One of the top cities in the world: Sydney. Yes, it’s a long flight but gosh.. It’s so friggin’ worth it. When entering the city it will for sure blow your mind. It’s huge, it’s different from what we know, it’s very Australian and the people are super friendly. I will share my highlights from my Australian trip; this time it’s up to Sydney and Brisbane. Enjoy:
You fall in love right away with this city, aren’t you? At least: Sydney was to me love at first sight. It’s crowded but so beautiful. It has some magical places you really need to check out when you’re there. And if you have some time; discover the cities around Sydney also. Go to the beaches of Sydney and be mesmerized by the beauty of the Aussie city.
Pretty touristic but when there.. You must take a picture like this. The Sydney Opera House. Yes, just like the movies. Just like the series you watched and the images you’ve seen. Quite imposing to see it in real life.
And of course go visit the Harbour Bridge and chill in the harbour. You see big boats arriving, you see them leaving, you see loads of tourists, local people and just overlook the beauty of the cultural buildings. You really need to save an afternoon to wander around and explore this neighborhood.
THE PEANUT BUTTER BAR
This is for real one of my favorite memories of my Sydney – or as I might say: my Australian – trip. The people who know me will agree with me. I’m totally into peanut butter. Every day on a rice cracker. And yes.. it’s just a real place to chill, hangout and eat peanut butter. Dang.. and yes it’s based in Sydney. Wish I could move here and drink the most delicious protein shake every single day.
I don’t know the secret ingredient but one thing I know for sure is that this is the most delicious peanut butter protein shake I ever tasted in my life. And yes, I tasted a lot of them already. So when in Sydney; don’t skip your visit to the Peanut Butter Bar. My number #1 place to go for lunch, for having the best peanut butter pie ever, for enjoying their ice cream and protein shakes.
There was no place I’d rather be on Boxing Day last year. And it happens to be my birthday also. The best birthday cake I had in my life. A pie with every single favorite ingredient I have: Reese’s peanut butter cups with peanut butter drizzled in peanut butter. Life’s not getting any better. Period.
And yes my other half, Dennis, also enjoying his moment of flexing fame. He really enjoyed the protein shakes too – thinking of the fact that he’s not a big fan of peanut butter. Or at least: not as crazy about it as I am.
Best birthday view, right? I must admit: after this I felt a little bit nauseous. And that’s not happening to me quite often. So it’s was a lot of food but it was good food. Oh, and birthday calories don’t count. Especially when on holiday.
A must try when visiting my friends at The Peanut Butter Bar. This hotspot will always have a place in my (peanut butter) heart.
Guzman Y Gomez
My number #2 hotspot of my Australian trip is definitely this brilliant Mexican food chain Guzman Y Gomez. I don’t know if they’re only based in Australia but this food is next level. When you go to Guzman Y Gomez and you see the package of the food you maybe have some doubts about the quality. But please don’t.
This was for real one of the best chicken nacho’s I’ve ever tasted. Fresh guacamole – no canned stuff – and real good tomatoes. Oh yes, Mexican food makes me so insanely happy. Especially from the quality this is made of.
THAI FOOD SYDNEY
And surprise surprise.. You walk into a small, tiny good-looking Thai restaurant at the corner of a street in Sydney. And wow.. This red curry was good. I really enjoy the Thai kitchen back home and eating it in Sydney – where a lot of Asian restaurants are – makes it even better.
My favorite Thai dish is for sure the red curry. Especially red curry with tofu. Or shrimps. That’s a winner combination also. So after eating this meal – and Dennis had also a really good dish for a good price – we were ready to walk across Sydney again. And keep in mind that the streets in Sydney are made of hills. Really steep hills. Yay.
Gold’s Gym North Sydney
And when you’re in Sydney and there’s a Gold’s Gym: you need to go there for a workout. That’s what Dennis and I thought also. During our trip in Australia we’ve found two cool gyms and this one is for real the best we’ve went to. And we saw a lot when we were out there for 4 weeks. Gold’s Gym has build an extreme good name within the fitness industry and this one in North Sydney really lives up to it standards. The best equipment, so much machines to choose from.. Yes, if I lived in North Sydney I would train here every single day with Dennis.
Hell yes, we are those touristic people; smiling in front of this badass sign inside of the most badass gym in Sydney. We had a blast training overthere.
And look how beautiful the neighborhood around Gold’s Gym is. A sweet little church, cool American-style houses and those streets.. Yes, they are steep. It feels really like hiking when you’re walking all day in the city.
NEW YEARS EVE IN SYDNEY
I think this is one of the moments you will never forget in your life. Such a crowd of people from all different countries travelled all the way to Sydney to explore that ‘NYE Sydney feeling’. And I must admit: I had it to.
Celebrating the new year in Sydney has always been one of my bucket list things. And suddenly it was not a dream anymore. I was in Sydney, with my love, and we were ready to start the new year together on the other side of the world. Somebody pinch me.
