3 days in South West Cornwall based in Mullion Cove. Visit Lizard Point, Kynance Cove, Minack Theatre, St. Michael's Mount, Land's End, Polurrian, Poldhu and St. Ives.
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We set off at 10.30 from Bajos del Toro on a cool, wet morning and arrived at San José Domestic Departures terminal a couple of hours later, all set for a short flight to Puerto Jimenez on the Osa Peninsula.
When you have had a shower outside in the rain and an open air bath on your balcony (safely concealed by the jungle!), it seems fairly pointless to wear an uncomfortable rain coat to go on a hike. Skin is waterproof after all? So today, I carried nothing except my camera and didn't let the rain bother me at all. I was feeling rather in harmony with Mother Nature (en Armenia con la Madre Naturaleza) and excited to explore Arenal Volcano National Park.
Final reflections on a great road trip to WA. The questions I asked myself at the beginning of the trip have now all been answered ...
Mount Lesueur National Park is one of the world bio diversity hotspots as a result of of its severely impoverished soil and the unforgivingly low rates of phosphorous. 900 flora species grow here - 10% of WA's flora. These are the species that are known too - it is highly likely that others exist in the dense bush that no-one has yet found. It has seven species of Declared Rare Flora. In late Winter to Spring, it erupts into a rainbow of colour and you can see rare orchids and several varieties of kangaroo paw as well as many other beautiful plants.
It is 443 kms from Carnarvon to Kalbarri - 4 and a half hours. We get off early and broke the journey at the Billabong Roadhouse - familiar ground from earlier in the trip, but this time, I stopped to take a quick photo of the funny flier for kangaroo burgers and a joke you can get hard copies of for free on request - you just have to love the great Aussie sense of humour. The temperature had dropped a bit today and the wind had picked up, but they told us it often reaches 49 degrees on Christmas Day here and tops out at around 53 degrees in January - definitely a place to avoid in our winter then.
Exmouth to Carnarvon Coral Reef, Wallabies and The Dish Our last day at Sal Salis started early as we had a 4 hour 38 minute drive from Exmouth to Carnarvon…
Monkey Mia Dolphin Resort is a great beach front location with dolphin feeding three times a day on your doorstep. The restaurant is extremely good for dinner and serves a good breakfast and coffee in the morning too. There is a good laundry facility and a swimming pool.
A great coffee is always a good way to start the day and Australia is truly expert at it. The flat white at the Monkey Mia Dolphin Resort is particularly good and the ocean side restaurant is a lovely spot for breakfast. A pod of dolphins pops in reliably
It is a long way from Esperance to Kalgoorlie - and an even longer road from Kalgoorlie to Perth (7 hours with one brief stop). This Place is Rough and Tough. With hindsight, we should have spent 2 days in Kalgoorlie which would have given us a chance to visit the Super Pit and also the Flying Doctor Service which is based here, which would have been really fascinating.
Esperance to Kalgoorlie - #DriveYourselfWild It is a 4 and a half hours drive from Esperance to Kalgoorlie, which gives you limited time to explore once you get there, so…
The road from Bremer Bay to Esperance (home of Australia's best beaches) was long - very long - and straight. There were hardly any vehicles on it except the odd road train (shortish) which gave you a start as it rushed past. The road took us through interesting sounding places like Jerramingup, Munillinup and Nindilibillup. Up means "place of" around here - I wonder what these places we were passing through were places of ...? They didn't have enough interest to make us stop long enough to find out. We were keen to press on to Esperance and explore all those beautiful beaches. It took us around 4 hours in total to get here.
Qualuup Homestead Wilderness Retreat is the only accommodation in the Fitzgerald River National Park. situated on 40 acres of privately owned bushland in the western side of the National Park, near the town of Bremer Bay. It is 189km from Albany via Devils Creek Rd. and a further
We woke early on the morning of our drive from Albany to Bremer Bay and enjoyed a hearty breaky (pronounced brekkie) at the Three Anchors in Alby. (Hey - this learning the lingo is a real breeze!). A group of other early risers were lifting weights with big grins on their faces outside the cafe. Middleton Beach has a net line set up for swimmers (large marine animals can’t pass through it, but small fish can) and there were half a dozen of them braving the cool morning to have a dip in the ocean.
