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Monday 8th November 2004

We left the city of Portland in Victoria at about ten o'clock in the morning via the Princes Highway,  we stopped for a break and a photograph in the town of Heywood,  about twenty five km from Portland, this was our last stop in Victoria. At about midday, we reached the South Australian borders. There we stopped at the park for a coffee break, took some photographs, then we crossed the borders and drove for about 15 km  when we arrived at the beautiful City of Mount Gambier. There we checked in at the Mount Gambier Central Caravan Park. The Park was a Top Tourist Park, clean and shady with good showers nice people and close to the city centre. We stayed here for one week, during which we visited the Blue Lakes, a result of nature volcanic wonder,  and the Centenary Tower high on the hill overlooking the city. Another day we went for a day drive to the little and quiet town of Nelson across the Victorian borders at the mouth of the Glenelg river, thirty six km away from Mt Gambier. There we spent the afternoon sightseeing the town and then into the Nelson hotel, where we downed few cold ones with our dinner. Another day we spent the afternoon at Port MacDonnell, the most southerly point in the State,  about thirty km from Mt Gambier. This little town with a population of about 860 people, was once the second busiest port in the state, loading wool and wheat to Adelaide and Melbourne. Today it is a quiet seaside port but still with the biggest Cray fishing fleet in the state.                                                                                           

Mount Gambier Blue LakeMount Gambier Centenary TowerMount Gambier Lady Nelson
Mt Gambier Jen's HotelMt Gambier Central C/Park Mt Gambier Jen's Hotel New Sect'n

Monday 15th November 2004

We left the beautiful city of Mt Gambier at about ten o'clock in the morning heading north west via the Princes Highway to the town of Kingston SE. We stopped at the little town of Millicent for breakfast. This town with a population of about 5200 people is major business centre for the surrounding rich farms and is popular for its pleasant  parks and gardens, especially the memorial garden with its quaint rotunda. From here we diverted to the coastal road, where we visited the coastal towns of Beachport and Robe, we bought lunch from the bakery and relaxed at the beach front park and enjoyed it. Robe with a population of just over 700 has a professional crayfish and shark fishing fleets operating out of the sheltered anchorage. From here we took the Princes highway heading North to Kingston SE on the shores of Lacepede Bay (The SE. , for South East, is to avoid confusion with Kingston-on-Murray, another town in South Australia.  As we approached this fishing and tourist destination we came past the very large lobster known as Larry on the Princes Highway, then we stopped at the Cape Jaffa Lighthouse erected on the foreshore before checking in at the Kingston caravan park. The town is an important fishing port, especially for crayfish. In here we stayed three nights, during which we visited the small coastal town of Cape Jaffa, with a population of 31 you do not expect more than good scenery and relaxation, as well as Sun Dial and the surrounding beautiful gardens.

Larry the Big LobsterKingston SE Post OfficeKingston SE Sundial
Kingston Caravan ParkKingston Main JettyVisit This When You Don't Catch Fish
Beachport Hotel BeachportRobe Beachfront Cafe Cape Jaffa Lighthouse

Thursday 18 November 2004

We left Kingston SE heading to Murray Bridge via the princes Highway in the morning, we stopped for a fresh breakfast at the Meningie bakery, and sat at the park by Lake Albert, then we continued on along the Coorong National Park enjoying the loneliness and the beautiful scenery until we reached the small town of Tailem Bend which is close to the last great bend of the Murray River. The town's interesting colonial history has been re-created in the pioneer village at Old Tailem Town a few kilometres north, where we sauntered around the many exhibits and buildings that have captured the atmosphere of bygone years. After we had lunch we continued on to Murray Bridge and checked in at the Long Island Caravan Park on the Murray River, where we were welcomed by a swarm of annoying mosquitos. The park was a Top Tourist, clean, shady and spacious. We stayed here for three nights. With a population of about 13000 the town was tidy and easy to get around, with the old Murray Bridge as the main attraction. We visited Mannum about 30 km North. Mannum with a population of about 2000 is a holiday town on the Murray River, has many paddleboats, and is still an important town servicing the surrounding communities. Another day we visited  Strathalbyn about 35 km South, with a population of about 2600 and over 30 heritage listed buildings, and beautiful gardens, was well worth a full day.

