The first shot of this very special trip should be from the airplane window- if flying to Sydney-, as the view of Sydney Bay from the air is absolutely spectacular. Bring the camera as near as possible to the window. Set manual focusing- it will better to avoid the water spots in the window- A wide angle lens will be appropriated, at 100 ISO, fast shutter speed to obtain a nice panoramic from the plane is on landing stage, of that mirage of city surrounded by water and eucalyptus forest, in which the Opera House embellish its gorgeous bay and the iron Harbour Bridge crowns it.
Therefore, let your fantasy wander freely and get your camera ready to take photos of a harbour considered one of the most gorgeous ever seen. Photographically speaking water plays the protagonist role in Sydney. By the bay are located the strategic points of the city. All type of ferryboats sail around the Opera House, under the Harbour Bridge, near Luna Park, in front of the Rocks, carrying scholars British uniformed, tourists wandering one place to another, people going to the office. Taxi-zodiacs New York style yellow painted offer their services as well as boat shops selling coffee, ice cream…to all that many, sailing around the bluest Sydney water. A 50 mm “normal” lens, 100 ISO and shutter speed at least 1/50th should be suitable for these kind of pictures.
Ferry and taxi boats wait to be boarded at Circular Quay, the hub of Sydney Cove, sideways at the catamarans restaurant that sail around the bay- 50 lens, 100 ISO shutter speed al least 1/50th- while their passengers enjoy an exquisite dinner of Australian creamy oysters, rack of lamb with marmalade mint sauce, accompanied by a good Australian wine. – over a white tablecloth for a nicer hue- macro at 10-mm. distance, tripod, ISO 200, 1/200 th shutter speed-. The jewel of Circular Quay is the reproduction of Captain’s Cook sailing ship, in his austral soil discovering journeys- Cannon objective 24-105, 100 ISO, fast shutter speed-. Nowadays, designed to cruise during three days towards northwest in Queensland where passengers will disembark, amidst salutes and cheers of Port Macquarie people- 24105 Cannon Objective, ISO 100, fast shutter speed-who receive them every time as it was the first one to discern the romantic sailboat in the horizon- use 70-200 f/2.8 Lens great zoom for portraits, delivering great bokeh (background blur quality).
One of the emblematic beige coloured Sydney ferryboat sails from Circular Quay to Toronga Zoo, -24-105 cannon lens, ISO 100 fast shutter speed-from where among a wonderful selection of animals all over the world you will enjoy another unique sight of the Opera in front, beside the Harbour Bridge, Manly Beach and its braves big waves surfers, at left. The 70-200 Cannon lens will be perfect to photograph the animals in Toronga Zoo-.
Returning from Toronga Zoo to Circular Quay, next stop will be The Rocks, leading to the Sydney icon Harbour Bridge, … Back in time, towards the end of the eighteenth century, vessels laden with human beings arriving from England imprisoned the convicts with no space in British jails in those red brick buildings, the Rocks. Their twenty one century look -24-105 lens 100 ISO fast shutter speed-is lighter and more joyful, and its reddish bricks with black window bars houses cozy restaurants and artefact shops, suitable to find genuine wood boomerangs where you can even learn how to throw them, or get the beautiful and ancestral aboriginal wind instrument “didgeridoo” describe as a natural trumpet, or discover the wooden stick hollow sounding “bull roar” painted with cheerful tints, used by the tribes to communicate and as danger alert- use for these objects a “normal” 50 mm. lens.
A good contrast for a shot will be the perspective of the antique little houses of the Rocks, behind the glass and steel buildings of the city-24-105 lens 100 ISO fast shutter speed-. As for close ups, details of the street market in The Rocks like bottle sculptures, colourful water pumps, or even that young man rocking in a hammock, absent from the world, should be nicely trap with a 50 mm. lens 100 ISO fast shutter speed-. Charming restaurants are all over The Rock serving Italian, French or noveau cuisine. Any corner of the restaurant, a nice settle table, or an appetizing rock bone steak accompanied by a golden foster beer will be a good excuse for photography, with the macro lens over the tripod a slow shutter speed, 100 ISO. Don’t miss the old looking coffee maker in the aromatic stall, sideways to the yellowish corncob one,-50 mm. lens 100 ISO fast shutter speed-.
