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wxman

Sydney, Auckland Ideas

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So I booked a trip with my best friend last night to Sydney, AU and Auckland, NZ for July. We're overly excited about every aspect of the trip (including the 14 hour flight it'll take to get there as we've never been on a plane that long or on a plane that big (777-300).

 

That said, has anybody been to Sydney or Auckland? Aside from saying ''omg, we're in Sydney!" we couldn't find much to do. We'll be in Sydney 5 nights and in Auckland 3 nights. Here is what we've come up with so far:

 

Sydney: Opera house, harbor bridge climb, dinner cruise in the harbor. Is there anything else worth seeing? We were hoping to get a view of the 'outback' and wild kangaroos but going to the 'outback' is no easy or quick task. Going from Sydney to the 'outback' would be equivilent of going from Houston to Denver or more. There just simply isn't enough time. So any thoughts on what would be worth seeing? Ayres Rock is a considerable distance from where we are staying so that's out.

 

As far as Auckland goes, we face the same problem. Aside from being a place that everybody wants to visit, we're having problems filling our schedule. Any info. would be helpful!

 

One last thing, the longest flight i've ever been on is Phoenix to Honolulu which was a mere 6 hours. We'll be on a flight more than twice that long. Any suggestions on how to survive the flight? I find it hard to sit still for a 4 hour flight much less 14 or 15 hours. The only part of the flight i'm excited about is flying on the 777-300. The biggest plane I've ever been on to date is the DC-10.

 

Thanks in advance!

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Flights that long typically can be pretty bad, though you can do things to make the time go by faster.  My experience (and advice): plan on getting up and standing/walking a bit every 2 hours or so (long enough you can watch a movie in between), bring a book you've been waiting to read, or .

 

As for Oz and Kiwiland?  Have fun.  There is a lot to do!

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Sydney is pretty awesome. We stayed in the Darling Harbour area http://www.qvb.com.au, went to several museums in the area, went to the Opera House, etc. There's also Luna Park http://www.lunaparksydney.com/. We stayed at th eNovotel Darling Harbour, not a great hotel, but OK http://www.novoteldarlingharbour.com.au/

 

We did not see much of Auckland other than the airport and the road to Hamilton, Rotorua, and Tauranga, plus a trip to the North to Paihia on the Bay of Islands. 3 days in NZ is about a month less than you want.

 

I've been traveling overseas for over 40 years. Drink lots of water, skip the alcohol. Sleep as much as you can. Get up and walk around every so often. Carry a change of clothes in case your luggage doesn't make it.

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Just spent 13 days in Sydney in November and never got bored.  Stay at the Meriton Serviced Apartments on Campbell Street - great place in a great location, top rated on Tripadvisor - reserve soon, it fills fast.  It's also near all the great Chinatown restaurants, which are much tastier and more reasonably priced than downtown or the other tourist areas.  Tripadvisor is great for finding things to do too (attractions ranked).  Take a day tour to the Blue Mountains - tons of operators, we did Blue Diamond and loved them.  It included a wildlife park where you feed kangaroos and hold a koala.  That day trip was probably the highlight of our stay.  Totally worth the price.  Reviews: 

http://www.tripadvisor.com.au/Attraction_Review-g255060-d1745257-Reviews-Blue_Diamond_Tours_Blue_Mountains_Day_Tour-Sydney_New_South_Wales.html 

 

Bridge climb is not to be missed.  Do it at sunset - it's spectacular, and you get both the day and night views.  Be aware that the first hour is training, so I'd schedule it roughly 1.5 hours before sunset, which you can look up online.

 

Had a ton of fun doing this escape room puzzle: 

http://www.tripadvisor.com.au/Attraction_Review-g255060-d6783885-Reviews-Mission_Room_Escape_Sydney-Sydney_New_South_Wales.html 

 

Definitely walk Darling Harbor, The Rocks, Bondi Beach (trail goes south from the beach), Manly Beach (awesome harbor ferry ride + trail leads to old WW2 gun emplacements), and maybe Chinatown (neat markets, right next to the hotel above).  Cockatoo Island is fun to explore (Google and/or Tripadvisor it).  We enjoyed the Maritime and Powerhouse museums, especially the old Aussie sub at the Maritime.

 

Here are my overall reviews, including the hotel: http://www.tripadvisor.com/members-citypage/EasyToPleaseTrav/g255060

 

Don't know if I'd recommend the harbor dinner cruise: you can get just as spectacular views with the normal ferries, and they're much much cheaper.

 

All in all, I think you're going to find 5 nights inadequate in Sydney, but pack in as much as you can and have fun!

 

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I would second the Taronga Zoo. Its a zoo where the animals have plenty of space, and are actually happy (i usually am not a fan of zoos). Everything ToryGattis said was spot on, don't have much to add. Expect watch out for koalas and the clap!

 

For Auckland I only spent a couple of nights there. We stayed on Queen street, lots of good bars and restaurants around there downtown. A day trip to an island would be good, and walking around Cornwall Park.

For us Auckland was just a layover to get to Queenstown so didn't spend too much time there.

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On my travel wish list!

Please post some pictures! Will you be chartering a sailboat in Auckland? Kite Boarding? Sky Tower?

I know this is a whim because it would be a long drive/2 hour flight, but the Gold Coast City looks stunning! Have fun!

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