CARDONA

Beautiful Cardona is an hour and a half drive from Barcelona,  journey  to the heartland of Catalonia to discover this charming  medieval town  and explore the magnificent Salt Mountain with “In Out Tours Barcelona”

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Cardona castle
Castle
Castle Cardona Wall
Castle Wall
Cardona Castle
Inside Look Out

Castle Cardona

Condona Castle
Castle

Our tour guide Mauriusz was very helpful and knowledgeable picking us up at our apartment to drive to one of the best-preserved castles in Spain situated on a hill overlooking the lands along the Cardoner River and the town with panoramic views from every aspect.

At this 9th century castle which is now a hotel, you can also visit Minyona Tower and a charming little chapel both dating back to the 11th century. They have taken great care to ensure that the castle retains all of the gothic elements, fosses, towers, and walls.

Hotel Cardona Castle
Parador de Cardona

Chapel Cordona

Corona
Castle Chapel

When we arrived at this medieval village, they were pulling down a portable bullring used during the celebration of the Aplec de Cardona which recalls the importance of the castle in the Catalan resistance of 1714.

The castle resisted the occupation of Franco-Spanish troops until September 18, 1714, one week after the fall of Barcelona. The Aplec de Cardona commemorates the resistance of the castle, which is known as the last stronghold of the freedoms of Catalonia. Every September 18 recreates the defeat of the collegiate church of the castle and the torch descent.

Cardona Bullring
Bullring 
Town Square
Colonnades in town square

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The village flanked by Romanesque and Gothic buildings has several restaurants where you can enjoy local cuisine and great sangria before heading out to visit the salt mines.

At Salt Mountain Cultural Park you are transported from the drop off point by the van below,  to enjoy a guided tour of the mine where there are various images produced by folds and seams along with stalagmites and stalactites.

Transport Salt Mountain
Salt Mountain
Mountain of Salt
Salt Mountain

 

Salt Mountain
stalactite

This full day tour was so interesting full of history and wonderful sights to see from the imposing 9th -century castle, medieval village to ancient crystalline salt deposits. Well done  “In Out Tours Barcelona”!

We did three tours with this company I can highly recommend! 

 

Interesting Tourist Activities Barcelona

Interesting tourist activities in Barcelona: 

1 – Runnerbeantours free walking tours, we chose the Gothic Quarter Free Walking tour and the Dark Past night Tour which you pay.

Both were excellent, the guides were very knowledgeable the alleyways and narrow streets were fascinating full of history and events. along with early Roman ruins.You can book online before you leave home. The guides are very easy to find at Place Reial meeting point in their bright green tops.

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Barcelona activities
Runner Bean Tours
Interesting activities Barcelona
Gothic Quarter
activities Barcelona
Miquel Runnerbeantours guide
Barcelona activities
Graffiti – Barcelona

Graffiti in the Gothic Quarter during the night tour.

2–  Funicular to  Montjuic to visit Montjuic Castle standing 173 metres above the port with fantastic views of the city and surrounds.

The castle was used as a prison also has launched bombing raids on the city on a number of occasions. Used as a military prison, an army base, a weapons museum and in 1940 the president of the Catalan Government was executed by firing squad.

In 2007, the castle came under the ownership of Barcelona City Council and now belongs to all the citizens of Barcelona.

Barcelona Interesting things to do
Funicular Montjuic

Barcelona cable cars

Barcelona has 2 cable cars and 3 mountain trains (called funiculars) on Barcelona’s two biggest hills Montjuic and Tibidabo. A mountain funicular train is for steep hills and the train carriages pulled up on a cable on train tracks. They are fun to visit for the spectacular views of Barcelona. A great experience in this vintage cable car.

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Not far from the funicular there are several beautiful gardens some with amazing city views. We just happened upon these and really pleased we added to interesting tourist activities Barcelona.

Interesting tourist attractions Barcelona
Garden path atop Montjuic

3 – Montjuïc – Gardens 

Opened in 1922, the Jardins de Laribal were some of the many gardens and buildings that served to decorate Montjuïc for the International Exhibition in 1929.
Barcelona’s city council bought the land, which was until then privately owned by Josep Laribal’s estate, and they commissioned the landscape.

