Cheating Death at Angel’s Pool Victoria Falls: Livingstone, Zambia (Video)

Cheating Death at Angel’s Pool Victoria Falls: Livingstone, Zambia (Video)

When we arrived in Livingstone, Zambia to see some on the amazing sights it has to offer, I decided that a visit to Angel’s Pool Victoria Falls had to be my splurge of the trip. Angel’s Pool at Victoria Falls is open during the rainy season, when water levels are high, and the famous Devil’s Pool is open when the water levels are lower. So at this time of year, the Victoria Falls Devil’s pool is inaccessible… and soon, I saw why!

Angel’s Pool Victoria Falls: Some Background info

Victoria Falls is right on the border of Zambia and Zimbabwe, with Livingstone being the Zambia side and Vic Falls Town on the Zimbabwe side. The tour company that basically has a monopoly on Livingstone adventures is EXPENSIVE as HELL. Like, jaw-droppingly expensive for my backpacker budget (and apparently it’s not even as bad as some of the resorts!). Anything you want to do will cost at least $100, if not much more.

There are so many adventures to do around Angel’s Pool Victoria Falls… but I do hope that your wallet is bottomless! You can bungee jump, zipline, do a gorge swing, raft on some of the world’s best rapids, go horseback riding, book elephant safaris and dinner/sunset cruises, do fixed-wing plane rides or scenic helicopter rides… and more. However, if there was one place to splash out a bit on awesome adventures, it would be here.

During dry season one of the most popular things to do is visit the infamous ‘Devil’s Pool,’ which is a little pool right on the actual edge of Victoria Falls (over 350 feet down) that you can hang over and take a photo. Obviously I wanted to do that (ha), but the water levels are too high at this time of year (late March).

So, in wet season, you can visit something called the ‘Angel’s Pool’ instead, which, as I was told, is apparently 1.5m away from the edge and still pretty cool. I didn’t know much about it, but I did know I wanted to go as close to the devil’s pool experience as possible, and to see the top of the falls. I am a bit of a daredevil, and I love me a good height/cliff/dangerous experience. So, I splurged big time (although pretty much the cheapest activity) on an Angel’s Pool Victoria falls tour, with breakfast, for $100. (With lunch it was $165 and ‘tea’ it was $145. What?)

Transfer wasn’t even included in this price (wow) so we met our taxi and got on a little boat to go to Livingstone Island, an island on the edge of the falls where David Livingstone (a British explorer) apparently stood as he laid eyes on the falls for the first time.

Victoria Falls is what David Livingstone named the falls (after the Queen of England at the time), as the first white man to discover them. But, the local tribes have always called it “Mosi Oa Tunya,’ meaning ‘the smoke that thunders.’ It was overwhelmingly apparent why it was called that, because in wet season the sheer volume of water going over the 1.7km long falls is so massive that it immediately billows back up in massive clouds of spray, that can be seen from over 20km from the falls. So, basically, picture a waterfall so massive and powerful that you can hardly even see it due to the spray it produces, floating up high in the air like a monsoonal cloud.

Spending some time in Vic Falls? If you don’t already have plans to visit Botswana, try a Day Trip to Chobe National Park from Victoria Falls!
For More Africa Inspo, check out my experience at The Okavango Delta in Botswana  or my Africa Travel Journal for Namibia or Botswana, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.

 

Angel's Pool Victoria Falls livingstone zambia mosi oa tunya the smoke that thunders

mosi oa tunya the smoke that thunders victoria falls livingstone zambia

Angel’s Pool Victoria Falls: Our Experience

As we got closer to Livingstone island, the spray rose above us like a big white cloud of smoke. It was already a thrill to be speedboating near the edge of the falls, but I had NO idea what was in store. We were welcomed by interesting strawberry + maize drinks (good… getting some luxury treatment for my money here!) and a little tour of the island. It was adorned with little tents over dining tables, which were sheltered from the spray and set nicely for a meal, with a kitchen in the back. We stripped down to our swim suits and waterproof cameras, and set out for ‘the edge’ of Victoria Falls, the Angel’s Pool.

The guide told us to make sure he is always in front of us… and I soon found out why. This was like the ACTUAL EDGE of the MASSIVE waterfall. Like, there was a drop of over 100 meters directly below us, and there was water billowing back up to soak us before we even walked ten steps from the tent. The guide pointed devil’s pool out to us, and we could tell why it was impossible to do in wet season unless you legitimately had a death wish.

