Saturday, 31 January 2009

On the road again

After almost four weeks in Melbourne watching daytime TV, going for breakfasts at noon and soaking up the sunshine we packed our bags and said goodbye to the Ellen Degeneres talkshow.

Our first trip was down the coast, following the great ocean road south of Melbourne stopping at the twelve apostles. The eight (yes, sadly therer's only eight left of the twelve) rock formations were absolutely splendid and we were taken aback by their beauty. Having that said they still didn't manage to be the highlight of the day. No, that race is between the cuddly koalas and the jumping kangaroos. Still not sure of the winner but we greatly enjoyed spotting both. It is a strange sensation seeing what looks like a teddybear hugging a tree or watching two kangaroos jumping through the sprinkler system on a cricket field. 

A one hour plane journey took us to Sydney, the city of boats, bridges, opera houses and even more sunshine. 

We arrived at 7:30am and went straight for the Harbour Bridge, enjoying a 3 hour breakfast while leisurely taking in the views of the famous Port Jackson and the ferries that came and went. A very nice start.

From there, we walked around the corner and there it was, the Sydney Opera House. It's incredible how something that has been seen so many times on tv or in newspapers can still take your breath away in real life. We snaked our way through the throngs of tourists to venture inside (and use the bathrooms with the incredible sinks that Jeff knew about). 

Sadly there were no cheap shows available to us but we were delighted to find out that there was a free Opera performance in the Botanic Gardens on Saturday night and that was enjoyed with beers on the ground, bats flying overhead and literally thousands of people all around us. A beautiful night.

Other Sydney sights have been the brash Bondi Beach, the Pyrmont Fish Market (2nd largest in the world behind Japan's) and the Manly suburb which is a ferry ride from the city centre and the perfect place to have a Sunday afternoon breakfast, which we are doing as we type this.

Tomorrow? That road awaits yet again as we hire a car and drive up the coast to visit friends and see new sights.

We are learning that the thing about flashpacking is, it doesn't work so well when you aren't on the move!

Sydney Photos

An early breakfast soon after arriving in Sydney, the Harbour bridge reflecting just over Ann's shoulder.

Listening to Opera in the Botanic Gardens.

Jeff does a rather terrible "Which way to the beach?" muscle-man attempt.

The real kangaroos didn't stay still enough to get a good photo of them. (And they were less huggable)

It'll soon be goodbye to Sydney (and the Opera House) as we head towards Brisbane.


Ann looks forward to the next 12km

Jeff and a koala strike a (similar) pose for the camera.

The highlight of Ann's day (and perhaps the whole trip!)

Just like a teddy bear but no, that is the real thing.

A final farewell to the wild koalas as we head off to Sydney.

Australia photos

Jeff at one of many stops along the great ocean road.

Two travellers and Twelve (eight) apostles.

An attempt to hide from the sun on federation square.

Coloured huts on Brighton beach.

Watching Verdasco breeze through the first round at the Australian Open.

Saturday, 27 December 2008

Christmas Photos

Erick's Guesthouse - Our Christmas lodgings (complete with a much needed mosquito net!)

Ann checks out a snowman built on the beach.

25th December 2008 - A very different kind of Christmas

Hamock swing at the first guesthouse we stayed at. Thanks to the lizards and the goats and the mosquitos, we didn't stay more than one night.

Jeff relaxes at Gapang beach as our time on Pulau Weh comes to an end,

Monday, 22 December 2008

God Jul / Merry Christmas !

We fly this morning to Banda Aceh and then onto a ferry to get to the 'paradise island' of Pulau Weh where our Christmases shall be spent.

There will be no snow, no hams, no turkey and not too many presents, but we think we'll get by just fine walking on a sunny, warm beach watching the sea turtles waddling on by.

Hope everyone has a fantastic Christmas!

(We'll be back in the land of civilization from the 28th. In Georgetown, Malaysia to be exact)

Sunday, 21 December 2008

New Photos from Indonesia

1. Picture Perfect Bali!

2. The Volcano Gunung Bromo

3. Where Ann was drawn into the party with the hyper indonesian tourists

4. Night of arrival at the beautiful, relaxing lake Toba

5. Jeff cools down after the jungle hike up to the waterfall outside Tuk Tuk in Lake Toba