G’Day, Australia!

Sydney Harbor with a view of the Opera House.

It’s not often that hard work pays off so handsomely! We recently had the good fortune to receive a new order for a research simulator to be delivered and installed – in Australia!

Without a second thought we packed up our system and our tools and left the frigid Southern California temperatures (we were going through a cold spell at the time – it got down to the 50s, during the day!) and traveled to balmy Newcastle Australia. Newcastle, for those unfamiliar, is on the East Coast of the country, approximately 160 km north of Sydney.

We knew going into it that we weren’t going to take that long flight without exploring Australia a bit once the work was done (we’re not mad as a cut snake!). So with camera and appetite in hand, a little exploration of Sydney was in order. My humble recommendations:

Manly Beach > Bondi Beach

While Bondi Beach is pretty, jump on a ferry and head up to Manly Beach instead. It’s less crowded, they have shopping (if you like that sort of thing), and there are plenty of places to tip back a cold pint. As an added bonus, you get some stunning views of Sydney Harbor from the ferry ride.

Sydney Opera House Tour

A tour of the opera house was both enjoyable and informative. The history of the opera house’s inception and subsequent construction was interesting, and the walk-through presented breathtaking views of the interior structure, and Sydney Harbor.

A cheeseburger at The Rocks.

Walk Through the Rocks 

Take a walk through the Rocks area across from the opera house. If you’re lucky enough to be there on a weekend, the street market provides plenty of entertainment and shopping. And when you get hungry, you can head over to the Irish pub at the Mercantile Hotel. The have live music, good food, and you can toss back a KilKenny or two while enjoying your cheeseburger.

Ditch the Koala!

Sure when you’re down under you might get a hankering to see a Koala in its natural habitat. But really, you can go to almost any international zoo and see a Koala. If you really want to see something out of the ordinary, try looking for an exhibit that has a Cassowary. Now that’s interesting!

The esteemed Cassowary!

To top it all off, the simulator installation went just fine and the world-class University of Newcastle now has a brand-new driving simulator in the Department of Psychology.