So what was it like to visit Sydney about 50 or so years ago? I recently have been going through some old slides that were taken by my father. They date from the 1950s and 1960s. I think they're awesome and thought you might enjoy the opportunity to see them.
First the big guns. Here are some shots of the Sydney skyline pre - opera house. You can see Bennelong Point with the tram yard over to the right of the shot.
Next we look across Taronga Zoo towards the city, and second shot is more directly to the south. It looks very different in Sydney today.
In the early sixties the Royal Easter Show was big drawcard, as it remains today. It seems that leaving litter lying around Sideshow alley is not a recent phenomenon.
Before leaving Sydney lets have a look at the band new lookout constructed in Ku-ring-gai National Park's West Head. The view looks across Pittwater to Palm Beach. There's a lot more development and boats in this view today!
Still in Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park, Bandstand hosted by Brian Henderson at the time, did some filming at the Basin when my family was there (they often were.. they spent almost every weekend on my grandparents cabin cruiser wandering around Pittwater).. Here we have Judy Stone and Col Joye, the pop idols of their day looking groovy...
In 1965 there were some pretty impressive storms. Dad caught some great seascapes following the storms. This first shows the rock pool at Collaroy dwarfed by the waves.
But this shot of storm surf is my favourite. I'm sure Dad must have been very happy with how it turned out. It's my favourite.
Heading out of Sydney now...
Touring the south coast accommodation options were few and far between. Caught in a storm in February 1958 my parents were driven to seek shelter in a ramshackle building that seemed to be only just standing. In later years the exact location was hard to pin down but the following shots were taken in the general area. A beautiful day next day for some photo opportunities.
The Tilba Tilba Post office was a lonely affair..
And of course Narooma was a popular stop on the south coast then as it is now.
A tour of the nation's capital was a different experience in 1958. At least this seems to be Canberra, I believe that is the spire given to Australia by the USA.. and is that old Parliament House there... but if so where is the lake? Not built yet.. note the river that is wending its way across the photograph. It was interesting to find this photo as I have recently read the memiors of Sylvia Curley who lived on Duntroon when it was still a sheep station.
Heading on from Canberra, my wandering parents appear to have come across this little town that seems well along the way to falling down!
I have another image of this town with a lake in the distance. Perhaps Lake Eucambene.. but I don't know for sure.
The following shots my mother thinks would have been taken at Surfers Paradise or Gold Coast back in the day when they were just getting started in turning it into the tourist spot it is today. These are some of the local accommodation options as they once appeared. These photos will definitely be making their way into my home decor!
Going overseas now to Hobart, in about 1962 my grandmother recorded this hip little square in Hobart. I wonder if it is still there somewhere..
We someimtes don't realise the little treasures that await us when we decide to take a trip through our parents travels decades ago. I am sure glad I didn't just stick to looking at the photographs of family!