Interesting tourist activities Barcelona
Jardins de Laribal Barcelona

4 – The Miró Museum and the Fundació Joan Miró

Is amongst the interesting tourist activities Barcelona especially for art lovers.

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The foundation Fundació Joan Miró was initiated by the artist Joan Miró himself and the same year, the museum opened on June 10th in 1975. The artist relinquished the majority of his works to the foundation. Other works are presents from his wife Pilar Juncosa, Joan Prats. Well known sculptures such as the “Couple d’Amoureux aux Jeux de Fleur d’Amandier” (1975) and a large, lavishly designed wall hanging, made particularly for the foundation, are among these works.

 

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Worth a visit not only to the museum but the city views.

Whilst on Montjuic you can also visit the Olympic Museum within walking distance from the funicular.

5 – The museum managed by Barcelona Olympic Foundation is the first of its kind in Europe. Opened in 2007 next to Montjuïc’s Olympic Stadium, the Joan Antoni Samaranch Olympic and Sports Museum is an innovative center entirely dedicated to the world of sport.

 

Hosting the 1992 Olympic Games “totally transformed” Barcelona, according to the city’s mayor, Xavier Trias. Speaking at the Global Sports Forum in March 2012, Trias revealed how the Games created a long-term sporting legacy for the city.

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6 – When you come down off Montjuic you can visit the Columbus Column at the end of Las Rambla, the views not as spectacular as the top of Montjunic but give you another great perspective of this beautiful city.

7 – In this area is Port Vell the cruise liner port along with cafe’s, restaurant and bars.

Barcelona Columbus Column
Columbus Column
Interesting tourist activities Barcelona
Port Vell

 

Marina Port Vell

If you alight at the other end of the cable car you are at San Sebastian beach.

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During the summer this beach is a mass of sun worshippers, hope they are using the sunblock!

This is a lovely part of the city and will certainly fill a whole day.

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In the evening the Magic Fountain of Montjuïc (Font màgica de Montjuïc) the first performance was on May 19, 1929, during the Great Universal Exhibition. The link will give you the times and days.

Another wonderful day in Barcelona! 

 

Sitges-Spain

Sitges-Spain is  35km southwest of  Barcelona on the Costa Del Garraf. it is a quaint little coastal town surrounded by the hills of the Garraf National Park. 

One of the most attractive towns on the Catalan coast. Known as the St Tropez of Spain. Great beaches and lively cafe and restaurants creating a sophisticated and cosmopolitan atmosphere.

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The  Ferrat Museum and Maricel Museum showcase Spanish and Catalan art.

The town consists of large avenues, narrow streets, museums, churches, boutique shopping. A tourist paradise.

Direct trains to Sitges leave from Passeig de Gràcia or Sants stations – from Plaça de Catalunya changing at Barcelona-Sants. The journey is around 35 minutes.

Buses are also available.

A tourist resort since the 1800s, Sitges not only attracts many tourists but is favoured by artistic, trendy and gay communities.

Fiestas




In February is Sitges Carnival Week.

Sitges hosts the October Grape Harvest Festival and the Sardana Dance of the Harvest Festival.

Santa Tecla Festival  celebrated between 15th and 23rd, September since 1321. One of the most important Spanish traditional festivals. Human towers, historical parades, and fireworks are some of the main activities

During October, the town holds the International Film Festival of Catalonia.

Sitges - Spain Beach
San Sebastian Beach Sitges

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Sitges-Spain church
Church of Sant Bartomeu & Santa Tecla
Sitges Wedding
Bridesmaids Sitges

The 17th-century Parish  Church of St. Bartomeu and St. Tecla Santa Tecla is Sitges’ most striking landmark sitting proudly on a rocky elevation on the Baluard headland, overlooking the Mediterranean sea. the locals refer to it as‘La Punta’ or ‘The Point’. 

Bacardi Museum Sitzes
Casa Bacardi
Sitges -Spain
Casa Bacardi

Facundo Bacardí Massó was born in Sitges 1814, he developed a unique process of fermentation which made the first transparent white rum in the world. The  Bacardi museum is located Plaça de l’Ajuntament, 11, Sitges.

Surges Spain
Casa Sitges-Spain

Beautiful architecture throughout Sitges, discover the historical and cultural heritage.

