Close your eyes and dream of Sydney. What images come to mind? The distinctive outlines of the Opera House and the Harbour Bridge? And the water that surrounds and defines? That is the essence of Sydney. The sea.
Officially known as Port Jackson, Sydney’s bustling harbour is an integral part of life in the city. Locals rely on the ferries for both transport and leisure activities and so should you as a visitor. There is something quite divine in boarding one of the many ferries from Circular Quay and heading across the harbor with the sunshine on your face and a gentle breeze ruffling your hair.
There are any number of ways to cross the harbor. You can try a dinner or cocktail cruise in the evening, a luncheon cruise where you eyes and ears can gobble down the sights in an a la carte fashion, or a mid morning coffee cruise. Don’t care for a meal? Use the ferry to transport you to various sightseeing venues such as the Taronga Zoo or Fort Dennison. Depending on your route you can sail past the iconic Opera House or under the Harbor Bridge.
From the water is just about the best way to see many of Sydney’s other sights. You can size up Nielsen Park as a potential picnic site or its beach area for an afternoon swim. Or gaze at Vaucluse House, an historic house built in 1803. At South Head, look for the ever gorgeous Watsons Bay with its well known beachside restaurants and the cliff walks around the Gap. Nearby is the historic Hornsby Lighthouse, built in 1858 following the tragic shipwreck of the Dunbar that lost the lives of all on board except one.
There are any number of cruises from which to choose and a good number of ferry operators. One option is the Sydney Harbor Explorer cruise that combines the flexibility of a ferry with a sightseeing tour. An all day ticket allows you to hop off at any of seven harbourside attractions including Watson’s Bay, Luna Park, Shark Island, the Taronga Zoo, Darling Harbor and Fort Dennison.
You can also explore Sydney’s Harbor from the air. Take a seaplane ride from rose Bay and you’ll discover a breathtaking view of the Opera House, Harbour Bridge and Bondi Beach.
No matter which way you choose to see Sydney’s spectacular harbor you won’t be disappointed. The harbor is the essence of the city – and it’s a lively one!