Thursday, July 9, 2015


Spent a couple of days here at Sapphire,
it would have to be one of the friendliest places we have stayed although there isn’t much to see and do other than fossick for sapphires and zircons.
We camped at the town reserve which we shared with cows and guinea fowls  

they told us there were also camels and a donkey roaming around the town as well but we weren’t lucky enough to have them visit while we were there.
Fred and I did some fossicking and as we knew nothing about this fascinating pastime we opted to go to Armfest Mines where they give you a free tour and instructions on how to find your gems. They then sell you a bucket of wash and you use their equipment to wash your dirt and look for the gems. 
The best part of this deal is after your have finished your fossick they check your dirt and find the ones you missed for you and then access what you have found and tell you whats good and whats bad.We found about a cup of gems and out of that we found 2 that were worth having cut and made into a piece of jewellery.

We had a great time and I think we had value for money at $20 per person.

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Blackdown Tableland National Park

 Blackdown Tableland National Park
We spent a day exploring this park, we left the van at Dingo as the road into the park is unsuitable for caravans.
Our first stop was Yaddamen Dhina Lookout which gave  us sweeping views of the distant ranges and down onto the plains we had driven over to reach the park.

We also did a short 3km walk down to Two Mile Creek this was a pretty little walk with lots of wildflowers I was surprised at how many were in flower as it is still winter, the prettiest were Wattle and Sarsaparilla plants that were entangled together
 The smell of the Wattle was devine.
Back in the truck and onward to Minosa Camping area where we did the Goon Goon Dina Circuit Walk which took us past the remains of old cattle yards and along the creeks to Ghungalu Rock Art site. This was only a small site with mostly hand stencil art.

Next stop was Gudda Gumoo where we walked down into a gorge and the Rainbow Waters Waterfall. This waterfall was beautiful and the gorge stunning, it was lush and green in comparison to the rest of the park. The walk was 4km and involved 240 steps down and thus 240 steps back up. The park brochure list this walk as needing a high level of fitness but we found it easy walking.

Time for lunch then we did the 19 km 4wd loop road, most of this was easy driving with just 3 sections where we needed to put the truck into low range 4x4 and do a careful scramble over large boulders there were lots of scenic outcrops of sandstone in this section of the park.

 It was then homeward bound for a well deserved happy hour.            

Sunday, December 14, 2014

cruise part 3

Mystery Island
Had a very early start and were on the first tender to leave the ship this morning but so worth it to get our snorkeling in early before the hoards got off the ship. The water and coral here are stunning. 
We snorkeled and swam until lunchtime then we split up to wander around the markets, Fred and I had a mooch then went and had a cup of tea. Was so quaint you got a teapot cum kettle of hot water and 2 mugs and 2 teabags and a piece of cake, the table was rough planks and the chairs and in fact everything was old and mismatched but the people running it were so polite and friendly. I so regret I didn't think to take photos.
Mystery Island is a "deserted" island but as ships pull in almost every day and islanders come across from another near by island and set up their markets stalls to sell the usual tourist rubbish I personally thought it was a misrepresentation and felt a little cheated


Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Cruise continued

Our first island stop was Lifou  and the morning started a little stressful as Fred and I disagreed on where to go.  Fred reckoned we had to go one way and I reckoned we had to go the opposite way. We had been told about a really wonderful snorkelling area and our instructions were to walk up the hill past the white church to a car park  but they forgot to tell us there were 2 white churches and we of course went to the wrong church and couldn't find a carpark so after a nice  long uphill walk until we flagged down a passing car and asked directions and sure enough we were going the wrong way so retraced our steps to the intersection and had a family discussion and decided we would just find a nice spot and snorkel. While Fred Jay and the 3 kids hopped in the water the girls and I explored a little and took about a million photos.

From there we made our way back to the main beach area, Fred Erin and Renae went to a cave area with a fabulous swimming hole and Kris, Jay, I and the kids returned to the beach and swam til it was time to return to the ship

The next days stop was the Isle of Pines. We all enjoyed todays island so much more than yesterdays.
The beach and snorkeling were excellent and the island really picturesque.

Monday, December 8, 2014

Carnival Legend Cruise

As the cruise lasted 11 days I will do my blog over a couple of posts so you don't get tired of reading.
Our cruise left from Circular Quay in Sydney so we flew down the day before and met up with my
2 daughters and their spouses and my 3 grandchildren who flew in from Adelaide to join Fred and myself for the cruise.

I will start with describing the ship and what we did abroad and then describe the islands we visited.
The ship was huge it is 963 ft long with decks 2 to 10 for the sailing guest which number 2124 when full and approximately a 1000 crew to look after us and believe you me the staff do an excellent job, always smiling and helpful whatever the problem.
I won't list everything on the ship as this post will go on for ever but there were a heap of eateries, bars and entertainment areas to suit the different ages from very young to very mature.
the ship
looking overboard
The Punchliner Comedy Room
1 of the bar areas 
dining room 
every night we had a different towel animal on our bed

The deck at night

part of a deck
Our first port of call was Noumea and it was my least favourite stop of the whole cruise take away the  different language I could have been at home, my view may have been tainted by it being sunday and nothing very much was open but suffice to say I probably won't return.
a beach in Noumea

Friday, October 31, 2014

Millmerran part 2

Tractor Pulling

This was interesting and much to my surprise I really enjoyed watching it.
As far as I could work out it is old restored Tractors that compete against each other pulling a weighted sled over a track seeing who can pull the fastest over the longest distance. ( I may be wrong so if you know definitely what they are doing please feel free to correct me.)

Stage  two
This is where they have smaller shows and demonstrations happening I watched a presentation by The Cast Iron Boys on how to use your camp ovens and a cook-off with Paul and Blair from my kitchen rules both were very enjoyable, there were other shows held here but I didn't bother watching them as you can’t fit in everything happening over the weekend so just have to pick what interests you.
Camp Oven Cooking Competitions

These were happening over the whole weekend some were interesting to watch and others a bit boring so we just wander back and forth watching them in between everything else  

Market Stalls
As always there were the usual markets stalls that are part and parcel of a festival so had tastes of lots of yummy food and sips of wine and of course had to buy what I tasted and liked.

There were lots of other things as well that we didn't have time to watch and if I list them all I will be here forever so in summary The Millmerran Camp Oven Festival was a great weekend