We tidied up Escape Velocity and stowed everything that tends to fly across the room when we’re underway in bumpy water and motored out of Blackwattle Bay for the first time since we arrived in Sydney, our destination the Taronga Zoo on the other side of the harbour bridge. Athol Bay is one of the preferred places to watch the legendary New Year’s Eve fireworks so we were eager to check it out and claim a spot before the crowds showed up. Plus we wanted to visit the zoo. We were rewarded with a rolly anchorage from the constant ferry traffic and a spectacular harbour sunset view.
There’s no dinghy dock for the zoo so we had to do a wet landing on a tiny beach, a first for Nancy and Dave, then haul the heavy beast up beyond the tide line. The zoo is built on a steep hill and the best way to enjoy it is to take a cable car to the top, then work your way down.
We’re not really zoo people, preferring to see wildlife in its natural habitat, but the unique setting of this zoo and being able to see close up some of the animals that only exist in Australia made it a fun visit.
There were lots of old favorites who were used to posing for the crowds.
We were advised not to miss the bird show so we arranged our day to take advantage of the presentation closest to lunchtime and grabbed some sandwiches and drinks and took seats in one of the best amphitheatres I’ve ever been in. What a view!
It was an sweltering day, the kind Sydney is famous for and we looked forward to getting back to Escape Velocity hoping for a bit of breeze. We could see that more and more boats were moving into the anchorage for the fireworks the next night.
When we got to the beach we discovered we’d been swamped by the incoming tide. Nearby party boats had rescued the dink and pulled it further up the beach but it was full of water and sand. Welcome to cruising, Nancy and Dave! We got back to Escape Velocity wet and sandy and needed a hose down, but we were once again rewarded by a beautiful harbour view. It never gets old.