It was New Years Eve in Sydney! The whole reason we planned our trip at this time of year was so we could be there for the NYE fireworks at the harbour. Last year, we even watched the Sydney fireworks on TV, since they are such a big deal. It is pretty cool to be celebrating the new year almost a day before the rest of the world. It’s like time travel.
Our plan was to head downtown and wander around a bit, see some of the city sights before grabbing some dinner and finding a place to watch the ‘works. There are 9 pm “family” fireworks and then the midnight event. We were hoping to see both shows.
We got downtown around 11 am, and it was already packed. We couldn’t sightsee anything, because a lot of the downtown core was fenced for crowd control and people were milling about everywhere. We tried to get in to see the Opera House up close, but that area of the harbour was already shut down because it was filled to capacity.
We settled on a quick walking tour of the Rocks shopping area, grabbed an expensive and rather disappointing lunch at a cafe, and wandered around looking for a place to squat. It was noon. We found a pretty good place in front of the Museum of Contemporary Art and hung around. Now it was 12:05. Only 9 hours to go, then another three til the big ones. Dear lord. So we snoozed, we people watched, the kids whined, we played sudoku, the kids cried, the kids ate all the packed food too quickly, we bought more food, we took turns wandering around. A plane showed up to do some very cool trick flying.
Finally it started getting dark! Night time! Nope, just a rain cloud. It rained on us. Everyone scattered and we lost our sweet spot. By now it’s about 8:00 pm. The rain stopped and we waited anxiously for the fireworks to start.
At last, we saw them! B got one kid up on his shoulders and I got the other and we were ready for the show!
Here’s a video that YouTube decided to squish, sorry for the weird ratio:
Were they worth a 10-hour wait? Not one bit. Ten minutes of fireworks later, the kids were ready to go. We left my parents to enjoy the adult fireworks at midnight, dragged the kids back to the subway through a frighteningly densely packed stream of people, got to the hotel, put the kids to bed, and proceeded to watch the midnight fireworks on TV, again. At least we could hear the thunderclaps in real life this time, so there was that.