We took a little break over the holiday period and headed down to Dromana for a couple of nights by the beach. It was super busy and hot and while Emmy was heavily pregnant (not any more! :D) we did manage to do a few things. The day we arrived was stinking hot, high 30s and sunny, so when we checked into our airbnb accommodation we just hid in the air-conditioned room for a bit to relax.
Later in the afternoon I took Oscar to the beach, which was absolutely packed, I didn’t go looking for the the best stretch or anything, I just found a park on the main road not too far from our accommodation and went from there. We walked about 50m from where we parked to find a patch of space near the water, the sand wasn’t great and it may not have been the best time to go for building sand castles. Oscar got bored really fast (perhaps because I was reading a book instead of playing with him :() and decided that he wanted to go home, so that was that for our beach time.
I had planned on going to Cape Schanck at night time to do some night photography, but the skies greyed over and it was hot, and in the end it was just a few things conspiring against me (lazy) so I ended up not getting out to take any night photos, there definitely wasn’t a chance for starry night skies anyway.
The next day we went strawberry picking at Sunny Ridge Strawberry Farm, I can’t remember when I last went strawberry picking (if ever) but it was certainly a positive experience for Emmy who kept complaining about the last time she went and how there was nothing. We managed to fill two punnets with sweet (relatively speaking for strawberries), juicy strawberries, despite Oscar coring a bunch of them.
I was thinking that it was best to go early so that you wouldn’t miss out, but as I was picking them, it occurred to me that some of the strawberries that I didn’t pick due to not quite being ripe would probably ripen during the day, so even if you didn’t arrive at opening time, there’d probably still be plenty to pick from. We had some strawberry iced cream afterwards which seemed like it was made using actual strawberries so another thumbs up.
This one turned out to be a bit of a hit and miss, it was warm and stuffy so walking around a lot wasn’t exactly Emmy’s cup of tea. But we managed to get through two hedge mazes, a rose garden maze, and part of the lavender garden. The first hedge maze was a disappointment though as it was pretty much being regrown from scratch, at least half (probably more) of the trees were saplings or very young and so it didn’t take much effort to find our way through.
The second hedge maze was much more difficult, in fact, I’m not sure if anyone that went in actually found the exit correctly. We’d just keep seeing the same people over and over at the entrance, eventually we gave up and moved on, but I did quickly go in through the exit to see where it was, but I still couldn’t figure out how to get there even though it was right next to parts that we walked through several times.
The rose garden maze was less frustrating as we managed to find the finish point and return successfully, it was challenging but not too difficult, which made it fun for me and Oscar. The lavender gardens didn’t seem to be in full bloom as the purple was a bit dull.
We didn’t venture out of Dromana to eat even though it is so close to many restaurants and wineries. We had lunch at the Pier Street Kitchen on the first day, which used to be called Dee’s Kitchen, I think that they must have changed owner because they used to have a deli and assorted goods for sale, but seems like just dining nowadays. The food was okay, but nothing special, not to the level of regional gourmet delight level anyway.
We had fish and chips the first night at Dromana Fish Supplies (take away), as it was the highest rated on that we could find. It was a letdown, it took 45 minutes (they did warn us) to get our order done, and everything was super salty. My fish burger might have been under cooked, I’m not sure, the fish didn’t flake apart when eating, so not great.
We had lunch at Laneway Espresso, a cafe on the main road which was highly rated for its cooked food apparently, but ended up not ordering any of the main dishes, and instead just got a sausage roll and a pre-made sandwich. They were good, but Emmy scolded me for not ordering something cooked off the menu :D.
We were looking for some kind of take away for dinner and went with pizza from That Pizza Shop, it has an interesting menu made up of gourmet style pizzas. I chose the sunday roast which has lamb, pumpkin and potato on it, while Emmy chose the garlic prawn (small size). The small pizza was really small, so I wouldn’t recommend getting a small unless it’s for a child. The quality of the pizza was good, they were a little expensive but they were good for take away, so no qualms there.
I also can’t leave without mentioning the IGA in Dromana, which seems to be a very high quality supermarket, we only looked around half of the store for stuff that we needed specifically for breakfast and it was pretty impressive. Looked very much like Leos here in Melbourne, full of all sorts of things that you either don’t get in the regular supermarket or at least different brands or products from places around the world, high quality stuff.
Before leaving very early on our last morning for a doctor’s appointment, we stopped by the main pier so that I could take a few pictures (as seen above). I was thinking of doing that pier into the endless sea cliché shot, but there were people there so I decided to have a look underneath for that tunnel style that I’m renowned for :D.
1,603 total views
Hey, it’s not the first time I’ve ever been on the Great Ocean Road, I mean I’ve lived in Melbourne for over thirty years, that’d be crazy, but this time I actually went down to see the Twelve Apostles as well (that was a first). Unfortunately I was the one driving so I couldn’t really enjoy the scenery as much winding along the beautiful coastal road. From Melbourne we stopped in Lorne for a break, and Apollo Bay for lunch (word of advice, don’t bother going to La Bimba, let’s just call them Lord of the Flies) before reaching our destination of Port Campbell National Park to see the Twelve Apostles, which is just a name, they’re actually just big limestone stacks in the sea, not the apostles of Jesus Christ, also, there aren’t twelve of them.
