We are on the road again starting tomorrow morning. About mid morning we will hop in the car, drive to the airport and catch a “jet airplane”. So, where are we going? We are headed back to Australia. In a couple of days we will look like this picture again, after spending many many hours on 3 airplanes. This will be our third trip there since the year 2000. For those that followed us previously will note that we were there just last September and October (2013). Yes, we like Australia, but we have things and events that keep drawing us back.
We were seriously thinking of going back while we were there last year, and being retired and still able to enjoy traveling we got serious about it early this year. This biggest issue we had to overcome was Monty’s bi-lateral knee replacement that took place in January. His recovery has been successful. Katie had some issues to work on also, but thank to the miracle of modern medicine, she is also ready to go.
What is taking us back? Katie is a member of an internet quilt group (The Magpies) that has people from all over the world. The group periodically meets up at various places. The last one we attended was in California in the fall of 2012 (San Jose quilt show). This year the group is meeting in Perth Australia (Perth Quilt show). Then the other draw for us to Australia is that Monty’s sister and her husband live there. There are our two excuses for traveling “down-under” again.
Previous trips have taken us to mostly East Coast locations. We have been to Brisbane, Sydney, Tasmania, Canberra, and about a week in the outback at Uluru (Ayers Rock). This trip we will be on the West Coast at Perth (Western Australia) with travel into the areas around that city. We are also going to spend a couple of days in Melbourne (Victoria) on our way to Perth.
We will fly to Los Angeles tomorrow and catch an Air New Zealand flight tomorrow night. The flight takes us direct to Auckland , New Zealand (12 hour flight). There we have about a 2 hour layover, a chance to stretch our legs, and then continue our travels into Melbourne (about another 4 hours).
For this trip we are traveling in premium economy which gives us a little more room. The seats look something like this:
The map gives you an idea of our flight route once we get to Auckland, It is surprising that it is almost a straight shot from Auckland to Melbourne and then to Perth.
While in Melbourne we plan on getting a bus tour of the city and a cruise of the Yarra River on Monday and then on Tuesday we get a guided tour of Phillip Island with a bush tucker lunch, Koala Conservation Center, Nobbies and Seal Rocks and a Penguin Parade. That will be a fun two days and hopefully give us a chance to change our body clocks.
Then it is a flight from Melbourne to Perth where we will spend the rest of our time. There we will meet up with the rest of the Magpies (we will tour Melbourne with some of them), and will meet up with Monty’s sister and her husband (Sylvia and Roy).
The first few days will be spent in Perth visiting the quilt show, and visiting various places in Perth, including Caversham, Fremantle, and Kings park. There is also an excellent rail museum and aircraft museum in Perth.
Toward the end of May, Katie, Roy,Sylvia and myself will be traveling by car around the area south of Perth.
We expect to tour around Margaret River, walk along a path at the top of giant trees, and visit a place called Wave Rock (Google it). This five day drive will give us a good feel for the countryside and sites in the area. We also hope to get a chance to go north of Perth to the Pinnacles.
So, over the next three weeks, keep an on on this Travel Log. I probably won’t update it every day. It depends somewhat on the availability of internet connections and well as how tired we are at the end of the day. But you can expect pictures and narrative on each blog. For those that wish, you can comment and ask questions as we go along. I think you may have to get a google log on to do that, but we welcome the comments and the contact.
Tomorrow being a travel day, and since we skip a day crossing the international date line, our first update will probably be on the 18th (Australia time). Until then………….cheers.