Celebrating New Year’s in Sydney – Watching the Fireworks at the Harbour at Campbells Cove

This year was a very special New Year’s Eve because we started the year with fireworks at the Harbour Bridge and Opera House in Sydney!

You might have seen the famous fireworks on TV several times already because they show them every year. Not just because Sydney is the first big City celebrating into the new year every year, but also because the scenery of the Harbour Bridge and Opera House makes an amazing location.

I was not just lucky enough to have my family over for three weeks in Australia and not having to be without them for Christmas, but we also got to end our road trip from Cairns south to Sydney on New Year’s Eve to see the fireworks at the harbour.

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Our New Year’s Eve Day

We already arrived in Sydney on the 30th and stayed the last night in our camper at Burwood Park where it wasn’t prohibited to stay overnight.

The next morning we checked into our rooms in Burwood at Boronia Lodge, left our camper and went straight into the city centre. Luckily Burwood is only 20 minutes away from the city centre.

We had lunch in the city and walked to The Rocks where we had tickets for a cordoned area with a great view over the Harbour Bridge and the Opera that where FREE! You only need to be quick.

All the areas with the best views are cordoned for New Year’s. For some, you have to pay lot’s of money (the cheapest were around 400$ including food), for the Campbells Cove you just need to be quick to get the tickets (we already got them in September).

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The view from the Botanical Garden over the Harbour is amazing, but the tickets for that venue that includes a dinner where crazy!

After we checked how the land lies because we didn’t know how many people are going to be there / if the view would only be good from specific places that you need to save early etc. we went to get an afternoon snack and some sandwiches for dinner to take away as there weren’t that many food options on the venue area.

From around 4pm we started waiting… because we didn’t have that much information about how the afternoon/evening in Sydney will take place, we had to be there early and wait a lot – but you will be lucky enough to have some more knowledge after reading my blog post and you can improve from our mistakes/experiences!

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Unfortunately, it started raining very hard at around 7pm and we couldn’t stay seated. Luckily there was a bridge on our venue location where everyone looked for shelter from the rain and storm. We also were very lucky that it was still warm because we were not prepared at all and only improvised a rain cape from a garbage bag that kept us dry and warm.

At 9pm there was the first fireworks for the kids which was already amazing and some families also left afterwards.

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We had a few more rain showers and at around 22pm it started to get fuller because they close the gates for the area at 22.30pm. But there was still enough space to sit down and walk around comfortably.

From our place, we could see that that the streets leading to the Harbour through the Rocks where packed. Like really packed. So we were very thankful for our safe space and also the bridge saved us a lot.

All the hours of waiting were very exhausting because there wasn’t a lot of distraction and if we would have known how things work before, we for sure wouldn’t have arrived that early.

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Then it was FINALLY 12pm and the amazing firework started. The firework locations are spread over the whole water area in Sydney and there are no private fireworks allowed (obviously), but the Harbour and Opera view, of course, is the prettiest. It’s just a great show and location!

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After the fireworks, EVERYONE is trying to get to the tram stations as quick as possible and you can’t believe how many people are there. All the streets are packed with people walking in the same direction. It is insane and you can only be thankful that glass bottles and alcohol is prohibited – otherwise, it wouldn’t work out as relaxed!

You can’t really do something to get home quick. It’s just not possible. Everything is crowded and even though there are lots of trams departing they can’t bundle off these millions of humans fast.

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There are lot’s of places you can celebrate the New Year in Sydney with amazing views: rooftop bars, restaurants, at the botanical garden or from a boat – it’s just a matter of how much you want to spend :D

Things you need to know before

  • get lots of information and tickets for the events/locations at sydneynewyearseve
  • in the whole city centre area, glass bottles and alcohol are prohibited and the police (that is very present the whole evening) is allowed to check your bags
  • the streets of the CBD, as well as the Harbour Bridge, are blocked for vehicles from the afternoon on until late at night
  • around 2 million people watch the fireworks at the harbour in Syndey (even more than in New York!) and they all want to leave after the show – don’t even think about getting a taxi/uber or the tram at Circular Quay right away (as long as you don’t stand next to the station while watching the fireworks. When you are close to the Harbour, everyone else behind you will get there before)
  • restaurants and bars might close earlier to prepare for their evening dinners (prebooked way in advance and pretty expensive)

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Celebrating at Campbells Cove

