Sunday, 2 February 2014

Anniversary in the park

Friends (loosely defined) gathered to mark the anniversary of an acquaintance's arrival in Australia. It was the golden anniversary of her arrival in the country. Ba, British born and still in possession of a noticeable accent, was probably an eager, energetic young woman back in 1964. Now aged well into her 70s she looks no older than myself - more than ten years her junior - and without blowing my trumpet most people who know me say I look younger than my age so she certainly is doing well.

The gathering was a picnic in McKell Park named after Sir William McKell a former Premier of New South Wales and later Governor General of Australia.

Gates to McKell Park

The park is small and located harbour side in the exclusive suburb of Darling Point itself named in honour of the wife of a New South Wales Governor, Ralph Darling. It is sufficiently out of the way not to attract huge crowds, which it could not accommodate anyway, but is popular enough to attract picnickers, outdoor wedding celebrations and the like.

We were lucky that the park was comparatively quiet despite a sunny and warmish day. Strong breezes may have kept some away yet did not stop topless sunbathing by some. See below.

The park provides many delightful harbour glimpses.

Picnickers and sailboat

Sail boats and motor boat


There is a wharf at the foot of the park at which Ferries stop during peak hours on weekdays on the Watsons Bay to Circular Quay run. There are no weekend services to the park however so the wharf was being used for fishing and swimming on this Sunday.

Wharf fishing

Looking west from the wharf is a spectacular view. From left to right, harbour side apartments whose views guarantee a seven figures real estate value, the skyscrapers of Sydney's CBD, the crane towering over the Garden Island naval base, the Opera House and the 'coat hanger' (Sydney Harbour Bridge).

And there is other scenery by the harbour.

There are some valuable properties adjacent to the park. This one, a harbour side house with tennis court, I've always understood was a USA Consular residence but may be in other ownership now.

And then there is this more modern style residence which overlooks the park and I assume has a splendid outlook of both the park and the harbour.


  1. Caused me to do some back reading on my blog, but I seem not to have mentioned McKell Park. It is lovely and we met the civil celebrant there when we arranged R's sister's wedding in 2006. I think there may have been a button to press to request a ferry to stop at the wharf.

    1. I doubt there is press a button ferry service nowadays, Andrew.

      The park is delightful.

  2. I know your enthusiasm in this department, Victor, but I think most people would be surprised by your use of "topless" for sunbathing by a man!

    1. Fair point. There were quite a few shirtless men about - fishing, sunbathing and generally meandering about. I suppose I was thinking of more than just the sunbathers.

  3. Sydney Harbour has so many hidden treasures, I would love to live on the Harbour.

    1. A great place to live, Disco, but also very expensive.

  4. I must say Andrew, how rude of that guy to be sunbathing in board shorts.