Day 9 – Sydney (Museum and Paddy’s Markets)

Today is our 2nd last day in Australia. Theoretically, it is our last activity day as we will be leaving for Singapore & Hong Kong first thing tomorrow morning. We cancelled the Blue Mountains tour. I reckon the group had enough of wildlife, sea and forest. We decided to spend our last day exploring the city. Finally, we have some “free-&-easy” time.

Tracy went off to meet her Australian friend. We dragged lazybones Meijie to the museum to see more bones! Felicia and I wanted to bring Elkan to see those gigantic dinosaurs skeletons, fossils, rocks and stuffed animals.

The Australian Museum is modern, high-tech and visitor-friendly. Exhibits are well-spaced and designed. There are a lot of digital screens, giant projection walls and tables for kids to interact with the content. It has a rich collection of Australia’s culture and nature gems.

Opposite the museum stands one of the world’s largest cathedrals – the 106m-long St Mary’s Cathedral. Interestingly, it started it’s first service in 1833, works on the cathedral’s spires weren’t completed until 2000! No photography is allowed inside the cathedral. I managed to take a couple of shots before I was caught. Sigh, I would love to show the beautiful Birmingham-made stained glass windows.

Finally, we arrived at the last stop for our trip – the Paddy’s Markets. Armed with big canvas shopping bags, we spent 2 hours, combing this huge 1000-stalls market for souvenirs and food stuffs for our families and friends back home. It reminded me of the old Shanghai’s “XiangYang Markets”. Most of the vendors were either Chinese, Vietnamese, Malaysians and Thais.

Unlike the Perth’s Fremantle Markets, I thought Paddy is too generalised and overly-commercialized. It was boring and monotonous. Shops were selling the same things. (The only good thing was the competitions kept the prices low. We got good bargains here.) There were only a couple of specialty shops selling local-made crafts. (Below is another shopping place “Queen Victoria Building” where you get the top luxury premium brands)

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