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Hoping to get info on the fires around Sydney from some Aussies. We are going on a cruise and will be flying into Sydney and arrive Jan 4. We will be spending 4 days in Sydney pre cruise at the Four Seasons. This is our trip of a lifetime and so excited about seeing your beautiful city. We have guides to take us around the city and also into the Blue Mountains to see the three sisters and into Manly. Are these areas affected in anyway by these fires. Hopefully the smoke will not be too bad. In the US the news is reporting a very Bleeker situation. Hopefully someone can give us more accurate info. Not a lot mentioned on cruise critic regarding the fires.

 

Kandy from Texas

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To give you an idea of what is happening, last month I was on an islands cruise out of Sydney and about 1500 miles away at Port Vila, Vanuatu, the smoke haze from the bushfires reduced visibility to a few miles at best. There were no sunsets, the orange sun would just go grey and disappear well before it touched the horizon.

 

This is a map of the affected areas.

 

http://google.org/crisismap/australia

 

You need to check with your tour provider about conditions in the Blue Mountains, but at the moment I would steer clear of the area. In two weeks things may improve, or they may get worse.

 

Manly is a seaside suburb of Sydney. Like the rest of Sydney it is affected by the heavy levels of smoke in the air, not by the fires themselves.

Edited by SinbadThePorter
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At present, Katoomba, 3 Sisters, Ruined Castle area is under a bushfire advice

 

https://www.google.org/publicalerts/alert?aid=652cf7bcdbbcc4fe&hl=en&gl=AU&source=web

 

Fires have been in the area from early December. lots of rain needed.
 

When you visit, if the warnings are about stay well away. The fires are huge and deadly.


B2770C67-9AC9-47CD-93FC-67675D1ACEC6.thumb.jpeg.be9686ac39db494e6a85286d7e43ef12.jpeg
 

 

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Here is the interactive web site we use for up to date info from our RFS.  The fires are constantly changing their status, due to obvious weather conditions like heat/wind direction etc.  We have been told these fires will take months to extinguish due to their size, the dense bushy terrain, and obviously it's our summer and bushfire season.  We here have had over a month of constant high levels of smoke, and many days with embers in the air, as have most of NSW.  (We are on the Central Coast just north of Sydney, approx 20kms from the Three Mile fire.)  It's impossible to predict visiting the Blue Mtns etc due to the volatility and unpredicatable path of these massive fires.  I would make a decision once you arrive in Sydney, on a daily basis.It was reported Saturday that the smoke had reached Melbourne (and of course it's also gone across the ditch to NZ).  Hope this info helps.

 

https://www.rfs.nsw.gov.au/fire-information/fires-near-me

 

 

 

 

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Thank everyone for all the great info and for the links to the maps. I am saying a prayer for all that have been affected by these fires and hopefully there will not be anymore lives lost. 

Looking forward to visiting your great country .

Merry Christmas to all

 

Kandy from the great state of Texas

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Here is a link that gives the pollution levels for Sydney. https://aqicn.org/map/sydney/

 

If you have any health issues that could be exacerbated by poor air quality then I would recommend bringing P2.5 (N99) anti-pollution masks with you. Amazon have a good range.

 

It's hard to predict what the smoke haze will be like when you arrive, so much depends on wind conditions and what the fires are doing. We had a few really bad days but it's OK at the moment. Be prepared to miss out on your Blue Mountains tour but the rest should be OK.

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Given the time you arrive there is a slight chance that there will be nothing left to burn in that area when you arrive. I am used to the bushfire season but it started early this year and has been more intense than ever. This is something that flares up occasionally and I remember it spread out a few times in my life. The Australian bush is very unique. It needs fire to burn it down to crack open all the seeds of our native trees to sprout new life. The Aboriginals knew this and apparently burnt off large super-massive swaths of land in the cooler months to prepare and did it haphazardly to they did not concentrate on the same area all the time.

 

I don't want to give bad information but I would guess that if the fires are burning now there will be less likely to be much burning by the time you arrive. I could be wrong but generally once they burn out and burnt areas form a barrier preventing fire from spreading to other areas.

