Aussie Road Trip! (part one)

Posted on December 12, 2009. Filed under: Uncategorized |

So as James mentioned in the last post, we hired a car in Sydney and headed out onto the open road. The plan was to take 8 days to travel the 1000 or so kilometres of the <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pacific_Highway_(Australia)">Pacific Highway</a> from Sydney to Brisbane, stopping where we fancied and going on detours as the mood took us.

Our first detour was almost before we reached the highway. We went to Katoomba, in the Blue Mountains. Katoomba is a charming town high in the mountains. We liked it and the guesthouse we were staying in so much that we actually extended our stay there an extra day. The highlight of the area is the Three Sisters and the Echo Point Lookout, from where you can see the Sisters. These are they:

We actually went to Echo Point twice as the first time the rain came at us from across the enormous valley and obscured everything. The second time the weather was glorious.

We eventually dragged ourselves from Katoomba and started on the highway proper, towards Newcastle. It was the first of many places with British or Irish placenames that we would come across on our travels. The highway itself winds along the coast by times, while at others it travels through national parkland. 

My abiding memory of Newcastle is that it was windy. Really, really windy. Like, hang on to your small children and animals windy. We stayed in a youth hostel there that was in an old gentlemen's club, with sweeping mahogony stairs and high ceilings. This was at the end of our corridor:

Next morning we set off for the large town of Port Macquarie. Port is an interesting place: there's a huge river that widens out to a large-ish 'bay', which provides the port, and then wanders down to the sea. Next to the river runs the breakwater. The breakwater is made up of large stones and boulders as you would expect, but what you might not expect, is this:

For literally hundreds of metres rocks are painted and adorned with amateur art, proclamations of love and dedications of mourning. The above is a particularly good example, but all have merit. The tradition has been going for many years; we saw rocks with dates as far back as '97. It was a wonderful, inspiring sight.

Port also has several sandy beaches, and in the evening rays we walked along quiet 'Sandy Beach' (as it is locally known), feet in the Pacific.

Part 2 of the Road Trip to come!

xR

Posted via email from dreadpiratesarcas

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