Sydney: May 2017
Started the day off with a quick pre-dawn run across the Sydney Harbour Bridge. Beautiful sunrise across the bridge, although the chaos of the late-night partying from Vivid Sydney was evidently close-up. Next stop was the Blue Mountains in search of scenic vistas, wildlife, and waterfalls. Not to mention a great way to appreciate just how big Sydney is. Much like Los Angeles or other major metro areas, Sydney extends for over an hour's drive, all the way to the edge of the mountains.
Scenic World operates two aerial trams and the world's steepest cable-driven railway in the world. While a little gimmicky, the views from the trams are nice. The Three Sisters, Orphan Rock, and Katoomba Waterfall are all visible, although you can see these all from public areas, aka skipping the tourist trap (oops). Add in a plethora of wild kangaroos, two lyrebirds, some incredible views with the sun shining down, and a rainbow in the skies as we dodged the rain, it was definitely worth the visit.
The return to Sydney was via the Olympic Park, which is still in remarkably good shape, and then ultimately via ferry from Olympic Park into Darling Harbor (Circular Quay was unavailable due to Vivid Sydney). It's a leisurely hour's cruise back into central Sydney, and to see more of the Parramatta River that flows through Sydney.
Arrived in Paddington a bit too late to do any shopping on a Sunday, but a few fishmongers were still open, and of course, The Paddington for dinner. The beef rump wasn't bad and the duck hearts were surprisingly well executed, but apparently the rotisserie chicken is the way to go (second oops of the day... #firstworldproblems). Broccoli was quite disappointing, massive florets covered in cheese- not terribly interesting. To be fair, the real action at The Paddington appears to be the handful of tables that are adjacent to the kitchen, as opposed to the rest of the tables, which are much more quiet.
Wrapped things up at Regent Place for dessert at The Choc Pot (so-so) and Uncle Tetsu's (it's almost easier to fly here than wait in line at the ones back in Los Angeles!). Tons of food options but sadly I was out of stomach space!