I know Sydney. After spending just enough time away from my birthplace to appreciate it more, my whole body knows it. My feet explore its footpaths, parklands and national parks. My head plans for places with a buzzy city vibe or those with the promise of quiet. My stomach pipes up with an opinion whether it’s been asked or not. And my heart … my heart still skips a beat whenever the Sydney Opera House comes into view. The contrast of its white sails against the blue Pacific and green botanic gardens reminds me there is more to my suburban life for anyone willing to go out and meet it.
Yet still, Sydney surprises me.
Walking the new 80km Bondi to Manly track from one iconic beach to another is a revelation. Passing through the city centre and over the harbour bridge, the walk wends in and out of Sydney Harbour National Park. It takes in every available green space and waterfront, yet still delights in traversing urban areas usually reserved for resident multi-millionaires, avoiding main roads wherever it can.