This is part two of our road trip in Australia. For those of you who missed the first one, here it its.
After the actually not easy decision what kind of rental service we will use for our three weeks on the road we picked up a Jucy camper in Melbourne to head down towards the great ocean road in the first place. We chose Jucy over Wickedcamper because they had a better reputation if it comes to help and service as well as newer cars, and the last thing you want is loosing a day because of an old camper. Wise decision, we loved the camper and did not had a problem at all!
We left Melbourne heading down to Anglesea where Johns parents where waiting already for us. Rudi, his dad, is actually from a neighbor’s village from Ingo’s home village. But we did not forget to stop at the Aldi food store to get some great food for cheap. Really great products and as our camper had a fridge we event could buy lots of cream cheese and bread.
Rudi and Georgie showed us around in there wonderful area. We visited a golf course with literally thousands of kangaroos having a good time there. Number one rule on that green, never drive off if one of these guys could get hurt. Hilariously sweet!
Here we would like to thank the Gassers for there amazing hospitality and for the tips for our tour through the outback. That was very helpful! Thank you!
With all this information, we have never had before on our trip :-) we headed further along the world famous great ocean road. Guess what? It rained very heavily and that day we leaned, that not just Queensland has been flooded but also Victoria. Parts of the great ocean road just opened that day after serious flood damage. And we will see even more problems after getting further into Victoria.
We pretty much drove, stopped, drove, stopped, drove etc… So much too see. Finally we reached the place on the ocean where we spent the first night (of many) really sleeping inside the van. Turned out, that it was more comfortable than we ever thought it would. From there we spend another half day for the ocean road, with just perfect sun.
Next target: Mildura, also known for the Mungo National Park with its great wall, naturally build with sand.
We drove through all kinds of nature and after a while you start thinking that you had seen this place already before ;-) everything is kind of repeating itself. Somehow wired.
It was a longer ride than expected so we stopped in a place called Warracknabeal. This place was flooded and people all over the place where helping to rescue houses. The community did not loose a single house, which shows how helpful Australians are.
While driving though flooded streets we almost though a boat would be more convenient at this time. We kinda were afraid of this uncontrollable water as that day another village had an inland tsunami! Ever heart about such things? We don’t.
Repeating nature all the way to Mildura, flooded fields, detours and a funny sign which pretty much says: “through all your fruits away because we don’t like your fruit flies”. We could not believe that. Mildura is one of the biggest fruit growing cities in Victoria and in a radius of 20km around the city you are not allowed to have fruits with you or bring into the city respectively. No further words needed ;-)
We found a really nice campsite with pool, BBQ and kitchen. The latter you find actually on every campsites, so it is easy to cook by us and have great meat. For example: kangaroo! We are terrible sorry for this really sweet creatures but their meat is cheap and it tastes freaking amazing!! We would say it is even better than most of the beefsteaks you find in most places. Really go and try is meat if you have the chance.
We spent a couple of nights in Mildura because we wanted to go into the national park but due to the rain the streets were damaged! But no way, they did not open them during our stay. Too pity!
So we headed further to a place called Ivanhoe. Sounds interesting in the first place and to get there we had to dive into the outback. It’s just a 230 km through the middle of nothing! We did not see a single persons or car on the way but much emus and kangaroos. Here is a quick tip for doing things like that. Never ever in Australia pass a gas station without filling your tank up. You never know how far it is going to be to the next one. We had like half level of our tank and as it is just 2,5 hours we should be able to make it. Haha guess what, your adrenaline level was pushed quite high as we still drove in freaking nowhere and almost ran out of gas. It’s scary! But we made it. Gas sure is triple price in places like this.
All you can do in Ivanhoe is: Bar=Beer! We met a couple of great folks there and hang out with two guys from Sydney too. The village sign says 350 people living here, but to be honest, this sign might be 20 years old :-)
There where a few amazing jokes flowing around that night and we really had fun!
The next day was maybe one of the hottest days we ever experienced in our lives so far. And it was not getting better due to the two beers we drank the day before :-)
We hit the road, the off road of course, to Cobar. That’s another place to be through a long 4 hour drive through the outback. It fascinates us, how people can live so far away from big cities. This ride we wont forget too soon. We almost had an accident and this is one thing you don’t want to have anywhere in the world and specially if the chances that someone is coming to help, are ZERO!
Again, not much to see or do in Cobar, so we headed further just after a nice overnight at the campsite to Tamworth. If we say its not much to see then we actually mean, that we have not taken the team to visit the tourist information centre to actually get deeper into this town or city. Sure their might be something but we have not got recommended or pointed on anything. So this means basically we drive to a supermarket, buy some delicious beef or kangaroo, salad and enjoy the sunset while having a good dinner.
Our next plans were to head up to Frasier Island along side the coast. So we stopped at a few places overnight like Woolgoolga, Surfers Paradise and finally Hervey Bay.
That place had a very nice welcome for us. While walking at the beach during sunset, just around 30 meters away from the beach, dolphins were enjoying themselves and jumping out of the water. We have seen dolphins before but not so close to the beach. It was fantastic.
What to say about Frasier Island? Well, we know a lot of people have been there already and we got a lot of comments about it. It is a very beautiful place indeed. Is it the most beautiful we have ever been? Probably not. But we loved it anyway especially the touristic tour we booked was somehow a real fun. The guide had a great humor and was totally friendly. We maybe enjoyed it so much because we jumped on this bus, toured around and they dropped us off back home again. Nothing to worry for us at all, just enjoying!
Ingo will remember this island trip because he topped it with a 15 minute flight above the beach. So beautiful but very bumpy!
On the way down towards Brisbane we enjoyed some more nice beach places like Maroochydore/Sunshine Coast and Dicky Beach in Caloundra. At the latter we spend even three nights at a sweet campsite with great people. Ingo went to surf for the very first time and found out, that it looks much easier than it is. Even though he could stand up now and then, it is extremely exhausting if you fight to stay even laying on the board ;-)
Getting ourselves ready to head further to New Zealand we spend our last night in Brisbane again in Annies Shandon Inn. Needles to say, that we were happy to leave the country, as again a natural catastrophe was forecast in the news. The biggest cyclone in Australian history was about to hit the coast just the night before we fly out.
Looking back from now, Australia is a very nice place we totally loved to be there and enjoying the extreme friendliness of the people there. Financially speaking, we would choose a better time, as spaghetti for 21$ are not going to be our favorite kind of meal!
You know, we are behind schedule with the blog posts about our TATW and while you read the Australian stories, we are flying home after a wonderful, unforgettable 6 month long trip! Richer in experience, our minds even more open than they were when we started and a lot of stories to tell! But this wasn’t it yet. We will blog about New Zealand and USA as soon as possible from back home!
Thanks for being with us.
Love Carmen and Ingo
too sweet this wild Coalas
our Jucy Camper
breakfast by the sea
the twelve apostles
Victoria was widly flooded
Watch this little Video from the flooded streests
even streets where flooded
Aldi Weißbier, not too bad if consumed very cold :-)
on the road in the middle of nowhere.
we saw sunsets like that on a regular basis.
One of many iphone food shots
That was an intens body surf session. Great surf at almost at every beach in Australia! Much like!
sunrise at Sunshine coast (Surfes Paradise)
Playing dolphins near the beach
Ingo in the air…
… Carmen in the bus :-)
Maheno Wreck on Fraser Island, a luxus liner agrounded 1935
A Dingo nibbling on a giant dead turtle!
a lake on Frasier Island
our “truck” driver John from Frasier Island. What a funny guy!
iphone combo from one of many beaches where you totally feel you are the only person on earth right now