Sitges Spain

Sitges-Spain
Casa Sitges
Sitges Spain Square
Small Square Sitges
Sitges Spain Town Hall
Sitges Town Hall
Sitges old town has typically Spanish narrow streets leading down the promenade that runs along the foreshore.
Narrow Streets Sitges
Sitges
Narrow Streets Sitges
Sitges Narrow Street
Sitges is a lovely place to take a stroll and enjoy the sights and sounds of local life, its compact centre holds lots of interesting shops, restaurants, cafes, bars, museums, and art galleries. Easy to walk around and take in all this beautiful town has to offer.
 

Visit Beautiful Tarragona Spain

Tarragona Spain a UNESCO world heritage site with a wealth of archaeological remains dating back to the Romans.

Situated around 100km from Barcelona on Costa Dorado. One of the three provinces that formed the Iberia Peninsula approximately 2000 years ago.

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The tour company we chose for  Tarragona Spain   In Out Barcelona Tours arriving right at the  prearranged time. Our guide Mariano was excellent, full of the knowledge and extremely caring.

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Just outside Tarragona  Spain, you sight the first of the Roman engineering the impressive Les Ferreres Aqueduct a 217m long and 26m high structure also called the The Devil’s Bridge.

Tarragona Street at entrance to old city
Pebble Pattern Street Tarragona
Pebble pattern Tarragona
Pebble design controls water flow

Leading to the entrance of the old city is this beautiful path and cleverly designed to control the water flow during rain..

Old city Map Tarragona
Tarraco Colonia City Map

Near the entrance to the Old City, there is Tarragona’s small archaeological museum which houses a collection of mosaics, tombstones, statues and other artifacts.  Also the old city map, Mariano explains the points of interest.

Old City Building Tarragona
Old City Tarragona
Tarragona water fountain old city
Water fountain

Wall Tarragona Old City
Ornate Wall Old City
Street in Old City Tarragona
Old City Tarragona

Tarragona Old Town located in the upper part of the city is full of history and charm.  Many winding streets and narrow alleys meander through this city which was once encircled by a stone wall built by the Romans. Parts of the wall are still visible and other parts used by some as construction in their homes.

Cathedral Santa Maria Tarragona
Tarragona Cathedral Santa Maria

At the highest point of this city sits the Cathedral of Santa Maria built between the 12th and 14th century,  with an amazing history. Before there had been a 10th-century mosque, a Christian Visigothic basilica and, a Roman temple.

It is well worth a visit inside.

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Leading from Cathedral Square is a beautiful 14th century arcaded street Call Merceria .

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You can visit different manor houses in Calle Mayor and the Old Town Hall stands statuesque at the end.

Tarragona Amphithestre
Roman Amphitheatre

The amphitheatre carved into the hillside around the turn of the  2nd Century AD.  used for entertainment by the Romans such as Gladiator fights. public executions, celebrations.

The Roman Circus was a hippodrome built to hold Chariot races, circus, and theatre.  Seating 30, 000 the circus was 350m long by 115m wide, most of it now lies hidden beneath the medieval city centre.

Remaining sections of the walls and some of the tunnels which originally gave access to the stands run beneath the surrounding streets and buildings of the city centre.

Tarragona Spain
Cathedral Santa Maria and Tarragona Old City
Tarragon Spain consul statue
Statue of a Roman consul in Tarragona,

Tarragona Spain was a wonderful experience and I strongly encourage you to visit this beautiful city once the capital of the Roman Empire in Spain.

There are many festivals held in Tarragona so check your travel dates with the Tarragona City festivals calendar to see what is available.

On a Sunday there is a market, just outside the Santa Maria Basilica Cathedral.

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Barcelona City Landmarks you must visit

One of the top Barcelona city landmarks is the awe-inspiring  Sagrada Familia, Gaudi’s famous Cathedral.  I advise an early tour and booking tickets before leaving home to avoid queues. Later tours tend to be much busier especially if there are several cruise ships in port.

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Barcelona metro is a fast and efficient way to move around the city avoiding the traffic and takes you near to the Cathedral.

metroMetro: Sagrada Familia (Blue Line, L5) and (Purple Line, L2)

The whole cathedral is amazing but I  loved the sculptures by Josep Maria Subirachs his angular figures are impressive.

