Our time in Melbourne flew away so fast towards the end. Just as we had gotten to know the city centre and became familiar with our metro- and bus lines and the Queen Victoria Market it was time to leave and say goodbye to the metropolis. The hardest part - without any doubt - was saying goodbye to our hosts. The children Kai, Ava and Loki, and their parents Sandra and Erich. The good part is that they are family of Alexandras so we will stay in contact, but the bad part is the great distance that we will have between us, when we get back to Europe. Hence we do not know when we will meet again. We have made a “pact” saying that we WILL meet again, as soon as possible.
Many years ago I was having lunch with my grandmother in Munich, and I asked her if we, by any chance, would have some relatives somewhere in the world, that I could maybe visit and thus make my holiday a bit cheaper. She told a story about her niece who went to Chile, came back, and then immigrated to Australia where she stayed for good. An interesting story, but I obviously did not pay attention to all the details.
We can hardly believe it, but we have already been in Melbourne for two weeks now, and our time here in Australia is almost coming to an end! It seems like only yesterday that we arrived in this country!
After having traveled around in a campervan, stayed in hotels and an apartment (Sydney) for some months, it has been really nice to just settle down for a short while. We are currently guests at Alexandras family here in Melbourne, and we have had a good chance to get a little bit of a daily rhythm more close to a “normal” daily life, than the last months have been.
After our trip through Flinders Ranges and Barossa Valley, we were ready for some sea fog and salty air again. We drove down the coast south of Adelaide, to start our drive along “The Great Ocean Road”.
It’s winter here in southern Australia. We could feel this as the nights fell upon us in our campervan. Every single evening we took full advantage of our 20 dollar investment in the electric heater. Without it we simply could not have enjoyed this part of the journey. In spite of the fact that we are used to much colder winters in Europe. But when the outdoor temperature goes below zero degrees celsius, it just gets too cold no matter if we all sleep inside the cabin of the van, and are covered in good sleeping bags.
After a wonderful introduction to the Australian wine districts in Clare Valley last week, we were ready for a wildlife experience. We drove from Auburn in Clare Valley to Wilpena in the middle of Flinders Ranges Nationalpark and checked in at a “resort” in the middle of the woods. “Resort” is probably a bit overdriven as it was rather simple, but it certainly made it to the Top 5 of all the caravan parks we have been to so far.
After 10 great days in Sydney we flew down to Adelaide on Friday afternoon, in order to start our South Australian part of the journey. We had grown quite fond of Sydney, so it was with a bit of a heavy heart that we left. It was a nice treat to have our own flat again for a while. Life in a campervan can be a bit simple, and although we generally like this way of traveling, we are rather limited on several areas. Cooking and shopping just to mention the two most obvious ones. We cannot buy much at a time, and although Alexandra is a great chef there are limits to what she can produce on two gasburners or in the camp kitchen.
As far back as I can remember, I have dreamt about visiting Sydney. For many reasons. I have read and heard so much about the biggest city in Australia. Probably because it is also internationally the “best known” city in Australia. Coming from Denmark I also have an interest in Sydney because the danish architect Jørn Utzon was the man who drew what has arguably become the most important landmark in the city: Sydney Opera House. And then there was something about the Olympic Games in 2000, where our danish Crown Prince Frederik met his future wife Mary.
After having spent 5 weeks on the road in our campervan “Moonbat” it was time to bring it back to Spaceships Australia today. As it has been our home for so long, it was a little sad to say goodbye. We were so used to the small and tight space, the routines and necessary tidiness. It took us a few days to begin with, but then we were quite happy with all the fantastic opportunities you have when travelling this way.
We are still at the coast, a bit north of Cairns. We have gone as far north as we wanted to on this trip. And then we have started to go south again. The north point of our trip, Cooktown, turned out to be a big disappointment. After a 350 km drive in one go, through some quite interesting bush scenery, we arrived one late afternoon to our camping site. Anton was motion-sick from the many curves during our drive, and threw up just as we arrived. On top of that we were all a bit tired, grumpy and edgy! As we had just come from a super cool camper park, with high expectation for the next (same chain), we realized that it did not live up to our expectations. So far from it! It was dark, deserted and run down. And then it was, by far, the most expensive one we have yet stayed on.