We took a few photos in various parts near the falls, always with a guide near us. He had to make sure we walked on the grassy bits, as not to step on a rock and slip off the edge of a 350 foot cliff! One by one, they would take us and position us for a photo, holding onto us and guiding us around. Perhaps the scariest of these is when we (when I say ‘we’ I mean just maybe three of us from a group of six… everyone else was too scared!!) sat on a little rock with the falls dropping hundreds of feet down, literally a few feet behind us.

They held us as we looked over the edge for a second – a sight to make even ME a little bit queasy. When I am queasy at a height – you know it’s fairly intense (if you know me, you know sitting on the edges of high places is one of my stupid favorite things). But, the excitement and adrenaline in my veins overpowered the queasiness for sure. We saw a rope right over the edge of the waterfall, and kindof assumed that was a catch-rope in case anyone maybe slipped from the Angel’s Pool, which we thought would be much farther up.

Read More: Adventurous in Africa? Read What to Pack for a Kilimanjaro Climb!

The Zambezi River is one of the best places to go White Water Rafting. They have all different classes of rapids, and it would be a shame to miss out on for a true adrenaline junkie! Too bad I was too poor at the time, but check if out for me, will ya?!

Angel's Pool Victoria Falls livingstone zambia

angel's pool victoria falls livingstone zambia go pro

angel's pool victoria falls livingstone zambia

We all joined hands to cross over a knee-deep bit of the river to another small little rock island. The current was STRONG and there was a LOT of water going by us. We were all a bit shaky and moving very carefully. We sat on the rock and watched the guide hold onto a rope and maneuver his way closer and closer to the edge… and to our disbelief, he went ALL THE WAY to the rope we had thought must be a simple last-resort precaution. WHAT.

We looked at each other with laughs of nervousness and uneasiness. Is he serious?? Yeah, this is not a joke. That is the Angel’s Pool Voctoria Falls. I was the first in line… so, I guess it was time to follow suit! Sorry, mum.

I turned on my Go Pro and grabbed onto the rope for DEAR life, not letting go with one hand until the next was firmly fixed to the next loop like a limpet on a rock. I turned my Go Pro off after losing a tiny bit of my footing… this was SO not a joke. A 350 foot drop was just a stone’s throw away from me. Actually, not even a stone’s throw.. literally a few feet. This rope was my lifeline and although the guide was firmly standing there, I had to concentrate on cautiously finding my way down to him. What is health and safety in Africa anyway?

I grabbed his hand and he helped me down into maybe chest-deep, flowing, whitewater, honestly ONE METER away from falling hundreds of feet to the depths of the Zambezi river within thick, foggy spray. My adrenaline was pumping so hard I couldn’t even really fathom the fact that I was on the edge of Victoria Falls in the deep, flowing Angel’s Pool.

I took some quick videos and lots of photos, smiled for the other guide to take photos, wet my hair, took a deep breath, and looked around in awe, with one hand gripping the rope. I honestly was so high on adrenaline and disbelief that the moment was over in what felt like a second. Eventually I climbed my way back up and made way for my friend Min to go, sighing a great sigh of relief and general AWESOMENESS. That. was. insane.  Even as a huge adrenaline-junkie myself, I was blown away by the extremity of what had just happened. What a rush!

Try a Bike Tour of Victoria Falls as one of the coolest ways to see many different perspectives of the falls!

angel's pool victoria falls livingstone zambia

Angel's Pool Victoria Falls livingstone zambia waterfall spray cheating death

cheating death at angel's pool victoria falls livingstone zambia edge of a 350 ft waterfall in water up to my chest

After only one other group member decided to do the same thing, and all the others decided to sit a bit closer to the ‘safe’ rock in shallower water for their pictures, we joined hands again to cross the current. We dried off, laughed about our terror, and (half) jokingly questioned the health and safety regulations and the strength of the single rope to stop one from going off the edge of Angel’s Pool Victoria falls. Our guide said no one had ever died and that they change the rope at least once a month… not sure how much better that made us feel, though!!