Barcelona Sagrada Familia
Sagrada Familia sculptures by Josep Maria Subirachs
Beautiful Barcelona Sagrada Familia
Sagrada Familia Barcelona
Barcelona Sagrada Familia
Sagrada Familia sculptures by Josep Maria Subirachs,
The sculptures are unique and less know features of the cathedral,  as the beautiful stained glass windows and the exterior are usually displayed and for good reason.
 
The genius of Gaudi never ceases to amaze me, the detail in everything is perfect.  You will really enjoy visiting the cathedral especially if you are into art.
 

Another beautiful Barcelona city landmarks the world heritage listed  Palau de la Musicia with its beautiful Art Nouveau architecture.  Built between 1905 and 1908 by the modernist architect Lluís Domènech i Montaner .

 We attended a concert by  Italian Aniello Desiderio currently one of the great masters of the Spanish guitar, who captivated the audience with charisma, enthusiasm, and passion for the instrument, a unique and unforgettable performance.
Concert venue Palau de la musica
Palau de la musica
Barcelona Palau de la Musica
Palau de la Musica lead light ceiling
Concert hall Palau de la musica Barcelona
Bar Palau de la Musica

Palau Guided Tours

Guided tours of the Rehearsal Hall, Lluis Millet  Hall,  and the Concert Hall all filled with unique detail of decorative art along with the great skylight which appears different by day and night.   In the Concert Hall grandly sits the organ of the Palau.

Place Reial  a public square with restaurant and nightclubs  was our meeting point for a “Free’  Gothic  and Jewish Quarter  walking tour with Runner Bean  tours

Our guide Miquel was informative relating the history of Romans to saints, kings, and warriors. whilst guiding us through the medieval quarters, narrow streets,  alleyways and squares. Place Del Pia in the middle of the Gothic Quarter with the Santa Maria del Pia church with some of the most impressive sgraffitos in the city.

Barcelona Santa Maria del Pi
Barcelona Cathedral

In the Born District sits this amazing  Barcelona Cathedral an architectural delight and another of Barcelona city landmarks – The Cathedral’s organ is inside the nave, under the bell tower, in the upper gallery over the door of Saint Ivo. It was built between 1537 and 1539, repaired and restored between 1985-1994. Popular organ concerts are programmed each month.

A small medieval square outside Barcelona Cathedral you will find performers and buskers of all genre. We were lucky to happen upon some great opera singers and a bride dancing to the music whilst husband proudly watched on.

Barcelona cathedral square
Barcelona Cathedral medieval square
Walking through the narrow passageways and passing ancient houses in the Gothic Quarter you reach the Old Jewish Quarter (El Call) where you find the Ancient  Synagogue in Spain and one of 5 medieval synagogues that remain today.
The synagogue is only 60m2 consisting of two rooms, the foundations are from Roman times as are parts of the walls.

Nearby is  Placa Sant Jaume where the main government buildings dominate the square. and has been the centre of political life for over 2000 years. Many rallies and festivals start and end from this square.

Government Building Barcelonsa
Catalan Government Building Sant Jaume Square

The  Cathedral Cloister, known as La Seu, is in the Gothic district (Barri Gotic). .The cloister dates from the 14th century and has been called” the loveliest oasis in Barcelona”, there  13 geese reside, one for each year in the life of the Santa Eulalia (a Christian martyr tortured and killed by the Romans).

On the edge of the Jewish Quarter is the baroque church of Sant Felip Neri was built in 1750 and was one of the few examples of this style in Barcelona.  The main façade has simple lines and the doorway is crowned by a semi-circular form surmounted by the figure of the Saint.

The shell wounds etched into the stone of Sant Felip Neri are a reminder of the aerial bombardment that took place in January 1938 at the height of the Civil War, ending the lives of 42 people, many of them children, who had taken shelter in the basement of the convent.

Barcelona City Landmarks
Sant Felip Neri Church

The buildings in the square once housed the city’s guilds of coppersmiths and shoemakers.

Barcelona City Landmark
Barcelona Placa Del Rei
A 14th-century medieval public square in the Barri Gòtic of Barcelona. It is a small square with beautiful architecture and a great atmosphere by night. 
King Ferdinand, Christopher Columbus and the Spanish Inquisition all have something to say in Placa Del Rei.
Barcelona City Landmarks
Santa Maria Del Mar

Santa Maria Del Mar called “the Cathedral of the Sea”.  A masterpiece of the Catalan Gothic.  Construction started in 1329.  Check for music recitals, often baroque and classical. Guided tours available at midday which includes the rooftop.

