Travel,  Whale Watching

Sydney highlights

We’ve hit 3 weeks since my Sydney trip so I’m getting a wriggle on and finally posting about it!

The first day was reasonably uneventful (other than a dropped phone and partially cracked screen 🤦🏻‍♀️) so moving along…

Whale watching

Hornby Lighthouse, South Head

Day 2 was my first day of whale watching in Sydney. I booked on the morning trip with Go Whale Watching, leaving from Darling Harbour. (I chose Go Whale Watching on recommendation from a few instagrammers.)

One of the most random – but awesome! – parts of the trip was running into Peter and Jodie from Blue Dolphin Marine Tours! They were on the same whale watching tour, so we had an excellent chat on the way out of the harbour and as we were looking for whales. (I am SO looking forward to my trip with them in August! But I digress…)

Tail up

Getting out past the Sydney Heads is a LOT more bumpy than any boat ride I’ve had so far (with the possible exception of Tasmania), but once we were on the open water it was a lot easier to remain fairly steady on our feet.

And I’ve gotta say… the view from outside the heads and looking back at Sydney and the coastline is magnificent! You can totally understand why Cook sailed straight past the Heads. With the way the land is, you’d never guess that there’s a MASSIVE harbour behind all those cliffs.

Slicing through the water

In all we saw 3 whales up close, with a few more much further out who were breaching. We didn’t get any ‘big action’ – breaching, tail slapping, etc – but that’s not what I’m out there for. Considering how humans decimated the humpback population only a few decades ago, I consider it an absolute privilege to see these gentle giants up close in their habitat. So having them cruise beside the boat was more than enough for me. 💙

As much as I love whales, though, the real treat was the dolphins! 🐬 I’ve never seen so many in one place! I’m not sure if it was one big mega-pod or if there were several large pods in the area, feeding, but wow. Really didn’t know where to look. And they were FAST!

Whales with dolphin escort

They also seemed to be playing escort to the few whales we found. There were a handful of them either in front or at the sides of the whales. Not too much bow riding going on. (I should explain. You know when dolphins like to ‘ride’ the pressure wave in front of the bow of a boat? Well, they also like to do that to the whales. And it can sometimes drive the whales NUTS. 😂)

These whales seemed pretty chill all up, though. There was no big splashing, no breaching – they just looked to be cruising north to warmer waters. (Not that I blame them. Sydney was freezing! 🥶)

You can click on any of the images in this post to see the larger versions and I’ve also posted some other images from the trip on my instagram account.

Code 8 premiere

One of the other reasons I was in Sydney was because I was attending the Australian (Sydney) premiere for Code 8. It was a fun night and I enjoyed the movie…

…and that’s about all I can say on that front until we’re allowed to say more! 🤐

It was a good night, though, and I was able to learn something else. Which leads me to…

Ridesharing in Sydney

One other thing I want to mention is the rideshare service I used in Sydney. You would have seen from my earlier post that I hired a car for my trip but I didn’t want to be driving into George St for the movie premiere and having to deal with traffic and parking. 😬 So I booked a rideshare using the service Shebah.

For those who don’t know about it, Shebah is an all-women rideshare service, catering to women and children, and it started right here in Australia! Having used other rideshare providers previously, let me tell you the difference with Shebah is AMAZING.

I’m a solo female traveller. My safety is my #1 priority, above anything else (including getting ‘that shot’, as much as it pains my photographer’s soul to say it). Like many other women, I’m always aware of my surroundings and essentially doing risk assessment before I do anything (sad as that thought is…). I can 100% honestly tell you that I haven’t always felt safe when using rideshares. Or taxis, for that matter.

With Shebah I had two really great experiences. Lively, engaging conversation with my female drivers (thank you Yvonne and Aileen!) who were only too happy to talk about their experiences driving for Shebah (both were adamant that they would prefer to only drive for Shebah if there was enough business for it). Felt totally safe, no Spidey-sense creep factor zinging at any point whatsoever.

Unfortunately, Shebah isn’t as widely known as the other rideshare companies. Damn shame. I wish it was. I’m definitely going to be using only Shebah from now on. They’re in multiple cities around Australia, not just Sydney.

Ladies (and parents with kids), I recommend checking it out. I don’t think you’ll be disappointed.

If you have any questions or comments about anything I’ve posted here, hit the comments and let me know. 😊

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