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Sydney NYE to Byron Bay - Jan 2010

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Sooooo sorry for the length of time since my last update but I've been snowed in (oh no, thats you guys, oops! :) ). Actually, I've just been having waaaay to much time to bother! :)

Right, so last time I wrote was pre-New year. Had quite an exciting finish to the year. On 29th Dec went out on a rich friends speedboat for the day going around Sydney harbour drinking champagne, then on the doughnut/wake board thing and ending up in a really posh yacht club (which I'm amazed I was even allowed in to!) Pretty cool day all round, but suffered with quite a few bumps and bruises from the doughnut falls (mental note, best not to consume a bottle before attempting such rides!).

The next day he took us up to the Blue Mountains as we realised we really had not done anything touristy at all in Sydney with one day left - I didnt think it was all that great to be honest - saw 'The Three Sisters' etc - all very beautiful but the photos speak for themselves. Had my final night in the hostel bar that night with a great band playing so finished up with a good dance!

That brings me up to New Years Eve - WOW, what a day! Once again, myself and Bea somehow managed to completely land on our feet, and while the other backpackers were queueing from the early hours of the morning to get the best viewing spot for the Harbour Bridge fireworks, we wandered leisurely around town for a bit soaking up the atmosphere, then had lunch at Sydney Opera House Oyster bar, drinking lush champagne and eating scallops, safe in the knowledge that the best seats in the house were being reserved for us directly opposite the Harbour bridge and Opera House, courtesy of Rogers (Claire and Justins friend, thanks guys!) AMAZING pad with amazing garden views! So at 8ish we rocked up in time for the 'kiddies' fireworks and partied away there for the rest of the night. The fireworks were unbelievable - I'll try and add my videos if I work out how to do it to give an idea. Definitely the best I've ever seen.

New Years Day was met with the inevitable hang over followed by the realisation that we had to take the overnight bus at 8pm so not a lot happened that day, except for sneaking in our last bargain steak and chips before setting off on the dreaded journey. The less said about the journey the better. Thankfully I slept for most of the way, but not something I'd like to repeat on a New Years Day again!

But the journey was TOTALLY worth it when we got to Byron Bay and I officially fell in love with the place within approx 5 mins!

Spent the day on the beach and a local gave us a load of recommendations for food (becoming increasingly important to us - you'll notice the ever-expanding waist line in the pictures!). Our hostel was undescribably bad so we spent a lot of time out and about in Byron! We are in a thai (Orient Express) the first night, then hit The beach hotel (every night in fact!) which had a cool reggae band on which was fitting with the mood of Byron generally! The next day we brunched at One one one, and dined in Fish Heads on the beach - the seafood platter was mammoth and amazing! And the third night was spent in Dish restaurant which was unbelievably good and let's just say not really a backpacking place at all! Okay, enough about food, you get the message that I was in food heaven!

On our final day we went on a walk around the lighthouse and spotted a load of dolphins who kept swimming up to the surfers - it was great to watch - have got a few photos and videos - not sure how well they'll turn out but hey, great experience. Then on our walk back through a rainforest on the way home there was this MASSIVE (and I do mean MASSIVE) lizard directly in our path. It was terrifying and so we did as we were told and kept our cool and just wandered past it - NOT!!!!! I've never run back so fast in my life!! Now I know I'm a bit of a wimp, but I quickly realised that Bea may even be worse than me! Anyway, we made it through eventually and so rewarded ourselves with a cheeky night out in the infamous 'Cheeky Monkeys' - a must-do for all backpackers! It was Coyote night and guess who was first up dancing on the tables??!! A brilliant fun night, 6 hours of solid table dancing followed by a rickshaw home (poor bloke pulling us uphill home!).

From here we reluctantly left Byron Paradise for Surfers Paradise but thats for the next story.......





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From Sydney to Byron Bay.....Jan 2010

Byron Bay, Australia

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