Murray Bridge Main StreetLake Albert MeningieTailem Bend Hotel
Tailem Bend Visitors CentreMannum Visitor CentreMannum Car Ferry
Beautiful Building StrathalbynStrathalbyn Memorial Park Strathalbyn Bank of South Australia

Monday 22 November 2004

We left Murray Bridge about 9.00 o'clock in the morning, travelling North East, we stopped at the small town of Karoonda for breakfast and a coffee, then we toured around the town taking pictures. Karoonda is popular with its sheep and wool, and for that they have a sheep sculpture in the park in mid town. From hear we carried on until we reached the town  of Loxton. Loxton is situated on a sweep of the Murray River. It is a pleasant town with a number of gardens and parks, as well it is very rich with vineyards and orchards. Much of the history of the region is re-created in the Loxton Village with more than 30 fully furnished buildings. After we had lunch, we continued on to Renmark. We arrived here at about 4.00 o'clock in the afternoon, and checked in at the Renmark Riverfront Caravan Park. Renmark< initially named Bookmark, is located on the Sturt Highway about 235 km North East of Murray Bridge, alongside the Murray River. It is the oldest and largest town in the Riverland, and is the centre for South Australia's largest irrigation scheme along the Murray River. The life giving flow of water allows the growing of grapes, citrus, stone fruit, vegetables and flowers. The town is very clean and modern, and has magnificent and well preserved old buildings, as well as beautiful parks and gardens. The Murray Princess, the largest stern paddle-steamer in the southern hemisphere, plies the waterways taking passengers on cruises, as well as houseboats cruising up and down the Murray, and there are many to choose from to suit the individuals. We stayed here for three enjoyable nights. One day we went to the nearby town of Berri, and I think many of us heard about the Berri Oranges and juices, we have enjoy the day there, especially when we had an afternoon drink at the Berri Hotel along the water.

Berri Cafe And Info CentreRenmark Greek ChurchRenmark City Centre
Renmark Town Gardens Renmark Town GardensBerri Hotel on the Murray

Thursday 25 November 2004

On the road again via the Sturt Highway, we crossed  the South Australia Victoria borders and travelling for about 150 km, we arrived at the All Seasons Caravan Park in Mildura and checked in for three nights again. As you can see, it is the second time we come here to Mildura, because we wanted to go to Broken Hill in New South Wales, and we did not want to miss out seeing Loxton, Berri and Renmark. Anyway we had a great time, and we passed our time by visiting the surrounding towns of Red Cliffs, Gol Gol, Buronga, Merbein, Dareton and Wentworth.

Monday 29 November 2004

As usual we left Mildura at about 9.30 in the Morning, we crossed the bridge over the Murray heading East to New South Wales, then we turned left into the Silver City Highway 79, Heading to the outback city of Broken Hill NSW 300 km away. After 35 km, we stopped for breakfast at Wentworth near the junction of the Murray and the Darling Rivers. From here we continued for another 140 km and stopped for lunch and a fill at the Coombah Road House. It was a very hot day when we arrived at the Broken Hill Caravan Park. We checked in for ten days. Broken Hill with a population close to 22000 was very rich in silver-lead-zinc, and what, more than one third of the world's silver has come from Broken Hill, but now the ore is finally running out, and the townsfolk, all of whom in one way or another have been dependent on the mine for their livelihood, are turning to tourism. The town is absolutely magic, with lots of restored old buildings, including the Post Office and the Town Hall, and a beautiful restaurant and souvenir shop on top of the hill overlooking the town. Apart from that, we went and visited the Living Desert Sculpture Park, where sculptors from all over the world have created massive works from Wilcannia sandstone. Another day we went out to the historic town of Silverton, and visited the old gaol and the museum, then to the Silverton Hotel where we had a drink, and to the plains where the action shots for Mad Max were staged. Another day we went visiting the old town of Cockburn, 15 km into the South Australia borders, and after touring the town we dropped in at the old Cockburn hotel and had drink and a chat.

Broken Hill Post Office and Town HallBroken Hill Earth Cafe Restaurant And SouvenirsBroken Hill Picture on Railway Station Wall
   
Silverton Gaol MuseumSunset on Living Desert SculpturesPalace Hotel Broken Hill
Living Desert SculptureLiving Desert SculptureLiving Desert Sculpture

 

Thursday 9 December 2004 On the road again and after 40 km, we crossed the State borders into South Australia heading to Peterborough 250 km away, via the Barrier Highway 32. We passed through the towns of Cockburn, Mingary and just between Waiwera and Olary, we stopped at the fruit check point. We took lots of pictures, and bought some souvenirs from all them towns. Then we stopped for breakfast at Mannahill where we visited the Mannahill hotel and had lunch and a long chat with the publican and his lovely wife, and bought some souvenirs.

