A very long day..

Trip Start Jan 22, 2011
Trip End Feb 24, 2011

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Where I stayed
Formule 1,

Flag of Australia  , Western Australia,
Saturday, February 5, 2011

A 7am wake up and a nice breakie of cereal toast juice and coffee oh and a muffin! Not fry up today. Ah, we had some grapes and a yoghurt left over from yesterday as well, so all in all a nice breakie sat on the porch watching the sheep in the fields. It was a cloudy morning, but not too cold and the sun should be paying us a visit sometime today! So there's hope yet.

We set off at 8 am and having filled up the tank we made our way to Prevally beach. Again suk spotted kangaroos playing in the fields. We passed through some nice forests before arriving at a deserted, but beautiful beach. It was still cold so I didn't go in this time, but we sat for 15 minutes watching the waves and just enjoyed the fresh air.

We then set off for Margaret river (MR) the biggest and most famous town in this area. Known for its wineries, beaches and caves! We passed two of the biggest caves on the way, but opted to skip them as we have seen caves before and there was a 20 dollar entrance fee, so instead we raced on and enjoyed morning tea on the main street in MR. MR was extremely touristy and we were shocked at the amount of people! We popped into a few shops but were not too interested. We have been used to quiet towns with hardly any tourists, so this wasn't much fun for us. Saying that the sun was starting to come out and that always puts a smile on my face!

It was about 11:30am when we left and our next destination was to sample some of the famous food factories just outside town. We checked out the old cheese factory and tried some weird cheese flavours, the chili cheese was very nice! Suk liked the herb and garlic one! It was a fun experience! Next up was the Oompa Loompa chocolate factory. This place was crawling with tourists, which wasn’t surprising with the amount of free chocolate on offer. Nice! I think I went up about 4 times. Well, I was hungry, and do like a bit of chocolate. There wasn’t any fry up this morning remember! Suk ran away in embarrassment ha-ha. We didn't buy anything, but had fun exploring the factory, or should I say queuing for chocolate.

On our way out we stopped off at a very plush winery. We planned to have lunch there, but it was way to expensive and full of people in groups trying all the wines, again too many people for us. The previous wineries we had visited were small, friendly and so peaceful, so we soon left and tried a quieter less popular looking one down the road. This one was better and we got some tasting in. This wine tasting lark is good! It's always nice to buy a bottle for dinner though, saying that we didn't buy one this time, as we were leaving in the morning and had some beer to finish off.

Still hungry we headed for Yalingup, a very small beach town about 40 mins North West of MR. We have also noticed that the roads in this region are somewhat busier too. I miss the quiet roads where you are the only car on the road for miles. The sun was blazing now, so we pulled into a beach called canal rock. Wow, what a stunning beach! Perfect blue sky and a wonderful greeny blue sea dotted with rocks of all sizes! Now it was time for a quick swim. Arh bliss! Suk didn't come in, but took some photos of me trying to do handstands and cartwheels on the beach. It really was a peaceful spot and we would have loved to have stayed longer, but our tummies were rumbling! No pack lunch today.

In Yalingup we found a very nice cafe and sat out on the terrace and enjoyed a wonderful meal of Italian bruschetta and homemade hamburgers. Wow we were stuffed after that. The portions really are big here. I'm sure I've gained weight! From here we travelled into the national park to visit the other lighthouse. It's about 100 km north of the one we visited yesterday, so most people go from Cape Leeuwin in the south to Cape Naturaliste in the north to see both lighthouses. They are nice and with the sea backdrop always make for a good piccy. The problem here were the flies, a bit too many for our liking so we didn't hang around for long. We did bring fly nets with us, but decided running was easier.

On the way out we briefly stopped at Bunker bay which is yet another wonderful beach. I think we are slowly getting beached out now. We have been spoilt with some wonderful beaches over the last week or so. Saying that I had another quick swim, and suk again took the time to relax on the beach. Not for very long though, I’m never in for long, but felt like a stuffed whale floating around in the calm waters. Lunch still had not gone down.

Marching on we made a brief stop in Dunsborough before continuing on to Bussleton. Now Bussleton has the longest pier in Australia and it has been closed for two years and guess what its grand opening was today. We arrived to a packed town full of families sitting everywhere, grass, beach, and roads, you name they were there. They had entertainers, performers and beach shows going on all over the place. Stalls and circus tents everywhere, wow what a show! Unfortunately the opening wasn't until 9pm so we were going to miss out. Oh well!

We were well and truly worn out by now and just wanted to find a nice spot to relax for an hour or two, but we had no such luck! It was an awesome atmosphere, but we were too tired to get in and enjoy it all.

I went off to get some photos of the pier which looked stunning with the amazing blue sky that we now had. Australia has the bluest of skies, that's why I get so disappointed when it's cloudy. We sat down for ten minutes to have an ice coffee, but decided to hit the road again and hopefully find a quieter town further north.

We got back to the car only to find a parking ticket on our windscreen. Oh no, we had parked in a no parking zone! I wondered why we got a parking space so easily. Oh well! 35 dollars it is then. I asked a policeman about how to pay. And as it was almost 5pm, he said that the best was would be to do it online anytime within the next 28 days. Oh well, so I'll worry about that after India I guess. (I’ve got two weeks in India next)

There was a constant flow of traffic on this road. It seems the closer we get to Perth the more cars that are about. But it was still easy driving. The scenery wasn't too exciting, lots of fields and small townships. It was about 5:45 when we arrived in Bunbury which is about 2 hrs south of Perth. Our plan was to get some fish and chips and pull up on a beach to watch the sun set. But finding a chippy was a nightmare; everything closes at 5:30 in town and it was like a ghost town. Oh well, we got what we asked for - no people!!

We managed to flag down another driver to ask directions and he was extremely helpful he said "just follow me I'll take you there". Wow! Ok so we followed him for about 10 mins out of town. Ha-ha we were wondering where the hell he was taking us. Anyway we eventually got there and finally managed to get our fish and chips. It was all wrapped up in paper just like how they used to do it in England years ago. Cool! We drove back to the beach where the sun was almost setting. We ate while feeding the sea gulls and enjoying the most amazing sunset. What a perfect spot we found. I got some cool photos of the seagulls flying around with the sun setting in the background.

Right then, bellies full and the time fast approaching 7 pm we got back in the car for the final push back to Perth. We got straight on the motorway and off we went. What a drive, I really enjoyed it. Suk slept and I raced along with the other cars, watching the sky turn from a glowing orange colour to a dark blue to black. Nice!

When that sun goes down, you really are on your own. Driving in the dark on Australian highways without street lights at 110km is nervy. (Not used to this at all) But it was good, I always ensured I had a car in front of me to follow. So no worries.

We made it back into Perth around 9:15pm, checked into our motel by the airport (Formule 1), and then immediately went back into town to drop the car off. Saying goodbye to our car was sad! We clocked up over 3400 km in 12 days. No that was one hell of a road trip. We grabbed a taxi and went back to the motel to get a few hours sleep before our 3:30am wake up to make it in time for our 6am flight out the next day.

We were zonked big time! The last 2 days have been way too busy, but we have seen and done some amazing things. Next time we won't go so crazy! But it was all worth it.

We'll be back for sure..
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