The end of a really busy but interesting day visiting the many  Barcelona city landmarks.

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Barcelona

This is the first day of our fantastic stay in Barcelona where there are so many interesting things to do and see.

I organised a trip for four other ladies and myself staying in a lovely Art nouveau apartment in an Airbaun Carrier an upmarket part of the city with easy access to transport and shops.

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Gaudi’s La Pedrera designed in 1912 was our first stop. I recommend the tour which gives you an insight into this amazing man’s creative genius.

I would book tickets online to avoid queues.

travelswithclaire
Casa Mila

You can also visit Casa Batilo another of Gaudi’s works close by. Casa Amatller and Casa Lleó Morera are also very impressive, cheaper to enter and tend to be less crowded.

Heading off down La Ramblas which is 1.2 kilometres long and a well-known destination of everyone visiting Barcelona. It was built in 1766 and became the meeting place of all the social classes to spend their leisure time away from the narrow winding streets elsewhere.

As you walk along, with the many tourists and locals you’ll see Gran Teatre del Liceu, Barcelona’s grand opera house completed in 1847. Tours are available you can book online to avoid queues. The tour takes you to quarters not open to the general public, very interesting.

The Palau de la Virreina the beautiful late 18th century Palau (palace), an old mansion converted into a cultural centre dedicated mostly to images and photography next to the Boqueria Market. The market has every variety of food imaginable and small eateries good for a quick bite. Worth a visit.

La Ramblas

At the end of La Ramblas, you will find Columbus Monument which offers panoramic views from the viewing platform at the upper end of the column.

Just before the end of La Rambla heading towards the docks at C.Josep Anselm Clavé 3, principal 2ª 08002, Nomar Leather is situated it was a much larger establishment when I first visited, you now need to call for an appointment.

The father retired and the business is now run by his son Ricardo, their products are excellent and made to measure. We all ordered jackets as we were in Barcelona for two weeks. They do have off the rack or they will ship to your home.

Worth a visit if you are after leather items. Much better quality than in the shops along the tourist areas for around the same cost. I will try and contact them and see if they will offer my readers a discount and let you know in the next post.

Regardless, excellent quality and I have had many items made over the years. I found Nomar when I worked on the ships visiting Barcelona every week.

After this full day, we set out in the evening for our Paella cooking lesson with Mariangeles Alonso – trip4real First we went to the wrong address then had to high tail it across town to La Barceloneta in peak hour (hairy) to arrive at a tiny fisherman’s cottage, up a very small stone staircase to a tiny apartment.

We set to chopping up ingredients in this tiny kitchen wondering where we were going to eat as there was no obvious dining area.

Next, we were ushered up more small stone steps to the rooftop where you could nearly touch the adjoining apartments, Mariangeles proceeded with the demonstration whilst we sat on crates/cushions with wine in hand and neighbours looking on and wanting an invite to dinner as the aroma was wafting all over the neighbourhood.

The Paella was fantastic and it was such a unique experience, better than any dining room!

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Mariangeles paella cooking teacher
Barcelona
Amazing Paella

Just as we finished eating the heavens opened up so after throwing cushions down the stairwell we scrambled off to find a taxi home like drowned rats. A fun night with great memories!

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Sydney Beaches North – CBD

Sydney Beaches North CBD – The beaches total around 23 of the 40 beaches along the coastline, not including the harbour and bays. Many accessible by public transport.

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Dee Why / Long Reef

Dee Why

The most northern point of Sydney Beach North CBD is Palm Beach the most northerly point 41km from Sydney Beaches North CBD derives its name from the cabbage tree palms that grow there. The beach is 2.3km long east facing.

Palm Beach is also known as Summer Bay in “Home and Away” soap opera filmed there Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. Tours are available to see the filming.

Palm Beach is a beautiful, exclusive location with stately old and modern homes. A getaway for many celebrities due to the isolation at the tip of the peninsula.

“The Boathouse” restaurant on the point at the end of the golf course is a popular eating spot, especially on a perfect sunny day. Serving modern Australian breakfasts, seafood and juice bar in a rustic-chic space with outdoor tables.

The 4th Sunday of the month you will find a beach market located in Governor Philip Park with a wide range of products, a variety of food, and music.