It was time for breakfast, which was included in our price. They had told us it was ‘light’ breakfast (eye roll) but we were pretty pleasantly surprised to be served a coffee, a selection of biscuits and yummy cinnamon raisin muffins, and a hot eggs benedict, all with a view of the falls and spray. We happily indulged in as much breakfast as physically possible (getting our money’s worth, obviously) before boarding the boat back to our taxi. Yep, swimming in Angel’s Pool Victoria Falls was definitely one of the craziest things I have ever done. Sorry, mum!!

WHERE TO STAY IN LIVINGSTONE:

I was on a tour when I went to Angel’s Pool, Victoria Falls, and Livingstone, so I camped in my lil tent in a field somewhere near a nice resort. But I did get a change to check out some different accommodation options, both for budget backpackers (read: poor people) like me, or some more luxe travelers who love a good resort (there are many!).

BUDGET ACCOMODATION IN LIVINGSTONE VICTORIA FALLS:
Jollyboys Backpackers

I walked past this place a few times and heard great things about it. It has a great vibe and has been around for a long while. They can sign you up for anything you need, and is close to the town center. Livingstone is awesome!

CHECK AVAILABILITY

Fawlty Towers Livingstone

Also near the center of town, Fawlty Towers boasts pancakes by the pool and can book you into any tours you may want. They have both dorms and private rooms to fit any need.

CHECK AVAILABILITY

LUXE ACCOMODATION IN LIVINGSTONE NEAR ANGEL’S POOL VICTORIA FALLS
The Royal Livingstone

This place is right on the Zambezi, and the closest you can get to the actual falls. You can see the mosi-oa-tunya right from your window! This place is definitely top-of-the-line when it comes to Livingstone Accomodation. Most of the tours depart from around this Resort as well.

CHECK AVAILABILITY

Zambezi Waterfront Hotel

I ‘stayed’ here… but I really camped in a field out the back. However, although I lived on the grass, I was still allowed to use the amenities like the regular guests, which was awesome. This allows me to inform you that the amenities are, in fact, great! 😛 It’s right on the river also, and has a great restaurant, bar, and common area. I seem to remember the wifi being adequate as well, which is huge.

CHECK AVAILABILITY

BOOK AN AFRICA OVERLAND TOUR 

I did my African Tour with Acacia Adventure Holidays.  These run from 3-58 days and can be accommodated or camping tours depending on your route and countries. Overland tours are the best way to travel in Africa; they run in a big overland truck with camping and cooking equipment so you can rough it in deserts, bush, and forests! I camped the 40 Day Southern African Adventurer Tour  from Cape Town to Cape Town (at an employee discount – see How I Afford to Travel), but you can book many different legs of this journey or different journeys all together.
Other amazing overland routes: Kenya to Cape Town (longest + most epic tour!) // Nairobi to Livingstone/Vic Falls // Joburg – Botswana – Joburg (Accommodated) // Joburg/Kruger to Cape Town (southern/garden route) // Cape Town to Windhoek (All of Namibia – my favorite part!) // Cape Town to Zanzibar and tons more! Check the link above for all tours. If you are considering an African Overland Tour and need any help planning, leave me a comment/email!

 

ANGEL’S POOL VIDEO:

angel's pool victoria falls livingstone zambia

Pin my story if you would like to try swimming in Angel’s Pool Victoria Falls one day!

I felt like I was cheating death while swimming in Angel's Pool just off the edge of Victoria Falls in Livingstone, Zambia. Angel's pool is where you go during the wet season when the famous 'Devil's Pool' is closed, and I honestly htink it might even be more extreme!!

April 10, 2017

Swakopmund Activities: Sandboarding in Namibia (Add it to Your Bucket List) (Video)

Swakopmund Activities: Sandboarding in Namibia (Add it to Your Bucket List) (Video)

The mark of a good adventure is that you leave it exhausted, dirty, and with a massive smile on your face. This was more than true after our adventurous day sandboarding in Namibia with Alter Action Sandboarding: one of the coolest Swakopmund activities.

When looking at all the crazy activities in Namibia, I knew that sandboarding had to be the one for me. I’ve never had a similar opportunity really, and it seemed exotic, adventurous, and adrenaline-inducing all at once, which is pretty much exactly my style. And.. I was right!

We zoomed off from our lodge at 930am for our day of Swakopmund activities. We went towards the massive desert sand dunes that border the Atlantic ocean along Namibia’s coast and the city of Swakopmund on all sides. The area is so sandy the streets are all actually covered with a thin film of sand!

