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‘Obamamania’ sweeps Sydney as the ex-US President’s motorcade does a mad dash around the city – taking him to a meeting with the PM, on a bushwalk and to a swanky lunch behind closed doors

  • Former US President Barack Obama has arrived in Sydney
  • He touched down with  wife Michelle for a speaking tour
  • The president met with Prime Minister Anthony Albanese

Barack Obama has spent a whirlwind 24 hours in Sydney – his motorcade roaring over the Harbour Bridge for a meeting with Anthony Albanese as he sees some of the city’s natural sights and dines at a top restaurant.

The 44th President of the United States and his wife Michelle Obama touched down in Australia’s most populated city via a private jet on Sunday night before they were whisked away with a police escort.

Former President Obama filled his Monday full of activities amidst a rainy morning, first being greeted by John F. Kennedy’s daughter and US ambassador Caroline Kennedy at the Four Seasons. 

Mr Albanese then hosted Mr Obama at Kirribilli House. The pair were all smiles as they posed together for the camera by the harbour while holding black umbrellas amidst the drizzle.  

The president, along with his wife Michelle, flew into Sydney via a private jet on Sunday night

The president, along with his wife Michelle, flew into Sydney via a private jet on Sunday night

‘Honoured to welcome President @barackobama to Sydney,’ Mr Albanese wrote in a post to Twitter. 

Mr Obama later went for a walk along the cliffs at Shelly Beach in Manly – as more than a dozen police cars and a dozen police motorbikes waited by the road nearby. 

He then attended a lunch at the Bathers Pavillion restaurant at Balmoral with Ms Kennedy – a witness saying he was dining in a room where the curtains were closed to the outside world. 

The president and his wife are in the country for his ‘An Evening with President Obama’ speaking tour, which will be kick off at the Aware Super Theatre on Tuesday night, with the cheapest tickets $395-per-head.

He will then jet down to Melbourne for another appearance at John Cain Arena on Wednesday. 

The president will speak about leadership and global challenges with former Australian foreign minister, Julie Bishop, who will also moderate the event.

Mr Obama is pictured with the US Ambassador to Australia and John F Kennedy's daughter, Caroline Kennedy, outside a Sydney hotel on Monday

Mr Obama is pictured with the US Ambassador to Australia and John F Kennedy’s daughter, Caroline Kennedy, outside a Sydney hotel on Monday

More than a dozen police cars and a dozen police motorbikes were on standby as the president went for a walk by Shelly Beach

More than a dozen police cars and a dozen police motorbikes were on standby as the president went for a walk by Shelly Beach

Tour organiser Growth Faculty said in the event description that attendees would hear Mr Obama ‘discuss strength in leadership and explore techniques for navigating an unpredictable future’.

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‘In times of great challenge and change, President Obama’s leadership ushered in a stronger economy, a more equal society, a nation more secure at home and more respected around the world,’ the description read.

‘There’s no leader better equipped to share their experience, unique strategy and wisdom on the changing face of leadership.’ 

Ticket prices range from $195 for a standard seat to $895 for a ‘platinum package’.

A platinum ticket includes priority seating, designated entrance, one hour pre-event cocktail party, a copy of Mr Obama’s book ‘A Promised Land’ and a commemorative lanyard and program.

The president and his wife were whisked away by a motorcade after they touched down in Sydney on Sunday

The president and his wife were whisked away by a motorcade after they touched down in Sydney on Sunday

President Obama is in the country for his 'An Evening with President Obama' speaking tour, where he will talk about leadership and global challenges with former foreign minister Julie Bishop

President Obama is in the country for his ‘An Evening with President Obama’ speaking tour, where he will talk about leadership and global challenges with former foreign minister Julie Bishop

President Obama’s last official visit to Australia was for the G20 Summit in Brisbane in November 2014.

He also visited in November 2011, where he addressed a joint sitting of federal parliament in Canberra after he was invited by then=prime minister Julia Gillard.

In his speech, president Obama spoke about the importance of the asia-pacific region. 

Mr Obama served as the 44th President of the United States from 2009 to 2017. 

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