From Palm Beach to Manly there are 20 beaches that all have their own special appeal depending on what experience you want, some more difficult to get to than others if travelling on public transport.

Mona Vale Beach

Warriewood Beach

Dee Why 18K north of the CBD it is a popular beach for the family with picnic areas, playgrounds, ocean pool. It also is the site of numerous first-class sporting events such as the Beachley Classic, Sun Run, Ocean Thunder and much more.

Dee Why

Along the strip, facing the beach there is a wide variety of restaurants catering to all different palates.

Curl Curl Ocean pool

Manly, I may be a little bias as I live here but this is my favourite.

As teenagers, my sister and I would head off on the train to catch the iconic ferry from Circular Quay for our day at the beach coming home as red as lobsters from the sun.

Mum would be cross smearing tomato all over us to aid the sunburn only for the little seeds to stick to your already sore skin. Now we are more informed. Use blackout it is most important here even in winter.

MANLY BEACH

Manly Beach

Narrabeen Beach “Swim between the flags”

Tip -23% of drownings in Australia are at the beach so it is important to swim between the flags to avoid rips and stay safe. Do not swim at unpatrolled beaches.

Manly and Shelly Beaches are the closest of the Sydney Beaches north of CBD. and easily accessible by ferry or road but the latter is time-consuming as the traffic can be rather heavy especially at peak times.

More to do in Sydney:

 

Visit the Top 10 Things Sydney CBD

Sydney – Australia information on the top 10 things Sydney CBD.  that you can experience.

You can travel any time of the year as the winters are mild.

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1 – SYDNEY OPERA HOUSE

Built from 1959 to 1973 and designed by Danish architect Jorn Utzon, is one of the famous performing arts multi venues in the world situated on the beautiful harbour near the Botanical Gardens and Government House.

The Opera House became a UNESCO World Heritage site in 2007. The building also houses a concert hall, 2 theatres, a playhouse, a studio, a small multi-purpose room, a recording studio, cafe’s, restaurants, bars and retail outlets and a huge outdoor forecourt.

Guided tours are available, including frequent tours for 1 hour.  A daily backstage tour 2.5 hours that takes visitors to see areas normally reserved for performers and crew members.

TIP On the foreshore steps resides a lone seal you can visit – he/she is cute

2 – HARBOUR BRIDGE

travelswithclaire
Sydney Harbour Bridge

One of Sydney’s most famous landmarks opened in 1932 joining the northern and southern shores of the harbour affectionately known as the “Coathanger”

You can climb the bridge “Bridgeclimb” during the day, twilight and evening. Groups of twelve leave every ten minutes.   Not quite as exciting but none the less you can visit the Pylon Lookout has 360 degrees views which include the city skyline, Opera House, and harbour.  Good if you are pressed for time. You will be able to watch the bridge climbers from there!

Enter Cumberland St,  at The Rocks.

I did the climb at twilight, amazing!

TIP A free pedestrian walkway across the bridge,  for great views taking 15-20 minutes. You can enter from either the south or north of the bridge.

Sydney Harbour Bridge.

http://bridgeclimb.com.

http://pylonlookout.com.au 

 

3 – BOTANICAL GARDENS & GOVERNMENT HOUSE

Established in 1816 and covering 30 hectares in the heart of the city on the edge of Sydney Harbour,  explore these breath-taking Gardens that occupy one of Sydney’s most spectacular positions.

A 10-minute walk from the CBD or Opera House, entry in Gallery Road.

Take time to explore and enjoy this beautiful setting with a diverse range of flora.

Learn the richly diverse history and culture of the Aboriginal people of the Sydney region with an Aboriginal guide in the heart of the city. Uncover the Royal Botanic Garden’s rich Aboriginal heritage by exploring plant uses, culture, artefacts and tasting some bush foods.

The tour is offered every Wednesday, Friday and Saturday at 10 am, departing from outside the Garden Shop. For more information and for bookings, please click here.

Free 1.5 hour walk, departing from the Information Booth outside the Garden Shop at 10:30 am, 7 days a week.

Tip:  Wear a  hat and sunscreen.