After spending some hours in the Rocks, looking around the shops crafts, jewellery and opals, rambling along the seashore towards The Customs House Museum in Circular Bay, it comes along a couple of shots of the aboriginal man, glamorous smile beating drums, Sydney Opera behind him, or the Asiatic boy violin playing, or the crocodile Dundee hat man. shoot with the 70-200 canon tele objective-. If that day in Sydney belongs to the month of late October, it is possible to witness the beauty of the jacaranda tree in full bloom of its purple flowers. -50 mm lens-One shot after another will escape from the camera, trapping the gorgeous tree, behind the Opera House, the Harbour Bridge, a close up of the exultant flower-macro lens, tripod, long exposure, 100 ISO-or the unique spectacle at the beginning of November of Sydney streets carpeted with Jacaranda purple petals fall. Nice shot, scholar’s shoes, socks falling down stepping on the petals, same picture lady high heels…with a 50-mm. lens.
Once learned about the interesting history of Sydney, and before going to The Opera House Play it will be good to have dinner. One great option for sights will be the 36 floor of the Shangri-La Hotel, place of Blue Bar and Altitude Restaurant from were the breathtaking panoramic of the night falling over Sydney Bay are mandatory shots, wide angle, 200 ISO over a tripod at slow shutter speed. Another alternative will be Opera Bar with great view at the water edge, perfect to have a bite before the play starts.
The brave dessert of the day will be the night climbing of Harbour Bridge. It’s said You haven’t seen Sydney until you have seen it from the Bridge. A trained Climb Leader escorts each group of 12 people during 2,5 hours, day, twilight and night. Equipped with a safety harness, the 360o view of the magnificent Harbour. Big problem for photographers, they don’t allow to take cameras for safety reasons. Therefore, to contemplate the awesome views from the top it is a must to climb the 200 stairs 87 meters above mean sea level, inside the southeast pylon, home of the southeast Pylon Look Out Museum about the construction of the bridge. Once at the top the Pylon Lookout offers a magnificent sight of Sydney harbour, Botanical Gardens… On a clear day it is possible to see as far as the Blue Mountains. In this case it should be recommended a Fish Eye 10-17 mm. tripod 100 ISO overture f8-f16. Being cameras allowed, the situation from the Pylon Look Out permits to take good scenes of the adventurous climbers of Harbour Bridge, -70-200mm tale objective 100 ISO, (day light) high speed, 1.600 ISO (night time) – exhilarating panoramic views-18 mm wide-angle 100 ISO high speed (day light), 200 ISO tripod required, slow speed (night time) of the Harbour, and the big smile of Luna Park.
An amusing way to close a day full of emotions could be the visit to Luna Park, which opened in 1935, has become Sydney’s iconic amusement park. Once inside the cheerful mouth entrance to the park, the colourful Luna Ferris Wheel takes you 40 m up into the sky, from where at 1.600 ISO, 18.mm. wide angle its possible to shoot more panoramic of the harbour from a different angle to the Pylon Look Point. Later on walk slowly and attentive to go back to childhood experiencing the thrill of riding slides in Coney Island attraction, or the stumbling through Barrels of fun, shooting the spontaneous guffaws of people tackling Ye Olde Turkey Trot or lasting the distance on the Joy Wheel. To close the night with a flourish, shot a couple of 1.600 ISO wide aperture, high shutter speed of the spectacular antique steam Carousel merry go round and take advantage when it stops to photograph helped by tripod at 100 ISO 16 aperture, slow shutter speed the many immaculate details, the wonder lights and the romantic glaze of this unique carrousel that took master craftsmen many years to restore.
- Time required for this trip: One day.
- Traveller profile: Amateur. ( What´s this? )
- Itinerary difficulty: Quite easy.
- Adventure level: Low.
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- Macro lens.
- Wide-angle lens.
- 50 mm. lens.
- 24-105 mm. Cannon lens.
- 70-200 mm. Cannon lens.
- Fish Eye lens.
- 400 mm. Tele Objective lens.
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- Circular Quay: ferries, taxi boats, catamarans cruises. Circular Quay Skyline watched from the ferryboat.
- The Opera House and Harbour Bridge from every possible angle, night and day.
- The Rocks, its taverns, restaurants, craft shops, cozy houses and hundred details.
- The view of the Harbour from 36thl floor in Shangri-La Hotel.
- Creamy oysters and Rack of lamb.
- Pylon Look Out at Harbour Bridge.
- The Costume House.
- Jacaranda Tree.
- Uniformed scholars.
- Street Musicians.
- Aboriginal instruments and boomerangs.
- Luna Park, outdoors and indoors.
Aussie people are warm and charming but be careful to ask permission before taking pictures of a person, as usually they don’t like it.
Be aware of the marvellous birds of all kind and colours than fills Sydney sky, Use a tele lens 400 or more, in burst mode, smaller aperture, fast shutter speed, 100 ISO. Try to focus on the eye of the bird, and be quiet, so that it doesn’t scare.