 

2019-12-19-037.thumb.jpg.0a4a3e10ba0672c387f53456d37b7ce3.jpg

 

This is Sydney last Thursday from the smoke.

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Thanks for all the updates and hope to see more as we plan to arrive in Sydney Jan 4 prior to the cruise. Are all the Blue Mtn day tours being cancelled? This info really helps us all so many thanks.

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53 minutes ago, Bcjf said:

Thanks for all the updates and hope to see more as we plan to arrive in Sydney Jan 4 prior to the cruise. Are all the Blue Mtn day tours being cancelled? This info really helps us all so many thanks.

I doubt tours are being cancelled.  The last few days have been cooler, allowing our firies to do major backburning ops re protecting properties.  There are no emergency levels atm (yippee), however this can change at a moments notice.  We are expecting temps in the 40's in a few days.  Smoke will depend on wind direction and fire status, which may impact on views of Three Sisters.  Scenic World is open fyi, and is a very good indication re tours operating.

https://scenicworld.com.au/

Enjoy your time downunder!!!

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I would think tours would be cancelled currently, but that can change quickly, one example is bushfire could start the morning of your tour cutting the road to the mountains, but the chance of that happening is slim.

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Just to add....The Blue Mtns Explorer bus is operating today. I am assuming by their website, they are making decisions on a day to day basis.... be aware that the fires are still huge and volatile, hence tours will cancel at a moments notice.  It's impossible to predict whether tours will operate or not on 4th Jan.  Check the day before and also morning of tour. Your tour operator will let you know.  If you are thinking of doing a tour by yourselves, then my advise is NOT to take the risk.  

 

https://www.explorerbus.com.au/

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I  live in Penrith at the base of the mountains.The highway up to Katoomba is 4 lanes all the way... 2 in each direction. More than likely there won't be a problem getting up there. Going further than that will depend on the fires as the road to Lithgow has been closed at times. However all the tourist attractions are in Katoomba. The main issue will be the smoke. That can be anything from a light haze to very thick where you can look at the sun and just see a red ball. The wind plays a big factor there. No idea what that will be at the time of your visit.

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The Bells Line of Road on the other side of the mountains has also been reopened today with reduced speed limits and cautionary advice whilst the clear up takes place.  Conditions change but hopefully a step in the right direction. Thanks to all the emergency services and volunteers out there who have been involved in fighting the fires.  Stay safe

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14 minutes ago, subaru94 said:

Lovely photos David are you a professional photographer?


Goodness me no . They are grabs from a web cam . Those are from the Quay West Hotel in Sydney with its stunning view . You can see it any time you like by clicking

 

https://www.thesebelquaywestsydney.com.au/webcam.html

 

I check it out most days to see who is in town and it’s a good indication of how much smoke is over Sydney. .

Hope it all goes well for the fireworks tonight .

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Things move rapidly with bushfires, and getting very nasty in places. My daughter and friends cancelled their trip to go climbing in the Blue Mountains over New Years, too dangerous.

 

Big fires on the NSW south coast towards the Victorian border.

 

4000 people on the foreshore at Mallacoota with no way out.

 

Another firefighter killed overnight.

 

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2 hours ago, Docker123 said:

Things move rapidly with bushfires, and getting very nasty in places. My daughter and friends cancelled their trip to go climbing in the Blue Mountains over New Years, too dangerous.

 

Big fires on the NSW south coast towards the Victorian border.

 

4000 people on the foreshore at Mallacoota with no way out.

 

Another firefighter killed overnight.

 

It's so sad about the young firefighter. My heart goes out to his wife and family. Many wouldn't realise the danger every time a fire truck turns out. As the wife of a former volunteer of 35 plus years I used to worry and not sleep when he was out at a fire and it was worse when he was interstate or in country Victoria on strike teams. You just don't know what is happening. 

 

I am also amazed at the number of holiday makers who were advised to leave East Gippsland on Sunday and whodidn't and are now caught in amongst the fires at Mallacoota and Lakes Entrance, with no way to leave and surrounded by fires.  The warnings turned out to be very accurate. 

 

There are four people missing or unaccounted in the East Gippsland fires. I hope they are safe.

 

Leigh

 

 

 

 

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