Fancy hot chocolate goes down great on a drizzly morning in Forrest. I had regular hot chocolate and Scott had a mocha. You had to assemble it yourself. Put the chocolate ganache sphere and the extras into the cup, pour the hot milk in, and stir a lot. It was tasty, although maybe it could be a little more chocolatey?
And we finally got to try ruby chocolate! Ruby chocolate is a new type of chocolate that was introduced in 2017. It tastes fruity, like berries, but doesn’t contain any fruit. I really liked it!
It had been 10 years since I last went on the Great Ocean Road so we took our time getting to Forrest/Warrnambool. It was nice. We saw 8 koalas!
Decent conditions at Winkipop Bells Beach. There were a lot of surfers in the water.
Snot block in Lorne. Was a pretty good one! The pastry was crisp and the icing layer on top was nice and thick. I think I offended Scott by suggesting that the custard layer could be half as thick.
We backtracked a bit after Lake Elizabeth to go back to Kennett River because I wanted to see koalas. It ended up being totally worth it because we saw a whole bunch, including this cutie who put on a bit of a show for us. It was so great. We were by ourselves, he was not too high up, and he was awake!! We saw him climb, switch trees, almost fall down, munch on some leaves, and then find a nice place to settle in for a nap. So cool.
PS I always said I wonder what would happen if you gave a koala a nutritious diet instead of poisonous leaves but apparently koalas are so dumb that they can’t even recognize eucalyptus leaves if they aren’t attached to a tree, and would literally starve to death with a plate of eucalyptus leaves right in front of them. So probably you couldn’t even get a koala to eat something like avocado unless you force fed it hahahaha.
Scott’s hand, a king parrot, hordes, and an unpictured koala. Anywhere the tour buses stop was hella crowded. I wonder if the koala was placed.
More hordes at The Grotto. Pretty cool place though. Who doesn’t love a good natural bridge.
I have never been so disappointed with something cheese related as with Cheese World. Actually this place inspired this whole trip. But it sucked. All they had was a few self serve cheese cube samples, a weird museum of mostly farm equipment, and the most expensive gift shop ever. Who would pay $6 for a crappy sticker?? I wanted to get a hat or t-shirt or something but there wasn’t a single decent item in there.
Tower Hill, just outside Warrnambool, was pretty cool! It’s an old volcano turned wildlife reserve. You get to drive right into the crater which was neat. We walked around trying to find echidnas but didn’t see any. We did see a few koalas and lizards.
We had a nice time in Warrnambool itself, but apparently I didn’t take many pictures there. We went to the hot springs spa at our hotel and had a soak and a massage, ate some nice food, and went to the art gallery. We went to a trivia night and should have won but the host added up the scores all wrong and put us in second last place. Scott was real mad. He never gets mad! I probably shouldn’t have brought this back up.
Then we drove back to Melbs via two cheese shops and a cidery. Not bad.
I booked two nights camping at Lake Elizabeth because I heard there are platypi there. I really liked the campground! It was very basic, just drop toilets, but most sites had tables, and fire pits (which are pretty rare in Australia!) It was totally surrounded by eucalyptus trees and super quiet.
At dusk both nights we headed down to the lake, about a 20 minute hike each way. The first night we walked part way around the lake, trying to get a good vantage point for platypus. We didn’t see any but it was still a nice adventure. But there was a group on a canoe tour that said they saw a bunch? They didn’t really elaborate and were kind of weird in general lol. I actually thought they were lying. Plus none of them told us about the glow worms? Rude.
We tried to book the canoe tour the next night but he wasn’t going out again for a few days so we just set out again on our own. We were the only people at the lake. It was soooooo quiet. We just stayed on the dock.
I maybe saw one??? I saw something dark at the surface of the water for a second or two, and then it ducked down under the water leaving a decent size ripple. It wasn’t a bird or a fish, so it was probably a platypus? It’s an unconfirmed platypus. It would have been nice to see a bill or a flipper or something haha. I’ll still count it. :P
Also thanks to the nice guy at the campground the second night we knew how to see the glow worms on the walk back this time. If you turn off your headlamps you can see them all along the sides of the path. At some parts there were dozens and dozens of them twinkling away. It was really cool.
Katrina Jorna, of the House Perkin, first of her name, the traveller, Minister of Finance, maker of cross stitch patterns, mother of dragons.
During the day we drove around chasing waterfalls and looking for pink robins. We only found yellow ones though, no millennial pink.
It’s a nice national park! There are tons more waterfalls to check out so I’d definitely like to go back again.
