Our first day was an exceptionally hot day in Sydney, with temperatures hitting 36 degrees.
Not ideal for a city walking tour.
We decided to walk along the water, to stay cool. Our walk lead us to Mrs Macquarie’s Chair, a perfect viewpoint over the harbor.
We first passed one of the ever present swimming pools – and cursed ourselves for not having packed out swim suites!
Note to self: in Australia, never leave the house without your swimsuit. You never know when you might want to hop in the water.
Across the little Woolloomooloo bay some massive war ships of the Australian navy anchored, ready to head out.
By the time we reached Macquarie’s Chair we could use some shadow.
Mrs Macquarie’s Chair provides one of the best vantage points in Sydney. The chair was carved out of a rock for Governor Lachlan Macquarie’s wife, Elizabeth, as this was her favorite view of the harbor.
Indeed, the view is fantastic: across the water, the northern shore with its bays and Kirribilli House, the residence of the Australian Prime Minister, when he’s in Sydney.
To the left, even better, a perfect view over the Opera House, the Harbor bridge just behind and the Sydney skyline.
And: our destination: Sydney’s Royal Botanical Garden.
The garden provides the perfect resting space on a hot summer day.
Not only for us and the other tourists… the garden is full with people form the nearby CBD taking a lunch break – or worse: jogging in the heat. Or simply walking their dog (or carrying him).
All you have to do is to pick a spot in the shadow under one of the trees, in the grass, or rest on one of the many benches.
The Garden opened in 1816, and is the oldest scientific institution in Australia. And the best: it is open year-round and totally free.
It houses a rain forest and a rose garden, a herbarium and a succulent garden, ferns and palm trees… if it grows somewhere in Australia, they’ll have it.