After offroading a bit deeper into the dunes, we got out and were fitted for boards, helmets, and boots by our expert sandboarding guides. We actually used real snowboards and boots! On this day everyone had signed up for standup boarding – you can usually choose stand-up or lie-down, but our guides decided to let us have a go at both since they were available.

sandboarding in namibia

sandboarding in namibia snowboards

The dunes we were to board had just become a National Park in 2010 – meaning that, to conserve the environment, we were a bit more limited to the Swakopmund activities we could do on and around the dunes. 4×4 tours on the dunes had to stay in certain areas close to the dunes to protect animals and insects of the desert, more specifically the gravel plains between dunes that are home to a variety of important species we wouldn’t want to disturb. The last thing you want to do on an adventure in nature is mess with the native animals, so we were all happy help out.

Protecting the environment for us sandboarders meant one other thing… walking up the dunes each time after sandboarding down. No lifts or 4×4’s to carry us to the top here, just our good old fashioned two legs! As a fitness junkie and hiker myself I was even more stoked on this – and our guides assured us the first walk up to the top is the hardest!

After splitting into two groups of people who had snowboarded before and those who had not, we headed up the mountain. As we ascended, the view became more and more spectacular, with the contrast of the swirling dunes against the morning sun. At the top I was delighted to find the sweet smell of an ocean breeze, and see the deep blue Atlantic in the distance behind a layer of cool fog that was quickly burning off.

Want to see where the dunes meet the sea? Try a tour of Sandwich Bay to see more beauty of Namibia!

sandboarding in namibia go pro alter action sandboarding swakopmund activities

sandboarding in namibia

sandboarding in namibia go pro alter action sandboarding

sandboarding in namibia sand dog alter action sandboarding swakopmund activities

sandboarding in namibia swakopmund activities group sand dunes

 

I was surprisingly only one of two in the group who had snowboarded before. Our instructor, who was amazingly also from California (and found herself living in this beautiful country leading Swakopmung Activities tours after backpacking 22 years ago – not surprised!) let us know that sand feels a bit like slushy snow on the board, like at the end of the season when show is melting off a bit. We were to wax our boards before each run so they wouldn’t get stuck. There was also a jump at the top that she assured us even the beginners do at the end of the day – I wasn’t so sure, but I knew that I probably couldn’t turn down at least trying it. You only go sandboarding in Namibia once!

Read More: 10 Day African Travel Journal from our Namibian Road Trip

Swakopmund Activities: Stand-Up Sandboarding in Namibia

I started off slowly – inching down the hill of my heel side just to get a feel for the sand. But after a few seconds I was hooked; I turned on my go pro and wizzed down the mountain, getting a few sloppy S-turns in before getting a better hang of it. The sand was smooth and slightly sticky, requiring slower and more exaggerated movements than snowboarding, which I got used to pretty quickly. My adrenaline was pumping as I carved through the sand, stopping to look up and take in a view of sand, dunes, and more sand more as far as I could see. This. Was. Awesome.

As I trodded back up through the soft sand, I smiled to see even the people who had never snowboarded before getting a great hang of it. They would slide through the sand for a few seconds, sometimes catching themselves, and sometimes plopping onto their bums or hands for a minute before getting up and persevering down the dune. It was clear the instructors knew what they were doing, especially if people with zero experience could be doing so well.

Check out Spitzkoppe from Swakopmund, another of the most beautiful places in Namibia!

Sandboarding in Namibia swakopmund activities

sandboarding in namibia sand dog alter action sandboarding swakopmund activities

sandboarding in namibia go pro alter action sandboarding namibia sand dunes

I must have gone up and down the mountain at least 4 times before finally being talked into trying the jump. The other experienced snowboarder had tried it, and I was assured that it was less of a ‘jump’ and more of a ‘drop’ that you go off and simply land a few feet below. I obviously wasn’t going to leave this place without trying it (being a massive ‘yes’ person) so I decided to give it a go. One of the instructors basically positioned me right into it, turning my board the way it needed to go. I tried to follow their instructions and slowly inch to my toe side after landing… but as soon as I was airborne I subconsciously turned the other way and sat right down on the sand just after landing. Ah well, it made a good photo!!

