Budj Bim and the Coorong – Beautiful and spiritual places.

Budj Bim in Western Victoria and the Cooring in south Eatern South Australia are beautiful and spiritual places. Particularly spiritual for the Australian Aboriginal people who have occupied and cared for the land for 10,000 years.

The purpose of the trip was to meet up with friends from Adelaide at Kingston SE which sits at the southern end of the Coorong. It also claims to be the lobster capital of Australia!

Budj Bim National Park was a stop on route.

The campground is noted for its families of koalas. Beautiful to see but their growling and grunting through the night makes sleeping a challenge!

The park is set around an old volcano. In the park there are small lava tubes and lava canals you can explore as you walk around the old crater.

The basalt rock covers the local most of the local landscape. On the road out to Tae Rak (Lake Condah) there is Tumuli (lava blisters). Unique basalt rock blisters dotted on the landscape.

Tae rak (Lake Condah) is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Tae Rak incorporates the oldest aquaculture farm in the world. An Eel farm that has operated for 6500 years

Due to recent heavy rains the lake was full of water and the still day meant the water was mirror smooth

At the cultural centre I joined a cultural tour with an aboriginal guide.

It’s about a half day ride from Budj Bim to Kingston SE and the Southern Ocean and an extra special sunset.

The Coorong is formed as the estuary of the Murray River (Australia’s longest river) where is flows into the Southern Ocean.

The Coorong is a series of lakes running south for 200km from the Mouth of the Murray. The lakes are separated from the ocean by high sand dunes.

The lakes vary from almost dry saline ponds to deep expanses of water brimming with wild life.

Climbing over the dunes the Southern Ocean is wild and cold and pretty much deserted.

Of course I could resist taking a dip in the cold ocean.

The Coorong was the setting for the famous Australian movie Storm Boy. Also in the documentary Wash My Soul that examines the life and music of Ruby Hunter and Archie Roach there is stunning cinema photography of the Coorong.

Dotted around the lakes are reminders of colonial settlement like the well dug by Chinese immigrants as they made the long walk from South Australia to the Victorian goldfields in the early 1800s.

In my 2022 travels this was my December trip. There was lots of water in the Coorong which was beautiful. The big flood waters that fell in NSW and Victoria in November are still yet to reach the Coorong and the Ocean. Maybe another visit in the next month or so to see the lakes in flood is on the cards.

A bit like opposite ends of road touring in Australia. The BMW adventure bike and my friend’s EV.

If you would like to find out more about touring in an EV visit: littlecamperevtravels.blog

Around the Coorong the is much else to see and taste, art, wine, food and music.

Looking back at 2022 and the beautiful places visited

New Years Day 2023 is a good time to reflect on some of the beautiful places I has the opportunity to visit.

Beautiful places in Australia, Europe and the UK and in Morocco.

It’s hard to believe that Australia still had its borders closed this time last year.

So January 2022 started with friends in Queensland as part of a road trip 1,900 km north from Melbourne. A PCR test had been needed to get into Queensland to celebrate the New Year

The travel highlight of February was the Snowy Mountains National Park in New South Wales. The Alps of Australia for some camping and trail riding.

Toward the end of February, Australia’s international borders re-opened and the possibility of international travel became real again. April

March offered an opportunity to explore the Snowy River National Park, the famous McKillops Bridge that spans a small gorge cut by the Snowy River as it makes its way to the sea at Marlo.

In April I headed up to the beautiful beaches of Northern New South Wales to catch up with some friends and catch some late Australian Summer before flying to England.

I had been touring my BMW adventure bike most of summer, so it was a good chance to riding the Mighty Moto Guzzi Breva before collecting its English Sister!

I’d swapped Australian late summer for England’s April showers. But in April I had May on my mind. May was for Morocco a dream trip that became the victim of the pandemic in 2020.

So May was just Morocco. Could have been many months what a trip.

It was back to the Iberian Peninsula in June. Spain and Portugal.

July I was back in the UK for the summer heat wave and a bit of culture.

August it was back to the Continent landing in Brittany to commence my trek to Mandelo del Lario for the Moto Guzzi 100th anniversary celebration. So August was France.

September 1, I crossed into Italy.

October was back to England and flying back to Australia.

Back home in October and November there was a chance to revisit some of my favourite places and with lots of rain a chance to chase waterfalls.

December is a blog in print.

And now it’s 2023!

Happy New Year peace and good will to all.

Summer is finally in Victoria, Australia

On a clear warm spring day with a touch of summer in the air there is no better place to head the down the Great Ocean Road for a ride with a friend.

One of my favourite stops on the Great Ocean Road is Wye River, a beautiful beachside village.

The Wye General Store Cafe is a great spot for lunch and a cold beer on a hot day.

I should have gone for a swim in the Southern Ocean while there but the riding was just too good.

Mid week, little traffic, no wind and warm on this beautiful road. Perfect biking conditions.

So back home it was on the bicycle and down to Williamstown Beach, my local, for a dip.

The weather is still going to be volatile in Australia’s south east but summer is definitely in the air.

And on a warm evening Melbourne shows off her colours when you look across the bay from Williamstown.

The signs of Spring are around.

The Noon Flowers are in full bloom at the salt Marsh in the Jawbone Reserve.

Also the water birds are returning to the mangroves and mudflats to feed and breed. The wet conditions in inland Australia may mean that some birds may not come to the coast but stay in the inland wetland. But it was great to see some arrivals like;

Spoonbills;

Egrets;

White faced herons;

And the old friend that rarely leave, the Australian Pelican. This one was catching a fish. Hunting, priming, then strike. Two attempts for two fish.

There are also beautiful views in and from the reserve.

Another sign of spring is finally here was the nice turn up of Guzzis at the monthly coffee catchup on Saturday.

A collection of bikes at the coffee kiosk in Lygon Street an Italian Hub in Melbourne

While it’s still a battle for Spring to kick winter out the door, it will prevail. Such is the cycle of the seasons. Meanwhile way up north in Queensland. Julia Creek has experienced its hottest ever October day- 43.9c.

When travelling in Europe people ask me – What is the weather like in Australia? I answer – It depends where and when. The above is a good example of why!

Its a Southern Hemisphere October but doesn’t feel like Spring

Its been a wet spring in Australia with floods right across the country.  Even parts of Australia that is normally desert is in flood.

In the little part of the country that I call home, Melbourne, has had its fair share of rain and at one of the local fields the new sport bicycle water skiing has been invented.  And a fun sport for the family as we can see.

But for me my cycle trail is often blocked at the causeway at Koroit Creek Estuary which floods at high tide.

One of the quaint aspects of this little part of Melbourne is the little fishing villages up the little inlets.

There are breaks in the rain and that is an opportunity of enjoying the aspects of beauty of my part of Port Philip.

I hope you enjoy this little aspects as well.