A Travellerspoint blog

Sydney to Melbourne

The Great Road Trip

Three days in Sydney flew by! We did all the touristy things like the Opera House and Botanical Gardens. We also met my Mums cousin for lunch at the top of the Westfield Tower. She hadn't seen him for around 35 years! It was one of those restaurants that spins around slowly and you get a 360 degree view of Sydney. It was amazing and the food was delish. All you can eat buffet! Can't really go wrong with an all you can eat! One night we actually saw a show at the Opera House. I can't remember what it was called but it was very entertaining if not quite weird. It was basically a circus show with eveyone doing different acts. For example one lady dressed up as the queen and did a comical speech, a couple did a trapeze act and another lady stripped completely naked whilst doing the disappearing tissue into the fake thumb act haha! I think that was all our excitememt for Sydney. On our last day we picked up our campervan and headed South!

Now I dont think I will remember the names of any of the places we visited as they were fairly off the beaten track and I'm sure they had strange names. We hadn't booked any camp sites and were going 'strolling traveller' style. If we like it we stay if not we try and find somewhere else and the lonely planet guide book gave us a good idea of where to go. On our first leg we stopped off at a place called Dolphin Point and guess what? We saw heaps of dolphins! So amazing and beautiful! They were ao close as well I wanted to go in and swim with them. Our first campsite was on the coast and had a beautiful view but there wasn't much there. We set up camp. Our van was so cool! The back seats went into a double bed and the roof raised up and had a single bed in it with a little window for me. It was super comfy, I loved it!

When sleeping in the campervan I found that we all woke up fairly early because of the light and the animal noises. Loud birds and things. No complaints though! We got the hob on for a morning cup of tea and had some poached eggs before hitting the road again. A lot of the time the roads were deserted and it was super quiet. Almost eerie! I don't think many people drive down from Sydney to Melbourne the coastal way. We stopped off at some more beautiful coastal picnic spots, unfortunately I was relying on my Mum and Dad to take the photos as for once I didn't have to have my camera out all the time. Shame now though as I don't have any photos for this blog! The second night was even more in the middle of no where then the last! It was a plain field camping ground that already had lots of residents or regulars who all new each other. We tried to drive in casually but it's hard not to be noticed when you're in a huge bright green and purple van. Everyone was staring and we couldn't find a good spot to park so kept going in circles. Quite embarrassing really but we found a spot that we were all happy with finally! It was a short distance from the ocean and we got some cracking photos of the sunset on the camera. We had been to a little market that day and picked up some delicious, fresh pasta sauce so it was pasta and sauce for dinner. Cups of tea and biscuits for pudding. There was one other man camping in the same area as us. He was with his son and they were trying to start up a bonfire. We literally spoke to him for about 5 minutes and we had his life story! Middle aged, divorced because he didn't love his wife anymore, 3 kids 2 of which don't speak to him anymore but he's ok with that, still has a good relationship with his son and that was that! He did offer us to join him at his bonfire but we politely declined. God knows what other information we would have got from him had we gone over!

The third nights camp site was my favourite. Mainly because when we got there, in the sea right next to the decking was a seal swimming up and down on its back. So cool! Someone told us it often came by to show off its full belly of fish. Haha funny guy! We also saw big pelicans flying over the water and when we woke up there was a kangaroo hopping about next to the van. Amazing!

So we had driven heaps over the last few days and finally we made it to Melbourne! The road trip had been so incredible though! We had dinner at The Dining Haul where I used to work and my parents slept in the camper van by the sea and I stayed with a friend. In the morning we took the train to the city and met up with Emma. We all did a walking tour of the city that my mum had found in the travel book. It was really good actually! We stopped off for a couple of coffees, got aome of the famous chocolate, visited the Shrine, Federation Square and walked along South Bank. I really do love Melbourne and was so happy to be back. My home away from home. If it was closer to Abereen I would absolutely live there forever.

