Thursday, 25 July 2013

Australia: 4 weeks in 1 blog

Desperate for some home comforts, we were off for the land of Oz! Unfortunately for Imy, it was more of a brown-brick road than a yellow-brick one, after a slightly messy incident in Bangkok airport. But soon enough, we were in the welcoming embrace of big-sis Lauren and settling into her home a little too easily. Lauren had an amazing itinerary ready for the evenings of the first week, which left us with plenty of time to sit and catch up on some awesome TV (Sons of Anarchy (watch it!)). We were also reunited with Katzy (Michael) who introduced us to his wonderful family, who not only treated us to a real Aussie BBQ, with some delicious roo on offer, but also afternoon tea with his legendary Nana. It was also time for Kat to be reunited with Mama Park!

We've compiled a list of our top 10 Aussie highlights, so here they are...

1) The Great Ocean Road.
The name doesn't do it justice, as it wasn't just great it was bloody brilliant. Imy and Lauren hired a car (roooaadd trriiippp) and made their way down it, just in time to catch the The 12 Apostles and London Bridge at sunset. Imy also caught sight of her first kangaroo... it's just a shame it was roadkill.

Sissies on tour 2013

12 Apostles

London Bridge beauties

Kat and Wenners opted to do a day tour, and it's just as well that we did because it tipped it down all day and at some points the rain was horizontal. Luckily it cleared up in time for the last few stops (The 12 Apostles and Loch Ard Gorge) and it didn't stop us spotting the wild koalas along the way!

Parks on tour 2013

Loch Ard Gorge loving

2) Mornington Peninsula Spa and Phillip Island

Kat and Wenners hired a car for the day and after a slightly shaky start, we were on our way to Mornington Peninsula Spa. We were having such a good time in the hot pools that we stayed a tad longer than expected and had to whizz off for Phillip Island to make it in time for the Penguin Parade. Along the way, we stopped at a cattle farm (bit random), where we treated ourselves to tea and scones. We made it in time for the Penguin Parade, where each night hundreds of mini penguins pop out of the sea and make their way home. They were mega cute and it was great to see them in their natural habitat, although it was a little bit nippy to say the least.

Pampered princess

View from the top

Cow farm

Penguin paparazzi

Lauren and Imy squeezed these into the same road trip as The Great Ocean Road. We got to the Spa bright and early but apparently not early enough as it was already over taken with Chinese people, who loved to play a game called "how many people can we fit into a natural pool until no on can enjoy it anymore". We did however find a few less occupied ones which were a real treat to relax in and the pool right at the top of the hill gave a beautiful view of the surrounding area. We then dashed off to go and see what for Imy was the highlight of the weekend...kangaroooooosss. They were well worth the wait, it was so fun to get up so close to them and feed them all. There were also plenty of wallabies that wanted feeding too, so being the good Samaritans that we were, we fed them too. We were also lucky enough to have a mumma Roo come up to us and the baby Joey kept bobbing his head out - very cute.
We then rushed over to the ocean to catch a glimpse of the penguins too. They really were tiny but had a  good waddle on them, giving them some serious speed.

Oooohhh fancy

Getting hot and steamy

Loz and all her mates

Dr. Doolittle

3) Melbourne Arcades and graffiti
We (Kat and Imy) did our own little walking tour of Melbourne, taking in some of the best arcades and graffiti that Melbourne has to offer. We were enjoying some of the graffiti that some people with real talent had taken time over, when two 15 year-olds thought they were really clever by "tagging" over these pieces. Morons. Hopefully our disapproving looks told them otherwise. It was a really good way to get around the back streets of Melbourne and in one of the arcades a nice Italian man took pitty on us, giving us a free fruity yogurt each!

Badass graffiti

Arcade stroll

For frrreeeeeeeeeeeeee

Talent of Melbs

James Park??

4) The Bombers game with Michael
Being the hardcore fan that he is, Michael was the best person to introduce us to the world of AFL (Australian Football League), which is their own take on rugby/American football/football. As with any sporting event it is only right to start in the pub with a beer, we happily obliged and Michael kitted us out in some Bombers scarves. It was a bit of a slow start, which gave Michael the opportunity to fill us in on some of the rules. By the last quarter though we were biting our nails and screaming with the crowd, as the Bombers were drawing with Carlton. With seconds to go, the Bombers pulled it out of the bag and won by 5 points (1 goal)!! It was a great game by any standards, made even better by the fact that we were supporting the winning team.

Fans for life!!


See the Bombers fly up, up!

5) Imy Joined a Football team for 4 weeks.
Within two days of arriving Lauren's mate had space on an indoor mixed football team so I jumped at the chance and was starting on Wednesday. It was so much fun and the team were good too! The only problem that seemed apparent immediately was my fitness, that appeared to have left me a long time ago! For the next four weeks I got to play with them, hopefully getting slightly fitter in the process.

Cracking corner

Go on girl

6) Chicken Parma
Having heard so much about this dish, we were buzzing to finally try it. Michael took us (Kat, Imy, Lauren and Wenners) to a great place with "Parmas from around the world" and we all tucked in to a hearty meal of bread-crumbed chicken (minus food poisoning), sauce and chips. It was right up our street and filled us to the brim.

7) Wendy and Kat walk from Bondi to Coogee
Eager to explore the beautiful beaches around Sydney, and with  spot of cracking weather, we headed for Bondi. It was a first for both Wendy and me because on my first trip I'd some how forgotten to go. The moment we got to Bondi, Wendy went for a frolic in the sea. She soon retreated from the freezing cold water though. Along the coastal walk to Coogee we stuffed our faces, stopped for coffee and gawped at some surfers, which meant we managed to drag the walk out for a good few hours, and loved every second of it.

Bondi bbz

Was it a tad windy Wendy?

Bondi lads

8) Lauren and Imy's Trip to the Blue Mountains
This was a first for both of us and with the sun shining it was set to be a good day. Our guide was an interesting fellow who made the trip even more enjoyable. The first view we got was over the whole valley and we found out how it got its name as all of the trees gave of a bluey/grey mist which was beautiful. We saw plenty of wildlife and natural beauties as the mountains continued to open in front of us. The guide also took the opportunity to paint Imy's face with some 'tribal artwork'. We finished at the three sisters which were also beautiful. It was however some young boy running round dressed as Batman that kept us laughing the whole time we were there!

Blue mountains innit

View from the top


Waterfall of gold

Na na na na na na na na BATMAN

9) Dame Edna Beverage and the Sydney Symphony Orchestra
Determined to see something at the Sydney Opera House, we got tickets for the only thing showing, Dame Edna Beverage. To our great surprise and delight, it turned out that it was actually Edna Beverage alongside the Sydney Symphony Orchestra! A pretty odd combo, but one that worked. The Orchestra brought heaps of talent, while old Edna added some humour to the mix. It was a great night and a lovely way to send off Mamma Park.

Opera House tour

Splendid Symphony

10) Hitting up Kings Cross nightlife and one of Harry's pies
The Palms Hostel had a great crowd, especially the crazy Italians, and we all headed out to Kings Cross Hotel for a boogie. The night was going brilliantly until we bumped into a stupid American in the toilets, who told Imy she was 18 and ugly. Cue a minor scuffle and a major dampener to the night, but it was the early hours of the morning and we were ready to call it a night anyway. Lauren had a rather more successful could say it was "sparkling". Hungover and needing some comfort food, we headed to Harry's de Wheels for one of his infamous Tiger Pies. A perfect end to a wicked time in Oz.

Can't hack the pace!

Harry sorted us out

Well done Australia, you've revived us and nourished, making us ready for travelling again!

Byyyyeee Sydders!

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