Pål and I have spent the last two days at Bondi Beach; soaking up sun, playing in the waves and doing the typical aussie pastime – perving at the girls 🙂

It’s a beautiful place, well worth spending a couple of days seeing. The water temperature was great, but it was a bit too salty for me, and I had too stay in shorter than I would have liked to because my throat got a bit sore.

We’ve also used the opportunity to catch some of the programme of the short film festival Flickerfest, held at the Bondi Pavillion, just off the Beach. It’s been a great way to spend the days – laying in the sun until you feel a bit too hot, then just head inside to cool down in the darkness of a movie theater a couple hours!

Tomorrow afternoon we’re heading to Melbourne, so I can get started with the cleaning of the house and other stuff that needs to be done before I move. I’m a bit sad about leaving Sydney though, but I hope I’ll be back here soon.

Our bridge climb yesterday was a wonderful experience – the view of Sydney was great, and it was fun being on top of such a huge old structure, 134 meters above sea level. It was just too bad about all the smoke from the forest fires on the horizon, which reduced visibility a lot; on a clear day we would have been able to see all the way to the Blue Mountains, now we could only see as far as the Olympic Stadium, a couple of miles away.

In the evening we went to King Cross to check out the nightlife – we had some food and beers, but the place is a bit too rowdy for my tastes, with strip joints, hookers and cars cruising the streets with music blaring. Maybe I’m just getting too old? Anyway, tonight we’re going to Oxford Street, which I hear is a lot more laid back.

After Pål arrived in Sydney yesterday, we went to the Opera House and had a guided tour of the building. We saw the inside of the huge concert hall, which was really spectacular. We’re thinking about getting tickets to a performance there one of these days.

Afterwards we took a ferry to Darling Harbour to visit the Sydney Aquarium. There are lots of fish and other interesting aquatic creatures to watch there, including huge sharks, which you can watch from transparent underwater tunnels. After spending about three hours there, we were really hungry, and went to get some sushi and beer at the Zenbu restaurant.

I’ve heard it said that Sydney has the most beautiful harbor in the world, and it really is spectacular!

I took the bus down to Circular Quay, and saw the Opera House for the first time. I walked around it and admired the great architecture, and had a few beers at an outdoor cafe. After that I walked all the way round to the south end of the bridge, admiring the massive pillars supporting the bridge, and strolling through the nice old neighborhood of The Rocks.

Walking around is always a good way to get to know a city, so I walked down through the city back to the hotel. This has been a long hot day, so I think I’ll just take a shower and read about some sights to see in the Lonely Planet guide the rest of the evening.

After arriving in Sydney this morning at about 10:00, I’ve finally managed to find a nice hotel for the next few days. A double room for $45 per night is pretty good… I’m staying at The Windsor Private hotel near Central Station, so it’s just a short bus-ride to the harbour.

The weather is great – 30 degrees and sunny – although the sky is a bit hazy because of the bushfires around the city. Afterwards I’m going to to see the Opera House and the harbour for the first time! My friend Pål is coming down here tomorrow morning, and we’re gonna try to see as much as we can of this beautiful city.

I’m going to Sydney on the 2nd of January to meet Pål, a friend of mine from Norway. We’re staying there until the 9th or 10th, when I have to be back in Melbourne to start moving out of the house.

I hope they have the fires under control before we get there, ’cause it sure doesn’t look very nice to be there now…

On Thursday my housemate Eivind and I went on a trip to the ‘Great Ocean Road’ south-west of Melbourne.

It was a pretty long day, but it was really worth it. The scenery along the coast there is really beautiful, especially the 12 apostles, and the many steep cliffs along the coastline. The Loch Ard Gorge, named after a famous shipwreck in 1878, is a truly spectacular place, with a deep gorge formed in the limestone cliffs from millions of years erosion.

We also got to see kangaroos, koalas, and take a walk in the rain forest. You can see the pictures from the trip here.