An attempt to visit every suburb in Sydney.

So the anniversary video took us to Blacktown City, but it barely touched the suburb of Blacktown itself. Let's see what it's got to...

Western Heart: Blacktown

So the anniversary video took us to Blacktown City, but it barely touched the suburb of Blacktown itself. Let's see what it's got to offer.

Blacktown

Blacktown is somewhat of a Western Sydney hub, accessible by train, bus, and obviously road. Blacktown station was my port of entry today.
When I say this place is a Western Sydney hub, I really mean it. The station connects you west to the Blue Mountains, via Penrith, northwest to Richmond, and east to the city. But if where you want to go isn't on the train line, they also boast a fully-fledged bus station.
Leaving the station on the south side and heading to the street, I found a very typical Western Sydney CBD.
What makes it typical? Well you've got the Blacktown Westpoint, an enormous shopping centre which seems to contain the majority of the local populace. I actively dislike your typical enormous suburban shopping centres, so here's an outside picture.

What is interesting to me, as a nerd who enjoys well connected public transport, is that the shopping centre also has a bus station under it. 
Neat.

Anyway, other hallmarks of every Western Sydney CBD are also here, from discount variety stores where the official motto is "if it's plastic, we got it",
to plenty of multicultural shopping and dining options - the big ones here are African, Indian and Middle-Eastern.
I did get a kick out of this restaurant that realised that Indo-Chinese food wasn't a huge market and so decided to pivot with the help of a $39 printer from Officeworks. 
Now, usually there is only a single reason I come to Blacktown. 

Blacktown's the only place in Sydney I know of for Ethiopian food (although I'm sure you've got some dotted around in other places too). Ethiopian food is best known for spicy stews or marinated meat and vegetables served on top of injera, a sour pancake-like bread. 

Sadly, my go-to, a down to earth restaurant in Blacktown CBD named Gursha, was closed today despite it being within their business hours. 
Instead, I can offer you a picture from Wikipedia of Ethiopian food

This meant that for lunch, I reverted to another tried and true go-to of mine, Western Sydney staple El Jannah who have set up a local branch.
A charcoal chicken wrap with garlic and chilli was the right option today.

Having now checked off the Western Sydney requirement of smelling like garlic sauce, I was able to continue my exploration of Blacktown, by crossing the station to check the north side.
While south of the station houses the dollar stores and injera, I find northern Blacktown a little more interesting. 
This is the kind of place with Asian groceries with the footprint of a Bunnings,
or the delightfully scruffy Goodluck Plaza,
featuring a handful of restaurants and services,
and another very fine Asian grocery.


The kind of Asian grocery where beer and wine is in the same open fridge as the soft drinks, 
along with salted egg yolk, bags of garlic and pre-cooked, vacuum-sealed duck.


After purchasing an obligatory imported drink from the grocer (today was a Dr Pepper Cherry & Vanilla), I stepped outside, heading past this apartment/immigration lawyer/restaurant,
and Muhammad Ali,
where I found myself starting to touch a little bit of high- and medium-density residential Blacktown. 
This soon led me to a main road where rather than East Asian groceries, 
Indian places in large, warehousey blocks became the style. This was restaurants,
dance, hair,

and groceries. 
Newer Delhi soon ended and I continued on.
Soon reaching Blacktown Showground.
I also apparently found myself briefly joining the Great West Walk, a 65km walk which takes you from Parramatta all the way through Western Sydney until you hit the Blue Moutains. Not quite up for a 65km walk through suburbia right now, I headed into the Showgrounds to see what I could see. 
The Showground turned out to be a fairly pleasant place with benches, sports facilities, ducks and play equipment. 
It's also really hard to leave on foot, if you don't know how to get out.
I did eventually find a gap in the fence,
whereby I was able to get a bus to another suburb.
Blacktown: It's okay.

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