Beautiful Blue Mountains Wildlife Park

Trip Start Oct 01, 2008
Trip End Nov 21, 2008

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Flag of Australia  , New South Wales,
Monday, October 6, 2008

On Monday we got an early start to the day.  Our first stop was Featherdale Wildlife Park where we were able to get up close and personal with the cuddly Koalas, fed the Kangaroos in the animal sanctuary and saw other native animals such as the Fairy Penguins and a crocodile as well as native birds in the natural habitat.  Next, we moved on to a campsite where our tour guide showed us how to throw the boomerang.  Garry did quite well on his first try; I was not as successful.  We bought a boomerang so when I get home I'll have more time to practice. 

Before lunch we took a guided walk to a spectacular cliff lookout which provided breathtaking views of mountain scenery - a photographer's paradise with panoramic views of the Jamison Valley, its sandstone cliffs' coloured rust and pink and lush subtropical rainforest.  Our delicious lunch was provided at a picturesque golf and country club.

Then, we were in for a real thrill!  We descended into the valley by cable car where we were able to view a giant rock formation including the famous Three Sisters as we plunged over the cliff face and into an enchanting world of prehistoric tree ferns.  Once we reached the bottom we were treated to a guided walk beneath the canopy of this temperate rainforest, and, then, boarded the world's steepest railway, the Katoomba Scenic Railway, which took us to the summit.  Before we headed back to Sydney, we were given some free time to explore the enchanting town of Leura with its quaint antiques and arts and craft shops and, of course, we could not miss the famous Candy store where one could find candies that they hadn't heard of for years!

On our way back to the City, the bus took us through the Sydney 2000 Olympic site.  Most of the buildings are still being used today.  Our last stop was the Rivercat which glided along Paramatta River, under the Sydney Harbour Bridge and past the Opera House to Circular Quay where our tour concluded.  A very busy day!  Our hats go off to our guide, Bob, who provided us with tons of information and humour.

Our friends, Ruth and Ed Baxter and their two adult children, Hallie and Adam, met us for dinner at Cafe Sydney which is located on the top floor of Customs House overlooking Sydney Harbour.  What a spectacular view - the Sydney Harbour Bridge and the Opera House.  As I looked out the window it was difficult to believe that this was real.  To us it seemed like a backdrop in a photo.  The dinner was delicious.  The service was exceptional!  Ruth and Garry were schoolmates in a very small school in Schomberg, Ontario, from Grades 1 through Grade 12.  After graduating, Ruth travelled by ship to Australia where she met her husband, Ed, settled in Australia ... and the rest is history!  Customs House is where Ruth first entered Sydney in 1966.

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