And of course; there’s no start of the new year without some delicious chocolate. And how to celebrate New Year’s Eve better than this? In the afternoon Dennis and I stopped by a Woolworths and bought this bigass Ferrero Rocher egg. Oh and don’t forget to eat it right away because: it’s hot on December the 31st in Sydney.
And to flush the chocolate away Dennis and I stopped by the best protein shake bar we’ve found in Australia: Boost. They have chains all across Australia. So yes, that means a happy fit couple because we need our protein. What’s inside this bigass cup? A chocolate-banana protein shake with a little extra protein added. Just because.
HOTEL FOOD IN SYDNEY
We also had days were we saved some money and did grocery shopping at the Aldi and Woolworths. So this delicious hotel-lunch-thingy was some good fuel. What I put in there? Greek yoghurt vanilla flavor – be prepared sport fanatics: Australia is not really familiar with cottage cheese; and even when they are; it’s so bloody expensive) – some crunchy gluten free muesli, fresh strawberries and a teaspoon of peanut butter. Hell yes.
Brisbane aka Brissy
What a surprise Brisbane has been. Before I saw this city I had a clear view of how the city would be. But man.. Was I wrong. I thought this was a ‘coldhearted business’ city. But no; nothing was less true. This city was the biggest surprise of my Ozzie trip. Also one of the most beautiful cities Australia has to offer. Just see it for yourself; this view is stunning, right?
Walking across this bridge on the first night in Brisbane. It felt like walking into the clouds. The view from the bridge is so stunning. This was a real ‘pinch-me’ moment. The beauty of busy Brisbane combined with so much sunlight and the most laid-back vibe ever.
And when I was in Brisbane the festive season started. The Christmas vibe was literally everywhere. And Aussies go big. A beautiful Christmas tree full of lights and the building next to it was covered in Christmas stories. Damn.
I’ve spent a lot of days in Brisbane just because there was so much to see. So we extend our stay in this city. So please; when you’re here make some time to explore the city. Go on walks, go jump into the pool or the sea near Brisbane Southbank and have some delicious meals in the city center.
And when you’re wandering around Brisbane put on some good shoes. The streets in Brissy are also super steep. And while you’re walking sip on your cup of Starbucks.
Starbucks has a few chains around Brisbane so walk in for a coffee of choice. Because of the hot weather I was really feeling the cold brew with sugar free vanilla syrup. And a little caffeine boost never hurt nobody.
And when checking out the cool stores in Brisbane you will be hungry. They also know a few protein stores were you can buy protein bars, protein shakes and protein cookies. So of course it was our duty to walk into the store and buy a delicious snack. So that’s what we did.
Guzman Y Gomez (Emporium)
In every new city Dennis and I were hunting for a Guzman Y Gomez chain. And of course we found some in Brisbane too. We found two to be precise. But the one in the mall was the cutest one. So a few nights in a row we had dinner at Guzman Y Gomez in the mall. This time I choose the taco’s instead of the naco’s. And of course they nailed the flavors again. Please Guzman Y Gomez, come to Amsterdam. I promise I will have dinner every single night at your place.
And then we bumped into a delicious Italian hotspot. So of course I needed to order a ice coffee and sit down at the terrace. One of the nice things about Brisbane is that cafes or restaurants have a terrace. In most Australian cities they don’t have a terrace.. Or at least: I couldn’t find them.
Do you see this beautiful swimming pool? This is located in the city center of Brisbane. How friggin’ cool is that. I was so surprised they had a beautiful pool and a little beach near the city. It was also very welcome because temperatures were rising in Brissy. Holy.. So this cold dip into the water was much appreciated by me.
This is the skyline you see when being at Southbank Parklands. Brisbane has for sure the most beautiful skyline of any other Australian city. Reminds me a little bit of New York but than a lot sunnier.
And this was the gorgeous beach they made next to the swimming pool. And when swimming in the sea you still can see the skyline of the city. Cray-zay cool.
Lone Pine Koala sanctuary
When in Australia you need to cuddle with koalas. Yes. But you need to take a look at what sanctuary you’re going. Because sometimes the koalas can be very drugged out so people like us can watch them. And that’s cruel. Animal cruelty. So we really wanted to make sure we did go to a place where the koalas been taking good care of.
So the Lone Pine Koala Santuary outside Brisbane did the trick. The koalas were very active and awake. They also smell a bit funny. And when stroking the koala over it’s head it was pretty clear they are not soft and sweet. They are bushy and have strong paws.
The Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary is not only a place where you can see koalas; you can also see kangaroos and dingos. Oh and one crocodile. But I’m not a massive fan of crocodiles. Dennis is.
But cuddling with this cute baby kangaroo totally made our day. Especially Dennis his day. He was so blown away by that sweet, tiny animal he was talking about it non stop. Still until today.
Loving the Ozzie life. Australia is one of the most beautiful country’s I’ve ever seen in my life. The laid-back lifestyle, the kindness of the people, the food.. Everything as perfect. Those 4 weeks were not enough for me so one day I hope to be back again with Dennis and stay for a longer period of time and explore more of Australia’s highlights.