We had a bit of a late night last night after the State of Origin match (see Dustin's post). A lot of us found our way back on the train, making weird connections we weren't used to and splitting up into very small groups to get through the crowds from the stadium. It ended up being a very long night and meant that we were ready for bed as soon as we got back to our Hostel.
This morning we had our first day to sleep in (a little bit) since being in Sydney. You could tell that some of us needed it because some people slept in right before breakfast and others even slept past breakfast. With our late start to the day Lisa and Linda allowed us the wonderful luxury of not having to go to our breakfast time at the hostel and some people took advantage of that time by going to a pancake place near The Rocks (the neighborhood we're staying in) for breakfast.
Our tour of the Sydney Opera House was scheduled next so we all got ready (some of us finally woke up) and headed out to the giant building that has been in the background of our selfies for the last couple of days.
The Opera House is probably one of the most recognizable buildings in the world and is regarded as one of the greatest pieces of architecture in the 20th century. We were able to tour the outside and inside of the opera house (Thanks to Steven, our guide) and learned about the history of the construction of this masterpiece.
The Sydney Opera House was built at the end of the 50's in the hopes of having an opera house in Australia. What I didn't know until the tour was that the design for the Opera house was selected as a part of a competition for the best design. A Danish Architect, John Utzon was responsible for the design and the challenge of mathematically and structurally creating this artistic curved building as well as making sure the sound quality correlated.
I was very impressed by the sheer size of the opera house, it features around 6 theaters that can feature dance, ballet, opera, plays, comedians, children shows, classical symphonies, or other rock or pop music groups and is busy almost every night. The versatility of the building was amazing and it truly showed me how the Opera House is a part of much more than just a tourist attraction to take a picture with.
Linda posted some pictures of the group at the Opera House below, but here are some shots of the outside and inside the theaters.
After our tour we had a free day! So after this point we all decided to walk around the Royal Botanical Gardens for a bit and then we all split up into smaller groups.
Some of us took the ferry to Darling Harbor, walked around the area of Sydney that is more like the Business District and did some shopping & eating, while others got some lunch and went back to the Hostel to get some more rest. Afterwards the group that was resting got some of their energy back and decided to walk across the Sydney Harbor Bridge and then go out to dinner.
A couple of people decided to go try their luck and get tickets to see Les Miserables here in Sydney and were able to see the show tonight.
The rest of us went to dinner at the Orient Hotel and then had a nice walk around the Vivid Sydney Exhibits surrounding our Hostel. I think we've been extremely fortunate to be located so close to all of the action in Sydney by staying in the Rocks as well as being here when Vivid Sydney is going on.
Sorry for the long post today but I just started typing away and there were a lot of different adventures that we had going on. Hopefully more pictures will pop up later from others, but for now here are some selfies and pictures we all took thought the day!
(Vivid Sydney lights on the Opera House. Our tour guide today told us they use the Maximum Wattage for the bulbs they use to project the lights and they change the high power bulbs every night)
(Me with the Opera House at night)
Below are some group pictures from the last couple of days! I think Emma is up tomorrow when we'll be touring the Blue Mountains. There's a high chance of rain and lots of walking to do all day so hopefully we'll make it back and be able to rest for a little bit before our next day of Sydney Adventures!