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Old 05-25-2004, 07:31 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Suggestions for an Australian trip

I will be going to the cities of Sydney and Cairns in Australia. I will only have a few hours of leisure each night, so I couldn't really take on any big adventures.

However, if you have any suggestions on any places or activites in either of the two cities, I would really appreciate it.
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Old 05-26-2004, 07:03 AM   #2 (permalink)
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If it's a daytime trip, the Toranga Zoo was really neat --

If you have a few hours, I don't know if it's done in the evenings, but the Bridge Climb is superb. Basically you are taken on a tour of the Sydney Harbor Bridge (It's worth it to do it, but you will be breathalyzed before you go on -- so don't drink before going)

There's a casino, probably more than one, I don't remember the name or the address, but it was near the AMP Centerpoint tower.

I loved the harbour cruises that left from Circular Quay, they went to different places for just a few hours.

if you like Opera, the Sydney Opera house is worth going to - it's pretty building. The opera company itself is average, but the building is impressive.

Near Darling Harbour, (I think - I can picture in my head where it is, but I am not 100 percent sure) there's a very cool Chinese Garden, that was fun, was just a nice Zen way to spend the day.

Paddys Market - -not far from the train station, great place for picking up your touristy knick knack crap for dirt cheap.

The Rocks -- nice walking area, has some trendoid restaurants and bars - -but its also got a ghost tour - that was ---boooo -- fun http://ghosttours.com.au/

Pick up the Syndey Morning Herald in the morning, it used to list lots of things to do in the evening. In the time I spent there, I was never just stuck in my hotel room -
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Old 05-26-2004, 07:25 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Thanks for the information!
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Old 05-26-2004, 07:34 AM   #4 (permalink)
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If you have weekends free, there are also some coach (bus) tours that were pretty cool. I did a winery tour of New South Wales that was great - -learned a lot about wines, and it was a nice afternoon.

Over the course of 4 business trips, I spent about 20 weeks there, and would go back in a heartbeat -- so much to see and do.

Another interesting museum was the Powerhouse Museum - (dont know about evening hours) I think this was the museum dedictaed to Australian history.

And the Darling Harbor Aquarium - -the best part - -was somewhere in the bottom -- you'd walk thru a glass tunnel - - all glass - fish swimming all around you -- kinda freaked me out - and I wouldn't let go of the railing - but it was -- for lack of a better term - -NEAT!

Have a blast!
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Old 05-26-2004, 11:40 AM   #5 (permalink)
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You could probably spend a few hours walking around the <b>Esplanade</b>, but there's not much to do in Cairns that doesn't require most of a day.

A boat trip to the reef for diving or snorkling is the usual choice of most tourists. Unfortunately, this has completely destroyed the more popular spots on the reef visited by companies like Quicksilver. Such a trip really isn't worth it. If you are into scuba though, and can spare the time, a 4 or 5-day trip to the outer reef with <b>these guys</b> is the ticket.

If you do get a free day (maybe on a weekend), I recommend taking the <b>Kuranda Scenic Railway</b> to Kuranda, checking out the rainforest and the Tjapukai dancers, and then riding back to Cairns on the <b>Skyrail</b>. The views from both the railway and the Skyrail are awesome.

I also recommend <b>Dundees</b> for dinner. They have an entree that includes crocodile, kangaroo, emu and buffalo that, as a practicing carnivore, I found extremely tasty. In fact I've had that dish the four different times that I've been to Cairns. If you're not into red meat, their Barramundi was so good, I wasn't sure if I should eat it or make love to it.

<b>Here's a cool site</b> with touristy info and 360 degree pix of selected locations around Cairns.

Have fun. Oz is a wonderful place to visit.
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Old 05-26-2004, 12:21 PM   #6 (permalink)
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oooh I just remembered, the railway reminded me -- if you have the time (there's so much to cram into one trip)

A fantastic day trip, is to head out to Katoomba. The drive out to the Blue Mountains is amazing, and they really are blue, there was a scenic railway and a cable car type thing that gives you pretty impressive views of the three sisters, a rock formation
http://www.bluemts.com.au/tourist/th...reeSisters.asp

i don't remember if this was a coach tour or if I rented a car to go... but I know it was great.
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Old 05-26-2004, 09:16 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I leave Friday for Australia, and I am very grateful for the vast amount of information you two provided in just a couple of days. Thanks again.
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