G’day from Sydney

We were due to stop for a day in Eden, a very small and quiet, but pretty town on the coast south of Sydney. This plan was scratched at the last minute by the ship’s captain due to high seas in the area, and the fact that we were not going to be docked, rather using tender vessels to get people to shore. The captain was concerned that the conditions for that process would be unsafe, so he ended up deciding to go to Sydney a day early.

Not one person on board the ship was upset by this change of itinerary. Everyone was excited to spend an extra day in Sydney. And Eden, though a “nice” town, and a “pretty” area, pales in comparison to what Sydney has to offer. At least that is the way most people felt about it. I am sure the people of Eden were very disappointed.

But not only would we be in Sydney, but we would have almost 36 hours docked at Circular Quay, which is a small cove wedged between the Sydney’s Opera House and Harbour Bridge. It is one of the most spectacular places in the world to spend some time. Hotels and apartments in this area are rented for astronomical rates, so we were all glad to have the chance to be there at no extra cost.

The Volendam docked in Circular Quay, Sydney.

The Harbour Bridge at night

Sydney Opera House photographed from the ship.

Part of the welcoming party, this was with Tony, Carmel and Sylvie.

The Volendam docked in Sydney next to the Opera House.

You have probably realized by the lack of updates, that we have in fact been in Sydney for some time. After disembarking we were whisked away to our salubrious accommodations in the Blue Mountains with my parents. We spent about three weeks there, and we jumped into action on our hit list and quickly found ourselves busy looking for a rental townhouse in Sydney and move forward on various other fronts…. looking for a car, getting health insurance, getting drivers licenses, bank accounts, retrieving our shipped belongings, etc etc (its a loooong list). So the blog has once again fallen well behind.

To cut the long story short, I can tell you that we have indeed found a place to live and all our belongings that were shipped have been delivered, and we are now comfortable and well settled. But it is still a busy time trying to get the last of the loose ends tied up (buying a fridge for example).

There may not be too many more posts after this one, the point of the blog was just to document the journey, but I will try and put up a few more photos of where we finally ended up if I get a chance.

Thank you so much for following along on the journey. Please come visit us in Sydney any time if you can – we have space for visitors. I hope this trip was not a “once in a lifetime” deal because it was way too much fun. We loved spending time with various friends and family along the way. The road trip was incredible. Travel by ship was without any doubt the best decision we made. It was such a calm and relaxing way to travel with a family – and although airplane travel offers almost instant gratification in terms of supersonic speed, we found ourselves often enjoying the slower journey, getting to know a few people, enjoying our time with each other as a family, seeing places here and there when we stopped and just enjoying the ride. For our family, in our circumstances, this was a stress-free and relaxing way to travel.

And now we just have to pay for it all 😉


Nouméa is the capital city of New Caledonia. We’re starting to feel a lot close to Australia as we see many Australian businesses (like banks for example) doing business in the ports as we get closer to Sydney. You also notice Australian foods stocked in the supermarkets. However, in Nouméa, everyone speaks French since it is a French territory.

The city of Nouméa, you can see our ship in dock just behind the buildings.

At a beach in Nouméa, where we spent our morning.

At the beach.

At the beach.

I found some fantastic graffiti in Nouméa. Here is just one example, this is an abandoned shipping container.