Still hard to believe, but here we are in Darwin! Today is Thursday, 28th Oct, and we arrived yesterday afternoon. You can check the weather yourselves if you like, but I can tell you it’s hot, humid, overcast with big blue spaces, occasional rain storms……actually just like Melbourne, only a little bit more humid. Walking through the shops today at the Darwin Mall, it was quite annoying as every shop has their air conditioning blasting, so you just get used to the heat walking along outside, then go into a shop and you’re freezing; then it seems even hotter when you get back outside!
We are treating ourselves again to a cabin, at a place called Free Spirit Holiday Park, quite nice, with a much better cabin than we had in Alice Springs, and cheaper too. Last night was Schnitzel and quiz night, at their bistro. We had, yes…Schnitzel for tea, and won a first prize in the quiz too! Recieved a voucher for free entry to a place called “crocodylus”, for one adult and one child, which we were going to anyway, woo hoo!
On a serious note, we have put through about 4 loads of washing so far here. Never enough time at other caravan parks when you arrive late, and have to be out before 10.00am, so the dirty washing builds up. We have also been shopping this morning, stocking up on various necessities, like clothes, shoes, stuff. Took the trailer to the local Kimberly Kampers agent (brand of the camper trailer) for some items to be looked at, hopefully will pick it up tomorrow.
We are going to the Mindle Beach Sunset Market this arvo, 4.30pm to 10.00, the last one for the season too, should be something differant. Tomorrow will be up early to go and feed the fish, a thing called Aquascene. Starts at 8.30am, at a place called Doctors gully, where right on high tide, lots of local fish come in to be hand fed, looks like fun. A “Dad” activity tomorrow will be to visit the WW2 Oil storage tunnels underneath the city, built to protect Darwins oil supplies during the wartime bombardment. Well, the girls might like it too!
Jocelyn having fun in our pool at Buley Rockhole
My last, very short post was from Batchelor, in the Lichfield National park. We had some really hot weather, but found some lovely, amazing places which luckily, weren’t too crowded due to the fact it was a weekday, and not school holidays. At only 100 kms or so from Darwin, the various gorges, rock pools and swimming holes are popular with locals and Darwinians alike, but not so much during the week. The main attractionsfor us were Buley Rockhole, Florence Falls and Wangi Falls. Could have stayed all day or more at Buley Rockhole, in fact, anytime anyone goes camping to the Northern Territory, you have to set up camp at Buley Rockhole, and just enjoy it. It has a campsite, toilets, picnic areas, many pools to choose from, and lots of creek to explore and play in. The photo in the previous post was from there, we claimed a nice big pool that had a high side you could jump or dive in from. I tried a few times to touch the bottom, but, without trying too hard, couldn’t!
Had a great time here, swam out one handed with the camera up out of the water for some good shots!
Florence Falls was awesome. Where Buley Rockpool was a creek flowing through various large pools, Florence was two big waterfalls into a big plunge pool, great fun to swim in, lots of really deep sections, and very handy rock in the middle to rest on, more people there though, bit like going to the local swimming pool on a hot day.
The smaller of the two falls is where the snake was, we swam over and kept slightly away from it. p.s need a waterproof camera!
Wangi Falls was a nice compromise, big waterfalls, big plunge pool, almost a lake, quite a few people but plenty of room to move. A group of Aboriginal schoolgirls was swimming at the same time as us, very noisy but really friendly. It was very funny when they swum over to the waterfall, only to find a snake trying to get out of the water, and they all went screaming over to the other side, carrying on. My theory was that this snake fell into the water and was trying to get out. We swam over there for a look, the poor snake was tired out, he climbed onto a rock and was just lying there puffing like he’d run a mile! Last I heard from the schoolgirls, he had rolled into the water and not come up, poor thing.
Bizzare to be swimming where we are told there are crocs!
Before we left, we went for a walk out onto the boardwalk, a nature look-out, walk along the edge of the lake and over the creek. Just at the creek, Dee called out, “look, a crocodile” and sure enough, in the creek flowing out of the lake was a nice, average sized, fresh-water croc lazily swimming downstream…..COOL. Dad was too slow with the camera though, sorry!
To finish this episode off, another wildlife story. The following morning, just as we finnished packing up, I was walking around the back of the camper, and caught my thong on something, I thought maybe a stick.
Not the best shot, but not really meant to get too close! My snake encounter...
As I looked down, I thought, my, thats a big lizard, and jumped a bit so I wouldn’t step on it, then the big double take, hmmmm, that’s a snake! Only a little snake, yes, but still a bit exciting. Of course, we took some pics, had a close look, and as he hid behind the camper wheel, we carefully drove off, making sure he was ok. The morale of the story should be, don’t wear thongs around the campsite on stinking hot days! Well, it’s lucky I was in thongs at all, usually barefoot! At least my thong survived!
The girls at Mindel Beach Market
For a postscript, we have just got back from Mindel Beach Sunset Market. Had a great time at a most interesting and unusual market. Very big, food stalls everywhere, arts and craft stalls everywhere else. Buskers, jugglers, had it all and more. An Army band was playing up until dark, then the flame jugglers put on their show, then the fireworks display started. After the fireworks, another band played. Two tired girls, one wanted to stay till stumps, the other needed to go home, so left at 9.30, and just arrrived home. A big day, bedtime soon, good night.