Jet boating in Sydney Harbor

Sydney, Australia is a bustling city filled with amazing and adventurous things to do.  The harbor area, in particular, is full of energy.  As I looked through all of our options I quickly realized that a lot of the things on offer in the city are right there, downtown by Circular Quay.

We were offered a jet boat ride in the harbor by OZ jet boating and since I knew we would be in this area I quickly researched more.  I read a post by Our Travel Lifestyle about their jet boat ride in New Zealand and aside from feeling nauseous with worry, it looked amazing!  I knew all 3 boys would love it so I said yes and booked a time for all of us.

Fast forward to the day of the ride and cranky would be an understatement.  We left our apartment in Penang, Malaysia at 4pm, 2 flights later and over 12 hours and we finally landed in Sydney around 10am.  Only the 5 year old slept so he was full of energy while the rest of us sort of dragged along at the airport.  Did I mention I booked the boat ride for the day we landed?  Oops!

After meeting up with some friends and having a nice lunch we got settled in our hotel where we could relax race around after realizing we needed to get to that boat ride!  Luckily we were able to walk over through the botanical gardens to reach circular quay (pronounced as key) where all the boats and ferries head out from.

Our spirits were much better after a walk through the gardens, which are stunning and peaceful.  The Oz jet boat is located on the Eastern pontoon and was easy to spot as soon as we approached the quay.  A quick stop for photos in front of the bridge and we found ourselves at the booth to sign in for our ride.

We had to give information and sign release forms before boarding the boat.  The driver came and introduced himself and seemed very enthusiastic.  Everything was a go until....they realized T, my 5 year old, was one of the riders.  It seems that anyone under 1.2 meters tall is too small and he came in just under that.  I felt awful, it was totally my fault for not researching that and here T sat in tears as my husband, who had little interest in walking over anyway, had to sit on the sidelines and wait for our ride to be over.

To say he was upset, that my husband was annoyed, and that I felt terrible would all be gross understatements.  But the show must go on right?!  I did get a bout of jitters as we were deciding T couldn't go and tried to bail out to stay with him.  My husband was having none of it, he insisted I go with the older boys, drats!  Butterflies fluttered around my belly as I thought about just how fast the boat would be going.  Yes I am a bit of a wimp sometimes!

I am so grateful that he made me go!  As we walked down onto the pier we were told to remove anything that would flap around, that might get lost, or that we did not want wrecked by water.  They have a great spot to lock up all your belongings, it seemed very secure as a person is there all the time as well.  We grabbed large rubber coats complete with large hoods and boarded the boat where the jitters returned in full force.

That is me screaming dead center of the pick.  Boys are to the left.

As we slowly made our way outside of the Quay, the driver explained what he would do, and showed us the hand signals he would be using.  He was so enthusiastic and happy I immediately felt at ease.  He always made sure everyone was ready and OK after a spin or abrupt stop and let everyone know that it was OK if there was any issue.

There were no issues at all, only fun for everyone on board!

We started out slowly, as he let everyone get used to how the boat would feel.  After the first couple times though he kicked it into high gear and the fast paced thrill ride really began.  There were spins, fishtails, and power breaks one after the other making it a constant adventure.  The views of the harbor, bridge and opera house were also really nice although if you want a tour a slower pace may be better!

One of the nicest features is the Go pro camera mounted on the front of the boat.  It takes photos and videos constantly.  The pics are placed on a USB directly after the tour so that by the time you are back in your shoes and out of your rain gear they are ready to be purchased.  There is an extra fee for this and you are permitted to bring your own camera if you prefer but at your own risk because it will get wet!

Overall this was a fantastic ride that lasted about 30 minutes.  It is a bit expensive but they offer a family deal of $200 for 2 adults and 2 children.  They are open and offer rides every hour from 11am to sunset.  Call ahead to book a ride especially if you have a specific day and time in mind.  Go ahead, ride the original jet boat of Sydney Harbor!  You can't miss the big red shark!

  • Booking in advance is recommended.
  • Take off your shoes to save them from getting wet, I was really glad I had.
  • Put the hood up on your raincoat if you want to avoid water pouring down your neck.  Dylan wished he had as the water was quite cold.
  • Bring a waterproof camera if you want your own pics.
  • Be sure no one is under 1.2 meters tall.  They will not be permitted to ride and take it from me you do not want to discover that at the pier!
  • Arrive 20 minutes before the rides scheduled time so you can check in, sign waivers and get in your weatherproof clothes (it goes right over what ever you are wearing)

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  1. I LOVE the pic of you screaming!!! Picked you out right away. Looks like so much fun!

    1. Ha, some of them are totally hilarious! It was a fun ride that is for sure!

  2. Nice place.Awesome tourist destination

    1. Yes Sydney is definitely one city I could live in! Hope to at least be a tourist there again soon!

  3. The screaming this is pretty cool . I have been there 2 times and it was one of my awesome experience.