We had two more nights in the camper van and decided to head down the Mornington Peninsula to Sorrento. It was either that or doing the Great Ocean Road but everyone was kind of tired of deiving so much so we had a day in Sorrento playing in HUGE waves. Like these waves really knocked you over it was so much fun! The weather was beautiful as well! We ate our left over seafood curry from the night before and went for an ice cream for pudding. This campsite was probably our least favourite because we accidentally parked on a slope and also right next to a busy road so it was quite noisy. Nothing awful though!

Our final day together we met up with Emma for some lunch before Emma and I moved into our new house. Super sad saying by to Mum and Dad but not long until I see them again! A fantastic road trip!

Posted by amcara91 05:50 Archived in Australia Comments (0)

Oh Brisbane You Again!

Not extremely happy that I'd found myself back in Brisbane, especially as Sarah was leaving me and flying down to Melbourne. Fortunately my parents were joining me in just over a week though! Before Sarah left we met up with the two girls from Fraser Island again. We seemed to be doing the same trip down the East Coast. We all went to the man made lagoon for a sunbathe and had a night out in our hostel club. It was quite a dark, dingy club that I didn't really like. While it was dark we went over to the Story Bridge and got a beautiful view of the city all lit up. The next day eveyone left me and I was all alone. The hostel was pretty social though and I was in a room with 20 people so there was always someone to speak to. I went for a couple runs around the botanical gardens, did some shopping and on the 3rd day alone my dads friend picked me up and I stayed with him and his family until my parents arrived. Their house was really something special. 4 floors, swimming pool, bar and everything! Ahhhhmazing! This after 3 months of hostels was a dream. I basically just chilled in the house, watched the winter olympics on their huge flat screen tv and enjoyed being in a nice house.

Finally my parents arrived! I was so happy to see them. It had been a long 14 months without them! We had such fun. Tne first couple of days we spent with my Dads friend. We went to a zoo and held koalas, had a road trip up to Noosa and down to Gold Coast, had some nice meals out and did some Brisbane sightseeing. They both coped with the jetlag pretty well which was good.
herrro

herrro


So after 5 funfilled days in Brisbane with them it was finally time for us to move on. The city had grown on me but I was still very happy to be moving on. The three of us rented a car for 3 days making our way down to Sydney. First stop was Byron Bay. We were staying inland though in the hill billy area. The sort of place where you walk into the pub and everyome turns and looks at youand you feel extremely uncomfortable. A lovely area though, deep in the countryside. Very green and we saw some wallabies hoping around the fields. Only one night here before heading further south to Port Macquerie. We had the best accomodation here. A small apartment with double beds, tvs and washing machines! It had been a long old drive from Byron so we were all pretty tired. A quick walk along the beach and dinner across the road before hitting the sack.
mum and the koala

mum and the koala


A morning breakfast of poached eggs on vegemite toast to start us off. My dad is the best egg poacher in the world! Always perfect! Another stroll along the beach and Dad even went for a splash in the chilly sea at 8am! We had to set off early as it was straight to Sydney today. Another long drive. The car was an automatic which took a bit of getting used to. A couple of times we would be roling towards a junction and Dad would accidently put his foot on the handbrake thinking it was the clutch and all 3 of us would just about crack our heads off the windscreen. Hahah I'm laughing at the memories! Also the windscreen wipers and indicators were on opposite sides. So everyone would be stressed out if we were lost trying to decide which way to go and then suddenly swish swosh swish swosh wipers are swishing all over the place. Oh lordy funny times! Finally we made it to Sydney! We managed to gt fairly lost in the city though and crossed over the Harbour Bridge 2 times and went under it once trying to find our hostel. A good way to see the city I guess and a cracking view too! A lovely, quick pasta dish by Mum before heading to our beds so we are ready for a day of sightseeing tomorrow!
dad

dad

me

me

Posted by amcara91 15:27 Archived in Australia Comments (0)

