December 2016 - January 2017
  • Day2

    Like a local

    December 9, 2016 in Australia ⋅ ⛅ 12 °C

    Today I am happy to be "Melbourner" . When we started our travels I mentioned to Roedolf when we go somewhere I want to pretend I live there. I want to blend in and do regular things that the locals do. Who cares about the tallest building and all the touristy stuff when 9 out of 10 times it doesn't really live up to the expectation. Hence we kicked of Friday morning with a run to MCG to pick up out cricket tickets and grabbed a coffee in Fitzroy gardens , a place that is a local hotspot.

    Our airbnb was also handpicked by me in a quirky neighborhood called Richmond, everything is walkable or a tram ride away. Our home is vintage with a chicness. I am happy with the Laura Ashley towels and very sharp chopping knives ( for chopping veggies not killing big hisbands) Vietnamese noodle stalls, Greek tavernas, and classic Australian pubs all line the main streets of Richmond. This culinarily and culturally diverse neighbourhood also boasts hip bars, farmers markets, and shopping options, from big box stores to small boutiques. Off the main streets and on the Yarra River bikers cruise by while rowers stroke along to the rhythm of chirping birds.

    {Issy}
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  • Day2

    MCG - The cathedral of sport

    December 9, 2016 in Australia ⋅ ⛅ 17 °C

    According to tripadvisor the number one thing to do in Melbourne is go to the MCG (Melbourne Cricket Ground, not the most imaginative name) and do the sports museum. We thought whats better than actually watching a cricket game there instead of just going to the sport museum. Unfortunately the Proteas was done beating up the Aussies so we had to settle for the Aussies hammering the Kiwis.

    Dylan Marshall who's from Melbourne suggested we have a couple of middies (mid strength beers 🍻) and meat pies. Those meat pies didn't look much better than a garage pie but wow they tasted amazing, as Dobbo said zero nutritional value but packed with flavor 😜.

    As a bonus, Dobbo had a meeting in Melbourne around lunch time and he planned to do some calls after but he decided to join us for the cricket halfway through the first innings, so we knocked back a few middies.

    Australia managed to scrap to 264/8 in their 50 overs after they lost two early wickets and kept losing wickets regularly. Dave Warner however batted through the innings and scored 156 to keep the runs ticking over. The black Caps then started really well scoring 50 runs in no time before losing the first wicket. It was basically a wicket feast from there onwards and they were bowled out for only 147 in 36 overs.

    {Roedolf}
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  • Day3

    Chicken n beer

    December 10, 2016 in Australia ⋅ ☁️ 14 °C

    While we were at the cricket Isabel found the little restaurant called "Chicken n beer", it had a Friday special for $1 ribs and $40 beer tower. Since we have been craving ribs for a while now we decided to go there after the cricket.

    When the waiter said 12 ribs per person is a medium size portion we should have known these ribs was not going to be pork ribs and maybe the restaurants name should have given us a hit. However I have never really seen or heard of chicken ribs being worthwhile to eat, I mean KFC don't have chicken ribs on their menu.

    When the ribs arrived we all looked at the plate and it was like the light went on for all us at the same time as we realized for the first time we are having chicken ribs. It was hilarious!

    The ribs or whatever part of the chicken was amazing, it only had a very thin bone and loads of juicy meat. Best of all it was fried to perfection even Isabel said she loved it.

    On a side note, someone on a NZ radio said, there are two kinds of people those who love fried food (I am one of those) and those who say the don't like fried food but actually they do (Isabel for sure).

    Tonight I learned 2 things; how to pour a beer out of a beer tower and that chickens have ribs and they taste much better than any chicken wing I have ever had.

    {Roedolf}
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  • Day3

    Fun day in Melbourne

    December 10, 2016 in Australia ⋅ ⛅ 18 °C

    We had a nice slow start to the day with a cheeky run before breakfast. After breakfast we took a cab to the CBD.

    We rented bike share bikes for the day. For those of you who have never done this, bike share bike are now found in most big cities in the US and I am sure around the world. Basically there are bike racks everywhere in and around the CBD and you can take a bike and cycle for 30min before having to dock it without paying extra. You can take unlimited 30min rides in 24 hours of AUS$3 per bike and you can dock the bike back at any station so no need to go back to where you started.
    Its really a nice way to see a city as you get to cover way more ground than on foot but slow enough to take in all the attractions and atmosphere.

    After exploring most of the CBD and smashing a cold one at a rooftop bar the hunger called and we jumped on google to find a ribs spot. This time we made sure the ribs were in fact pork 😜. The big boy BBQ situated in Hardware Lane, a lane full of little cool restaurants and takeaway sports was where we found some of the best pork glazed ribs I have had in quite some time.

    {Roedolf}
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  • Day5

    12 Apostels

    December 12, 2016 in Australia ⋅ ⛅ 12 °C

    The rugged splendor that rise majestically over the blue waters of the southern ocean of Victoria left us in awe.

    "Creation is the canvas on which God has painted his character"

    {Issy}

  • Day5

    Great Ocean Road

    December 12, 2016 in Australia ⋅ ☀️ 10 °C

    Off to an early start to meet our Melbourne Coastal Tour guide at Federation square. We grabbed a fresh brewed coffee Melbourne style and hopped on the mini van to explore the Great Ocean Road.