  • more info!
  • they start selling the tickets about in September and you need to be really quick. You can sign up for their e-mail newsletter and be the first to tell when they start selling
  • arrive by tram and walk to the Campbells Cove from Circular Quay – driving by car is just way too stressful when everyone wants to go home and also lots of streets are closed
  • when the weather is supposed to be bad/rainy, lot’s of people that got tickets look for different options or only arrive at around 22pm, but when the weather is good the venue is reaching its capacity at around 5pm, they close the entry at 22.30pm
  • they say they have food and drinks for sale, but there were only 2 stalls and you are allowed to bring your own food and unalcoholic drinks
  • take reusable non-glass bottles to refill so you don’t have to buy their expensive water
  • take blankets, card games, snacks, jackets to survive all the waiting
  • don’t arrive too late (besides that you won’t get a good place) but it also will be hard to get through the crowds to the entry of the venue

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It was an amazing experience and I would never want to miss it, but I have to say that it was also very exhausting and I would not want to do it the same way every year. I am more a person for a chilled dinner with friends and watching the fireworks from distance.

What was your craziest New Year’s experience? How do you like to celebrate the new year? How did you this year? Would you like to see Sydney’s fireworks for New Year’s one day?

2018 – My Year of Big Change

The last year changed my life completely. 2018 was my year of big changes. It started and ended with a family vacation, but everything in between is not at all how it was before.

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The first months of 2018 were filled with school, exams, learning, working. But I also took lots of time to spend with my friends and family.

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I turned 18 at the beginning of the year. And even though this means being an adult, I didn’t felt a big change…luckily. Driving a car on my own, without having to have one of my parents next to me was the biggest difference I could feel.

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In April I finally had my last day of school. Celebrated and enjoyed with my friends and making one of the last school memories together. Then the preparations for the final exams started and in the end, I can say: it sounded more difficult and challenging than it was. We all made it – we all celebrated our High School graduation.

And that was the biggest change of 2018: stopping to work on things that I need to know, need to do when someone wants it, to do what I love and choose for myself. I can finally use my time however I wish to. I finally spend my days doing things I love, enjoy, that are bringing me closer to my goals and that I truly want.

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After I enjoyed the summer in Europe at home and in Portugal for two weeks, worked in a beer garden and café for a while and spend as much time with my family and friends as I could, I started the journey I have dreamt of since I was 14 years old.

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I went to Australia. With a huge backpack on my shoulders and so much excitement for what is about to come. Facing the biggest adventure of my life, all by myself and knowing that I would learn, grow, experience and meet many new people along the way.

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There will soon be a blog post about celebrating New Year’s in Sydney and all the tips I have for you!

And my year still ended with my family by my side. I was lucky enough to have them over in OZ for three weeks over Christmas and New Year’s.

So this was my year 2018! I take a lot of amazing memories, lessons I learned, new and old friends, pictures I took and more excited for what is to come into 2019!

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Plans for 2019

In the last year, I wrote down goals that I want to archive. But even though I am a hard working person and I like to get things done, learn, grow and improve, it is hard to keep up with long-term goals. I just never know how and where to start. I rather like to tick many things off my to-do list and get things done to feel accomplished and productive. So this year I want to set myself a big to-do list / daily/weekly goals that are easier to keep up with.

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My To-Do List for 2019

Daily
  • Eat healthy! Which means: vegan, lots of veggies and especially greens, wholesome products, minimal produced food, good amount of protein, drinking at least two litres of water/tea
  • Be active! Go for walks, hikes, bike rides, swims, dance, stretch, do yoga, clean, cook or bake in the kitchen, take pictures – try to limit sitting that is not necessary for eating or working

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  • Spread positivity! Be happy, grateful, thankful, loving, caring, kind, helpful, nice. Pamper yourself, do things that make you feel happy and loved, love yourself, care for yourself so you can take care of others, practice gratitude, spread positivity
  • Be me! Not afraid of other peoples opinions, doing what I desire to, not being shy because I might have different opinions or values than others, don’t overthink your decisions too much

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  • Make a positive impact on the world! Eat vegan, buy only vegan & cruelty free products, don’t support animal cruelty, use only minimal plastic, buy from sustainable brands, support local agriculture and businesses, use re-useable products, buy less and also: talk about these topics with people you meet, your friends and family, make people think and hopefully improve and change to the better, be a good example, inspire people

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  • Work towards your big goals in life! Read books, blogs, educate yourself, practice, practice, practice, work hard, put in effort and heart, take opportunities, go for it

