Posts: 2972
Joined: Wed Jun 15, 2005 2:33 pm

RE: Attention Sydneysiders!

Wed Apr 21, 2010 1:54 am

Quoting Kent350787 (Reply 2):

Freudian slip there? I don't know that she's even visited the Opera House? And Bondi isn't Bondai....

Heh, realized that right before I saw your post. Edited!

Thanks for the info, guys! Great help!

Cheers,
Cameron
Cheers,
Cameron
 
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NZ107
Posts: 4946
Joined: Sun Jul 10, 2005 6:51 pm

RE: Attention Sydneysiders!

Wed Apr 21, 2010 6:02 am

Quoting Kent350787 (Reply 2):
Unfortunately spotting is a little difficult by public transport

I really don't mind the observation deck at the international terminal. It's a simple train ride in from the city and up a few flights of stairs (or lift if you're so inclined). That's the easiest and closest viewing area. I wouldn't think you have enough time to walk around Qantas Drive to the end of 16R/34L. Views aren't that bad, especially when 16R is in operation - you'll see all the heavies landing and departing! Maybe you'll want to visit the observation deck all morning before your flight - getting to the airport really early (by 7am - hey, it's a good opportunity to get back into US time!) means you'll catch most of what SYD has to offer traffic-wise.

Cheers,
Nicholas
It's all about the destination AND the journey.
 
Kent350787
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RE: Attention Sydneysiders!

Wed Apr 21, 2010 6:36 am

The observation deck is best if 16R is in use - most aircraft rotate well before it from 34L.

It's a pity they closed the bar/cafe up there - I used to take my eldest son there regularly for coffee and spotting.

The problem with the train is that it is so expensive (airport stations prvately owned), so that it's OK for 1 person to travel to and from their flights, but a taxi is similar or cheaper if you have more than 1 person travelling.
 
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cpd
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RE: Attention Sydneysiders!

Wed Apr 21, 2010 7:06 am

Quoting Kent350787 (Reply 5):
most aircraft rotate well before it from 34L.

And that's still good actually, because it gives you great photos that will be free of heat haze.

Be warned - the bus tickets have changed, they now have these Myzone tickets that have come into effect. I don't know what the costs are, I haven't needed to get one - yet. Still have to get my next MyZone quarterly train ticket (or maybe one for the rest of the year).

As for the airport - Qantas Drive is a great spotting location when planes are using RWY 16R, they pass right over your head. You'll also see them from the observation deck at the international terminal, but the view will be punctuated by light posts. You can get photos like this:


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Photo © Chris P Denton
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Photo © Chris P Denton
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Photo © Chris P Denton

Used Nikon D700 and AF-S VR Zoom-Nikkor 200-400mm F/4.0G lens for these.

Qantas drive looks like this:


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Photo © Chris P Denton
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Photo © Chris P Denton
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Photo © Chris P Denton

Used Nikon D700, AF-S Zoom-Nikkor 24-70mm F/2.8G lens for these photos.

The beach is a bit of a pain to get to unless you have a car. Photos from there look like this:






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Photo © Chris P Denton


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Photo © Chris P Denton


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Photo © Chris P Denton


View Large View Medium
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Photo © Chris P Denton


View Large View Medium
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Photo © Chris P Denton


View Large View Medium
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Photo © Chris P Denton

The local Sydney spotters forum is yssyforum.net. Nothing can fly in and out of Sydney, or over Sydney for that matter without them knowing about it.

I'd offer to show you about - but I'm not very reliable and I tend to be too busy all the time.

Edit: I hate HTML tables!

[Edited 2010-04-21 00:40:59]

[Edited 2010-04-21 00:41:27]
 
bookishaviator
Posts: 225
Joined: Sat Jun 13, 2009 10:39 am

RE: Attention Sydneysiders!

Wed Apr 21, 2010 9:37 am

I'm not from Sydney, although I do visit on a frequent basis as it's quite a cheap and easy weekend away from Melbourne. I probably wouldn't recommend a guided tour - much of what Sydney has to offer is within easy reach of trains, buses and ferries (airport included, which is a relatively quick train trip from the CBD) and is probably better enjoyed at your own leisurely pace. Although the Opera House does do a decent guided tour in and around the complex, but generally I'm a bit anti-guided tour.

You can also freely walk across the Harbour Bridge (the walk from Circular Quay to the start of the Harbour Bridge is an easy one) and when the weather behaves, it's really quite an awesome walk (well, if you can somehow block out the motor vehicle noise).

Bondi, I think, is best enjoyed over an entire lazy day. With a towel, bathers/change of clothes, a couple of books and some loose change for lunch and the odd ice cream. It's not a snap-a-photo-and-go kind of place.

I'd certainly recommend taking a ferry somewhere (anywhere) from Circular Quay to, say, Manly, even if only to get a perspective of the harbour from the harbour itself. It's very nice stuff.
When I die, when I die, I'll rot. But when I live, when I live, I'll give it all I've got.
 
