Steven Lewis Take a self-guided audio walk from Sydney's Circular Quay -- the spot where European Australia had its beginnings. The walk takes in the Sydney Harbour Bridge, the Sydney Opera House and winds its way along Sydney Harbour into the Royal Botanic Gardens. It finishes at Mrs Macquarie's Chair, with views of Fort Denison, Garden Island and down harbour. As you enjoy spectacular views and iconic landmarks, you'll enjoy a breezy commentary on 200 years of Australian history. This is, after all, where it all began for European Australia. The walk takes about 45 minutes (longer if you're planning on returning to where you started) and is graded easy. There are no steps and it requires no more fitness than it takes to walk on the flat for 45 minutes in the conditions on the day.
Steven Lewis Ask an Australian to name Australia's culture capitals and Brisbane, Queensland's capital, won't get a look in, even if you're asking Brisbanites. In this entertaining feature, we tour some of Brisbane's cultural highlights, which give the lie to the idea that Brisvegas is a cultural desert.
Steven Lewis Covering the continent from Perth on the Indian Ocean to Sydney on the Pacific, the Indian Pacific is one of the world's iconic rail journey. Climb aboard in this short feature to get a sense of what life onboard is like and the sights to be seen, including desolate Cook in Australia's extraordinary Nullabor.
Steven Lewis A review of Cafe Sydney, one of Sydney's best-placed restaurants. Sandwiched in an historic building at Circular Quay, between the Sydney Harbour Bridge and the Sydney Opera House, this might be the city's most spectacular dining venue.
Steven Lewis No visit to Sydney is complete without a trip to the historic Rocks district on the harbour foreshore. And no visit to the Rocks would be complete without this self-guided audio walk. The Rocks is the enclave where European Sydney had its beginnings. Here the first convicts were ordered to build their huts and here they worked the sandstone that made Australia's first buildings. This self-guided walk will take you to the places they lived and tell you their stories. You'll even see where the marks of their chisels are still visible. Steven Lewis's light-hearted but informative commentary has kept this guide in the Amazon travel Top 10. You'll hear tales of kidnappings, murders, foul deeds and the vision that saved The Rocks from government bulldozers. The guide makes for good company as you take a hour-long stroll through the history of this young city and of Australia itself. You'll hear about the lives of the convicts, many of whom had never so much as seen the ocean before they became some of the world's best travelled people. The transportees emerged from the fetid cargo holds of their tiny sailing ships to a land already peopled by spear-carrying aborigines who viewed them with justifiable suspicion. Their settlement shared the harbour foreshore with flightless birds that stood as tall as a man; and animals that hoped rather than ran, carrying their young in pouches. These men and women lived stories we can only imagine through science fiction. The history of these first European settlers, Sydney and Australia is around every cobblestoned corner of the Rocks but the Rocks isn't a museum or a theme park; people live here, work here, and throng to the famous weekend markets. Nowhere in Australia offers such a tangible and unbroken connection between today's Australia and its European beginnings. This guide is your connection to Sydney's colourful and usual past.
Steven Lewis A review of Cloudland in Brisbane, without doubt one of Australia's strangest dining experiences. The decor is like diners fell down a rabbit hole into one of Paris Hilton's dreams played out on a set designed by Cindi Lauper. The walls are covered in 5,000 plants, making it perhaps the only Australian restaurant with an on-staff gardner.
Steven Lewis Travelling from Circular Quay to one of Sydney's most popular beachside suburbs, Manly, the Manly Ferry is a 30-minute cruise across Sydney's iconic harbour past cherished landmarks like the Harbour Bridge and the Opera House. But the ferry is primarily public transport for Sydney residents, despite carrying a million tourists a year. There is, therefore, no audio commentary introducing the sights and their history. This audio commentary changes that, timed with the ferry journey it tells the tales of the First Fleet, which founded European Australia, and sketches the history of what the ferry passes. It's light but informative, turning the ferry journey into a collection of stories that will become your own.
Steven Lewis For a ticket costing less than $10, you can cruise Sydney Harbour on a public ferry from Circular Quay, in the heart of the city, to Manly, the first of Sydney's northern beaches. The journey takes about 30 minutes and a million tourists a year join commuters on this iconic trip. This feature covers the highlights but is not the audio commentary that is also available from Audible.