Monday, February 9, 2009


We arrived in Melbourne early in the afternoon and headed to the Big 4 Caravan Park in Coburg. It was not bad for a big city park and best of all it had a great pool! After we had set up we had a swim which was very refreshing.
We caught up with our daughters, Katie and Nikki, and Nikki's boyfriend Shannon,in the evening, which was great!
On Saturday we caught up with some good friends of ours in the morning. It was very hot, and very windy. We left to meet up with Nikki and Shannon at a shopping centre - coolest place I could think of! Then we all had a long swim in the pool. The weather was amazing and quite scary. I was amazed how nature can cope with the heat - our air conditioning in the van drips water out side, and I noticed that ants had moved their eggs under the van near the water. The water is really cold, so they knew what they were doing! There were heaps of them scurrying backwards and forwards. I found it really fascinating. The eggs would have baked otherwise - I have never experienced such heat!! Sadly we ran over them as we drove the van out of our site. Randall and I listened to the radio to hear horror stories about the fires. We heard one man ring the radio station to say that all of King Lake was burning. I don't think people really realised how bad the situation was until then.
I was a bit concerned about what the crossing in the ferry was going to be like as it was so windy.
We got an 'upgrade' on the boat - the room looked much like any other - however, it had a really big porthole and was right in the middle at the front of the boat. I'm sure that's why I didn't feel the boat rock as much. Iactually slept quite well!
After all the fuss about gas bottles and petrol that we experienced on the way over to the mainland, we gritted our teeth to hand them over this time. Can you believe that we were never even asked about any of that - they were only worried about fruit and vegetables coming into the state!
We were very sorry to finish our holiday - had a wonderful time, and did not get 'cabin fever' the whole time. Luckily it didn't rain much and we lived outside most of the time.
Can't wait for the next time...................................

Cape Conran

Our last real stop before Melbourne was Cape Conran. We got up early and left Bateman's Bay to travel to a place Randall and I had thought about staying at on the way up the coast. It was fully booked then, but now that the school holidays have ended it was available. We had a few stops on the way, Eden being one of them. When we arrived at Cape Conran, we were very impressed with the camping area. There was no power, so our solar panels kept the fridge running. We had a shady spot, and it was only a short walk to the beach.

We decided to stay there two days and then head down to Melbourne on Friday for our departure on the ferry on Saturday night.
The thing that was so nice about the camp ground was that we could have a fire. There was plenty of wood left from previous campers, and Randall and I found lots of little sticks lying around to get the fire started. It was so nice sitting in front of the fire in the evening, and seeing other camp fires and smelling that nice smoke smell. It was the one and only time we did this, as it was far too hot at the other places we stayed.

This is our setup:

Randall has really set us up well in our caravan. We had great showers every day courtesy of our gas hot water heater and 12 volt shower. Here I am washing the salt off after a swim:

Here is our shower/toilet tent - very roomy!!

We had a great couple of days here and were very sad to leave as we knew that our holiday was over. Next stop Melbourne, with warnings of extreme weather the day we were to leave on the boat.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Bateman's Bay

It was very overcast while we were staying here, but managed to catch up on some washing. The swimming pool looked very nice, but not the weather to go in! Randall continued his green ways by collecting rainwater from the storm, and putting it in the water tank. Only trouble was, there was a problem with the plumbing, so the water was actually going into the bottom of the cupboard and onto the carpet - a total disaster!!! We had to sop up the water, empty the cupboards, and work out what had happened. Thank goodness Randall was not using a hose to fill up the tank - then it would have been a MAJOR disaster!!!

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Bonnie Hills to Bateman's Bay

We had a very long day yesterday - getting up at 5am and leaving Bonnie Hills at 6.15am. We had a couple of stops, one for breakfast at about 9 am, and a coffee stop at a rest area just south of Sydney. We really enjoyed that one, as it was quite fast and furious on the motorways.

We couldn't get over how many hills had been carved into on the way through Sydney, and there were a lot of high wind warnings for cars towing caravans, as we went over high bridges. Luckily for us, it was not windy!

We had an idea of where we wanted to park ourselves next, and using our trusty GPS system, Tomtom, we went the shortest route, through Murramurang National Park. As we approached a gravel road, my face fell, and tried to get Randall to go the highway instead, but no, trust me he says, and so we go off road. We had one stop to take a photo to prove we have been offroad....

and then we had an enforced stop to get a huge lump of wood out from under us!

I was ever so glad when our trusty GPS lead us back to the Princess Highway - a very 'interesting' shortcut!

We have ended up at Bateman's Bay, and, as the car and van were so filthy, the first thing Randall did was wash them, ignoring any water restrictions!

When I opened the cupboards, I had to be very careful, as the poor little caravan had been very shaken up on our off road trip. We were both very tired after we set up, so we ate out at an Italian restaurant, watching the sky light up and listening to the thunder rumble.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Bonnie Hills

Morning mist at our campsite

Bonnie Hills is just one of many lovely spots we called into when we left Broken Head. It is on the beach, but we both noticed how cold the water was here, so we know we are heading south!! We much preferred the swimming pool here as it was warm!

Today we drove to a place called Diamond Head. It is in Crowdy Bay National Park and has some lovely walks etc as well as being near the beach.

We saw this exact same picture in a magazine, and both of us wanted to go there. It certainly is very beautiful. There is a camping ground nearby, so we have added it to the list of 'must go back to's'!!! We walked along another track nearby and came to the ocean again, with the beach going on and on in the distance.

Our campsite here feels like we are in the bush. Kookaburras are laughing all the time, and there are lots of trees for shade.