Hi, my name is Nadine and I have been best friends with Mel (or Melli as I call her) ever since we were little girls in kindergarten.
We grew up together in Stuttgart, as a matter of fact, we have been next-door neighbours growing up. About 11 years ago I decided to move to Sydney in Australia.
As you have been following Mel’s blog, you have already had a lot of great insights into this beautiful city and country. However, this time I will let you in on some of my favourite things to do in and around Sydney:
A visit to Wet ‘n Wild
Wet ‘n Wild has recently opened its doors in Sydney and is supposed to be the biggest water theme park in the world. It features some of the tallest and fastest water rides in the world. There are over 40 slides and attractions, including a beach and massive wave pool. We each got a great deal on a season pass (about $99) and after visiting the park twice, you already got your money’s worth. We spent a fun day at Wet ‘n Wild, although I was not game enough to go on all the rides. If you love going on rides at the Oktoberfest, this is the perfect place for you on a hot summer’s day! I can’t wait to go back soon!
Experiencing a Sydney Swans game live at the SCG (Sydney Cricket Ground)
The Sydney Swans are a football club playing Australian rules football (we generally refer to it as footy or Aussie rules) in the Australian Football League (AFL). It is a very fast and high energy sport and unlike anything I have ever seen before. Players are allowed to kick, handball and run with the ball. Frequent physical contests, spectacular marking (when a player catches the ball), big kicks and high scoring provide for great entertainment and atmosphere! There is never a dull moment! And while you are there, make sure you have a beer and a traditional Aussie meat pie with tomato sauce! It can’t get better (and more Aussie) than that!
Having dinner at the Black Forest Restaurant at the German Austrian Club
If I ever feel homesick and have a craving for some traditional German food, I grab my friends for a night out at the German Austrian Club in Cabramatta. Cabramatta is a suburb in south-western Sydney and has the largest Vietnamese community in Australia. ‘Cabra’ (as the locals refer to it) is known as Sydney’s Little Asia and boasts a large number of authentic Asian shops and restaurants. Thus it is even more surprising to find a German Austrian club there. However, prior to the Vietnamese community settling in and around Cabramatta, the German Austrian Society of Australia opened up their club in 1956. The Black Forest restaurant offers some traditional and hearty German food, such as Schweinshaxe (pork knuckle), different type of Schnitzels and of course Sauerkraut (white cabbage), RotKohl (red cabbage) and Spaetzle (German egg noodles). And if you manage to fit anything else in, there is always their yummy Apfelstrudel (apple strudel). To assist you with digesting your hearty meals, I suggest a German Schnapps from their vast selection. Also, don’t miss out on having a nice and cold German beer in their little beer garden!
Grabbing some baked goods from Luneburger German Bakery
While we are on the topic of food and Germany, there is another place where I can satisfy my craving for German goodies, in particular Vollkornbrot (wholemeal bread). Whilst I love everything about Australia, there is one thing that the Aussies don’t know how to master: Making ‘proper’ bread! The Luneburger German Bakery has opened up a number of stores around Sydney and they sell anything from bread to bread rolls, Pretzels, pastries, cakes and ‘belegte Broetchen’ (sandwiches)! I feel like I am in heaven every time I visit one of their stores and absolutely love the smell once I enter the bakery! They have become very popular over the years and it doesn’t matter what time of the day you get to one of their stores, be prepared to queue up!
Spending the day at Wattamolla beach in the Royal National Park
Wattamolla in the Royal National Park Sydney is one of my favourite spots in and around Sydney! There is something for everyone: The calm waters of the lagoon for snorkelling, swimming or simply lazing around, having a picnic or barbeque under the shade of the cabbage tree palms or heading to the beach (it is supposed to be a great spot for fishing if you are into that). I also love going for a walk or hike along one of the beach tracks or cliff top walks. If you are lucky you may also spot some amazing wildlife, such as sea eagles or oystercatchers.
This is a tiny fraction of the activities and things to do around Sydney. This city is a truly beautiful, fun and amazing place and there are a million and one more reasons to come and visit. I have loved every moment of my 11-year journey so far and am stoked and proud to call this place my home! I hope you get to visit Sydney one day and experience it for yourself!