Viewing posts from: November 2000

Views to die for!

by Edgardo Gubelin on June 15, 2016
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Fort Denison is a small island located about one kilometer east of the Opera House and just off Mrs Macquarie’s Chair.

After the First Fleet arrived in 1788, Governor Philip and his advocate-general used the name Rock Island. In 1788, a convict named Thomas Hill, was sentenced to a week on bread and water in irons there, after a time the island came to be known as “Pinchgut.”  It was once a 15 meter high sandstone islet, the rock was later leveled by convicts for sandstone, to construct nearby Circular Quay.

In late 1796 the Governor had installed a gibbet (which is a gallows-type structure) on “Pinchgut” from which the dead or dying bodies of executed criminals were hanged on public display, to deter other existing or potential criminals.

A convict to be hanged there, was Francis Morgan. The British Government transported him to New South Wales for life, as punishment for the murder of Simon Raven. On the 30th November 1796, Morgan was hanged for the brutal murder of Simon Raven. Following his execution his body was hung in chains (gibbeting) on “Pinchgut”. His skeleton was still hanging there four years, after his execution.

He said to the hangman that the only thing worth mentioning was “the superb view of the harbour from his high elevation”, and that he was sure there were no waters the world over, to compare with Sydney Harbour’s  beauty!

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The Queen Victoria Building

by Edgardo Gubelin on May 30, 2016
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The Queen Victoria Building (QVB) is Sydney’s most beautiful building. The Romanesque revival building was built on the original municipal markets site. Completed 1898, it was designed as a market place.

The QVB consists of 4 main shopping floors. The elegant interior of the Queen Victoria Building features, beautiful stained glass windows and remarkable shops, two mechanical clocks each featuring dioramas and moving figures from moments in history.

The Royal Clock activates on the hour and displays 6 scenes of English Royalty. The Great Australian Clock includes 33 scenes from Australian history seen from both Aboriginal and European perspectives. An Aboriginal hunter circles the clock continuously representing the never ending passage of time.

The Queen Victoria Building is a must to see!

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The Sydney Vivid Festival 2016.

by Edgardo Gubelin on May 20, 2016
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This year’s Vivid Light, Music and Ideas Festival promises to be bigger and better than ever!
From Friday 27th May till Saturday 18th June, get down to Sydney Harbour and the City to experience an illuminated Sydney.
“Vivid Sydney” is a unique annual event of light, music and ideas, featuring extraordinary lighting sculptures. It’s one of Sydney’s most spectacular, creative and  dazzling events. From artistic light sculptures to musical collaborations, innovative designs and architecture, Vivid Sydney hosts a unique range of performances.
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What? A Wombat?

by Edgardo Gubelin on May 4, 2016
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On a recent trip to the Jenolan Caves with a German client, I was heartbroken to pass a dead wombat lying on the side of the road that had been been knocked over by a car. And then sadly, another one within a short period of time. One normally never sees wombats during the day, as they are nocturnal and come out to graze after dusk. And seems like they nibble on the grass verges alongside the roads.

So, when I got home that evening, I decided to investigate what the Wombat’s dietary needs were. Australian native grasses and the roots of some shrubs, seems to be their staple diet. Wombats dig underground burrows, to set up home. What fascinated me was that the wombat’s pouch (being marsupial) was back to front which prevents it from filling up with sand, when digging its burrow. I was blown away, when I realized how mother nature had thought of everything!

Reading on, I was more fascinated to find out that the Koala was its closest relative and for a moment, I tried to visualise a wombat climbing a tree. A weird thought then went through my mind. Surely, that despite these two marsupials, being so closely related, there was no doubt in my mind that the Koala, which spends its entire life in the canopies of the eucalyptus trees, would no doubt have its pouch facing upwards to avoid its young joey from falling out…

Mother nature, yes back to her. It seems that when she created the Koala, it must have been at the end of a very busy week, as she sewed the pouch on back to front. I have never seen a baby Koala falling out of a tree, maybe thats because mother nature quickly recovered and slipped a strong “sphincter muscle” at the opening of the pouch to prevent the joey from falling out!

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Sydney Opera House

by Edgardo Gubelin on April 15, 2016
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The Sydney Opera House is undoubtably, Australia’s most recognisable building. Completed in 1973 with its soaring white shell shaped sails, it has been internationally claimed as an architectural masterpiece of the 20th Century. It is the focal point of Sydney Harbour.

Built on Bennelong Point and adjacent to Circular Quay, the approach whether on foot, or by ferry, the vision is dramatic and unforgettable!

Today the Sydney Opera House is a cultural centre and performing arts venue and includes a concert hall, opera and drama theaters and a fitting showcase for many of the world’s leading performers.

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Sydney Harbour Bridge

by Edgardo Gubelin on March 20, 2016
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The Sydney Harbour Bridge, also affectionately known as the “Coathanger”, was opened in 1932 after 6 years of construction. Made of steel, the bridge consists of 6 million hand driven rivets! The Bridge has huge hinges to absorb the expansion caused by the Sydney hot sun.

“Bridge Climb, Sydney” provides climb experiences to the top of the bridge. We can book your climb. Or, whilst visiting Sydney, we recommend you visiting the South Eastern Pylon (Circular Quay side).

It is a short walking trip to the base of the Pylon and there are 200 steps to the top. But well worth the climb as the photo opportunities are fantastic. (Recommended for the fit only).

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Sydney Tower Eye and Skywalk

by Edgardo Gubelin on January 30, 2016
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Sydney Tower Eye is Sydney’s tallest structure and second tallest observation tower in the southern hemisphere. The building stands 309 meters above the city and is open daily to the public. It is one of the most prominent tourist attractions in the Sydney with a revolving restaurant and stunning views over the city.

The Skywalk is an opened-air, glass floored platform encircling the Sydney Tower Eye at a height of 268 meters above ground level. The viewing platform extends over the edge of the main structure of the deck. Not for the faint hearted … or those with Vertigo!

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