A GLIMPSE OF PERTH
Trip Start Oct 05, 2009
325Trip End Oct 31, 2013
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PERTH: arr. October 31. Dep: Nov. 23 2010
WEATHER: MOSTLY FINE AND SUNNY
There is so much to do whenever we hit the "big smoke" and time has passed quickly in Perth. We have really appreciated cousin Sally's hospitality in her gorgeous house close to cafes, shops and the city.
Perth city centre is smaller than anticipated, traffic flows quite freely and despite the drought everything looks green. Let's not forget to add everything is super clean!
The Department of Conservation and Environment, DEC, held a 2 day induction program for their volunteer camp ground hosts and we enjoyed participating and catching up with some recently made friends. Camp ground hosts are volunteers assigned to Western Australia's National parks to assist the park rangers, to meet and greet visitors and campers and to collect camping fees. Hosts provide their own accommodation- caravan, tent, motorhome etc. and set up for a month or longer and camp free. A uniform shirt and hat are supplied when training is completed and various rewards are available depending on the park location. We all got a chance to talk to the rangers from different parks who are recruiting hosts for 2011.
This program has become very successful in WA and provides thousands of free hours to the managing of camp grounds. We have already done 2 assignments; one at Karijini Np and the other at Cape Range, both very different environments with very different daily tasks and benefits.
Our next assignment is Lucky Bay at Cape Le Grande NP, near Esperance for the month of December; The Lonely Planet describes Lucky Bay as 'the most beautiful beach' in Australia so we consider ourselves 'lucky' to get this posting, plus we have met the rangers from there and they seem very considerate and appreciative of our volunteering. The drive from Perth to Lucky Bay is close to 800kms.
A visit to the city and the impressive Art Gallery of WA including a drive through the spectacular Kings Park filled an afternoon.
For various reasons we became frequenters of Rokeby Rd, Subiaco, Subi to locals, a trendy inner suburb of Perth with lots of shopping options. We loved the Deliciosa Pizza Place.
We enjoyed a weekend at Sally's holiday house at the pretty beach town of Binningup about 90 minutes drive from Perth.
Fremantle, Freo to locals, impressed us with its gorgeous historic buildings, wondeful art galleries and its yummy delis and coffee shops. We caught the train there on a Saturday to check out the weekend markets which we thought were just like all markets and not very interesting for us. The free bus dropped at us Cicerrello's an enormous fish and chip shop doing a huge trade and apparently operating since the early 1900's- we had a delicious piece of barramundi and a serve of crispy battered squid.
The museum and art centre kept our attention for a couple of hours; we wandered the shops and loved Kakulas Sister, a provedore with so many local & international provisions that you don't come across often. We bought a slab of the most delicious homemade halva and a cinnamon brioche and greedily devoured both.
Freemantle at the mouth of the Swan River is a busy port and has a population of 25,000. It has a relaxed, arty feel to it and is a very attractive place. We had an excellent coffee at Gino's a famous Freo coffee house and we noticed an interesting mix of customers jammed into this very busy corner spot. There are so many bookshops to choose from and we visited most of them.
This has been a happy 3 week stopover in a city that was unexpectedly attractive to us. We serviced the van, bought a satellite dish for TV coverage everywhere, another awning/shelter for the van to protect us from the sun, visited the doctor, dentist and unpacked and cleaned the van. Sheila did a fantastic job of cleaning every square inch of the vehicle by hand.
We had to get a new carpet from Clark Rubber as the one we got in Adelaide had not recovered from red dirt, a beer & a spaghetti bol. spill and other accidents! Everything is clean and sparkling for the moment and ready for the next adventure.
We finally left Perth mid afternoon on Wednesday November 23.