Let’s face it – in our era of living above our means the term ‘treat yo self’ rolls off the tongue on the daily.
Which is why the ol’ birthday present of a bunch of a bunch of flowers has transitioned into a $300 dinner or a dramatic activity.
And this year, only a seaplane over Sydney Harbour will do.
Be had a casual ‘treat yo self’ moment when we turned a leisurely Sunday morning into something indulgent and jumped on a Sydney Seaplane for a wip around our gorgeous harbour.
From the moment you arrive at Sydney Seaplane’s Terminal, known glamorously as the Empire Lounge, you’re treated like a star. The friendly staff check you in as if you’re flying first class to London – boarding pass and all. There’s top notch coffee or perhaps a cocktail before your name and flight are called over the PA for boarding.
Sydney Seaplanes have a fleet of four aircrafts – Be flew in a vintage six-seater Beaver from the 60s.
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It’s a bouncy take off over Sydney’s secret harbour beaches and as we peer down at the turquoise blue waters of Watson’s Bay and Milk Beach, we get a stark reminder of what an incredibly beautiful city we live in.
As we cruise towards Palm Beach our pilot explains that Rose Bay terminal was actually Australia’s first International Airport.
In 1938 airboats were flown in from Rochester, England to carry mail to and from the land Down Under but that operation soon transformed into the most luxurious and exotic form of air travel in the world.
The journey, from Sydney to London, took ten days and could take 15 passengers. There were 13 refueling stops including Brisbane, Townsville, across the Cape York Peninsula, Darwin, over the Timor Sea and across Surabaya and Jakarta before arriving in Singapore. The flight then went on to Bangkok, Calcutta, Karachi, Alexandria, Basra, Marseilles and finally Southampton.
We can imagine the view flying across Avalon Beach in the late 30’s, that same sparkling ocean with a lot less yachts and seaside mansions.
As we head back towards the city over the dramatic cliffs of North Head we can see Sydney’s famous skyline peaking in the distance. The 90-year-old man we shared our flight with sighed with emotion and told us he’d spent his whole life in Sydney but had never, ever seen it like this.
It certainly was a ‘treat yo self’ moment but it’s also the treat of a lifetime. The perfect date or birthday present to show someone Sydney like they’ve never imagined.
We’ll certainly be going back for more – this time we'll splurge on a picnic on the Hawksbury!
Be was a guest of Sydney Seaplanes and you can book your trip here.