A Travellerspoint blog

Shark Bay world heritage - Western Australia

Monkey Mia and Denham

Check out my blog on Shark Bay at:

www.nal-lifeinaustralia.blogspot.com

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Main highlights:

Old Pearler restaurant
Monkey Mia
Denham
Riverside Sanctuary
Ninghan Park

Posted by nnylan 02:08 Archived in Australia Comments (0)

China - Suzhou

Tales from the Middle Kingdom

Check out my blog about China at:

www.nal-lifeinaustralia.blogspot.com

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Posted by nnylan 15:45 Archived in China Comments (0)

Western Australia - Weekend Getaway to Pemberton

Hawke Brook Chalet & Lavender and Berry Farm

semi-overcast 17 °C

We spent our weekend getaway to Pemberton lazying in the cozy Hawke Brook Chalet, which is situated adjacent to the majestic Karri forest of Warren National Park in the Great Southern Region of Western Australia.

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During our stay we had the whole 40 acres of land to ourselves because there wasn't anyone else staying there. Yes all 40 acres! Green acre is the place to be...

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Our chalet had a balcony with magnificent views of the lake, giant pine trees and wide grasslands. It even had a fireplace and a fully equipped kitchen. There are 4 chalets in total and all 4 have views of the lake.

Situated right in the middle of the forests, the only sound you would expect to hear is the crackling wood in the fireplace, the distant wind gusting through the tall trees and the quiet choral singing of amphibians by the lake.
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Taking a walk through the forests and fruit orchard
While we were on our walk, we were greeted by 4 most adorable Labradors. According to the owner, these dogs know their way around. So, they not only followed us into the forests but even led the way! Sometimes, they will wander away into the bushes for a while but only to come prancing back happily a few minutes later.

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One of the "tour guides" decides to chew a pine cone halfway through the walk

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Follow the leader...

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Spot the Kiwis - one on the left of the picture and one on the right!:) Hint: One kiwi is pointing to the other kiwi with his umbrella

We came across kiwi fruit on our walks... the owner grows kiwi fruit and avocado and says we are allowed to pick it... and so we did!

http://www.hawkebrook.com.au/

Lavender and Berry Farm
A trip with us is never complete without trying the local food so off to the Lavender and Berry farm in the afternoon.

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The Kiwi caught in his attempt to gobble the blueberry pancake.

We had blueberry pancakes with ice cream at the cafe. The farm also had beautiful sweet smelling lavender flowers and berries and even chalets (in the distance of the picture)

Posted by nnylan 31.08.2008 06:03 Archived in Australia Comments (1)

Western Australia - Margaret River, Pemberton, Denmark

Best hot chocolate, tree top walk, scenic drives in the Great Southern Region of Western Australia

Margaret River, Pemberton and Denmark is located in the Great Southern Region of Western Australia.

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Margaret River
If you go to Margaret River, you have to stop by the Margaret River chocolate factory. It's more of a cafe than a factory so don't be expecting to see a BIG factory, showing how chocolate is made, coz there won't be any! But don't give up going there altogether because there are mouth-watering chocolates in all forms imaginable (ice-cream, hot chocolate, mocha, chocolate cake, chocolate fondue)

I had the Hot Chocolate there and I have to say that that place sells the best Hot Chocolate. You'll like it as much as I do too if you enjoy dark/bitttersweet chocolate. Another cool thing about this chocolate factory is that they have 3 enormous bowls of free tiny chocolate drops (milk, white and dark) for you to sample. What more could a girl ask for?

Pemberton
What stands out most about this place is the lush green trees, grassland and hills. I really enjoyed the scenery when driving towards Pemberton. The trees are colourful and really pretty.

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Denmark
The tree top walk in Denmark is really enjoyable and a bit scary at the same time, being so high up on such a wobbly bridge! I was told it was still safe. I guess engineers like Jon would know best. Above is a picture of the bridge and the picture above it is me standing in the middle of a tree bark! This place isn't called the Valley of the Giants for nothing!

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Denmark waterfront
http://www.denmarkwaterfront.com.au/

While we were there, we stayed at the Denmark waterfront which was a cozy, wooden two level room. The bed was facing the glass doors so you can see the beautiful outdoors when you wake up in the morning.

Bluff Knoll, Stirling Ranges
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Bluff knoll, Stirling ranges near Albany is a good place to go hiking. The Stirling Range is a range of mountains and hills in the Great Southern region of Western Australia. You have to be really fit if you want to do this because it’s uphill all the way for about 3 hours.

