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Cruising to Australia - Mar 2010

 

Honolulu

We had heard that Crystal cruises were very good, so when we got an opportunity to travel from Honolulu to Sydney on one of their ship we jumped at the chance.  The weather was stormy in the morning of our departure date, but by late afternoon, the sun came out.  When we boarded the ship,  the the views of Oahu were quite memorable. 

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Back in the day, the Aloha Tower ship terminal was the hub of tourist travel to the islands.  This mural in the terminal is a reminder of past glory.

The Aloha Tower, seen here on the left, used to stand alone.  Now it is surrounded by taller buildings.  Lew's office was on the 30th floor of the mirrored building on the right

Here is a look at a waterfront park in Honolulu.

Here we are on the deck of the Symphony getting ready to sail off.  Diamond Head can be seen in the background. 

Diamond Head is the iconic symbol of Honolulu.  The light from the setting sun provided the perfect illumination for the extinct volcano.

 

The Crystal Symphony

The thought of nine consecutive sea days was a little worrisome, but it turned out that every day was busy.  There was an on-board film festival with lectures by a pair of well-informed film historians.  Most of the movies were relatively unknown classics that were very interesting.  The food was probably the finest we have ever had on a cruise.  we had to diligently use the walking track and avoid the elevators in order to avoid gaining too much weight.

 

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Sydney

No major city in the world has a more beautiful setting than Sydney.  Residents and visitors alike take full advantage of the harbor.  Ferries are a practical and inexpensive way to get around and visit Sydney's many attractions.  We took a ferry to North Sydney to visit the Tooranga Zoo.  Another day, we took a ferry to Double Bay to meet some friends for lunch.  What a way to travel.

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The Sydney Harbour bridge is almost as emblematic of the city as the Opera House.

For only $200 you can walk  across the bridge.  If you look closely you can see people at the top.

This is an unusual view of the Opera House, clearly showing that the building houses two theaters.

Koalas are usually seen napping.  These fellows were quite active at the Tooranga Zoo.

The zoo has an enclsure that you can share with the animals.  Here a guinea fowl goes whizzing by.

 

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This yellow beaked bird is a real squawker.  He has no apparent fear of humans.

Rock wallabies roam free in the enclosure.

A five day old baby elephant stays in the shade by walking under its mother.

We stayed in a very nice hotel in Circular Quay named the Sir Stamford.  A sulphur-crested cockatoo lit on our windowsill and peeked in.

World famous Bondi Beach.  As you can see it is very popular.  What a setting!

 

Melbourne

Although we lived here for less than three years, it seems like it was much longer.  We still have many friends here so we spent the better part of our week in Melbourne catching up with them.  As a result, there aren't many tourist type pictures to show.  A highlight of the visit was an exhibit of modern aboriginal art at Federation Square.  Shown below are examples of the art on display:

 

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