Heading to Melbourne: Great Ocean Road
Country: Australia by Lisette
Just arrived in Adelaide via the southern coastline from Perth (see this blog post about Wave Rock) to sleep in a bed, do the laundry, reorganize my backpack and bugger off to the next tour to get to Melbourne for the last leg of my trip Down Under.
In hindsight, I believe I saw and did too much in a very short time because I couldn’t really appreciate the beauty of nature and tried to be invisible during the tour. So here is a slightly negative (and unfair?) blog post about the Great Ocean Road.
First highlight of the tour is visiting Grampians National Park that is very beautiful but has way too many tourists for my liking. I hiked to the Pinnacles without much trouble; I sure am getting better in hiking and scrambling on boulders. The McKenzie Falls were not so impressive, but hey after 7 months traveling (including New Zealand), I’ve seen just too many waterfalls to go crazy over this one.
Most interesting moment of the day was when I came back to the parking lot to find out the tour bus had left without me! Thanks to my mobile phone I was able to call the reservation office that tried to reach the guide. Within 20 minutes the bus returned, one of my fellow travelers had noticed my stuff on the seat without me.
We stopped for a moment at London Bridge. I wasn’t really impressed but snickered when I heard the story. In 1990 the arch between the main land and the island fell, trapping two people who were having an affair. They were rescued with the TV highlighting it all and so the magazines afterwards. Needless to say both marriages ended.
Everyone I have spoken to about Australia and who has been there, speaks lovingly about the Twelve Apostles. I was disappointed… you could only see eight of them form the current viewpoint and I found so many more interesting places in Oz. I adored Uluru, loved Kakadu National Park, and greatly enjoyed Cape York, to name just a few places. I was sad to learn that is barely any information known about the indigenous significance of the Twelve Apostles.
Different for me was the walk at Otway Fly Treetop, where you walk through a rainforest (how weird is that in Australia?) at the same height as the treetops! It is quite interesting but you won’t hear me raving about this place. However, if you’re in the neighbourhood, I would go (especially if you like zip lining).
After a couple of days I am welcomed by Rich in Melbourne whom I met in New Zealand. He’s been here for a month and decided immediately to be my guide. We had fun visiting all the major attractions, bumming around, watching Australian football, and so forth.
I fell in love with the city, this wonderful country and its rich Aboriginal history (though much of it is gone) and was saddened by the difficult relationships between the Indigenous people and the Government. And then, then it was time for me to return home. I was looking forward to seeing my family again, laugh with my friends and yes, even going back to work.