It’d been a while since we’d gone exploring.
Sunday rose up bright, blue and brisk, so Brendan and I looked up places we could take the ferry to that we’d not yet visited. We thought we could get to Fort Denison by one of the local ferries, but the clerk at the ticket counter at Circular Quay said we could only visit that area through an actual tour.
Wanting to take advantage of our weekly transport passes and avoid shelling out extra for a tour, we stood outside the lit-up board of ferry departures and surveyed our options on a map. The ferry to Taronga Zoo was leaving in 10 minutes, but we had no intention of paying to see animals. We were instead going to explore the Sydney Harbour National Park area to the right of the zoo.
We walked off the ferry dock and found the track that wound along the harbour and took us down the peninsula to Bradleys Head, a lookout and historic area commemorating the Australian sailors of World War I. A foremast from the HMAS Sydney towers above a grassy area overlooking the water while the gleaming white, still functioning Bradleys Head Light sits to the left. The views of the distant city and Harbour Bridge from an area along the shoreline to the right were some of the best I’ve ever seen.
We hiked all the way to Chowder Bay, more than 3K from our starting point. Along the way, we spotted kookaburras, listened for animals in the bush and admired the vibrant colors of the flora and fauna dipping their green stems and leaves into our path. We felt the wind whip up as we neared the heads and fantasized about being able to rent one of the waterfront properties. There’s still more of Sydney Harbour National Park past Shelly Beach at Manly — perhaps that’s next Sunday adventure.