    Our first stop is the Memorial Arch which is a tribute to the World War One servicemen who built the Great Ocean Road. The present arch is the third built to replace the second one destroyed in the Ash Wednesday bushfires of February 1983. There is also a beautiful beach that we strolled on.

    Lorne is set between the sparkling waters of Loutit Bay in Victoria and the majesty of the Otway National Park, It is a spectacular and refreshing place, where the bush meets the beach. We drive up to Teddys Lookout to look at the beautiful coastline.

    Next stop was Kennet River which is known for being one of the few places in Australia where you can actually see Koalas in the wild. Koalas have minimal energy needs because of the small size of their brains, hence they sleep up to 16 hours a day and nap a further 2 to 3 hours. We saw 4 Koalas, all of them were snuggled against eucalyptus branches and their faces were completely hidden. Not exactly a national geographic postcard pose from the Koalas (hence no pictures). I did find it interesting to learn more about this cuddly creatures. They only have a lifespan of 10-12 years and basically live on a eucalyptus tree diet. Koalas eat about 50 out of the 500 different types of eucalypt leaves but mainly manna gum, blue gum, swamp gum and red river gum. Baby Koalas (joeys) are born hairless, blind, and earless. Tiny at birth, the joey crawls into the pouch on the mother’s belly where they live for the first 6 months before they will start to spend time outside the pouch.

    We also spotted wild Parakeets and cockatoo birds which was pretty cool.

    Next stop will be Lunch @ Apollo bay

    {Issy}
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  • Day5

    Great ocean road hike

    December 12, 2016 in Australia ⋅ ☀️ 13 °C

    After our picnic lunch on the beach at Apollo Bay bay, we did a short circle hike in the Great Otway National park... some of the trees and ferns are about 100 years old making it a lovely rainforest experience.

    We drove close to Gibsons beach where the van dropped us of and we walked a portion of the famous 8day great ocean hike. The limestone cliffs and dramatic drops against the blue ocean was magnificent. We climbed quite a few steps to make our way to the carpark where our driver picked us up.

    Next stop the world renowned 12 Apostles...

    {Issy}
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  • Day5

    Picnic on the Great Ocean Road

    December 12, 2016 in Australia ⋅ ☀️ 26 °C

    During the gold rush in Victoria Melbourne used to be the second most wealthiest city in the world. Then during the first world war the perfect storm actually hit Melbourne with the gold resources dwindling to nothing, plus the economic recession after the war caused Melbourne to suffer financially. Some wealthy business men came together and created the Great Ocean Road trust and planned this project to build the world best driving road as an effort to help stimulate the economy and create jobs. Little did they know back then that this road will generate over AUS$2 Billion in tourism revenue annually today.

    We got on the Great Ocean Road just before the Eastern View point which is also where the memorial arch was erected. We stopped at various lookouts on the way to Apollo bay where we stopped for a picnic lunch.

    We packed some ham, cheese, tomato and cucumber sandwiches and wraps with flavored tuna cheese and tomatoes. We basically had a feast on the beach. I was so full felt like passing out right there for an afternoon nap.

    {Roedolf}
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  • Day5

    Great Ocean Road without an ocean

    December 12, 2016 in Australia ⋅ ☀️ 19 °C

    Shortly after the Great Ocean Road project reached Apollo Bay the project ran out of money. This was a bit of a disaster as the aim of this road was to link Melbourne to the world famous 12 Apostles, therefore if the road did not make it there, it would defeat the point of building the road in the first place.
    In order to get the road all the way to the 12 Apostles the project made use of other existing roads, used for the logging industry inland. By connecting existing roads they managed to get the road completed all the way to the 12 Apostles zig zagging inland close to the Shipwreck Coast where it continues next to the coast again.

    This little inland detour meant we stopped at the Great Otway rainforest where you find some of the worlds larges trees today, only the Muïr Woods in California boasts with trees taller than these trees.

    Unthinkable that these trees are a couple of hundred years old and still considered juvenile, they become ready to produce fertile seeds at a very old age. It is truly like walking amongst dinosaurs in this forest as even some of the ferns here grow a couple of hundred years old.

    Our first stop on the shipwreck coast was Gibson's Beach where were able to get down to the beach and experience the enormous cliffs and stone structures up-close and personal. Breathtakingly beautiful it makes you feel so small in this wonderful creation of God.

    {Roedolf}
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  • Day5

    Great Ocean Road - 12 Apostles

    December 12, 2016 in Australia ⋅ ☀️ 24 °C

    The 12 Apostles was first called the piglets but this was not a very marketable name to attract tourists so the changed it to the 12 Apostles. Actually, there have never been 12 but in fact only 9 structures (currently there are only 7 structures left as the ocean has eroded 2 to the point that they fell over) on the beach thats called the 12 Apostles.

    The size of these stone structures and the surrounding cliffs reminds you of the majestic sight of the Grand Canyon. The stormy ocean just adds more mystery to it.

    {Roedolf}
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