Swakopmund Activities: Lie-Down Sandboarding in Namibia

After a little while it was time to try the lie-down boarding, which takes place on the other side of the same dune so that we could board into a little basin and naturally brake by going up a little dune on the other side. Lie-down boards are basically pieces of thin, pliable wood that are smooth on one side. This was a lot different than stand-up boarding, because, well…. you can’t steer and you can’t exactly just ‘brake.’ I mean, you can stick your feet in the sand if you want, but the whole idea here is that you gain as much speed as you can… so much so that the instructors brought a speed gun for a competition. Being the most competitive person ever, I knew I wouldn’t be able to help but at least try for a top speed.

I watched a few people go first, and it looked like they were flying on a little magic carpet atop the silky sand. There was a tiiiiny little drop about half way through due to the shape of the dune, and it looked like people were catching maybe a millisecond of air before zooming through the basin to a stop up the next dune. I was nervous but so, so excited.

sandboarding in namibia sand dune climb

sandboarding in namibia sand dune climb

I took my Go Pro on my first run, which (see below) produced a pretty epic video.. but I was at least 10km/h behind everyone else. After learning this, I marched up the mountain, put my Go Pro away, and went again, this time making sure to keep my feet up and my elbows as aerodynamic as possible. I improved from 45km/h to 55, which I was pretty content with. I was ready to chill out for a bit when one of the instructors motioned me to come over and told me he would get me the top speed. Naturally, I couldn’t refuse.

He piled a bunch of sand onto my board to add some weight, and gave me the biggest push down the mountain yet. I screamed and laughed on the way down, catching tons of air off the drop and nearly running into the instructor with the speed gun. It got really bumpy when I went over everyone’s previous footprints at the end, so much so that my helmet fell down over my eyes. But, I had so much speed that I kept going… past the footprints, up the next dune, and PAST the top of the next dune, catching even more air again to my helmet-blinded surprise. I landed and rolled off my board in a complete sandy laughing fit. I confirmed to everyone that I was, in fact, okay – more than okay! That run of mine took the top speed of 64 km/h, so I was happy to end on that note and chill out with some water at the top, enjoying the view. Apparently a while back (when the dunes were a bit different) a few people had gotten 82km/h… which I cannot even imagine!!

A yummy sandwich bar was set out and ready for us to have for lunch when we got down, along with some sodas and beers to everyone’s delight.We all shared some time eating and drinking in the sun and taking few last photos and videos before piling back into the vans. We were tired, dirty, and so very happy from the morning’s unforgettable antics.

Let me know what you think of my video!

Thanks to Alter Action for hosting me on this adventure – as always, all words are my own. Check out their Facebook page here or their website to bookmark this adventure for your bucket list!

PIN ONE OF THE BEST SWAKOPMUND ACTIVITIES TO YOUR PINTEREST!

 

The mark of a good adventure is that you leave it exhausted, dirty, and with a massive smile on your face. This was more than true after our adventurous day sandboarding in Namibia with Alter Action Sandboarding... see my blog post for more!

Heading to Cape Town at all? Check out my extensive Cape Town guide! 

BOOK AN AFRICA OVERLAND TOUR 
I did my African Tour with Acacia Adventure Holidays.  These run from 3-58 days and can be accommodated or camping tours depending on your route and countries. Overland tours are the best way to travel in Africa; they run in a big overland truck with camping and cooking equipment so you can rough it in deserts, bush, and forests! I camped the 40 Day Southern African Adventurer Tour  from Cape Town to Cape Town (at an employee discount – see How I Afford to Travel), but you can book many different legs of this journey or different journeys all together.
Other amazing overland routes: Kenya to Cape Town (longest + most epic tour!) // Nairobi to Livingstone/Vic Falls // Joburg – Botswana – Joburg (Accommodated) // Joburg/Kruger to Cape Town (southern/garden route) // Cape Town to Windhoek (All of Namibia – my favorite part!) // Cape Town to Zanzibar and tons more! Check the link above for all tours. If you are considering an African Overland Tour and need any help planning, leave me a comment/email!

March 29, 2017

An Adventurous Blue Mountains Day Tour from Sydney (Video)

An Adventurous Blue Mountains Day Tour from Sydney (Video)

This month I got the chance to go on a Blue Mountains day tour with Activity Tours Australia. The day was perfectly planned from Sydney to include all the most amazing things to do in the Blue Mountains, such as viewpoints of the mountains and the three sisters, rides at scenic world, Aussie wildlife and animals, and even a river cruise and a quick look at the Olympic stadium. I was so happy to show my parents around my new home in Sydney!

