Murray River Wodonga

31December 2018 and 1 January 2019

Over the past 2 weeks I have pushed myself too much. In the last 4 days alone I have driven 2000 km and need a rest.

I stopped at Wodonga as it is a town on the Murray River which borders my state of New South Wales and Victoria. I watched my beautiful Sydney NYE fireworks on TV and for the first time ever spent NYE alone but not lonely.

In the morning I got these lovely photos of the Murray River.

This evening I went out to Hume Weir to capture the sunset.

Happy New Year to everyone.

Castlemaine

The inspiration for this road trip from Adelaide was that I wanted to see the town of Castlemaine. This is where the Netflix program The Glitch is filmed and it reminded me of the country towns I should explore in my own country.

The cemetery

The Empyre Hotel

The old police station

Castlemaine Station

The Midland

Just outside of Castlemaine at Moonlight Flats is the Pennyweight Cemetery, the resting place for 200 children who died during the gold rush period of 1852-1857.

The place the first gold was found in the Castlemaine area.

The town of Cressy is the location for Nicole Kidman’s movie The Others

Great Ocean Road

30 December 2018

Last night I was in Port Fairy but there was not one room available (well there was a room for $250 with parking down the road and I cannot justify paying that amount for a motel room and have to leave my car so far away). It was a pretty town but all along the coast to Warnambool,this time of year, is packed with tourists. My preference is to stay in smaller towns with locals and I found the perfect place in Mortlake 35 minutes out of Warnambool, called the Mt Shadwell The Stables Hotel.

Lovely clean accommodation with bluestone walls and dating back to the 1800s. Good pub food, friendly locals and breakfast at the town cafe was delicious. Clarke’s Pies are so delicious even cold.

Driving on the Great Ocean Road you will come across these signs. This road gets so many tourists from around the world this road becomes treacherous when drivers forget what side of the road to drive.

It is surprising how often I have to think what side as well, particularly after the 30,000 kilometres I drove on my USA roadtrip earlier this year.

First stop this morning was The Bay of Islands

The Bay of Martyrs

The Grotto

I picked up my first hitchhiker, Katia from St Petersburg Russia and went to The Arch.

London Bridge

Thunder Cave

12 Apostles

Gibson’s Steps

And I picked up 2 more hitchhikers from Germany.

Penola and Mount Gambier South Australia

29 December 2018

An alternate route from Robe to Mount Gambier takes you through historical Penola in the Coonawarra wine district.

I enjoyed the varied santa displays.

The old lolly shop

Mount Gambier is a lovely town with beautiful old homes.

Umpherston sinkhole magnificent garden dating back to the 1800s.

The Blue Lake is another sinkhole

Coonalpyn/Kingston SE/Robe South Australia

28 December 2018

Coonalpyn silos

Kingston

The home of Larry the Lobster

The Cape Jaffa Lighthouse

There was no accommodation in Kingston so I tried the next town 45 kilometres down the road, Robe.

Robe is a lovely historical fishing village with many heritage listed buildings.

Custom House

Our Lady Star of the Sea Chapel

This Chinese memorial is for the 16,500 Chinese who landed at Robe between 1856 and 1858 and walked 200 miles to the goldfields.

This memorial for local fishermen lost at sea

Found my fourth Geocache

Adelaide and Belair National Park

27 and 28 December 2018

Simon took me to the best Vietnamese restaurant ever in Adelaide, simply named The Vietnam Restaurant.

Next morning Simon showed me where to find koalas in the wild. The Belair National Park has the most koalas I have ever seen in one place. It was so exciting to find them in the trees in their natural habitat.Koala video

The park has a section of 700 cherry trees to commemorate the Allied victory of World War I.

Coffin Bay South Australia

27 December 2018

My last day on the Eyre Peninsula took me to this pretty fishing village.

Explorer Matthew Flinders named the area after a naval officer Isaac Coffin. The bay is famous for the Coffin Bay oyster. The ANZAC Cove scenes of the movie Gallipoli were filmed nearby.

I found my third Geocache here.

Tomorrow Carlos and Elise start their roadtrip back to Sydney as do I and we have separate routes. They are going through Melbourne but I will not, but wonder if we will bump into each other before we get home in either South Australia,Victoria or New South Wales.