Sydney Blue Mountain Tour & Featherdale Wildlife Park
G’day mates! Sydney is such a massive metropolitan city that can be overwhelming when you consider all that there is to explore. That’s where Activity Tours is really your best insider guide to some of the major sights and attractions in the city. The tour takes you around the land down under all the way to the land up over at the spectacular blue mountains. More importantly, we had a special stop at Featherdale where I got to pet the cutest koala! Read more.
As far as travel logistics, the tour really makes things as smooth and easy as possible. They picked up our party of four at the corner of our hotel. After a couple of other pick-ups we were on our way to Featherdale Wildlife Park, one of our personal favorite stops of the tour.
The cozy and comfortable bus we had for the day.
I immediately raced to the koalas! Everything about visiting the park is magical including the once-in-a-lifetime experience to get up close and personal in a photo with an adorable koala bear! They even let you pet the koala which is something of a rarity in Sydney due to strict animal handling guidelines. The tour does an excellent job streamlining providing tickets and wristbands to the park so that you can make the most out of the time there. I couldn’t resist, they’re too cute! The tour strongly advises you make a straight path to the koalas and that really is the right move. Our tour got us to the park early and before the other tours arrived so take advantage of this priority access. The best part of all was the koala photo opportunity was included in the ticket! According to our guide Steve, the park will charge for the koala experience starting next year. Crikey!
I was giddy like a little girl, how can you resist that koala?!
Once you step into the park it is really sensory overload because there are so many free-roaming wallabies, active wombats, and singing birds to greet you.
In any event, you’ll get a little over an hour at the park but there is far too much to see including a crocodile, kangaroos, and so much more. I recommend getting the animal feed because it is so worth it and makes interacting with the animals really fun. It costs 2AUD to get a ice cream cone filled with feed to give to the wallabies, kangaroos, and wombats.
The cutest penguins.
Our tour passed out small souvenir koalas when we got back on the van!
On our way to the next top, we were introduced to the boomerang and its history in Australia. Eventually we made a quick pit stop for a volunteer in our group to try throwing the boomerangs. After that Steve explained how boomerangs were used by aboriginal tribes and all in all it was a cool demonstration. Steve also offered a variety of intricately crafted aboriginal boomerangs for sale for 25AUD which, compared to the pricey but cheap quality boomerangs on sale at the airport, these were a true value buy.
We also made a stop at Lincoln’s Rock which features a breathtaking view of of the mountains and tree supporting the Blue Mountains range.You really feel an exhilarating rush of the crisp air when you’re at this elevated portion with a cliff’s edge overlooking the mountain range. This is a great opportunity for group photos and our guide Steve was certainly up to the task.
Prior to lunch we made a stop at Elysian Rock which is off the beaten path and not somewhere a lot of other tours know about – in other words, this was a special stop based on Steve’s familiarity with the area. This gave us a nice view of the luscious green valleys. It reminded me of a green Grand Canyon. Lunch was held in the town of Leura. There were plenty of options but I would go to the initial cafe which has a 10% discount if you mention the Sydney Blue Mountain Tour. Make sure you give yourself enough time at these vendors because service is slower in this affluent town where people really do know how to enjoy life.
We eventually got to the Blue Mountains. For 39AUD you can purchase a wristband which gives you access to the three popular rides at Scenic World. While we ended up purchasing the rides, I have to say that only one of the three were unique and that was the railcar that travels on a 52 degree incline. Honestly, I don’t think they are worth it. The biggest issue is the long, long queues to get on the rides especially for the tram that takes you back to the exit.
The steepest incline!
From Scenic World we stopped by get an up-close look at the famous Three Sisters rock formations. They really do look like three womanly shapes perched upon the ledge. I personally enjoyed Steve’s explanation of the aboriginal story behind the Three Sisters.
On our way back to make our cruise we made a brief stop at Olympic Park to take a quick glance at some of the stadiums built during the 2000 Sydney Olympics.
Finally, we were dropped off at the dock which harbored the Fantasy River Cruise. The cruise has two drop off points at Circular Quay and Darling Harbour but we got off at Circular Quay to Darling Harbour.
Catching the beautiful sunset!
We got the perfect view of the Sydney Opera House on the way to Darling Harbour, it was quite a beauty with the lights lit up just as the sun was setting!
Overall the tour was tremendous. We really enjoyed the jam-packed itinerary they provided and each stop was unique and worth visiting. Our tour guide Steve was fabulous and he really made the tour so much more enjoyable with his quick wit and humor as well as his in-depth knowledge of the sites and history of Sydney. Steve also went above and beyond to make sure his guests had a good time. He’s also conversational in many languages which is a nice touch. I’d recommend the Sydney Blue Mountain Tour to anyone because it really gives you a variety of sights and immersive opportunities and is a good way to be introduced to this beautiful city. Plus you get to pet and take a photo with a koala and that really is worth the tour alone!