A short(ish) drive to the coast brought us to Salmon Bay in the d’Enrecasteaux National Park. The view from the lookout is truly stunning. From the headland, crystal clear deep blue water, rolling surf and miles of deserted, golden sand stretches out before your eyes, beckoning you to discover it at close hand.
The Karri Valley Resort is good place to stopover for a couple of nights in Pemberton. There are self catering chalets and lakeside rooms. The lakeside rooms are not overlooked - well - unless you count a duck and four parrots perched on the roof and the odd canoe paddling gently past. You can see your neighbours a bit, but the angles are good.
Time for another great day in WA! Today, we travelled from Margaret River to Pemberton taking a short detour to the Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse en route. This is where the Indian and Southern Oceans meet (although they didn’t make much of a splash in the process today). It is the most southerly point in Australia - it is 5435 kms to the South Pole from here.
Exploring the Margaret River Region. Kaya Wadandi Noongar Boodja - Aborigini for “Hallo and Welcome to Wadandi Noongar country. This morning, we took the short drive to Ambergate Reserve and Walk Trail and walked through the bush in search of wildflowers.
The road from Mandurah to Margaret River has one of the best places to see kangaroos in Western Australia - G'Day Skippy! Our journey south continued today via Dunsborough to the Cape Naturaliste Lighthouse in Leeuwin-Naturaliste National Park. The road from the lighthouse to Ngilgi Cave passes close to the Petra Olive Oil Estate where a quick detour to Sheoak Drive rewards you with easy sightings of kangaroos.
We picked up the hire car this morning to drive from Perth to Mandurah and were a bit disappointed to find it had no sat nav as we had requested. Fortunately, our 'phone plans cover Australia, so we could plug them into Apple Play and get by on Google maps. Perth is not a busy city by any means and was easy to navigate our way out of. We were quickly out into the country and driving on deserted roads. There is so much SPACE here! It is also much greener than we expected, although the earth is deep red underneath.
We pick up our hire care today. From my pre-trip research, these are my top 10 tips for driving safely in Australia that I thought it was worth sharing with you to make sure we all have a hassle free trip:
Western Australia - What I'm Packing - My essential packing list for a 4 week road trip to WA.
The Pulitzer was a perfect choice of hotel for our short break in Amsterdam. The Pulitzer is a comfortable hotel and ideally located right in the centre of the city. Everywhere you want to visit is within easy walking distance. The rooms are nicely decorated with a modern feel and every effort is made to provide you with everything you need for your stay including a shopping bag, a brolly and even a bike repair kit!
3 days in Amsterdam is a challenge. There is a lot to see in this city - although we saw most of the major sites and walked through every part of the city - we were both left wanting more.
Our Deep South USA Road Trip has been such a great experience. Good music, food with soul and one warm welcome after another. never had much time for history at school, but I really enjoyed seeing modern history being brought to life in the Deep South and appreciated how important it is to an understanding of the world we live in today.
The first teddy bear was given life at the Onward Store at Rolling Fork, on Highway 61 between Vicksburg and Memphis.
Vicksburg is a proud little town which has witnessed tragedy, tribulation, gaiety and grandeur over the years.
A luxurious place to stay in the heart of Plantation country - although not quite the 5* you might expect.
Beautiful as the Nottoway Plantation was, I was left with wanting to know what was life really like on the Deep South Plantation? What were the slave quarters like? Was it really true what you see in films like Roots? We drove back up the River Road towards New Orleans and visited Evergreen Plantation to find out.
Where to Stay in New Orleans - Hotel Monteleone Accommodation Review A lovely hotel - authentic and full of charm. The Carousel Bar is amazing and the rooftop pool is…