The last day in Australia! We woke up early to climb the Sydney Harbour Bridge, which turned out to be pretty amazing. We had a guide, Kim, who would take 12 of us up to the top of the bridge and down again. First we got into these climbing suits: a gray jumpsuit with black wind pants that went over it. Next we were given a harness that would attach to a wire that we would follow around the entire bridge. Everything had to be clipped to us: sunglasses, hats, etc. because if we dropped something it would fall onto the traffic below and cause accidents. They gave us a "parachute," which freaked us out at first (are we going to jump off the bridge?) until Kim explained that it was just a fleece jacket in case we got cold at the top. We also got headsets so we could hear her talk throughout the climb. I thought it was going to be a little scarier being up at the top of the bridge, but we had a good 4 feet on either side of us and it was just an amazing view; the day was perfectly clear.
After the 3-hour climb, we boarded a ferry for Manly Beach. This was another beautiful beach across the harbour where we had lunch and spent a little time in the sun; it wasn't very warm out, just sunny, so we couldn't really swim or anything. When we got back we went to the Oz Experience office and met Carissa, who used to work with me at STA Travel and now works for Oz Experience. We chatted for a few minutes and planned to meet shortly at Side Bar, the bar at the Wake Up! hostel. We only had a short amount of time to spend with her since she had to catch a plane to Brisbane that night, but I had a lot of fun catching up with her and telling her about everything we'd been doing in Australia. She has lived here since March I believe, she lives near Manly Beach, and she just loves it.
For our final meal we had Vietnamese food (we wanted Chinese but everywhere we went was very expensive), then we went back to Side Bar for the final night out. That was a pretty fun night, although not fun the next morning! Hilary got up very early to catch a flight to Alice Springs (she is staying in Australia until Sunday to see Ayers Rock), and the rest of us got up around 8 to catch a train to the airport. We checked in with plenty of time, and I did some last-minute shopping (gotta get more Tim Tams!) and found a Wallabies t-shirt that I wanted (I really wanted the women's jersey but it was $119!). Then we took a LONG (but direct) flight on Qantas back to LA.
That's it! I'm probably going to go through these entries and make some minor changes (add a few details, etc.). Also I have photos to put up, but they are not complete yet so keep checking back for more photos. Thanks for letting me share this experience with you, I hope you have all enjoyed it! Oh, and if you want the uncensored version of my trip, all you have to do is ask. Thanks everyone!!!
Next stop: Fiji!