Sydney, one of my most favourite cities of all time. I fell in love with this city once more when I visited it for the second time after 8 years. 8 years! I can’t believe it took me that long to go back. But this time was just more special, and timely too, as it was with my boys, for Elian’s second birthday.
December is summertime in Sydney and it was beautiful. It was so much fun to experience it again with my little family. We flew in from Gold Coast which was about an hour and a half. Australia is really huge as local, intercity flights is almost the same as going to Hong Kong from Manila.
When we arrived it was noontime and we took a cab straight to our apartment in Potts Point. Our flat for our weeklong stay is in a convenient area, just a short walk to Kings Cross train station, groceries, restaurants etc. We also loved that a nice park with a fountain called Fitzroy Gardens, is just right across our apartment. There’s also a good brunch restaurant by the park called Fountain, because it’s right in front of the fountain (duh lol). What made me choose this apartment in AirBnB is its cozy Art Deco design. I’m a sucker for all vintage-inspired homes especially those with gardens and this one is all those. This place just immediately got me design-wise, if only its owner cleaned the place better then we could really make this place our go-to-place when visiting. It has a nice breezy garden and pool and the building is quite charming and sort of has an old English feel and makes you think you’re in London. I’m always into anything British and I’ve been wanting to go back to London to bring Elian so this Oz trip was sort of an inspiration and the closest we could do for now.
Another thing we loved in our apartment is the vintage piano! Elian would spend every morning playing it and it so much fun we hope we can find something like that for our own home. Arriving in Sydney felt so much like arriving home because of my dear dear friend and sis, Jojo, Elian’s Ninang. Jojo and I go way way back together and Australia is our first trip together (also both our first time in Oz back in ’09) and a milestone trip that sealed our very friendship so it’s quite sentimental I got to do this again with her. She welcomed us arriving in our apartment complete with sinigang and tinola for Elian hahaha! It’s just what we needed since that time, we’ve been away from home for about more than a week already (after spending a week in Melbourne and 3 days in Gold Coast) and Elian was already missing his comfort foods. So amazing to have friends and family in this part of the world where Filipino food is not so easy to find.
The next morning was our first day of going around and so the first thing in our list to see is of course Circular Quay! The Sydney Harbour and Sydney Opera House are always always the first and last things I visit when in Sydney. We took the train and went down at Martin Place and walked to the harbour. One thing I’ve always loved in this city is its architecture. Walking along Martin Place showed us the many nice buildings, old and new. We enjoyed the sights during our walk and then we met up with Jojo and had a cozy lunch at the Opera Bar where there’s an amazing view of the harbour. Afterwards, we spent the afternoon at the Royal Botanical Gardens and rode the Choo Choo Express for Elian. Elian loved the sightseeing, riding the trains, running around in the vast spaces and chasing birds.
Then we ended our day in George Street going around in QVB and the malls and shops around. Queen Victoria Building is one of my most favourite buildings in Sydney. It’s architecture is just beautiful and the interiors is really really nice too. A nice mix of old and new.
One thing I’ve always wanted to visit in Sydney is this restaurant called, The Grounds at Alexandria. I always see its pretty photos so it was on the top of my list for our trip. And so we decided to have brunch there on that Sunday morning while we’re there. Alexandria is a little far and unaccessible from the city centre so we took an Uber going there. When we arrived that morning, we were surprised to see how much it was already filled with people. There’s a long line already at around past 10am and it’s so gorgeously designed you don’t know where best to sit. There are different places to eat or you can buy at any vendor and just eat in the common grounds. There are some stalls selling desserts, drinks and other trinkets, etc. Every spot is just so photogenic and Instagrammable. I love dining places that are alfresco and close to nature and this one hits the spot right again. It’s very pretty and rustic and you’re surrounded by greens everywhere. Plus the food is really yummy! This is one place I’d imagine having our wedding party or engagement party or Elian’s baptism or first birthday if we lived in Sydney lol. I wish we had a chance to go back to experience more of the food and see the place at night where the lights will make it even prettier.
A week in Sydney was just not enough. These I wrote here are just for our first days. There’s so much we did and yet there’s still a lot to do and see. I fell in love with this city once more and not just me but also Ken and Elian. We could actually imagine our little family living there. If only we could. Sydney is a good mix of old and new and it’s chill and sunny vibe just hits you right. Makes you feel so at home and it quickly became our happy place we couldn’t stop talking about it long after we got back. And we can’t help but keep planning when we’ll go back. I’ll write more about the rest of our trip on my next post. But for now, here’s a video on our first days in Sydney! 🙂