It was a hot Saturday summer morning in Australia.
And just like any given morning during the summer months, thousands of people, locals and visitors alike, leave the comfort of their airconditioned homes in the suburbs and in downtown Sydney central to take an hour’s pilgrimage to Bondi, the undisputed mecca for beach lovers in the southern hemisphere.
There is a lot of discussion on the meaning of Bondi but the most accepted one is that Bondi is an Aboriginal word meaning “where the water breaks over the rocks”.
Barely a kilometer long, Bondi beach is definitely one of the most visited tourist spots in Sydney. It is located in the Eastern Suburbs, particularly in Waverly Council. It attracts millions of foreign and domestic travelers yearly.
I became one of those millions of travelers when I decided to take the city bus to take a 7-kilometer (4 mile) journey from Sydney central to Bondi beach.
You see, seeing it and swimming against its mighty tides have been a lifelong dream.
Ever since I saw pictures of Sydney in a travel show many moons ago, I have decided that I will one day visit Australia and visit Bondi.
It took me years, but that dream came true.
The Bondi Complex
Bondi beach is a gorgeous sight and I can’t help but catch my breath with my very first glimpse of its sparkly azure waters.
|The mural inside Bondi Pavilion|
At the eastern portion of the beach, you can get a glimpse of the Olympic-sized pool of the Bondi Icebergs swimming club, where the more affluent and senior tourists hang out.
Professional surfers then occupy the eastern stretch of the beach, since this part of Bondi is made up of mighty waters that only the more experienced and accomplished swimmers and surfers can take.
True story: I tried to swim in this part of the beach, but was quickly pushed back by the strong currents. I was about to commit unintentional suicide but the lifeguards on duty had pity on me and cautioned me against going into the water again.
|The wall of Surfih restaurant|
Past the professional section of the beach is the red and yellow flagged area, where beginners can safely swim. It was here that I decided to stay for the length of my stay in Bondi, following my harrowing experience at the pro side.
In front of this section of the beach stands Bondi Pavilion, which houses the small museum, along with several retail shops and restaurants such as Surfish, The Bucket List and Nick’s.
At night, this area of the beach becomes a giant party area under the moon.
This section is also where you can mind the Bondi Skate Park, and Parking Murals which depict and give tribute to the victims of the Bali bombing in 2001.
There is indeed a lot of things to do in Bondi Complex. Make no mistake however. The main spot remains the beach and its surf.
A local gave me a sage advice. He said that to best understand a Sydney local, you have to see him in Bondi.
True enough: the people of Sydney seem to be at their best element when they are in Bondi. They strip off their clothes without any inhibitions. They play a wide array of sports under the direct heat of the sun.
|Icebergs private pool|
In the grassy portion of the hill, people are reading books or taking a nap under the shade of the trees.
Bondi is a very important part of Sydney life that locals have incorporated the beach into their everyday schedule.
In the morning, you see several people take their morning jogs along the beach. Before sunset, you see people still wearing their office outfits, take leisurely walks along the beach while trying to unwind.
During my 16 days in Australia, I went to Bondi about three times and each visit was more memorable than the last. And like the locals, it has been a major part of my trip.
Bondi is really a magical place and my awesome experience made that trip all the more unforgettable.
Check the links below:
|A tribute to the victims of Bali bombing in 2002|
|Bondi Skate Park|
|The edge of the cliff at the western side|
|The pro side of Bondi|