Sydney, Australia! We spent 10 days here during the kids’ spring break (or spring holiday, as the customs agent reminded me they say here), and we packed our days so full that the kids begged for downtime.

I snapped two birthday pictures for my two autumn-born brothers: this is the Harbour Bridge as seen from Circular Quay, and then from the North side.

Sydney’s music is everywhere. Street-corner buskers, a Latin fiesta on Darling Harbor, the Opera House.

S listening to a guitarist in Hyde Park.

K. on the Opera House steps (but you knew that)! This building may be the most recognizable in the world. Here are some less-familiar angles of it:

These are what those famous roofs look like up close: triple-glazed tiles, both matte and glossy.

Aïda on Tuesday night was simply wonderful. I harbored a small worry that after a big day, a late night would be tough on the kids. But they were very good audience members, knew the story and enjoyed the experience. My favorite part was the ballet dancers incorporated into the story.

Here’s a view of the Opera House from the Harbour Bridge, which we walked across but didn’t climb (you have to be 12 years old, and that would have left our youngest out). Walking across it still gives an amazing view.

While in the CBD, we happened to glance down a side street and saw birdcages hanging between two buildings. As we walked closer, the sounds of the city behind us faded and we began to hear recorded birdsong. It was enchanting.

“These recordings are from bird species that once sang in central Sydney, before Europeans settled and gradually forced them away. Some of these birds can still be heard on the city margins where they find food and shelter in native vegetation.”

Sydney’s parks are fabulous. The equipment is sturdily built so that adults can join in the play—these are at the Darling Harbour playground.

Our Kiwi friends J & J (whom we met when they were spending a year in Seattle) are now in Aussie, so we got to spend an evening with them too!

If you ask A. what his favorite part of Sydney was, he’ll tell you it was swimming in the hostel pool. 🙂 Luckily for the rest of us, that’s not all we did… more coming up in another post.


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