GOVERNMENT HOUSE

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Government House Sydney and its grounds on the edge of the botanical gardens were opened to the public in 1996 under the care of the Historic Houses Trust. In December 2013, Government House resumed its role as the official Residence for the Governor of New South Wales. Government House Sydney welcomes visitors to the House and magnificent grounds of one of Australia’s oldest buildings.

For detailed information on Tours, Accessibility, Closures and Special Days please see Visitor Information.

Tip: Tours run every 30 minutes from 10:30 am to 3:00 pm. The tour takes 45 minutes.

4 –  DARLING HARBOUR

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Darling Harbour is accessible by ferry from Circular Quay Wharf 5   which is a great way to see more attractions on the way. You can also travel by bus, light rain or walk from the CBD.

Heaps of things to do:

  • Maritime Museum                       http://anmm.gov.au
  • 9D Action Cinema
  • Chinese Garden of Friendship
  • America Cup Sailing Experiences
  • Flight Experience Simulator
  • Retail Shopping
  • Family Fun Attractions
  • Restaurants/Bars
  • Kingpin Bowling
  • Madame Tussauds
  • M9 Laser Skirmish
  • Sea Life Aquarium
  • James Craig Tall Ship
  • Fantasea Cruising
  • Exitus  – Real Life Puzzle rooms
  • Powerhouse  Museum
  • Much more

http://www.darlingharbour.com

Tip: Try the fudge shop – the fudge turtles to die for!

5 –  FERRIES

travelswithclaire
Sydney Ferry

If you do not go to Manly on these iconic old ferries you have an option of many other locations, The Zoo which is amazing and has spectacular views back to the city, Darling Harbour, Watson’s Bay (great seafood) Luna Park (Amusement Park) Cockatoo Island (convict and shipbuilding history.) to name a few. All these places are interesting and have something to offer.

Tip – there are fast ferries to a lot of these destinations but a better experience on the older ones. The fast ferry is usually half the time.

http://transportnsw.info

6 – ART GALLERY OF NSW

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Australia’s most popular art museum, overlooking Sydney Harbour, just 10 minutes walk from the CBD through the Domain 34 hectares of open space on the eastern edge of Sydney.

The gallery houses an extensive collection of Australian art,  as well as the largest  Aboriginal art collection in the country,  European masters, Asian treasures and leading local and international contemporary art.

Visit on a Wednesday evening until 10 pm for Art After Hours and see a slice of Sydney culture with free celebrity talks, music, performances, films and special events.

Regular free guided tours are offered in Japanese, Mandarin, Cantonese, and Korean. Tours are also available for vision and hearing impaired visitors.

For times and dates of all tours, please check the Art Gallery of NSW website.

http://www.artgallery.nsw.gov.au/

Tip – Museum of Modern Art – MCA- at the Rocks is worth a visit.

http://mca.com.au

7 – SYDNEY TOWER EYE

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Located on Market Street, between Pitt and Castlereagh Streets The tower stands 309 m (1,014 ft) above the (CBD). It is accessible from the Pitt Street Mall, Market Street or Castlereagh Street and sits above the Westfield Sydney

Sydney Tower Eye takes you to the highest point above Sydney for breathtaking 360-degree views of the beautiful harbour city.
A 360 dining and bar experience, which offers revolving views of the Sydney skyline, is located on level one of the Sydney Tower Eye.

The Observation Deck offers state-of-the-art technology, including high-powered binoculars and multilingual touchscreen panels that tell every visitor interesting facts about the famous landmarks they are looking at.

Skywalk is an open-air glass-floored platform encircling the Sydney Tower Eye at a height of 268 m (879 ft) above ground levelThe viewing platform extends over the edge of the main structure of the deck.
Tip: This platform is only accessible for a  booked tour.
For more information: www.sydneytowereye.com.au

 

8 – THE ROCKS

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In 1788 The Rocks are where the  European settlers chose to land thus the birthplace of Sydney. a British Colony of convicts, soldiers, and sailors.Learn about Sydney’s past by exploring The Rocks, from cobbled laneways and sandstone warehouses to Australia’s oldest pubs.  Enjoy walking tours, museums, galleries, markets and a delicious range of restaurants.Check here for tours.The colourful markets are home to more than 200 eclectic stalls where you can find fashion and accessories by emerging designers, locally produced housewares, beauty products and original photography, art, crafts and jewellery. 
Tip:   Rocks Market Every Saturday and Sunday from 10 am – 5 pm year round.
http://www.therocks.com

 

9 – ST MARY’S CATHEDRAL

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The first St Mary’s was built on land given to the church in 1820 by Governor Macquarie. The site chosen was on the edge of town, close to the convict barracks and convict garden. Macquarie laid the foundation stone in October 1821.

