Australia, Beaches, Been There Done That

Australia’s Hyams Beach

Each year during the month of January, our friends take off to their family summer homes or favorite beach destinations.  This is Andrew’s busiest time of the year though so we take a girls only trip instead.  This year we kept things simple staying in Australia and closer to home. Jervis Bay has a reputation of white sandy beaches and sparkling clear water.  In particular Hyams Beach often ranks as one of the top Australian…

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Australia, Been There Done That

New Year’s Eve Sydney

What is it about a big fireworks display that transforms me into a giddy little kid? On New Year’s Eve (with the rest of the world), Sydney lights up the night sky with a spectacular show. This was my first time to celebrate NYE in a big city since typically I try to avoid crowds.  While ticketed functions are hosted all over the city (some views better than others), the Opera Kitchen New Year’s Eve…

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Adrenaline Activities, Australia, Been There Done That, Boat Rides, Tours and Excursions

Dolphin Swim Australia

My love for dolphins goes back to when I was a kid. Maybe it was my swimming background or the movie “Flipper”. I can remember them soaring high in the shows at SeaWorld but nothing beat seeing wild dolphins for the first time on our Bay of Islands cruise, New Zealand. I dreamed of swimming with them but not in a glass aquarium where they are encouraged to interact. Dolphin Swim Australia offered something I…

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Airport/Airlines, Been There Done That, England

British Airways First Class

The ability to fly first class on a long haul international flight always felt financially unattainable. I have my husband to thank for making my airline travel dream a reality. Our original plan was for the entire flight to be in a first class cabin; however the Qantas legs lacked availability in first and business classes. Not that I am complaining though as the longer flights were in British Airway’s First Class cabin. British Airways…

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Been There Done That, England, Tours and Excursions

Windsor Castle Self-Guided Tour

The final stop of my recent Europe trip included an overnight layover in London before flying to Shanghai and then back to Sydney. Considering we had stayed so central during our time in London, I had already visited many of the popular tourist spots.  I read that Windsor was located about 20-30 minutes away from my airport hotel so asked my cab driver to wait while I checked into my room. He happily agreed to…

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Animal Parks, Australia, Been There Done That, Family Friendly

Sydney Taronga Zoo

Sydney’s Taronga Zoo features some of the best views of Sydney famous Harbour Bridge and Opera  House. My suggestion would be to take the Ferry from Circular Quay instead of driving and parking. The Ferry boasts spectacular views of the Sydney Opera House and Harbour Bridge on the way over.  The short 20 minute ride gives you some of the best photo opportunities from the water.  Choose to sit outside to really get the full…

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Beaches, Been There Done That, Boat Rides, Thailand, Tours and Excursions

Phi Phi Island Excursion

During our stay in Phuket, Thailand, my only offshore excursion request was to visit the Phi Phi Islands which I learned were pronounced “pee-pee”. I called them “fee-fee” the entire trip I think. Pronunciations have never been my strong suit. These are a group of 6 small islands with the most famous one being Phi Phi Leh. Maya Bay, located on Phi Phi Leh, became a hot tourist spot after “The Beach” starring Leonardo Dicaprio’s filmed…

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Australia, Good Eats

Mia’s German Beerhall Cronulla

My goal is to add more restaurant recommendations to my blog. The “Good Eats” page looks a little pitiful at the moment but that changes today.  So why not start with one of our favorites! Mia’s German Beerhall, located across from the Cronulla beach, is now a regular spot for us. We walked right by it several times never glancing at the menu.  Mia sounded Italian so it never crossed our minds that it would…

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Australia, Been There Done That, Walks

Real Insurance Sydney Harbour 5k

For as long as I can remember, I have hated running.  Don’t get me wrong I consider myself fit but not a runner. My rhythm and breathing  seem off every time I attempt running.  This is the reason I have avoided 5K races (and any distance longer) my entire life.  I am happy to cheer on others in their quest to run further and faster as long as you don’t ask me to join along. …

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Beaches, Been There Done That, Free, New Zealand, Walks, Waterfalls

Kitekite Falls Track and Lion Rock

During my final months in New Zealand, I went on a marathon of new walks.  My close friend suggested we walk the Kitekite Fallls track in the Waitakere Ranges.  She grew up in Auckland and was familiar with the area. We dropped our kids and school and made our way up to Piha to the start of the waterfall track. Lion Rock On our way over to the Kitekite track, we pulled off Seaview Road…

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