Mannahill Hotel On the Barrier HighwayMannahill Hotel Marica chatting with the publican

From Mannahill we continued along the Barrier Highway, passing through the following towns : Yunta, Paratoo, Nackara and Oodla Wirra, taking pictures and buying souvenirs, then we continued on for a few kilometres, and then turned right following the road signs to Peterborough. We checked in at the Centenary Caravan Park. The town of Peterborough with a population of just over 2000, was and is still a railway town. A year after it was founded in  1880, the railway arrived from Adelaide, and seven years later the line from Broken Hill to Port Pirie passed through. A short time later the railway from Port Augusta arrived and Peterborough became one of the few places in the world where three railway gauges _ Broad, Standard and narrow met. Now most of the lines have been standardised  but the local, active Steamtown Railway Preservation Society still uses some of the narrow gauge lines in the town and around the area to run steam train excursions and they are wonderful. We took a tour at the Steamtown Museum where we saw many of the old locos and wagons, even they still have the railway turntable and it was great. Besides, the town has the only State gold battery, ore has been crushed here for 100 years and has yielded more than 400 kg of gold. We stayed in the town for two nights, touring around taking pictures of the many charming old buildings, and we enjoyed every minute of it.

Peterborough Town Hall Peterborough Information CentrePeterborough Hotel
Yunta HotelCharming YMCA Building PeterboroughOlary Hotel

Saturday 11 December

We left Peterborough in the morning heading to Gawler. We passed through the towns of Terowie, Whyte-Yarcowie, Hallet, Mount Bryan and then Burra, where we had fresh lunch from the Burra bakery in the town centre. Burra Burra as it was known has a population of about 1200, was a copper mining town, however now it relies mainly on tourism and servicing its surrounding rich Merino sheep country.

Terowie welcomeBurra Town CentreBurra Town Hall

From Burra and heading south along the Barrier Highway, we took a right turn, driving through the charming Clare Valley, finally we arrived at the delightful town of Clare. With a population of 3000, Clare has a large number of heritage listed buildings, including the former courthouse and police station which are now the National Trust Museum, and the beautiful Town Hall. We stopped at the bakery and had an afternoon break under the shade of the vine trees patio, then we walked around the town and took lots of photographs.

XMAS At Auburn

Clare Town Hall

We left the town of Clare heading to Gawler, continuing through the charming vineyards and gum trees which colour the scene ,and in the space of a few kilometres we passed through the small villages of Sevenhill, Watervale Auburn,  and Tarlee, stopping in each village, taking pictures and buying souvenirs. Then came the town of Gawler where we checked in at the Gawler caravan park. Gawler with a population of 11500, is nestled between the two arms of the Para River and backed by the rolling hills of the Mt Lofty Ranges. Ordered streets and three town squares with fine Victorian architecture made this town a delightful place.

Gawler Kingsford HotelGawler Flower Gallery and MuseumGawler Arms Hotel
Gawler Old Spot HotelGawler Town HallGawler ANZ Bank

 Monday 13 December 2004

Off to Adelaide, and after travelling 40 km, we arrived at the Levi's caravan park in Walkerville, about ten kilometres from the city centre. Adelaide with a population of just over one million, is Australia's fifth largest city after Perth, and it owes much of its charm and delight to the man who first designed its layout Colonel William Light. His plan was simple: A rectangular grid pattern centred around five squares, the largest and central one being Victoria Square, and bordered by the River Torrens to the north. North of the Torrens you'll find North Adelaide, equally well laid out but around one square called Wellington Square. All the streets are wide and tree lined, with the widest and grandest called King William Street, running from north to south, linking North Adelaide and Adelaide itself, with a vast area of parklands around the city's perimeter, to give the city a breathing space. We stayed five weeks in Adelaide so as to have enough time to tour around the surrounding towns of the Fleurieu Peninsula, like the McLaren Vale, Victor Harbour, Goolwa and the mouth of the Mighty Murray River.

