CRUISIN AUSTRALIA QLD ADVENTURE, 2014
With- Karen and Keith Holmes
Friday 16th May- Today our flight arrived from Perth to Brisbane at 2 pm; we collected our 6 Berth Discovery motorhome from the Cruisin’ Brisbane Branch and caught up with friends I haven’t seen for 18 years. It was raining but we were happy to start our adventure around Australia as the Cruisin’ Ultimate Travel Reporters.
Saturday 17th May – Today we went to the Indian Motorcycle Museum of Australia. This was only opened on March 15, 2014 and will impress any motorbike enthusiast. Adults $15 / under 16 free. There was some great art by internationally renowned muralist- Eric Henn. They have several areas to sit and enjoy a coffee and chat to the owner, Darryl White. He will even start one of his Indians and you can sit on it for the perfect photo opportunity!
Open- sat 9:00am – 4:00pm. Sun 9:00am – 2:00 pm 419 Newman Road, Geebung, QLD.
Café –gift shop- tours and events. Find them on Facebook
How’s that for an awesome mural?
Today we had lunch at The Belvedere Hotel at beautiful Woody Point in Brisbane. It was an affordable and great lunch with views of Woody Point Jetty and Bay.
Later we headed off to Bribie Island to set up van for the first night (my girlfriend wouldn’t let me sleep in the van when she had a perfectly good bed in the house, lol) Booked into Bongaree Caravan Park- Welsby Parade, Bribie Island. Ph- 07 34081054. 2 Adults, powered site- $32.00.
Arrived just in time for sunset – awesome.
Sunday 18th May, 2014. Bribie Island markets are well worth visiting as there is plenty of fresh and cheap fruit. I paid $2.50 for a whole sweet pineapple! The market also had some great artworks.
We decided to start heading inland as rain was about and we were hoping it would be better when heading south again along the coastal road. Was nice wandering past the spectacular Glasshouse Mountain. We headed to Beerwah to the Steve Irwin Australian Zoo. Was very impressed with the cleanliness of the zoo and even spotted Terri Irwin as we were leaving.
Keith showing his guns with Steve…..
We were very lucky to have been in Kilcoy when a heap of vintage cars and bikes came through so parked up and enjoyed the show. Brought back a few memories of our miss-spent youth.
Love that the fruit here is so fresh and sweet. I bought a massive bag of mandarins for $5.00 at Blackbutt.
We camped up for the night at Kingaroy Big 4 Caravan Park. BBQ for tea in the camper’s kitchen with some backpackers from Belgium and Germany, very clean park.
Monday 19th May, 2014- After a good sleep we visited Chris and Rob Patch at the Peanut Van and stocked up on some fancy flavoured bags of nut’s and had some shot’s taken in the peanuts! Chris and Rob were the winners of the Cruisin’ Ultimate Romantic Escape promotion run earlier in the year.
Had a great visit to the Kingaroy Heritage Museum and Art Gallery and learnt all about the local peanut history. This is also located in the Information Centre so heaps combined in one building. Both Museum and Gallery were free entry.
From Kingaroy we headed north to Captains Paddock Vineyard to sample their wines. We were greeted by Merlot the red Kelpie- Queensland’s first wine dog. It seemed a popular place with locals and tourists as had a café and several chalets, we took some nice pics and grabbed 2 bottles of “Happy Days” a sweet white and a jar of Shiraz Jelly for a girlfriend.
Wandering further north we came across a quaint little town named Wondai. Here they have a great woodwork shop which kept my husband busy while I wondered across the road to an antique and collectors store and as I was leaving noticed another similar store around the corner which would probably save us a few $$.
We planned on doing a few more kilometres before setting up camp but the G.P.S kept wanting to send us down dirt roads. We eventually set up camp in Gayndah but not before seeing some corn crops and cotton fields harvested; this is the livelihood of the locals in the Burnett area.
Having a mad desire to see as many “BIG” icons in Australia I was very pleased to find the Big Orange as we were driving into Gayndah. Keith even found himself a friend – Gay Dan, the orange festival man.
After setting up camp we were guaranteed a great feed at the Grand Hotel- there was no disappointment there.
One simply cannot go past the oldest pub in the oldest town and not stop for a beer- that would be un- Australian.
Tuesday 20th – Waking up next to this is sad…. Australia needs more water… but not floods
This morning we slept in before heading north to Mundubbera. The Sausage King was a delightful man and the sausages were amazing. Cute little town surviving on mandarins and cotton.
Always a funny guy. Lol
Mundubbera Caravan Park.
It’s a tough job….but someone’s gotta do it…..
To be in the heart of Queensland’s farming industry and see first-hand the work of local farmers was astounding….and that’s from an Australian, imagine what it would mean to a tourist??
Drove in to the night but then parked up for the night at Emerald…
Wednesday 21 May, 2014 – This morning we woke up to a flat tyre but a quick trip to Emeralds tyre place sorted that out. I wandered up the street to seek out local breakfast places…found Legendary Diner- kept the worms at bay…
Emerald is home to one of several Van Gogh replica art pieces. Here they have the Big Easel standing at an impressive height of 25 metres.
We headed to Sapphire and onto Rubyvale and had a good look in several shops. For a town surrounded by gemstones there weren’t too many flash looking houses there. Be careful going in and out as there are no fences and a few cows about. Lots of quirky things to get your attention.
Heading back to the Capricorn Highway we navigated towards Barcaldine which has a colourful history centred on the Great Shearers Strike of 1891. Here we have the worth visiting Tree of Knowledge, unfortunately just after it was just put on the National Heritage list it was poisoned and never recovered. It’s now place pride of place in town and the history here for the worker is worth a visit. For the true blue Aussie bogan it’s time to mention that there are 5 pubs along Oaks street- all over 100 years old.
You know you’re in the outback when you have to keep alert for local animals- great for the photographer but not for the damage it can do to your vehicle and going by the side of the road there’s many cars with dents in them.
Next we headed west and came across Ilfracombe were they have a mile of old machinery.
Sunset while heading into Longreach was awesome and then to book into the Caravan Park to find they have a restaurant and a great deal of $10.00 bangers and mash with complementary wine and live music and…. With $5’s extra you can have coffee and cake
Thursday 22 May, 2014. We headed back to Ilfracombe to check out the museum and Hiltons corner- an Aladdin’s cave of old memorabilia and a great bloke to chat to. Both well worth the back-track.
Back in Longreach we chose not to go to The Stockman’s Hall of Fame as it was almost $100 entry and when we heard that they had employed a German to design the place to look like an Australian Homestead we felt we wouldn’t support a place that didn’t support Australia.
We instead enjoyed ourselves visiting the Qantas Centre and immersed ourselves in the history. A great place well worth visiting with several theatres with great informative shows.
Winton was our next stop- the home of Banjo Patterson’s writing of Waltzing Matilda and opals. The Age of Dinosaurs museum was interesting and all around had a dinosaur theme.
Heading off again, we free-parked 75 km’s out of town and enjoyed the sunset.
To Be Continued………