Wednesday Wander – Watery Ways

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This week’s Wednesday Wander was inspired by an image I used in Monday’s post, of the Sydney ferries at Circular Quay. I lived in Sydney for a couple of years and would often take the commuter ferries across the Harbour, paying a few dollars to bob past some of the most famous landmarks in the world. There are several other ferries which venture further, such as the Manly one which goes out through the Heads. It can be quite an adventure on a rough day, when the calmer waters of the harbour meet the open ocean, the boat rocking as it turns to such a degree the sliding doors flick back and forth and you feel the need to brace yourself.

I’ve visited and lived in other waterside cities as well, where public transport is anything but everyday.

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View of the West End looking back from the Seabus.

When I lived in Vancouver my home was in the West End but I worked on the North Shore, so I would take the Seabus every day from Lonsdale Quay, then walk the rest of the way home. When we went back to visit last year we took it again – making the short trip across the water surrounded by mountains, Stanley Park, the Lions Gate Bridge and the Vancouver skyline. It still only costs a few dollars, and is a beautiful way to see the city.

Coming up to St Mark's Square and the Doge's Palace
Coming up to St Mark’s Square and the Doge’s Palace

I visited Venice for only a few days many years ago, yet still remember the colours and light, the way the city felt frozen in time, almost like a film set. I loved that you could spend a few lire (at the time) to catch a water taxi and be ferried around the city past so much beauty and history, and that people got to do so every day as part of their work commute.

Now I live near London, and have taken the riverboats several times, including one memorable occasion where we were on a school trip and supposed to alight at a certain dock, but the boat only stopped for about five seconds, pulling away again as we tried to get thirty Year Two children out of their seats and lined up. A stern word with the operators ensured we had enough time to disembark at the next stop, though it meant a longer walk through the city than we had planned. Still, it’s a wonderfulΒ  and very affordable way to travel the ancient waterway, past palaces and fortresses and famous bridges.

I’m sure there are many other cities where everyday public transport is a trip – let me know some of your favourites. Thanks for coming on a watery Wednesday Wander with me…

22 thoughts on “Wednesday Wander – Watery Ways

  1. Anywhere off the coast of California is lovely. You can see sea lions, dolphins, whales. Caves and such off the coast. Sigh…

    1. Oh yes – my face, the teacher’s face, and that of the Head teacher, who’d decided to come on the trip with us. Luckily the next stop wasn’t too far along!
      And your commute does sound very civilised – lucky you πŸ™‚

      1. I found the boat by accident. I had been using the tube and hating it and one day it was temporarily shut. I overheard someone say they were going to use the boat and I never looked back.

    1. That’s something, coming from someone as well travelled as you! Thanks, Ali – I have been to quite a few places but there’s plenty more I haven’t. Too bad I’m not a fan of flying any more – still, I think there’s more travelling in my future πŸ™‚

      1. Lol, I need the leg room! No I mean the fancy first class ones with the beds and a,, the extra doodads – I think I might be more keen to fly then. Too bad I’ll need to win the lottery first πŸ˜€

  2. Lovely post – and I think we’re following each other around the world! When I lived in Vancouver I took the seabus a couple of times, but the one I really loved was the little water taxi that went across to Granville Island. I wish the Thames Clipper went further – my parents live in Richmond and it would be great to use it when I stay with them, but it goes out that far about three times a year as far as I can make out. That said, I do live in Stockholm so get to commute by water (except for at the moment when it’s all frozen!)

    1. Oh yes, I love the little Granville Island ferries – we took those quite a bit as well when we were there last year, and when I lived in Vancouver they were only a short walk away from my place. They sit so low in the water, especially compared to all the larger boats around.
      And it does seem as though we’re following each other! Lucky you, living in Stockholm – I’ve not been to Scandinavia yet though it’s on my list. Another watery way to explore πŸ™‚

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