Many call it the world’s best harbour and I’d have to agree – it looks pretty good from any angle. I’ve admired it from a lofty lounge at the Shangri-La Sydney, from the Opera Bar’s harbour-side seats and even from above, as I took to the sky to see Sydney from a seaplane. But last month was the first time I got to cruise out of it – on a vessel as mighty as the Carnival Legend cruise ship.
I’ve watched cruise ships sail out of the harbour before, the upper decks slowing eclipsing the Harbour Bridge, but man was it exciting to actually be on the ship. As we inched out of Circular Quay the ship’s funnel cast a shadow over the iconic Opera House sails and us passengers, who had flocked to the top deck to watch, discussed the pressure the Captain must be under whilst manoeuvring something of this size out of the harbour.
We reversed up so close to the Harbour Bridge that we could see and hear the Harbour Bridge climbers waving from the top. The adults only Serenity retreat at the back of the ship came so close to Luna Park I thought we might end up in it.
The ship set sail at 6.30pm, in perfect timing with the sunset. As we sailed away from the bridge (we didn’t end up hitting it!) the sun was just beginning to peak below the wrought iron construction. With a small pilot boat leading the way, we picked up speed as we sailed towards the harbour heads, the ship tooting its deep horn just as we passed the Hornby Lighthouse at North Head. In stylish synchronicity the sun made its final decent, turning the sky blood orange and setting the city skyline aflame.
A gorgeous last glimpse of Sydney to send us on our way.
PS I took these photos on the E-PL7 I have on loan from Olympus. What do you think of them?