We decided that while Hannah recovers from her torn plantar fascia injury, we will transform from parents to explorers in a van, and really make the most of our time in Australia. We set our sights on Sydney, a mere 1,000 kilometers to the northeast.
One our first day out, we came upon a town by the name of “Stratford on the Avon”. Since David (and the other Keane’s, including his father Harold) grew up in Stratford, Connecticut, we decided that this was a must-see. We were not disappointed.
This Stratford has an art walk, complete with an audio guide, an MP3 player, and a speaker, all available for pickup at the local theater.
Here is the Globe, the first stop on the art tour:
And the marker for Connecticut:
Here are some of the art pieces along the 1 hour walk:
It was great to spontaneously take part in the tour of the town, and we were invited back for the weekend Shakespeare Birthday celebration that is apparently the highlight of the year. We weren’t sure how far down the road we would be, but kept it as an option.
That night, we had a truly beautiful free camp site thanks to the town of Metung at the Chinaman’s Creek park. Here is the view that awaited us in the morning:
Our next destination was Raymond Island to go on the Koala Walk. A short ferry trip:
And we were on Raymond Island, following the Koala Walk. Koalas were introduced to this island in 1953 when Australians were concerned that the population was dwindling. The koalas that live on this island are very used to people, and are not spooked by the many walkers and photographers that come over on the ferry to take the short 1.5 km walk. As you can see here, David was able to get very close to his subjects:
Here are some of the special koalas we spotted on our hike around the island
In addition to the koalas, we spotted many birds
And about the birds on the main photo: these are the Tawny Frogmouth. What we first thought was just the top of an old tree, came to light upon closer inspection. They were very well camouflaged! We thought they were maybe owls, but a little research and we discovered their true identity.
On the ferry back to the mainland, we spotted many jellyfish, and had fun trying to get a good shot. Not the most cooperative photo subjects!
Our next two days were pretty much just travel and find a pretty place to stop for the night.
First, along the famous Snowy River:
And then in the town of Genoa, where the town provides a superb free campground:
We stopped in the little town of Tathra, NSW were we came across the cutest coffee shop/bakery called “The Wharf Locavore” and treated ourselves to a cup of tea before we tackled a little hike.
Just look at how cute this place is:
And the tea:
Yes, I could have stayed there all afternoon with those views and the tempting pastries. But, we are just hours away from our Sydney-area destination, and we must move on.
It’s always a G’day Down Under,