On Sunday I ventured into Sydney’s suburbia, to the town of Paramatta. There is an Australian mystery series called Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries that takes place in 1920s Melbourne. The costuming for the show is quite incredible, and there is a costume exhibit making the rounds of several Australian cities. Currently it is on display in the Old Government House in, you guessed it, Paramatta.
I lucked out, as Paramatta is located on the Paramatta River, and is therefore accessible by the ferries that are part of Sydney’s Public transit network. And on Sunday, the maximum amount an Opal Card holder can pay for the day is $2.50.
Despite the cold, I sat outside in the ferry for the hour plus ride, getting a magnificent view of Sydney Harbour.
From the website and map I’d picked up at the Visitors Centre, I’d expected a quaint old town. Not so much. It’s very much a modern suburb, and rather quiet on a Sunday morning. However, once I got to Paramatta Park and saw the beautiful Old Government House, I was happy.
The exhibit was great, letting you touch swatches of the fabric used for some of the dresses. Other outfits were vintage 1920s, including a constable uniform that the character Constable Collins wears. There’s a quote from the actor about how uncomfortable it is, which is funny when put in context with certain scenes from the show. There were even not one but two dress up rooms:
After the exhibit, I walked around Paramatta Park to the old Dairy Cottage, enjoying the greenery and families playing. Somewhere in that park is the presumed site of the first European farming in Australia.
Since I was all the way out in Paramatta, I decided to visit another house museum that had looked entertaining from the brochure, Elizabeth Farm. It was supposed to be an interactive museum in one of the oldest remaining European structure in Australia. Unfortunately it wasn’t as interesting as I’d hoped, perhaps because it was a quiet Sunday afternoon and I was getting tired. It looked like it would have great tours for school children, however.
Since the ferry only goes every hour on Sunday, I hastened back to the wharf and on to Sydney. Coming back into the Harbor, we saw magnificent views.