Couch Surfing, Noosa and a cheeky bit of Hitch Hiking

So Sarah and I bussed it down to Noosa where we were couch surfing at a guys house. Couch surfing is a website where you put up a spare room, couch, or anything that you can for travellers to use for free. It was my first time doing it and I was a little nervous. Sarah had done it a couple of times before though so I was glad I was with her. This guy was super cool. He was vegan and ate about 15 bananas a day to get enough calories for his day. He surfed, cooked and was basically really relaxed and down to earth.
handstands in Noosa

handstands in Noosa


In Noosa we headed to the centre for a look around the shops and sunbathe at the beach. 2 girls from Fraser Island were also there so we met up with them on the beach. After some sunbathing Sarah and I decided to go for a walk through the national park. It was around 330pm and although women at the information cemtre had recommended us not to do it we decided to walk back to our couch surfers house. We really didn't think it was going to be too far and it was just straight down the beach. The walk through the park was stunning and we stopped to watch some surfers brave the waves. Walking along the beach got pretty tiring and after 2 hours we started to realise this hadn't been a good idea, we had seen the most amzing sunset though. It was starting to get dark and crabs had started crawling super fast underneath our feet. We also had to be careful not to stand on any of the jellyfish that had been washed up. When it was too dark we went along a small path to get to a lit street. This small path had the biggest toads on! They croaked and jumped and would not get out the way! They were terrifying and disgusting! I thought they were poisonous but later found out only posionous if you lick them. Neither of us had planned on doing that anyway! Finally we got to the street lit road. We started walking along when we got to a bus stop. Thank the Lord we thought! We looked at the timetable and the bus wasn't coming for another 40 minutes! What a nightmare! So we kept on walking. Not even 5 minutes later our bus zoomed past us! YOu can't imagine how frustrated we were. Believe it or not another 2 busses passed us on this walk. Ha unbelieveable. It got to the point where Sarah and I weren't even talking anymore. We were tired, grumpy and our legs were starting to give up on us. And we thought it was going to be an easy stroll! Just when we thought it was never going to end the petrol station down the road from our couch surfers popped up. Oh myyyy! Never been so happy. We pretty muh skipped home from then haha! It had taken us a cracking 4 hours to get back. 2 hours longer than we had expected. All an experience though and funny to look back on. Our couch surfer (sorry I really can't remember his name) couldn't believe we had done it and made us some dinner before we crawled into our beds.
sunset in Noosa

sunset in Noosa


The next day we were up early feeling slightly achy but ready to try some Hitch Hiking. Something Sarah said she had always wanted to do and i thought it was a great idea. We were headed to Brisbane which is only an hour down the road and the main road was a 5 min walk from our couch surfers house. He gave us advise not to get in cars with only men and told us to keep our wits about us. we strolled down the road with our "Brisbane" sign and stuck out our thumbs. I kid you not, 5 cars drove past before a lady and her son pulled over and told us to jump in. We weren't even standing on the road for 2 minutes! The lady was lovely and super chatty on her way to visit her daughter in Brisbane. She dropped us off just on the outskirts where we could catch a bus straight to our hostel. Such a good experience amd I couldn't wait to tell my mum that it hadn't been a crazy, rapist, axe muderer that had picked us up. Now I've ticked it off my list I have agreed to never do it again though.
hitch hiking to brisbane

hitch hiking to brisbane

Posted by amcara91 14:58 Archived in Australia Comments (0)

Fraser Island

Right it has been an ace 5 months but I have seriously slacked in keeping my blod updated so I am going to do my very best to look back and remember everything. I am currently sat in Singapore airport waiting to board my flight to Kota Kinabalu in Malaysia and have plenty of time to kill.

So let's go back to beginning of Feb. Sarah and I spent one more night in Gold Coast and then got the bus back up to Hervey Bay. We booked to do Fraser Island with our hostel but it wasn't leaving until the Tuesday which meant we had to try and find something to do for 4 days in Hervey Bay and trust me that's pretty tricky. It is a beautiful place but there is just nothing to it. We hired some bikes and set ofdf along the coastal path which was quite nice. We tried to be healthy and went for a couple of runs, chilled by the pool and basically relaxed.