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Weekly
  • Workout! At least 4 times a week. Whatever you fancy: go for runs, hikes, bike rides, swims, home workouts – at least you sweat, breath heavy and feel it in your body. But especially work on building muscles, let them burn, let them grow, tone and strengthen.
  • Stretch and do Yoga regularly! Stretch after every workout as well as stretch and do yoga for a peaceful mind, to move your body in between working at the desk, to stretch your sore muscles and to get more flexible
  • Set goals and write to-do lists for the week! To keep on track, keep focused and organised, to work towards the big goals, to be productive
  • Upload 3 blog posts per week with interesting content that has value

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To-Do
  • Do a surf camp and learn to surf
  • Be an AuPair
  • Find a job in a health food café, organic store or somewhere else that I like
  • Live at the coast, in an apartment near the ocean, with a balcony to have breakfast outside
  • Film and edit more, upload videos on YouTube, make vlogs
  • Write an eBook
  • Travel and enjoy Australia, travel the East Coast
  • Get a tattoo and a third ear piercing
  • Declutter and sell my closes and build a minimal wardrobe with great timeless pieces
  • Do skydiving
  • Ride a horse at the beach
  • Snorkel more
  • Travel and explore Bali
  • Test many healthy vegan cafés and restaurants or dishes
  • Do a retreat on Bali
  • Do Yoga in Bali
  • Do a Yoga class on the beach
  • appreciate and enjoy being home and around my family and friends
  • Enjoy having a kitchen to myself, all the ingredients I need and try out new recipes, make recipe videos, create recipes, take beautiful food photos
  • Start studying
  • Get my own apartment or a shared apartment, design it minimalistic and beautiful
  • Make my blog into a business, more professional, consistent, interesting, incorporate YouTube videos, improve writing and photography
  • find and connect with people that share the same interests, values, thoughts etc.

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What do you think about New Year’s Plans? Did you set some for yourself? What are you excited about in 2019?

Falling in Love with Bondi Beach, Sydney | Diary 007

After being in the middle of nowhere in the Outback – literally Down Under and hours away from proper civilisation, it was great to go back to the city but not straight to the busy centre. I really fell in love with Bondi Beach in that week and I’ll keep coming back here because the vibe is just amazing!

Monday 22/10

From my hostel in Alice Springs I took a Shuttle to the airport and almost thought I would miss my flight because the shuttle had so many other stops at different hostels and I only arrived one hour before my flight departure and almost thought I would miss my flight. But as the airport in Alice is fairly small I made it to the gate quickly (there are only two :D ) and flew with a stopover in Melbourne to Sydney.

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The flight from Melbourne to Sydney was the shortest I ever had. We started, got drinks and a little snack (which was super delicious! A little pizza bread which was so fluffy and yum with mushrooms and cheese) and then we landed already.

I took the bus to my hostel in Bondi Beach where I wanted to stay for a week with Meike (one of the German girls I met on the Great Ocean Road Tour) and just relax.

So we met right away and went to have Thai food for dinner at Thai Na Box which was super delicious. You can create your own Thai bowl with different bases, sauces, veggies and proteins and I got rice noodles with veggies and tofu in a sweet & spicy sauce.

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Afterwards, we treated ourselves with two scoops of Ben & Jerry’s to share in the celebration of our reunion. It’s so nice that they have B&J’s stores here so you can try all kinds of flavours without buying a whole tube and they also let you try before you order something (which isn’t common in Europe but it’s so convenient because then you are 100% sure you like a new flavour when you order it)

The Ice Cream prices here in Australia are crazy! One scoop costs around 5-6$ (3,50€) and every additional scoop is one dollar more. So Ben & Jerry’s isn’t more expensive than any other ice cream place, they are all freaking expensive. But I have to say that they also always taste really really good and they have a lot of different flavours that you won’t get in Europe usually (for example white chocolate macadamia nut, yogurt caramel, Belgian chocolate brownie, salted caramel nut and more).

I tested a few spots until now and I would say that the chain ‚Gelato Messina‘ has the best Ice Cream here! (Yes! Even better than Ben & Jerry’s in my opinion)

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Tuesday 23/10

I decided to go running at the beach promenade and I fell in love with Bondi right away. So many sportive people: lots of runners, people working out at a little “muscle beach” and a lot of surfers obviously.

The whole vibe in Bondi is very healthy & sportive, but chic at the same time and I totally fell for it! If I would have to choose somewhere to live in Australia (from what I saw until now) I would choose Bondi for sure!

