It’s 5:45pm on Friday and I have had enough – of work, of commuting, of the week in general. I want to summon my public transportation genie and be sped away to a sunset bar at the beach. In short, I’d like to be in Manly. Now.
Sydney ferries are fantastic – especially the Circular Quay to Manly service, the 30 minute trip from city to seaside. It’s justifiably famous as being practically the only way to get to Manly without crippling road rage.
But what if I told you that, departing from the other end of Circular Quay was another Manly ferry – one that A) took half the time, B) served cheap booze on board and C) was only $2 more than the ‘normal’ ferries?
Enter Manly Fast Ferries, with 23 return trips daily during the week and 10 services daily on weekends. The ferries are smaller and faster – the average trip is only 17 minutes. Passengers can sit up top in the open air, or if that’s a bit too close to nature for you there’s plenty of seats in the main cabin. Beer, wine and pre-mixed RTD spirits are sold on board for about $7 a pop, which is cheaper than you’ll pay in a bar at either end of the trip.
There’s no wi-fi like on the standard ferries but honestly, for a 17 minute trip I can cope. After a stressful work day (and most Friday nights) it’s my favourite way to get home – unplug, crack a vino and be beachside before the end of cocktail hour.
View: www.manlyfastferry.com.au; Visit: Services run between Wharf 6 Circular Quay (Sydney’s main ferry terminal) and Manly Wharf. Call: +61 2 9583 1199; Open: Departs circular Quay Monday-Friday 6:15am until 7:50pm / weekends 10:10am until 7:10pm; Wallet: $9 one way, tickets can be purchased on board at the bar, or from wharf before boarding.
Circular Quay Ferry terminal:
Manly Ferry terminal:by