Our trip to Wilsons Prom last year was fun, but too short, so this year we booked a longer stay. Unfortunately I injured myself right before the trip. I irritated my left SI joint and couldn’t walk uphill. My physio taped my butt in a hug, and thankfully it got a bit better every day, so we were able to do more and more stuff every day, but yeah… not ideal.
We stopped at Gurneys Cider on the way down. Same place we went last year but they’ve added a bunch of new ciders, plus the foraged ones taste different every year. I enjoyed my flight a lot. Still have a few bottles in the fridge.
We did a lot of evening walks. Started off with this flat one at sunset, and worked our way up to climbing half way up Mt Bishop completely in the dark. I wanted to see owls and stuff. We didn’t have that much luck except kangaroos (including this one who wanted to follow Scott home).
Of course we saw wombats in the campground as usual though. They make me giggle every time.
Watching the sunset from a look out. So pretty.
The campground was sooooooo noisy at night. I was very happy when everyone left on Sunday morning. If we go back again I don’t want to go on the weekend at all, even if school holidays are over.
But we were happy that the outdoor cinema was open on Saturday night! We watched Bohemian Rhapsody. I enjoyed it.
My new favourite camping food: bibimbap! Just bring a cast iron pan, some cooked rice, mince beef, stir fry veg, gochujang, and eggs and you’ve got a really delicious dinner. Love that crispy rice.
We played A LOT of games while I was still crippled. I beat Scott at everything. :D Carcassonne, 7 Wonders Duel, Agricola All Creatures Big and Small, Azul, etc. etc.
Scott on the beach near our campsite.
We did a bit of swimming. It wasn’t super warm out so it took me ages to get in the water, but once I did it was alright. We had a lot of fun body surfing. Scott wishes he got a video of me doing a front flip while trying to surf on the inflatable pizza. Maybe he can draw a cartoon of it. That surprisingly didn’t hurt my back at all.
PS what kind of skull is that?? It was pretty big!
Finally my back/hips were back to normal so we hiked up Mt Bishop, and around the Lilly Pilly circuit (which was where I was trying to go that night we accidentally walked up the mountain). I liked the Mt Bishop hike a lot more than Mt Oberon because it was more like a trail instead of a road, through very nice forest. We saw a bush kangaroo and plenty of birds and a “brown lizardy thing” as I was mocked for saying on Instagram.
Now that we’ve really done Wilsons Prom, where should we go next summer??
I think I’ve written before about how once a month Scott organises something for us to do. I was really looking forward to the January activity… ATVing! We’d been wanting to go ATVing again, ever since our 50:50 fun/stressful experience in Oregon.
My coworker Rhys came along as well. I love yes people.
I didn’t take many pictures. :/
We started off by taking the scenic route to Gippsland via Tarra-Bulga National Park. It was a nice drive along the ridge of the hills. We did a little hike to a suspension bridge and tried to find lyre birds. We didn’t see any but we called every bird sound we heard a lyre bird, because how could you say it isn’t, haha.
We continued on to the coast and ate some extremely mediocre fish and chip shop food for lunch. Why did my fish burger have like 18 pieces of beetroot but no kinds of sauce whatsoever? So dry.
Do you like my pants bathing suit?? Best purchase I made in 2019 so far.
There wasn’t a cloud in the sky but it was soooo windy at the beach it didn’t feel very hot at all. We still decided to swim. The water was incredibly warm so we actually stayed in for a while, but once we got out of the water we pretty much had to leave the beach right away.
We stopped in Sale for dinner supplies and then checked into our cabin. Drinks and games ensued. We played Upwords and Azul and Carcassonne.
The cabin was quite remote and the sky was still completely cloudless so I was really looking forward to some top notch stargazing. Unfortunately the brightest fullest moon I have ever seen in my life was rising exactly as it got dark. Pity. It was so bright I swear you could have read a book by moonlight.
Finally the next day was ATV time! Unfortunately it was way too slow and not that exciting. We wanted xxxxxxxxxtreme and we got zzzzzz.
Most of the time we were driving on paths around paddocks at 10 km/hr. Maybe if it had rained recently and there was more mud that would have been fun? But it was dry AF.
Eventually the dude brought us to a race track on his property and we got to drive as fast as we wanted for a while. I had a lot of fun because I had the best ATV. Scott and Rhys had some fun but still weren’t able to go super fast, and Rhys’s ATV was pulling to the right the whole time which wasn’t easy.
So yeah… ATVing was ok but not great. It’s always nice to get out and do an activity but we all wished it had been a little more exciting.