These photos were taken at Circular Quay in Sydney one late afternoon. The buildings are those that rises up high visible as far as Harbour Bridge. We visited Watson Bay in Sydney at that time, had lunch at the Opera House and after a brief photography at the Sydney Botanical Garden, it was already late in the afternoon, the sun is about to set off, and so this was the spectacular result – golden glow all over the high rise buildings where the sun’s ray penetrates and reaches them out.
This is the Featherdale Wildlife Park located in Western Sydney, now a prime tourist attraction here and the best wildlife park in Australia. It was just a poultry farm in 1953 and now holds a lot of enormous collection of Australian mammals, birds and reptiles.
I’ve been here two times now and the last was when a friend held a birthday party of his first born son at the function room inside the park. I would recommend for you to visit it someday. I noticed that visitors love most to get closer to the Australian animal icons like Kangaroos and Koalas, fed and touch them more than any other animals, and the crocodiles, they’re just curious to see them especially when they open up their big mouth.
Inside the zoo, birds do abound, they have native birds including eagles, owls, brolgas, emus, cockatoos and lorikeets. Also they have penguins, marsupials including kangaroos, wallabies, echidnas, bilbies, wombats, Tasmanian devils and, of course, koalas and reptiles including, crocodiles, lizards, snakes and frogs. They even have a farmyard with an assortment of farm animals for the kids to watch, become familiar with and feed. Do you love the wildlife, too?
A day before the Queen’s birthday last year we decided to visit the Nan Tien Temple which is about 80 kilometers south of Sydney in the city of Wollongong. We travelled even though the weather was somewhat not cooperating because it was cold, showering at times, and windy, but when we were at the shrine we’re surprised to have then a sunny day for the duration of the visit.
The temple has become the most popular tourist attraction in that place. History recorded that the hilly land where the temple was constructed was donated by the Australian government to Master Hsing Yun of the Fo Guang Shan, a sect of the Mahayana Buddhist based in Taiwan.
Nan Tien temple literally means the “Southern Hemishpere Temple” and is one of the largest Buddhist temples in the southern hemisphere, the construction was completed in 1995.
There’s a feeling of comfort, calm and reverence when inside the shrine much more when inside the Pagoda, a towering seven story structure, and at the main temple both of which they require that all shoes of pilgrims and visitors be taken off before entering the temple.
The architecture of all the structures inside the compound is somewhat distinct to each other because they incorporate several styles of Buddhism; those in China and Tibet. The gardens in the compound are Japanese in style, too. The statues and shrines are from Southeast Asian color schemes.
What attracted my attention for both the Pagoda and main temple were those thousands of tiny statues of golden Buddha on their walls and I know for sure that they are precious, carefully and delicately laid down.
The temple is huge and heaps of visitors were here when we visited it and the car park was full, too.
Jenolan Caves has a lot of cave formations and can only be toured in a couple of days or so to finish them all up and all of them are carefully preserved as well as the crystals inside the caves, lights installed, stairs complete with hand rails are provided for the safety of all visitors. Visitors are grouped and scheduled and are provided with experienced tour guides. The Jenolan Caves is in the Blue Mountains of New South Wales and it is 175 kilometers from Sydney. The caves are one of the many famous limestone caves in the country and being the oldest discovered open caves in the world.
This is one of the many photos I took from one of the many caves of Jenolan. Lucas Caves is one of the many cave formations that formed the Jenolan Caves. We were about 50 people in a tour group scheduled for the 2:30 pm tour.
First, we accessed the caves through narrow openings, winding, quite long in distance and inclined approximately to 45 degrees. We were relieved when we reached the first big chamber. It was a huge open space. From here we got the first lecture from our tour guide of what we were in and looking at, how it was formed.
She also showed us how wonderful a music was when played inside this chamber and we were all surprised and awed at the lovely sound reverberating on the rocks as it fills up the chamber where we were. The next thing she showed us was a “total darkness”. She switched off all the lights leaving our eyes to wander into the total darkness for about ten minutes, a duration just to experience how it feels and being in absolute darkness.
There were more caves and chambers as we went along our tour, all great and wonderful. You can just imagine how much time nature carved out all these formations in such caves in total array of perfection. You’ll indeed be amazed and wonder … appreciate their grandeur!
I have more photos in my photo gallery if you wish to view more.
Lorne Pier is another stunning beach front for swimmers and fishermen alike in Victoria. We had a brief stopover in this place when we travelled down the Great Ocean Road. Actually, it isn’t an ordinary pier and as the buildings up the road implied visitors come here most often to enjoy the place with complete eatery and lodges to complement their travels, most notable are the Grand pacific Hotel and Lorne Hotel.
Pier fishing is popular in Lorne Pier as well as salmon, silver trevally, garfish, squid, pinkies or barracouta. As we have seen when we arrived here, some anglers enjoyed their day fishing down the alley walls of the pier. The weather was good, sunny, and not too windy.
