on January 19, 2006
PHONE ENQUIRIES CALL 61 2 9206 1122Included in my AAT Kings tour was a lunch cruise through the harbor, and I learned when we arrived at Wharf 6 that it was to be aboard a Captain Cook ship. We were met at the ticket counter by Captain Cook himself – well, not really, since he was eaten by natives in Hawaii some 200 plus years ago – but a poor suffocating soul dressed as Cook to greet people and help them decide on tickets. The ship itself was the Sydney 2000, and we entered and climbed to the second floor where our lunch tables awaited us. It was a buffet style lunch – but let me warn those of you who, like me, can’t eat seafood – there wasn’t much else. Oh, there was chicken (dark meat), curry mystery sauce with rice, bread and dessert, but it left a lot to be desired. Though, I will admit, I’m a picky eater, and wasn’t expecting much to begin with.During the 2-hour cruise, there was a commentator giving a description of what we were seeing and a bit about the history of the city. I think that the Sydney natives are taught to spell and say “Utzon” (the architect of the Sydney Opera House) before they can say much else. Ha. After lunch was (quickly) over, I climbed to the top deck to take in the sun (a rare sight on this particular Australian trip) and the views of the harbor. I will say that the commentary on top of the ship was hard to hear, as the harbor is quite windy – plus being on a ship made it windier. I didn’t really need to hear as much as I needed to see – the marvelous coastline, the envy-inspiring, Mediterranean-style homes along the shore, the sailboats, etc. And, of course, the view that inspires millions – the Opera House and the Bridge.I think a cruise on the harbor is a must-do for any Sydney visitor. It’s the life-blood of the city, and it’s likely one of the most distinctive waterways in the world. You have many options of cruise companies, and I’d say Captain Cook Cruises is as good as any. You could save money and take a water taxi, but you’d miss the bad lunch and the commentary, plus, it wouldn’t be as big of a boat.Oh, and bring your Dramamine, no matter which one you choose. Since this was included in my tour, I don’t know the exact price, but the web site http://www.captaincook.com.au/sydney/dining.htm indicated a price range of $60-$75 Australian dollars.
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