Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Night 103 - Albany

What a great little spot Parry's Beach! We would have stayed another night here but as we have solar panels on the roof of the van and this place is so shady, it didnt really work for us.

Its Melbourne Cup day and I didnt even see the race. We arrived in Albany at 10am and went on the hunt for a caravan park. Craig went into the first one and they wanted to charge us $59 for one night! We drove around looking for another one and I went in this time. The price she quoted was $59, I almost walked away and she said she could drop it to $48 so I accepted. Its an absolute rort having to pay for the kids, usually they cost an extra $8 each a night which is why we are avoiding caravan parks. Without a doubt this is the most we have paid for a caravan park and its not even a capital city!! We are fully self sufficient with our solar panels, gas cooking and batteries. We can camp in a national park for next to nothing but as there aren't any in big towns often we have no choice but to stay in a caravan park.

After we set up we went into the town to shop at a decent supermarket, Craig put a bet on for the race and have a look around. Unfortunately we didnt win a thing on the race. The town of Albany is massive, its probably as big as Wollongong.

We drove out to the Albany Wind Farm which was awesome. There are 12 turbines that are 60m high and work almost every day of the year. Pretty impressive.

We have been bush camping for the past 6 nights its time to do some washing, fill up the water tanks and have a decent shower which is exactly what we did.

Night 102 - Denmark

The boys and I decided to give the girls a sleep in so off we headed to the beach for an early jog. It was an onshore southerly so no chance of a fish or a surf so we just jogged along the beach checking out what had washed up during the night. It's a long beach with rocky bombies (like Queensy Bombie) off the coast and with the big southern ocean swell its a pretty impressive sight.

We got away around 8am and headed to the 'Valley Of The Giants' which is a forest with huge Tingle and Karri trees. We did the tree tops walk that takes you along a 600m walkway that, at its highest, is 40m through the canopy above. It also sways around which almost made Lisa sick!! I thought Lisa was struggling until I saw a pregnant girl behind us who almost bowled us over as she bolted for the ground! It had a cool interactive centre for the kids which included a replica of a huge tree with a car inside it that used to be in he area years ago. It actually died because it was so big people did actually drive their cars inside to get a photo of it but this killed it....women drivers hey!!

A huge bushfire we saw...

The next walk we did was the 'Ancient Empire' walk, which the boys thought was something out of Star Wars, but was along the forest floor of more huge trees.

We picked up some things from the gift shop then headed back for lunch. I had seen heaps of signs around this area, with cafes, pubs, etc selling Marron lunches(freshwater crayfish) which is caught locally around here. I was hanging to give it a go but when I asked for some at a cafe I was informed that it was breeding season and that they wont be available for a couple of weeks......buggar!!

We had lunch back at the van (at our cool campground at Parry`s Beach $7 per night!) then off to Green Pools for a swim which is about 15k's to the east. We had seen this place in brochures and heard about it from others but with the southerly breeze and swell up I wasn`t expecting much......oh how wrong was I!! What an absolute beauty of a place. The photo's give a better desciption than I can but it doesn`t matter how nasty the weather is, it is always a lovely sheltered natural pool for a swim!! We brought our snorkling gear and the boys and I got in the water which was so clear and had plenty of fish. The rocks are all smooth with no barnacles or oysters on them so you could climb up anywhere.

I had a walk around the rocks to a place called Elephant Cove and you can see by these pics it is also a cracker of a spot.

On the way back we stopped in at 'The Toffee Factory' which the kids (and the oldies) loved. There were heaps of taste-testers there including a tasting of the ciders they brewed (woo hoo!). There was chili toffee, macadamia, almond, tia maria, english toffee, plus heaps more.......my teeth are still stuck together.

We see heaps of photo's and drawings of a little blue bird (like a local emblem as such) that I happened to take a couple of snaps of......found out its name is the 'Splended Fairy Wren'.