Victoria Square on King William StreetGlenelg city tramKing William Street at Christmas
Glenelg Town Hall Adelaide Rundle MallAdelaide XMAS at Night

Adelaide RSL Memorial

Anchorage Hotel Goolwa

Victor Harbour Main Street

Hindmarsh IslandGoolwa WelcomeMouth Of The Murray River

Monday 10th January 2005

At about 10 o'clock in the morning we were on the road again heading north to Port Pirie via the Princes Highway (1). We had breakfast and a break at Port Wakefield bakery and continued on arriving Port Pirie at 2.30 PM and checked in at the Port Pirie Beach Caravan Park for three nights. The park was shady, clean, on the foreshore and close to the city centre. Port Pirie has a population of just over 15,000 just off Highway One north of Adelaide on the eastern side of Spencer Gulf, is one of South Australia's major cities and ports. It is also the site of the largest lead-smelting and refining plant, as well as a site for a huge bulk silo complex which is used for the storing of grain before export. A number of historic buildings exist within the town including Post Office and the railway station. At one stage three railway gauges converged at Port Pirie and ran down the main street, but while these have been standardised, the town remains an important railway town which services the Indian-Pacific and the Ghan railways.

Port Wakefield Bakery

  

       Port Pirie Post Office

Port Pirie Railway StationPort Pirie Lead-Smelting Plant

Thursday 13th January 2005

We left Port Pirie at 10 o'clock in the morning travelling north via Highway (1), and after about 95 km, we arrived at Port Augusta and checked in at the Port Augusta Big 4 Caravan Park for three nights. The park was spacey, shady and very clean. Port Augusta is a major town in South Australia with a population of around 15,000, is situated at the head of Spencer Gulf and is known to many travellers as the Crossroads of the north, as well as it is the gateway to outback South Australia, the Red Centre and the Northern Territory and the Eyre Peninsula. During our stay we toured the surrounding areas like the Pitchi Richi Pass, the historical towns of Quorn and Wilmington and the Arid Lands Botanical Gardens. We very much enjoyed our stay and had lots to do and see.

Pitchi Richi Railway PassRailway Station Port AugustaBotanic Garden Port Augusta
Quorn Town HallQuorn Old MillWilmington Museum

Sunday 16th January 2005

On the road again, leaving Port Augusta and heading south along the Lincoln Highway to Whyalla. Whyalla with a population of over 25,000 is the largest provincial town in South Australia and it owes its existence to the nearby great iron ore deposits of Iron Knob, Iron Monarch and Iron Baron. We stayed for a week at the Whyalla Foreshore Caravan Park, an absolute water front, clean, tidy and shady with beautiful ocean views. We spent our time touring the town, the maritime museum and the beaches.

Whyalla Welcome

Spencer Hotel Whyalla

HMAS Whyalla At Museum

Sunday 23rd January 2005

We left Whyalla and continued south for 110 km arriving at Cowell at 2 PM and checked in at the Cowell Foreshore Caravan Park for three nights. The Park was right on the beautiful and protected waters of Franklin Harbour. Cowell is a major port servicing the inland grazing and cereal growing area. As well, fishing is an important industry while jade, mined in the nearby Minbrie ranges, has put Cowell on the world gem market. The nephrite jade, from one of the biggest deposits in the world, has a variety of colour and patterns not found elsewhere, and the jade boulders, sometimes weighing tonnes, are brought into the town-based factory for cutting prior to export or further processing. It is Australia's only commercial jade mining operation.  We very much enjoyed our stay at Cowell especially the delicious hamburgers and the oysters and bacon skewers from the friendly staff at the Cowell bakery.        

Cowell Town CentreCrabbing Off The Jetty - CowellThe Black Stump - Cowell
Franklin Harbour Hotel - CowellAt The Caravan Park - CowellNear the Jade Factory

While at Cowell, we visited the town of Cleve 50 km west, and spent the afternoon touring the town, then at the Cleve hotel where we enjoyed a cold beer served by the lovely and welcoming staff.