Tuesday finally arrived and we set off nice and early at 7am. There were about 10 of us. 2 Israelis, 2 Irish, 2 Danish and 4 Germans. A good mix! We all got on really well except for the Danish girls who were a little anti social. We had to go to the supermarket to pick up our groceries for the next 2 days and get a good supply of goon for the night. Once we had done this we seperated into 2 Jeeps. The Germans and Danish in one and the Israelis, Irish and us in the other. The Israeli guys were driving which was fine with us. Seemed like a pretty tricky car to drive and was fairly old. They had trouble changing gears a lot of the time. After a 30 min ferry ride we made it to the island. It was obviously going to be a lot of off road driving which seemed fun until we got stuck in sand and had to push/dig ourselves out. I was very thankful I hadn't agreed to drive as im 90% sure I would have drove us into a ditch. We flew up over hills and around bends and down steep slopes. All the time on super bumpy, off road terrain. The Israeli guys were both great drivers! When we were drivng along the beach every now and then the water would come up to the wheels and we would get sprayed in the face amd skid over it. I'm not going to lie a lot of it did seem pretty unsafe. There were times when Sarah and I screamed our faces off and thought that maybe we weren't going to see another day. Thankfully we were wrong! Haha! We saw some beautiful scenery. There is nothing really on the island except dingoes and picturesque views. We saw a shipwreck and chilled out in a beautiful lagoon surrounded by sand dunes. We also saw what they call Champagne Pools which are huge rock pools and the waves come up and spray through the rocks so it looks like when you open a bottle of champagne. Really beautiul. Quick dip in there then it was off to our accomodation for the night.
fraser islamd view

fraser islamd view

20140204_140310

20140204_140310


We had a little house/shack just for our group. We had an absolute blast. Between the 12 of us we had 4 boxes of goon (cheap box wine) which was 16 litres! We cranked on some tunes, got a bbq going and started on our goon. Hanns our German guide who was about 60 was very chilled out and happy to man the BBQ. He did have a couple glasses of goon though. Once we'd done the washing up we headed to one of the only bars on the island. A couple games of pool and some drinking games later it was time to head back to our shack where we still had a fair amount of wine to get through. We took photos, danced and sang the night away until someone had the clever idea of going down to the beach for a swim in the moonlit sea. Only 5 of us went in, me, Sarah, 2 germans and one of the israeli. Haha so stupid really. The waves were huge and our guide Hanns told us about killer jellyfish, rip tides and sharks. We really didnt go far in though and all stuck together. on the way back to our shack we stopped and looked at the beautiful sky. It was so clear I swear you could see every single star! By the time we got back we were all exhausted and went straight to bed.
fraser island gals

fraser island gals

4x4 fraser island

4x4 fraser island


The next day Hanns had cooked us a cracking breakfast with sausages, tomatoes, mushrooms, toast and all sorts! It immediately got us over our hangovers and we were feeling fresh and ready for some more driving around the island. First stop was a little stream that went into the sea. What you did was walk all the way to the top of it and jump in and the slow current took you all the way back to where we had parked the car. It was so nice as we were surrounded by big green trees that came over the top of the stream and it was so relaxing. We did that a couple of times then had a huge hike up some sand dunes for a stunning view of the blue water and yellow sand. We were meant to be looking out for sea turtles and sharks but didn't see any. On the way back it was about 1pm and neither Sarah or I had worn shoes. The sand was piping hot and we had to run as fast as we could to the shaded areas. It was so hot at one point I thought I was going to start crying. We made it back to the car in one piece though and soaked our feet in the cold sea water for a while. We stopped off in a forestry area for some lunch. While we were there a few dingoes came by. They are pretty scary actually but don't disturb you if you don't disturb them. They are basically just vicious, untamed dogs.
the fraser island gang

the fraser island gang


That was the end of our time on Fraser Island! I had such a great time, we were lucky to have such a good group of people. Will definitely try and stay in touch with everyone! The weather was perfect as well! All round a fab couple of days! Next stop for Sarah and I was Noosa!
fraser island gals

fraser island gals

Posted by amcara91 14:42 Archived in Australia Comments (0)

