What’s the scariest thing about travel in Australia? Sharks? Crocodiles? Spiders? Not what you think

CrocodileYou might think the scariest thing about travel in Australia is the killer wildlife, and you’re right.

Great white sharks, huge crocodiles in all the waterways, the world’s deadliest snakes, big spiders, blue ringed octopus at the most famous (and popular) beaches, irikandji – the list goes on.

But they’re not the scariest.

The scariest thing about travelling in Australia is mosquitoes.

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Explore the elements – earth, air, fire, water

FireIs there a better place than Australia to explore the elements?

The extremes in Australia are celebrated in poetry and song, and have been embedded in our psyche for thousands of years. The elements here – earth, air, fire, water – are the basis of life and culture.

Aboriginal society knew the importance of the elements and of looking after the earth. Secret and sacred waterholes were looked after carefully and celebrated for their life giving qualities, fire was an important part of managing the land and its resources, and the air and skies above were a source of stories as well as a guide to the seasons and songlines.

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Canoeing on the Bellinger River. Amid killer cows.

20150308_120547[1]Have you ever seen 5 ‘women of a certain age’ canoeing? Two of them in a double canoe?

It looks pretty much as you’re imagining it does.

After 3 days spent hanging around in Sawtell, dividing our time between the beach and home, with perhaps a walk or some fishing in between, we decided we all wanted to do something a bit more active. The golf that three of our members played doesn’t count as active.

So in between glasses of wine and hands of 500, we poured over the guidebooks and came up with … drum roll please …. hiring canoes on the Bellinger River.

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Cuckoo, cuckoo. What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger

Eurasian-Cuckoo-Mital-Patel-525x700Have you ever met a cuckoo?

Cuckoos are brood parasites. They lay their eggs in other birds’ nests, and when the young hatch they get rid of the other babies. Sometimes they’ll kick the other eggs out before they have time to hatch, other times they’ll worm their way in, taking food from the other chicks and/or pushing them out of the nest.

Some people behave just like baby cuckoos.

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Beaches, hibiscus and fish & chips

The beachWe came for three days, and five days later we’re still here.

Wouldn’t you if you could?

Five days of perfect weather in a beach side location. Who wouldn’t extend their holiday.

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The beach disappeared while I wasn’t looking!

20150305_083726There’s nothing like a coastal road trip to make you think about climate change. Or is that just me?

Doc and I camped at Sawtell a few years ago. I can’t remember where we were going to or coming from, but I do remember our night in Sawtell. The camping area is right by the creek & the beach, with a boardwalk along the rocks. The main street is wide, with gorgeous fig trees and gardens along the middle, and the cafes make great coffee. And there’s a long beach with soft white sand.

So when a friend asked me if I wanted to come away to Sawtell for a few days I jumped at the chance. I didn’t even need the inducement of free luxury accommodation, though it certainly helped. As did its location on the north coast of NSW so the weather is a bit warmer than in Sydney.

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