After huffing and puffing for 3 hours (as you can see I wasn't that fit), I finally reached the top and it was all worth it. Clouds were everywhere... beneath, moving past us and right above us. If you want to be able to touch the clouds, come to Bluff Knoll.

Posted by nnylan 02:43 Archived in Australia Comments (0)

Western Australia - Jurien Bay

Beautiful Turquoise Waters in Jurien Bay

sunny 26 °C

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The best beach has got to be in Jurien Bay - Western Australia if not for the cold waters! Although there were many Australians swimming. So you may not find it cold... depending on where you come from.

I heard the waters in Broome are a lot warmer because the cold currents (from the South Pole) doesn't get up there.

If you want to see Marine life, this is the place to be.There were millions of crustaceans on the shore and the occasional marine life that comes close to the shore to visit (eg Sting rays and dolphines)

I think Jurien Bay is ideal for a short getaway from Perth for sunbaking on the beach and enjoying the scenery. Not ideal for swimming though! Brrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr. Unless you're used to cold weathers eg. you're from New Zealand or have a thick layer of skin like Jon, you'll probably find the waters ok! (Jon might be a sheep in disguise)

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THE HEIGHTS BED AND BREAKFAST
While we were there, we stayed at The Heights Bed and Breakfast, which was a cozy house with very warm hospitality. It's about a 5 minute drive away from the beach but I really liked it because it was such a peaceful and relaxing place.

For good deals in accommodation, go to www.wotif.com

Posted by nnylan 03.08.2008 08:06 Archived in Australia Comments (0)

Australia - Melbourne

Melbourne - where city and country collide

all seasons in one day 13 °C

Just came back from a wedding in Melbourne. Must say Melbourne is so different from Perth even though it's in the same country!

However, I find the weather really cold and windy there and don't enjoy it one bit. So much colder than in Perth... Everyone was wearing big thick coats. I suggest not going to Melbourne in the middle of Winter. It's cloudy and rainy and cold all the time.

Best time to visit Australia I reckon is in September till November. If you love Spring, sunshine and flowers, this is the best time to go.

For more information on Australia's weather, go to
http://www.bom.gov.au/

FOOD
For the best Iced Chocolate, go to Chocolateria San Churro in Bruswick St, Fitzroy. Forget about your diet, because this is the most delicious, fattening drink. Anyways, I really hope they will open a franchise in Perth. If not, I could. hmmmm.... *in deep thought*

SHOPPING
Shopping is average. Not as cheap as Thailand or Singapore but much better than Perth. There were coats in so many different varieties. I found that Bridge street in Richmond was not bad. Rina found her coat there.

Went to DFO (Direct Factory Outlet)... all pretty expensive branded stuff. Cheap for a brand name I guess. But some people like DFO and don't really like Bridge street, so it really depends! I personally preferred Bridge street because I lurrrrrve bargains.
I heard Harbour town (like the one in Perth) is opening in Melbourne this October... so keep your eyes and ears peeled!

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COUNTRYSIDE
Anyways, besides shopping, we went to the Dandenongs, which is like Kalamunda Hills in Perth but soooo much nicer. The city was sooooo tiny. I recommend the skyhigh restaurant. You should go on a cloudless day so you can see the city. (picture above) Have to pay an entrance fee but it's really worth it.

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We went Salmon fishing after that too and I had tons of fun catching fresh Salmon. Sashimi cannot be any fresher than this, I loved it. The meat, however, is not as tender and red as the sashimi in the Japanese restaurants. A bit disappointing but still worth going.

That was all that I did being such a short trip and all. The next time I'm there, I would go to the Werribee Farm where the animals roam free! But no more shopping for me. I'll be shopping in Singapore from now on.

ACCOMMODATION
For accommodation, I seriously do not suggest the motel at Alexander Motor Inn. It's cheap ($65 per night per person) but sooo noisy in the mornings. And the place doesn't look very nice. It has one good point though and that is: there is a direct tram going into the city every 10 minutes. It's about 30-40 minutes into the city.

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I luuurrrve the tram! I love taking it. It's so noisy and slow but the feeling of sitting in one is just exciting. You can buy tram tickets on the tram, it's really easy. Go to http://www.metlinkmelbourne.com.au/ for more information.

Anyways, have to go! Let me know if there is anything I should improve here and if you want to know anything else about Melbourne!

Posted by nnylan 04:17 Archived in Australia Comments (0)

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