My parents finally visited me on my travels for the first time (RIP to my beloved dog Poppy, but on the bright side, my parents can now travel. Bitter and sweet) so I knew I had to show them as much of Sydney as possible! And I absolutely did… I might have worn them out a bit from so much adventuring, but that’s a different story. Oops.

My mum hadn’t been to Australia since she lived here when she was 6, and it was my dad’s first time ever being here! I’ve been here for about five months now, so I wanted to show them the best of what I had already seen, and go on some new adventures with them also. The Blue Mountains were always on all of our lists, so it was a perfect opportunity.

Booking a Blue Mountains Day Tour Too? Check Availability here!

Out Blue Mountains Day Tour

Our hilarious tour guide with Activity Tours, Steve, picked us up from the ferry just before 8am for a full day of true Australian adventuring. We were all really relieved to have the whole day planned out for us, as not to have to navigate the confusing roads or plan out the sightseeing ourselves. Everything on our blue mountains day tour was organized from start to finish, with all the best sights in the Blue Mountains and quite a few extra things added in as well. Here’s how our unforgettable day went:

FEATHERDALE WILDLIFE PARK

We first stopped at Featherdale Wildlife Park to see some real Aussie animals as the first stop of our Blue Mountains day tour. This was such a fantastic addition to the tour and gave the day a real authentic Australian feel. I’ve been all over Australia and seen a lot of the animals, but if you are just in Sydney for a short time like my parents were, it was perfect that the tour stopped here because there aren’t many more chances to see kangaroos, wallabies, koalas, wombats, and other Aussie creatures in the city! You can’t really come here and not pet a kangaroo now, can you?

But this place had so much more than Kangaroos. It had every variation of Kangaroo and wallaby that I didn’t even know about (big ones, small ones, striped and spotted, pygmy, etc), zillions of really colorful, interesting, strange, massive, and tiny birds that all made the most interesting sounds, snakes, a crocodile, dingoes (so cute!), koalas, wombats (which are hilarious to watch, slightly awkward animals that made me laugh pretty hard) and tons more. Check my video to see a lot of these!

BOOMERANG LESSON

After teaching us a little bit about aboriginal culture, art, and boomerang throwing during the drive, we stopped at a big field where I volunteered to try my hand at throwing a real boomerang. After a quick lesson about how to do it – make sure there is a shaved edge, hold the other side, have your arm at a 45 degree angle to your head, aim at the treetops, and make sure to flick your wrist – I tried it myself. The boomerang actually came back! It landed about 10 feet away from me, and I got better each time I tried. It was really cool to actually try after hearing about these mysterious returning boomerangs for my whole life!

PARK & LAKE

We made a few little stops on the way to the Blue Mountains. My tour was in May, which in Australia is the height of fall. The opposite seasons are still so confusing to me! But, as you can see in the video, the leaves on the trees were all changing to bright reds and yellows, making for a gorgeous scene up in the mountains on our blue mountains day tour. We got out to explore a pretty blue lake and park before our walk.

Blue Mountains Sydney Adventures & Sunsets

SHORT BLUE MOUNTAINS BUSH WALK

Our first view stop was down a little trail that I would never have found if we weren’t on the blue mountains day tour. We walked down this short trail that opened up to a stunning, sweeping view out over the beautiful Blue Mountains! The air was so fresh and crisp, and the mountain breeze was gently carrying the scent of eucalyptus up to us from the deep valleys. It was an amazing viewpoint and refreshing feeling to be out in nature, away from the city buzz for a bit. The Blue mountains are one of the most famous national parks in Australia and it was so great to finally see them!

LUNCH IN LEURA

Next it was time for a leisurely lunch in an adorable little mountain town called Leura. There was one main street lined with vintage shops, gourmet deli’s, bakeries, and chocolate shops. It had such a cute, small-town vibe that completely made it real to me that we were up in the mountains, and made it hard to believe we were just a few hours from the bustle of Sydney on our blue mountains day tour.

We checked out a fancy little deli that looked out over the colorful fall trees, with all sorts of home-made cookies, jams, breads, sweets, and lunches ranging from a goat’s cheese and feta quiche to eggplant parmesan. We got a few treats before heading down to a pie shop down the road, where we made the experience as authentic as possible with a real Aussie pie (as you can also see in the video)!

