1) Flying over the Southern Alps
2) The Southern Alps
3) Clearing the West Coast
4) At Sydney Airport, City in distance
5) Night view of the City near Circular Quay
6) Night View of the City
7) Sydney Harbour Bridge
Today was a great day for photographic opportunity as can be seen from the pictures above. It was also a day for packing a lot in so it was just as well that with the time change it was a 26 hour day.
With the bike packed the previous day there were a few hours spare to look round Christchurch again and do a bit of shopping.
The taxi had been pe-booked by email 5 months ago to pick me up at 12.00 and take me to the Airport but they forgot but did turn up within minutes of a reminding phone call.
At the Airport one dampner on an otherwise great day was that the checkout lady required the bike to be put on the luggage scales. She then said the bike plus my other baggage exceeded the luggage allowance and there was an excess baggage charge of 170NZ$ or about 70 pounds. Most Airlines have a special allowance for bikes or don't bother weighing them. Moral of the story is avoid flying Quantas with a bike if possible.In our case we had to because they were part of the alliance of Airlines for the Round the World Ticket we used.
The flight over the Southern Alps was great for photography with skies clear apart from over the highest peaks near the West Coast.
The flight arrived in Sydney 10 minutes ahead of schedule and by the time I got to baggage reclaim luggage and bike were waiting for me.The bike had to be checked by customs/quarantine officers for any obnoxious soil or vegetable particles it might have picked up. This involved the box being opened and the bike checked. My other luggage was X-Rayed.
I had checked on some websites and as expected there was no problem getting the bike in a taxi with a number of Station Wagon Taxis available.
My accommodation for the next 5 nights in Sydney is a B&B called Cremorne Point Manor. This is on the north shore on the far side of the Harbour from the Centre but only a 10 minutes ferry ride to the Centre.
I got to the B&B about 6.15 but didn't want to leave the bike to the next day to sort out so got it out of the box and re-assembled.
I went a few minutes walk down the road to the ferry wharf to get the 8.15 ferry to the City. By this time it was twilight and the City's lights were coming on with a great view of the City Skyline the Opera House and Harbour Bridge.
The ferries run every 20 to 30 minutes and I had a great 10 minute ferry ride with views of the Opera House, City Skyscrapers and Harbour Bridge. When I got off I went into full photographic mode using railings and litter bins as objects to steady the camera for night shots. The moon was rising over the Opera House and scattered clouds above the City were lit up partly by moonlight and partly by the City's lights.
With all the time spent photographing and sightseeing the evening meal was a snack from the ferry terminal cafe/takeaway before another ferry ride back to the B&B.