Saturday: More Spit to Manly and a Concert Adventure

hikes, national parks, Sydney 3 Replies

We had the most glorious weekend, full of mini adventures around town. The gloriosity was a direct result of a couple of days of the most beautiful weather we could have asked for – sunny, warm, but with a light breeze. After the seemingly endless rain and gloom we’ve had for most of the last month, this weekend was a welcome opportunity to stretch our legs and enjoy our new home.

So, Saturday…

Partner-in-Crime suggested that we tackle another section of the Spit to Manly walk. This time we got smart and actually packed water and a lunch. Last time, we did this part of the walk:

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This time, we did a middle section, beginning at Tania Park and ending at Forty Baskets Beach:

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The lookout at Tania Park boasted a beautiful view, particularly because there was a sailboat race going on when we were there. I liked this shot of the view, including the grand Manly Ferry:

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This section of the walk felt a lot more rugged, in terms of terrain, in comparison to the first part we did (though it was well populated with hikers and runners). I was bewildered by what lives inside the sort of person who thinks it’s a good idea to jog this trail.

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There were a number of hillside lookouts with great views …

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… but the thing that impressed me most was the preponderance of wild plants, well adapted for a rocky dessert landscape, and looking a bit like they come from another planet. My favorites:

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It took us about 45 minutes to get to Four Baskets Beach, a pretty well populated park. At this point, the trail became a paved boardwalk, and we weren’t really in the mood to continue on this section that felt too well manicured and urban. We decided to turn around and have a little picnic and swim on the more natural and undiscovered Reef Beach, which we’d passed along the way.

This was a pretty little shell sand beach that felt tucked away, though still within view of the Manly Ferry wharf. We watched parasailing tours pass by, as we ate our lunch. I’d packed tomatoes and tuna, and remembered the forks, but forgot things like, oh, a knife or plates. I used the tin foil cover from the tuna to slice tomatoes, and, in hindsight, am happy to not have landed myself in the hospital.

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The walk back to our car was all uphill and, again, I wondered about the sanity of all the runners we encountered. To each his own, I suppose.

After a quick grocery run and shower, we met up with friends to see some live music. All we knew was that we were seeing a Nigerian band that a friend of a friend’s boyfriend (got it?) had booked in. Turns out that it was a pretty amazing group of 14 (or 16? I never got an accurate count) called Femi Kuti and the Positive Force at the Metro Theatre.

This and many more awesome shots from the show here.

They were a raucous, full on spectacular that included the lead singer, a brass section, drummers, and these incredible backup singers/dancers. Our friend decided that we should all do whatever dance moves the dancers were doing, which was a pretty fun exercise in hilarity, as we channeled perhaps 1% of their sheer awesomeness. Sometimes, in scenes like this, I remember how old I am, that the third drink is rarely a good idea, and also how wearing heels is basically never a good idea in Sydney. I was limping along, headachy with sore, blistered feet at the end of the night; but it was so good to get out and do something a little different from our usual routine.

Tomorrow, we move on to Sunday, whereby I conquer even more adventures, hindered only by the ringing in my ears and a gin and tonic hangover.

3 thoughts on “Saturday: More Spit to Manly and a Concert Adventure

  1. mental mosaic

    The “Manly Ferry,” eh? Seems like there’s a joke in there, somewhere, or at least a good T shirt slogan.

    Your post makes me want to go hiking! I especially love the photo of the stone staircase amid all the overgrowth.

    That band sounds fun, too!

    ~Tui

  2. C. In Oz

    That is funny – makes me think of what I imagine that movie “Tooth Fairy” to be like. 😉

    Actually, the way that Manly (an island off of Sydney) got its name is that when the British first saw the natives there, they thought they were very “manly” looking, and so they named the island that. I think that’s the most hilarious and ridiculous story.

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