The first church had no roof until 1831 and the first mass was celebrated in December 1833. In 1835, with the arrival of Bishop Polding, Australia’s first Catholic bishop, the church was elevated to the status of a cathedral.

 In June 1865  nearly all the Cathedral was destroyed by fire except for the Pugin façade and bell tower and part of the north-east transept.

Plans for the construction of a new, larger cathedral officially opened in  1900 and consecrated in 1905. 

In 1913 the foundation stone for the final southern section, including the nave and the towers, was laid, and the final ceremony for the completed cathedral was held in 1928. The original design of the cathedral towers included spires, but the spires were not completed until August 2000, 135 years after construction commenced.

Remains the largest ecclesiastical building in the English Gothic style in the world.

Tip:   The Cathedral is opposite beautiful Hyde Park on St Mary’s Road, Sydney. 

http://stmaryscathedral.org.au/about-us/index.html

 

10 – Queen Victoria Building

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The last but not least of the top 10 things CBD is the beautiful Queen Victoria Building.

This outstanding example of Byzantine architecture, which occupies an entire city block – bounded by George, Market, York, and Druitt Streets – was completed in 1898 to replace the original Sydney Markets.

Remodelled in the 1930s and used for different purposes, including municipal offices. In 1984 it was completely refurbished as a shopping centre, with more than 200 shops.

The QVB has a series of domes and domelets with exquisite stained glass windows and extensive wood paneling throughout. An original 19th-century staircase sits alongside the dome.

There is a marvelous hanging clock that displays a series of mechanically moving tableaux of British kings and queens every hour on the hour. This “exhibition” is heralded by loud trumpeters and ends with the beheading of Charles I.

http://stmaryscathedral.org.au/about-us/index.html

Tip: On the opposite corner on George Street is the Sydney Town Hall built in 1889.

This is the most popular top 10 things CBD but I am sure you can find heaps more to add to your favourites.

I have been lucky enough to visit all these places so hard to pick a favourite it really depends on your interests. If you want to know more please feel free to email me or leave a comment below.

See more on Sydney:

Informative Travel Tips – Sydney – Australia

Whilst researching destinations for a trip it would be great to have all the information condensed into one page so with “Informative Travel Tips Sydney Australia” hopefully this will save going back and forth on an information gathering exercise,  which is time-consuming and frustrating at times.

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Sydney Harbour from the Zoo

“Informative Travel Tips Sydney Australia: to add to my previous blog:

“Top 10 things to do in Sydney”   –   the main tourist attractions.

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Airport Transfers   

Car Hire  

Public Transport

Hotels  

Parking

Self Driving

Distance between Australia cities

Maps of Sydney tourism areas

City Attractions

Image result for luna park free images Luna Park – Milson Point

Amusement Park

Aquarium

Garden and Parks

Chinese Friendship Garden

Harbour Cruises

Historic Buildings

Hop on hop off

Museums

Observatory

Parks

Walks

Zoo

Popular Destinations

 

Related image Watson’s Bay Hotel

Watson’s Bay

Barangaroo

Newtown

Kings Cross

Sydney Harbour Islands

Fort Denison

Wildlife Park

Day Trips

Related image The Three Sisters/Blue Mountains – Katoomba

Blue Mountains

Jenolan Caves

Hunter Valley

Café’s and Restaurants

Circular Quay

 The Rocks

Darlinghurst

Cockle Bay

Kings Cross

Darling Harbour

More

Shopping

Pitt Street Mall

Queen Victoria Building

Strand Arcade

More

Events

Image result for sydney fireworks free images Sydney Opera House New Year’s Eve

Festivals and Markets

All Markets

Hope these Informative Travel Tips Sydney Australia,  assists you with your planning when you visit our beautiful city.

The day trips are good but be aware that you may spend a lot of time in the traffic departing/arriving the city.

I would have to say for amazing views, a trip on an iconic ferry to the Zoo to view native Australian animals amongst others, then the ZOO is a no-brainer!

If you would like further information please email me or leave a comment below.