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fxramper
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RE: Attention Sydneysiders!

Wed Apr 21, 2010 12:11 pm

The Harbor Bridge tour is a tourist trap. Take your photos from somewhere else. Try a Victoria Bitter; stay away from Fosters please. See you back in Texas dude.   
 
bookishaviator
Posts: 225
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RE: Attention Sydneysiders!

Wed Apr 21, 2010 12:22 pm

VB? Hell no. Foul stuff.    And I say this as a Victorian!

So much good beer in Australia. For your every day sort of beer, Boag's all the way for me.

But this is off topic... apologies.   
When I die, when I die, I'll rot. But when I live, when I live, I'll give it all I've got.
 
Kent350787
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RE: Attention Sydneysiders!

Wed Apr 21, 2010 11:17 pm

Quoting fxramper (Reply 8):
stay away from Fosters please

Is Fosters even sold here any longer? I thought that it was now some dodgy beer that only Pom lager louts drink? (but it's still better than XXXX)

Kent
 
mirrodie
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RE: Attention Sydneysiders!

Wed Apr 21, 2010 11:24 pm

Quoting Longhornmaniac (Thread starter):
I would really like to see some of what Sydney has to offer, even if it's at its most basic. Opera House, Bondi, Harbour Bridge etc...

Can anyone suggest a really easy way to do all of that (maybe a tour or something), that wouldn't involve paying exorbitant amounts of money?

Cameron, what you might want to do is do that Sydney Explorer Bus(someone above linked it). We used it back on our first trip to Australia. It was well worth the ticket price. But the way we did it was that we hopped on it the first day so that we got a taste of it all. Once we did that, we then chose the top 5 things that we really wanted to focus on and see in greater depth and built the rest of our trip that way over the next 5 days.


So you'll get all of Sydney in a day and may have time to hone in on 1 area the most the second day.


Having done a lot of research prior to our travels, as already stated, dont do the Bridge tour, its a time killer and tourist trap for such a short trip


So you are all done and heading home?
Forum moderator 2001-2010; He's a pedantic, pontificating, pretentious bastard, a belligerent old fart, a worthless st
 
Kent350787
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Joined: Wed May 28, 2008 12:06 am

RE: Attention Sydneysiders!

Wed Apr 21, 2010 11:44 pm

Also, if you really want something a little bridge related (and not AUD$198 for the daytime Bridgeclimb), for AUD$9.50 you can go to the top of the SE pylon (www.pylonlookout.com.au/).

The explorer bus does seem good value for the tourist routes, as it includes a commentary. But, if you just want ordinary buses/trains/ferries a AUD$41 MyMulti1 (http://www.myzone.nsw.gov.au/mymulti.html) will get you all government ferries, as well as trains and buses within 10km of the CBD for 1 week (I know you're only planning 2 days). It excludes the explorer buses, and you need to pay an extra $7 each way for the airport terminals, but it is another option.

You could catch the train over the Harbour Bridge (for me, an upstairs seat on the Western (non-CBD) side heading north is the best view. You can even walk from Milsons Point station down to the ferry wharf and catch the ferry back to Circular Quay then head to Manly (30 mins each way to Manly)

Kent
 
Longhornmaniac
Topic Author
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Joined: Wed Jun 15, 2005 2:33 pm

RE: Attention Sydneysiders!

Wed Apr 21, 2010 11:53 pm

Quoting mirrodie (Reply 11):

Hey mirrodie,

Well, I'm definitely closing in on the finish line. The program is over in 3 weeks, but that is arguably the hardest 3 weeks of the program, as I've still got to finish my research on Lizard and then write my big research paper (20-40 pages). But yeah, I'll be headed back before I know it!

Thanks for the advice, everyone. I'm starting to get a good idea of what I'm in for!  

I can't believe how outrageously expensive it is to use the international airport train stop!

Cheers,
Cameron
Cheers,
Cameron
 
Kent350787
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Joined: Wed May 28, 2008 12:06 am

RE: Attention Sydneysiders!

Thu Apr 22, 2010 12:04 am

Quoting Longhornmaniac (Reply 13):
I can't believe how outrageously expensive it is to use the international airport train stop!

Nor can Sydneysiders. If I want to take my youngest to the terminal on a rainy day, it'll cost me a $16+ train fare (he's free). I can park at the outrageously expensive airport parking for $21 per hour.....
 
signol
Posts: 2652
Joined: Tue Oct 30, 2007 5:18 pm

RE: Attention Sydneysiders!

Thu Apr 22, 2010 12:22 am

Quoting Longhornmaniac (Reply 13):
I can't believe how outrageously expensive it is to use the international airport train stop!

If you have one of the standard passes, use it on the train to Banksia rail station, then transfer to the no. 400 bus to the airport.
http://www.sydneybuses.info/uploads/...twork_maps/southern_region_map.pdf

signol
Flights booked: NWI-AMS-JNB-DUR, JNB-AMS-NWI

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