It’s a lot of driving in one day, I would definitely say too much for one day, take a night at least cos there’s plenty to see down there and if you don’t want to see anything, just go and relax on the beach, it’s nice. Leaving at about 8.30am we didn’t arrive at the national park until about 3.30pm (that’s including lunch of course but still), and then we only spent an hour or two there, I would have preferred to see the stacks at sunset, sunrise, or any time in between as the light would have been a lot less harsh and much more conducive to some artsy photography (cos that’s what I do).
It was actually a really nice day, very sunny but not too hot (I did manage to get sun burnt a little), stupidly none of us remembered to take sunscreen so let that be a lesson to you. Yeah, I was very impressed by the scenery, and will go back one day but definitely staying overnight so that I can pay a visit at a time more conducive (I can’t believe I used that word twice in one post!) to clearer photos and less tourists, more towards twilight and after sunset and before sunrise for those sweet long exposures.
The other thing is, we didn’t even visit London Bridge or Loch Ard Gorge so there’s plenty more for me to see definitely and to photograph, next time I’ll go on my own terms :D. We took the inland road back to Melbourne which only took about 3.5 hours and with pretty much no traffic is probably the way to go (to avoid the stress of traffic jams), but there are a lot of lookout points on the road, so if driving towards sunset, it might be worth it. I took my big tripod and didn’t even use it, so I reckon that’s going to get some heavy use next time. I’ve got another post lined up for next week or whenever I’m bored next but after that I don’t know, haven’t seen Anchorman 2 yet, would like to, will have to see if I can make it.
1,377 total views
Hey, another post inside of two weeks, unbelievable right? Well, I was really hoping to post something last week but in the end it wasn’t to be, as the Spurs went down in seven games to the stupid Heat. And then we lost our semi-final this past Sunday having gone an undefeated 14-0 during the regular season, which was disappointing enough, but I had to be doubly disappointed with my own effort, as I was pretty much a complete non-factor which is going to sting me until we get back playing again in a couple weeks, and certainly it’s going to smart until we get back to the finals with a chance to right these wrongs. Any way, back to the point of this post, these photos were taken in the past month or so, the first two taken in mid-May down at Point Nepean National Park right near the tip of the peninsula, and the last three just this past weekend down at Cape Schanck again.
I really like the Cape Schanck Lighthouse area, and I definitely think that there is more to explore, I only had a brief look around Pebble Beach, but taking that peak, I reckon that there is certainly more to see with a bit more time to wander around. So I’ll probably head back down there later in the year with my tripod at the ready to snag some interesting shots, the sea scape is great with a big blue sky and the blue sea. The orange clay (?) of the rock on the edge is very vivid and provides a great contrast to the blue everywhere else. The waves crashing on to the rocks and the lighthouse are also some great subjects to pose around, I’m hpoing to wander around the corner down there and see something really great and photogenic, let’s hope so for next time. The food down that way is also a treat, all around a great part of Victoria I say, and reasonably close too.
1,252 total views
On a warm (hot) day in March, so a couple weeks ago during the heat wave, we headed down to Cape Schanck for a bit of a walk and wander around the beach. We parked at the Cape Schanck Lighthouse car park, and headed for Bushrangers Bay along the Bushrangers Bay walking track.
It’s only a 40 minute walk (or so) so it’s not especially difficult, the only issue is the heat as there is no shade at the beginning of the walk, after about 10-20 minutes there is a shaded section with trees on both sides of the trail which was a very welcome relief. For some reason we decided not to take our swimmers (and we left our sunscreen in the car thinking that we wouldn’t be down there for long) so we were pretty much just looking for a shady spot on the beach, of which there really aren’t any. We had a lunch which was pretty much crackers with cheese and salami (yum!), and then decided to go for a wander down the beach.
The water is beautifully cool which was great for getting our feet wet (apparently it’s not a good swimming beach, a bit dangerous) but we didn’t have our swimmers any way (surprisingly it wasn’t very windy), if you look at the pictures (the one with the red tent), the big rock on the right hand side, just past there is an arch that has crashing water, a rock pool, and the big rock is scaleable as well, actually third picture is taken from the top of the big rock, and the arch is to the left. Parts of the rock are super hot as they don’t get wet at all, so for that reason, as well as the fact that the rock and sand and plants under foot are quite abrasive, I would recommend wearing shoes, or at least thongs (unlike silly me who went with bare feet, and was in agony the whole time I was up there!). This is part of a national park, and the place is really quite pristine, we definitely want to head down there again with a bit more preparedness though, the lighthouse is very picturesque, unfortunately the sunset wasn’t particularly dramatic so I didn’t end up with anything that I am particularly happy about. We’ll go again though. We had dinner at the Flinders Hotel (in Flinders) at the Deck (which is a pub), it was pretty good, but we were quite rushed due to me wanting to rush back for the sunset after dinner.
1,321 total views