Australia – My Highlight Reel

Australia – My Highlight Reel

I was talking to someone the other day who was over here visiting family they had come from England and realised whilst they had explored Melbourne, but they really hadn’t ventured around Australia and with their time here quickly coming to an end they asked me what my favourite places in Australia are? What are the places to me that best showcase our beautiful country?
They had seen the tourist brochures, but wanted to know if I was to make a brochure highlighting Australia what would make the list?

There is nothing like seeing the Red dirt of Central Australia.

Every time I go there I am reminded about the amazing diversity in our country. The beautiful way the red dirt contrasts with the blue sky.

Step back into History at Paronella Park

(120kms south of Cairns)
Paronella Park is a magical historic site situated beside the Mena Creek Falls. The ruins of this magical Castle is the perfect place to take some majestic photos, and imagine how Grand life would have been when the Castle was first built 80 years ago.

Take a flight over the worlds largest Coral Reef system

The great Barrier Reef. Last year we had the great opportunity to fly over the reef out of Cairns. It is an amazing view, and if you combine it with a Scuba dive / snorkel trip out on the reef and it’s an experience that you will never forget.

See some of our impressive Wildlife.

In Australia we have a great variety of wildlife from the cute and cuddly, to the more dangerous.

Take a drive on an Iconic Road.

The great ocean road is 243 kms long and runs from Torquay VIC to Allansford VIC. The Great Ocean road was built by returning soldiers between 1919 – 1932. It is dedicated to the soldiers that died during World War 1, so it is the World’s largest War memorial. There is so many great landmarks to see long the way from the Twelve apostles, Loch Arch Gorge, London bridge.

Take a trip to the Home of the Man from Snowy river.

40km east of Mansfield on Mount Sterling is the iconic Craig’s Hut, It was built especially for the film the man from Snowy river back in 1981. Unfortunately when the bushfires came through in 2006 it was burnt down, however then beautifully restored by volunteers.

What would be on your highlight reel?

Awesome walks around Australia – Part 2 Walks near Alice Springs

Awesome walks around Australia – Part 2 Walks near Alice Springs

Now what if you are travelling with young children in your Jayco Ballarat Caravan but still want to get out and go for some walks around Australia in part 2 we have compiled a list of Family friendly walks around Alice Springs

Standley Chasm

Standley Chasm is a relatively easy walk located only 50 km from Alice spring via a sealed road.

It is located on Aboriginal land so costs $10 for adults ($8 for Concessions/seniors) $6.50 for children. There are family tickets available for $25 (2 adults and 2 Children)

Gates are open between 8am and 5pm and the view at the end is simply magical.

The walk is easy, when we did this walk our daughter was 22 months old and she was able to walk some of the way (we also piggy backed her a bit) it took us about 40 minutes return including taking lots of photos.

There are some rocky sections so I would recommend good walking shoes.

Glen Helen Gorge and Homestead – Walk through the Dry Finke River

A short ten minute walk takes you to the Finke River and waterhole, the water was cold but the view was magnificent. Our children loved that they walked through the dry river bed and then once they got to the end where the water was had a great time paddling in the cold clear water.

The homestead is the perfect place for lunch with an amazing selection of lunch meals available in the Outback bar, between 11am -2:30pm
Their is also dinner available in the Namatjira Gallery Restaurant

Ormiston Gorge and Waterhole

Just 12 km from Glen Helen Homestead is the iconic waterhole.

When we visited it was just a little two cold for a swim, in saying this our 7 and 9 year old where quite happy to get their feet wet.
The walk down to the waterhole was very easy, so easy and flat in fact you could push a stroller down near the water’s edge. Only takes about 5 minutes.

There are a couple of other walks that go from Ormiston Gorge,

The Ghost Gum Lookout walk

will take you about 20 minutes to get to the edge of the Roe Creek, the walk illustrates the native plants of the area with scattered signs giving you insight into the flora and fauna of the area.

The Ormiston Pound Walk

is much longer about 3-4 hours and completes a full circle from the Visitor Centre, wanders through hills, dropping into the flat expanse of the pound, then returning along the gorge via the main Waterhole.

The last walk is the Ochre pits

, this is only a very short 300m walk so easy our 22 month old walked the whole way, and it is definitely worth it.
The colors are amazing, you want to bring your camera for this one.

So pack your runners and go for some walks around Australia, and see the countries natural beauty.

Ochre Pits Northern Territory

Ochre Pits Northern Territory

The Ochre Pits are a very popular tourist destination located 100kms west of Alice Springs.

They contain several layers of multicoloured rock that range from White, brown, yellow to a vibrant crimson red.

It is a beautiful to see.

The Ochre has been mined for generations to be used in Aboriginal paintings and body decorations.

It holds an information shelter, so you can find out even more information on how, when and why the Ochre pits where used.

There are BBQ facilities, picnic area, public toilet and a sheltered area too

Jayco That’s Freedom

Jayco, That’s Freedom

The one thing we have learnt over the last few years of traveling is the freedom you have when you are on the road with a caravan behind you.
With the help of Camps 8, we are able to map out our days and travel around this amazing country.
If we decide we like somewhere we are able to stop for a few days, if we have enough we can move along to the next place.
Australia really is a beautiful place.

Ayers Rock and surrounds

Ayers Rock and surrounds

We have spent today exploring Ayers Rock and surrounds. The campground is huge and there is a variety of little shops, service station, cafés and restaurants, as well as a Supermarket to allow us to stock back up on essentials before we head back south tomorrow.

The morning was spent with the 2 big kids and my husband braving the climb up to the peak of Ayers Rock (Uluru)

Whilst they were enjoying the views from the top, I drove around to the cultural centre, they have great displays perfect for all ages and a nice little cafe with a mix of cakes, hot food and cold drinks. Our almost 2 year old was very excited to see a great little children’s corner set up.

We went back to pick up the exhausted but very proud climbers and headed around the rock to walk some more.

It was interesting to check out the waterholes, aboriginal paintings and little caves nestled into the side that you don’t notice from a distance.
We then took the almost 45km drive to the Olga’s (Kata Tjuta) – the drive is nice with some great views along the way.

The best thing was the view on the way back was just as good.

Alice Springs at last

Alice Springs!

Our first leg of our journey is finished we have made it to Alice Springs, the red centre.

The trip today was short only 200kms so allowed us to arrive just after Lunch. It was a great way to end our journey up here, the short trip catching the children by surprise.

The Caravan Park is a hive of activity with competitors, spectators and travellers alike all getting ready for the Finke.

The start of an adventure

The start of an adventure

So today our epic adventure begins, well our mini epic adventure. Caravan packed, 4 kids in tow, and 2200 kms to drive.

We are heading to the red Centre of Australia to the Finke Desert Race.
The Finke as it is commonly known is a multi terrain off road race for bikes, cars, buggies and quads that runs for two days over the queens birthday weekend  from Alice Springs to the Aputula Community. (The community was known as Finke until 1980) the Finke river passes within a few kms.

The trip today was a good one, after a late start (4 kids, 2 under 2 will do that) it was further slowed by drivers who take a look at you with the caravan behind and decide that they can’t be ‘stuck’ behind a caravan, overtake you only then to slow 10kms under the speed limit.
With the help of our hayman reece weight distribution hitch our van towes brilliantly, so being stuck driving slow makes for a frustrating start. However that all starts to fade into insignificance as our hometown fades into the background, and the open road beacons us forth.