THE THREE SISTERS

After lunch we made our way to a famous viewpoint and the staple of the Blue Mountains day tour scenery, a rock formation called The Three Sisters. Our tour guide Steve told us all about the aboriginal legend outlining how the rock formation came about, involving an elaborate story about a father turning his three daughters into stone as a last measure to protect them. There are so many fascinating aboriginal stories about how different Australian landscapes were formed! We took some photos with the three sisters, which were very opulent and majestic jutting up very close to the viewing platform where we were standing.

Staying in Sydney?! These posts might be of interest to you…

Scenic World Blue Mountains Cable Car go pro

BLUE MOUNTAINS SCENIC WORLD

Our last stop in the Blue Mountains day tour was a cool little theme park-like place called Scenic World, which was comprised of three ‘rides’ for a bit of an extra (worth it!) cost. We first got into a cable car to take us across the Valley to where Scenic World, its gift shop, and its restaurants, was located. The cable car even had a glass-ish platform at the bottom so you could see the valley hundreds of feet below you, and had sweeping views of the Blue Mountains, the Three Sisters, and another solo sticking-up rock pretty fittings called Orphan rock.

The World’s Steepest Railway

One of the three attractions at scenic world is quite actually the world’s steepest railway – kindof like a funicular that almost goes vertically down through a natural cavity in the mountains. They very appropriately play the Jurassic Park soundtrack for this ride, which is super thrilling! The seats all tilt back as the passengers hold onto the seats in front of them for dear life – can you imagine sitting in a seat on a train that all of a sudden went like 50 degrees down a hill?! It was awesome, and you can see my reaction going up and down in the video!

The other attraction at scenic world is a cable car that goes from the top of the hill down the the bottom, about a 10 minute walk away from where the railway car ends. There are absoutely beautiful views on all of these (‘scenic world,’ as it turns out, is actually pretty fittingly named as well :P) and at the bottom there are a bush walks in all directions. The trails that pass through here lead all throughout the Blue Mountains to other landmarks – there is a waterfall quite close by (pictures in the video) and there are 2 and 3 hour treks in either direction as well. On the 10 minute walk between the Scenic world rides, you can learn all about the mining that went on there years ago (the reason the railway was built in the first place) and learn loads about the mining industry that boomed there once upon a time.

SYDNEY OLYMPIC PARK

We made one final stop on our Blue Mountains day tour on the way back into the city, after most of us had a nice little nap in the car over a few hours’ journey. Sydney held the Olympics in 2000, and the grounds are located just up the Parramatta River. We got to explore the area a bit and see the place where the olympic torch was, still standing today as a beautiful permanent statue.

Go Pro Boat Selfie in Motion Sydney

BOAT RIDE UNDER THE BRIDGE

Included as the final leg of our Blue Mountains day tour was a lovely boat cruise along the Parramatta river, under the Harbour Bridge, and right back to the center of Sydney. This was a lovely relaxing way to end the day – watching the sunset over the river and admiring all the riverside houses as we glided along the water. Thanks Activity Tours for an unforgettable and adventurous day!

Ferry Sunset Sydney

What a sunset!

Blue Mountains Trail Bush Walk

The track between rides at scenic world.

Opera House From water night motion

The opulent Opera House viewed from the ferry.

Blue Mountains Scenic World Steepest Railway

Yes, the tain goes up that track.

Blue Mountains Trail Bush Walk

Bush walkin’

Blue Mountains Go Pro Selfie

my classic cliff photo!

Blue Mountains Orphan Rock

And, ‘orphan rock!’

Disclosure: Activity Tours provided me with a tour in exchange for this video, but all words are my own and I absolutely adored my Blue Mountains day tour!

 

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Blue Mountains Day Tour

 

May 13, 2016

What Summer Means to Me – London Video Submission

So I made this to apply for an amazing Summer job that says in the the description that you have to be 25 to apply… but it was so perfect for me that I applied anyway and got through to the second stage, making this video (they probably didn’t notice my age in the first, but I am keeping my hopes up…) This was shot 100% with my iPhone and made in 4 days. Wasn’t going to upload it but it surprisingly got a huge reaction on Facebook so I was convinced. Hope ya like it!

March 10, 2015