As the weather was bomb that day Meike and I had a wonderful beach day. We just laid in the sand, enjoyed the sun, relaxed, read and I went in the water once to cool down.

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Afterwards, we went grocery shopping and made our typical dish: yummy healthy wraps, that we always ate together in Adelaide as well.

Wednesday 24/10

On Wednesday I went for a run again, as all the healthy fit people motivate me to workout myself. After a big breakfast, Meike and I strolled around the cute boutiques in Bondi and couldn’t help ourselves to not spend money.

I bought some sunglasses from a Vintage store because I needed a pair with good UV protection to protect my eyes from the strong Australian sun.

Most stores in Bondi are small unique boutiques, but they also have a few typical brands you can find everywhere in Australia as well.

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I fell in love with a workout brand called “NIMBLE” that sell the softest tights and prettiest sports bras and everything has an amazing quality. As I needed some thin leggings anyways (because I only have thick winter leggings) I spoiled myself with a pair and now I live in them – so the 90$ (55€) where totally worth it. I literally wear these pants every single day!

Meike and I also saw hundreds of pretty bikinis and I already know that I will buy one or two in the upcoming year – but only when they are on sale.

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Thursday 25/10

Thursday Meike joined me with a beach run in the sand (that made our legs burn!) and a quick bodyweight workout afterwards in the grass.

I am really happy that I still get to exercise frequently on my travels to stay in shape and don’t lose my fitness completely, even though it can be hard to find a good place to smash a workout as you don’t have any private space, but it’s definitely possible!

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Afterwards, we decided to just go for it and have an amazing brunch at UMU in Bondi. There are soo many awesome cafés here in Bondi and we couldn’t help ourselves not testing them and enjoying their amazing food.

As you already know, I really love trying (healthy/vegan) food places and test their menu and that’s another reason why Bondi is a dream come true for me.

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We had a real feast at UMU and shared Avocado Toast, Sweet potato hash brown with vegan cashew cheese and beet hummus, as well as ricotta pancakes with berries and I, had a green kale and spinach juice – it was incredible!

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Afterwards, we spend some more money and I bought myself a ring that I already fell in love with the day before and then we went to the beach again and hang out in the sunshine.

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For dinner, we had our obligatory wraps and went to a bar with a group of people from the hostel. Sadly our cocktail was super disappointing and it showed me once more that it’s not worth spending so much money here in Australia for drinks and instead have delicious food for that money :D

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Friday 26/10

On Friday, we originally planned to do the coastal walk along the ocean, but it was so crowded that we decided we wouldn’t enjoy it. So instead we walked a bit through north Bondi and later went to the city centre (for the first time for me!) to meet with another German girl that has been on the GOR Tour with us as well.

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We got sushi rolls at Sushi Hub and sat down at Hyde Park to eat and chat about the last weeks and our lives at home.

I never expected that as food is usually pretty expensive here in Australia, but you can eat sushi super cheap here! There are a lot of places that sell whole sushi rolls (for example Sushi Hub that is a chain with very cheap rolls, but there are many more places in the big cities) and one 3-4 are enough to make you super full and you pay around 3$ for each (veggies are cheaper, with fish more expensive) and they are really good!

Of course, we craved something sweet after that, so we went to ‘Jet Bar Café’ a very cute place near Town Hall that has super delicious and fairly cheap carrot cake and other desserts.

I didn’t see a lot of the city that day which was totally fine as I wanted to explore it with my cousin together the upcoming week.

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Saturday 27/10

We couldn’t help ourselves but had to have another amazing brunch in Bondi as there are so many cute places (and I still haven’t tried them all, so I need to eat some more when I come back!).

So we went to Speedos Café that I already knew from some vegan Influencer. As it was Saturday the café was completely packed, but we still managed to get a table and had another incredible feast.

We both had avo toast first (Meike with salmon and egg, I had plain sourdough toast with avo) as well as a green boost juice for me and a coffee for Meike and afterwards we shared the famous banana pancakes.

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The weather was bomb so we went to the beach one last time before we had to leave our hostel and move with all our stuff to the city centre.

I arrived at the Airbnb that my cousin and I rented for a week and Meike stayed overnight on the couch as her hostel was super shit.

We cooked Gnocchi with tomato sauce and veggies and on time for dinner my cousin arrived from Germany. We had a nice evening together and it was my cousin, Lisa’s first night and Meike’s last night in Australia.

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