Brisbane, Surfers and Australia Day

After an amazing time in Cairns and a great road trip with Yaz we were feeling a little low. Brisbane was very rainy and when we went for a 10 minute walk we came back absolutely drenched through. We could see the beauty of Brisbane though. It had a lovely walk alongside a river and lots of free museums and art gallerys with some interesting things. No beach but a nice man made lagoon. We did a spot of shopping and I bought a new pair of running shoes to hopefully get me back into my fitness! Two days was plenty of time in Brisbane so we headed down to Surfers Pardise to get back to the beaches!
rainy day in brisbane

rainy day in brisbane


Our hostel in Surfers was little horrible but it had a swimming pool, a bbq and was 5 mins walk from the beach. Everything you need for Australia Day! We woke up fairly early and went to the beach to catch some rays. Pretty muh everyone in Australia cracks open there first beer early on in the morning but Em and I had had a fairly heavy last couple of days so waited til midday for our first cider. We went back to our hostel where it was all kicking off. The bbq was going and Triple J was on the radio playing 'The Hottest 100 song of the Last Year'. It was a great crowd in our hostel and we were there with the same guys we had been in Cairns with so it was heaps of fun. Emma and I didn't even bother heading to the bars and clubs as we were happy just staying at the hostel. The next day was a struggle though. It was a day for falling asleep on the beach which is exactly what we did.
GOPR0987_1390883418415_high

GOPR0987_1390883418415_high


The next day we were off to meet my friend Bella from Melbourne. She was flying up to visit. We also had Sarah with us, a Canadian girl we had been hanging out with at the hostel. We went to meet Bella at the airport only to find she was suprising me by bringing Sam up too! Oh my God what a suprise! So happy to see them both. I used to spend pretty much every single day with them in Melbourne. We all worked together so it was so nice to be reunited! We made a last minute decision to all rent a car and drive down to Byron Bay. It was only an hour south so we were there in no time. Byron Bay was beautiful but very expensive. We went on a walk to a lighthouse with a stunning view out to sea, chilled out on the beach and barbequed! The next night we drove down to Nimbin through extremely windy roads. Nimbin is the hippiest little town I've ever been to! It has lots of hippy shops, a hippy museum and we stayed in a comfy little hippy hostel! We didnt have long there unfortunately as we had to go back up to Gold Coast to drop Sam and Bella off for their flight. On the way back up to Gold Coast we stopped off at a couple walks. One of the walks was 45 minutes round trip but Emma accidentally stood on an ant home and got bitten a couple of times on the bottom of her foot so had to limp for a short while. Then we went swimming in the waterfall and climbed around the rocks. Then we stopped off at another waterfall. As there hadn't been much rain here recently there was no water flowing so we could actually stand at the top of the fall and look down! It made us feel a bit queasy! A few hours later we were back at Gold Coast Airport saying bye to Bella and Sam. A short but fun couple of days. Sarah, Emma and I had the car for one more night so we parked it along the beach and slept in there. Early in the morning we drove to Dream World which is Australia's biggest theme park and had the day there! Lots of big and scary rollercoasters and a water park too. Still not as good as Thorpe Park in my opinion though! Haha! We dropped the car back off after that and Emma and I went our seperate ways. Emma is off to Melbourne to try and find a job and I'm hanging around the East Coast waiting for my parents to arrive! Yay! I think Sarah and I are going to head back up north to do Fraser Island.

Posted by amcara91 02:28 Archived in Australia Comments (0)

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