When we visited the Enchanted Maze Garden at the Mornington Peninsula we passed by the city of Melbourne but this time we’ll be looking at the city centre for the duration of a couple of hours and so we targeted to visit the Yarra River and the Federation Square.
It was my first time to visit Melbourne and I was ecstatic at how it looks like compared to Sydney. Just like Sydney, car park is very limited; the demand is absolutely of paramount significance to the city’s growing business and life. To this effect, we had a hard time looking for one, and then the same thing happened to us when we’re getting out of the city, chaotic traffic even on arterial streets.
I had the first impression of a filthy, murky Yarra River, walkways full of dried fallen leaves of tall trees along the river banks, busy streets but have an awesome cityscape, tall and huge buildings especially at the Federation Square. The Federation Square has an aura of mixed cultures including aborigines as there were fire woods left burning at the middle of the park, significantly representing the red centre of Australia and Aboriginal cultures. I was imagining an awesome Yarra River because it’s one of the major attractions in Melbourne, but it’s the contrary. Yes, Tramline is one of the major public transports visible in the city.
We had also the chance to see Melbourne’s Aquarium, St Paul’s Cathedral, the Victoria University at Collins Street, including the Albert’s Park. There’s a lot more to explore here and a two hour stay is not enough. So to make good of our valuable time left here, I took as much photos as I can. It’s nice to be here anyway!
As they say, Melbourne is often referred to as the “cultural capital of Australia.” It has a rich history too, and has great significance and interest to travellers and holiday makers. In November 2008, it was announced that the Victorian Major Events Company had informed the Australian Olympic Committee that Melbourne was considering making bids for either the 2024 or 2028 Summer Olympics.
We arrived at this place late afternoon during our second day of holiday. It was cloudy, windy and in any minute rain will fall. The car park was full of visitors; two police cars were visible at the entrance and were seen busy checking out incoming cars. Visitors are from all different nationalities but Indians were dominating the pack at that time.
The rock stacks were indeed stunning and captivating! You can see at the faces of visitors a sense of awe and amazement, and most of them taking snap shots at every possible angle, the rock stacks as a background to their photos. I rushed up photographing the iconic place from one sight to the other as the chances of rain was positive in a matter of minutes but people just ignore the coming rain and continued enjoying sightseeing and taking photos the easy way.
In geological aspect, the formation was created by constant erosion of the limestone cliffs of the mainland beginning 10-20 million years ago, the stormy Southern Ocean and blasting winds gradually eroded the softer limestone, forming caves in the cliffs. The caves eventually became arches and when they collapsed rock stacks up to 45 metres high were left isolated from the shore. The 12 Apostles at sunrise and sunset are at their best beauty as they change colour from dark and foreboding in shadow to brilliant sandy yellow under a full sun.
Half an hour later after we’re there, rain started to pour down, but I can still see people going out there to take a look at them. I was already at the kiosk taking shelter at that time.
In a couple of minutes my other companions arrived. Rain prevented us from enjoying and staying a bit longer in this famous landmark and since we can’t do anything about it, we decided to drive back to Torquay.
Yes, this spectacular coastline is indeed awesome!
I would say that the place was completely developed including the construction of a Kiosk for travellers’ comfort and a huge car park, to which Australia receives recognition from foreign as well as local tourists as exemplified by the numbers of visitors it receives every day. You know, there are also rock stacks around the world of spectacular beauty such as these ones mentioned in this link, the Dorset coast in the south of England, small German island Heligoland, located in the north se, Black Sea in Russia, at easternmost island in the Galápagos archipelago, Borneo island of Malaysia, Cannon Beach in the state of Oregon, in Thailand, northern coast of the island of Eysturoy in the Faroe Islands, and in Scotland.
It was a sunny, Sunday afternoon and we just came from Mount Vitoria Museum in Blue Mountains New South Wales when we drove down to the valley, unto the narrow and winding road. I was amazed at the awesome beauty of the valley and powerful scenery that I can’t resist to capture heaps of photos along the road and into its mountainous background as well as its huge farms, its great pasture lands for cows, sheep and horses. We also had a good lunch at the Megalong Tea Rooms located just before driving down the farmlands further and close to the Werriberri Lodge Holiday Cabins.
Megalong Valley is simply magic while the view from the Hydro Majestic Hotel at Medlow Bath is breathtaking, a drive down into the valley itself is an unforgettable experience.
Megalong Valley is primarily a farming community for the locals yet offers adventure for visitors to the valley. Furthermore, Megalong Valley offers some of the best horse riding adventures available in Australia with many venues offering rides for beginners through to experienced riders.
One of the Blue Mountains’ major tourist attractions is the Megalong Australian Heritage Centre offering entertainment for the whole family, including stockmen shows and the famous Megalong Farm.