Wonderful Sunset - Cleve The Post Office - Cleve

Wednesday 26th January 2005

On the road again heading further south to Port Lincoln at the bottom end of the Eyre Peninsula, we stopped for a rest, and took lots of memorable photos of the beautiful coastal towns of: Arno Bay, Port Neil and Tumby Bay. We arrived at Port Lincoln late in the afternoon and checked in at the Kirton Point Caravan Park for one week. The park was on the water front and a little windy and cool and the caravan sites were a little squeezy, but the ocean views took care of that. Port Lincoln population 11,500, situated on Boston Bay is the busiest port on the Eyre Peninsula. A cannery was opened in the 1950's for processing tuna, and today the calm waters around Boston Island are dotted with the circular enclosures of great traps that house and fatten tuna. The harbour is also a base for the cray fishing and abalone industries, both of which are abound in these waters. It is also the second port in Australia to handle bulk grain export. A trip to coffin bay and the National Park was very enjoyable and interesting.

Grand Tasman Hotel - Pt LincolnFlinders's Theatre - Pt LincolnMarina Hotel - Pt Lincoln
Photos From The Towns We Visited

On The Eyre Peninsula Coastline

Coffin Bay Boat Ramp Port Neil Town Jetty
Arno Bay HotelArno Bay EntranceArno Bay Welcome Garden
Seabreeze Hotel - Tumby Bay Beach Front - Tumby BayBeach Front Gazebo - Tumby Bay

Wednesday 2nd February 2005

On the road from Port Lincoln and along the Flinders Highway (1) for about 300 km to Streaky Bay. We stopped at Warrow, Mount Drummond, Mount Hope, Sherringa and then Elliston for lunch. We continued on to Port Kenny and then Streaky Bay. We checked in for three nights at the Streaky Bay Foreshore Tourist Park. Streaky Bay lies on the southern end of the bay with the same name. The harvesting of wheat played an important role in the town's early development, and continues today, along with the production of barley, wool and fat lambs. Fishing and tourism also been a major part in the town's economy, and the latest commercial venture is granite mining. Just out of town are the impressive rocky outcrops of pink granite boulders known as "Murphy's Haystacks" are a phenomenal sight and well worth a visit. And this wrapped up our tour of the Eyre Peninsula. Below are some photos of the towns we've been to.

Streaky Bay JettyStreaky Bay HotelSmoky Bay District Club
Murphy's Hay StacksMurphy's Hay StacksMurphy's Hay Stacks

Saturday 5th February 2005

We arrived at Ceduna's Foreshore Tourist Park about midday and checked in for three nights so as we can have a bit of extra rest so as to be fit enough to tackle the long and boring trip across the Nullarbor Plain. So that's exactly what we did at this beautiful and clean Tourist Park. Ceduna is the largest town in the far west of the state, with nearby Thevenard - a deep-sea port just 4 km away, services a vast hinterland of cereal land and a fishing fleet that chases fish, abalone and crayfish as well as oysters. Grain, salt and gypsum are stored in the huge silos and stockpiles that dominate the skyline of Thevenard when seen across the bay at Ceduna.

The View from our VanWelcome to CedunaTourist Park - Ceduna

Tuesday 8th February 2005

We left Ceduna well prepared for the long drive across the Nullarbor, we stopped at Penong for breakfast, Nundroo and Yalata roadhouses for a breather, then the Nullarbor roadhouse and caravan park where we checked in for the night. It was still early in the afternoon so we took a 20 km drive to the Head of the Bight whale watching area, a semi remote area 14 km of sealed road off the Eyre Highway (1), the scenery were wonderful and should not be missed. The next morning, got up early and here we have a visitor, a dingo roaming around our caravan, apparently looking for food, so I was quick with the camera and managed to take few shots of it (above is one of them). All packed up, on the road again, this time to the Border Village Roadhouse 200 km of tree less scenery away and is the last stop in South Australia. We checked in for the night and after having a bit of a rest, it was still early afternoon so we decided to take a drive across the borders to Eucla and visit the Old Telegraph Station, we took lots of photos of this historic site which is half covered with magnificent pure white sand dunes. That wrapped up our tour of this wonderful South Australia. 

Head Of The Bight - NullarborDingo Visit Nullarbor C/ParkOur Camp at the Nullarbor
Border Village S. Aust.What you see at the BordersWA - SA Borders
Penong HotelNullarbor Ninety Mile StraightNullarbor Dingo
Walking on the Sand Dunes-EuclaWalking on the Sand Dunes-EuclaTelegraph Stn Ruins-Eucla
Telegraph Stn Ruins-EuclaTelegraph Stn Ruins-EuclaIt was Hot at the Telegraph Stn

Goodbye South Australia and Hello Western Australia

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