Sunday, November 2, 2008

Blue Mountains

Shockingly, Kevin was given the weekend off! We celebrated by leaving the city and taking the train out to the Blue Mountains (2 hrs west of Sydney). We arrived in Katoomba just as the weather turned misty and threatened rain. After considering our options, we chose to do the 3 rides at Scenic World immediately, before the weather turned ugly and stopped us from seeing anything.

Scenic World is a touristy way to see the Jamison Valley and the Three Sisters rock formation. First we rode the Skyway, a gondola with clear walls and a glass floor. There were cockatoos and parrots flying around us as we passed over a deep forested valley from peak to peak. The next step was to ride the Railway down the steep valley side to the forest below. The track runs at a 52 degree incline. Basically it was far vertical as you can go without falling out. Short trip but thrilling. Then we walked through the rainforest along a boardwalk for 40 minutes before taking the Cableway back up to the cliff side.

Lunch in Katoomba was followed by a trolley bus tour of the town and the neighbouring town of Leura. We saw a few good viewpoints of the Jamison and Megalong Valleys, and ended the trip at Echo Point. This was the premiere viewpoint of the Jamison and the Three Sisters. The valley stretches on forever, and is filled with trees and mist, bordered by colourful rock cliff escarpments. The rain never really happened, and the low cloud held back just enough to allow us to see most of the valley.

After taking the train back into the city, we walked to The Rocks to find some dinner. Kev chose an excellent Thai restaurant called Sailor Thai, and we thoroughly enjoyed our pork satay and spicy eggplant tofu. Since we were in The Rocks, we walked over to the Lord Nelson Brewery Hotel to meet up with Kev's coworker and his friends. Many drinks later, and getting booted from Lord Nelson at 11pm, then another hotel pub at 12pm, we ended up at Lowenbrau... a cheesy club/bar that was playing Shania Twain and Bryan Adams as we arrived. Many apologies for the terrible music were offered to us by the Aussies.

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