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TAKING THE STAIRS – SYDNEY HARBOUR BRIDGE PYLON LOOKOUT

Recently Hubby, AJ and I had the opportunity to walk up the South East Pylon of the Sydney Harbour Bridge. Hubby often takes overseas visitors there but I’d never been. The 200 stairs to the top, with no option of a lift, means that we can’t access it as a family. However, BJ was at respite and it seemed like a good opportunity to do something with AJ that we wouldn’t ordinarily do.

View from South East Pylon of Sydney Harbour Bridge
A panorama taken on my humble iPhone of Sydney Harbour

I’ve written before about how difficult I found it to try respite with BJ (you can read about his first time here and lessons learnt here) but nearly two years on, I can see that it has benefitted everyone. BJ still loves it, he’s gained some independence, learnt to trust others and we’ve been able to do things with AJ.

BJ enjoying his stay at respite
BJ enjoying his stay at respite

I’m sharing this post for two reasons. One, I wanted to remind people who are nervous about trying respite that you aren’t alone, I found it hard but we’ve also found great benefits from giving it a go. Secondly, I thought that although this attraction isn’t accessible I’d share it so others can see what is inside one of the pylons of the Harbour Bridge. I’ve always been curious when Hubby spoke of it and I’ve never seen it on TV or anywhere else to really know what it’s like.

Stairs leading to the top of the South East Pylon of the Sydney Harbour Bridge
200 steps lead to the top of the South East Pylon of the Sydney Harbour Bridge

The 200 stairs to the top of the South East Pylon took us 87 metres above mean sea level. When we reached the top we stepped outside to magnificent views of the Sydney Opera House, the arch of the Harbour Bridge (complete with walkers heading for the top) and views out towards Barangaroo.

View from the South East Pylon
View from the South East Pylon
The arch of the Harbour Bridge from the pylon
The arch of the Harbour Bridge from the pylon
The view of Sydney's skyline from the pylon
The view of Sydney’s skyline from the pylon

Inside the pylon there are various informative displays explaining the building process, history and commemorative items from the opening of the Sydney Harbour Bridge on 19 March 1932.

Commemorative items from the opening of the Sydney Harbour Bridge
Commemorative items from the opening of the Sydney Harbour Bridge

It took 7 years and 356 days to complete the  bridge which spans 1149 metres and includes approximately 6 million rivets. 272,000 litres of paint were used to give the bridge it’s initial three coats of paint. Imagine that job!

Movie of the building of the Sydney Harbour Bridge
Movie of the building of the Sydney Harbour Bridge

Our visit finished with a short movie on the building of the bridge. As Hubby said, “No harnesses or high visibility vests in those days.” Imagine what occupational health and safety would have said about that work site.

Top of the South East Pylon of the Harbour Bridge
AJ at the top of the South East Pylon of the Harbour Bridge

We had a lovely day and I’m pleased we could give AJ our time and a fun day out.

At the time of our visit the cost of entry to the museum was $13 per person (13 years and over) and $8 for seniors and concession card holders and $6.50 for children 5 years and over.

To read more about the opening times and how to access the pylon head to the website.

It’s definitely a place to recommend to visitors or people without mobility restrictions.

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3 thoughts on “TAKING THE STAIRS – SYDNEY HARBOUR BRIDGE PYLON LOOKOUT”

  1. Still a wonderful way to see Sydney Harbour.
    When I was a kid, there was a tram stop at Pylon Lookout.
    One of the attractions was the White Cats.
    Harry and I visited the Pylon in the 1960s. The photos we took are still some of the best we have of Sydney. I think we walked on the bridge deck level to reach the Pylon.
    Thank you for reminding me. Cheers.

    Reply

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