Australia Day 26: Bents Basin and Wombats!

So, the next day we wanted to walk around in the area of Bents Basin State Conservation Area and maybe spot even more wombats. Yes, that was the ultimate goal!

When you walk a bit, starting at the campsite, you get to a lake, where you can swim or have a nice picnic, which many families did. We had our food back at our van and didn’t bring any.

After walking around the lake and talking to a ranger about seeing wombats (what else?), we decided to walk up to Caleys Lookout. It was a nice walk/ easy hike and you can see the lake from up there, which we enjoyed very much.

Then we walked back down and back to the campsite. It was such a beautiful day! In the evening you could even have a fire, since there was no fire ban at the time.

The campsite was pretty empty, because it was a Sunday and all the families had left. I found this a bit creepy at night, because there was literally like six other campers and the campground is huge! But it also was beautiful during the day and so calm.

This is the amenities and this campground had the smallest amount of all the campgrounds we visited. There was no place to cook, we weren’t even able to have light in the camp area next to the bathrooms, so we put our phone flashlights on and cooked there with our own equipment. There were lots of spiders, I remember being scared when going to the bathroom/toilets. Also, I don’t understand why the women’s bathrooms are always the ones at the back of the building? There could easily be a creep waiting for you. You could also only shower for two minutes I think, which sounded little but was enough in the end, even for washing my hair. After the last night, I was so happy to leave the van. It was the perfect vehicle/hotel for this trip, but sleeping in it for almost two weeks really is enough and you start longing for a real bed.

After getting back to campground and eating something, we walked a bit further and spotted some wombats. The first one is funny, because I just walked and the wombat came towards me and then we both looked at each other. When I didn’t move, it didn’t seem scared anymore and just went on with its business.

This was actually the highlight of our trip: seeing wombats in the wild. They are just adorable. When we talk about this trip these days, we often talk about the wombats. Sometimes we mention them randomly: “Hey, remember the wombats?”

Hope you enjoyed my little post and the pictures!

Australia Day 24+25: Drive to Bents Basin and Katoomba

On day 24 we left Seal Rocks and drove to our next campground relatively close to Sydney Bents Basin campground (more on that in my next blog entry!). Now, I’m just gonna say, we arrived there in the evening, after buying lots of food at Aldi and we saw a wombat when walking around after having dinner! Seeing wombats in the wild was one of the best parts of the trip to Australia. They are adorable and very shy.

The next morning, we got up, did our morning routine again, which was much longer than at home: preparing hot water on our portable stove, making cereal, going for a shower and to brush our teeth (that at least took much longer, with packing everything and walking to the amenities). Then cleaning everything and packing things away to drive off (putting away the curtains, arranging the matress, etc.). In Bents Basin one had to buy a daily ticket for parking (or staying) at the campground. We were a bit confused with those tickets at first, also because we wanted to drive off, but we could only buy the tickets after 9 a.m. at a machine.

We had deciced to go see Katoomba in the Blue Mountains on our first day in Bents Basin. It was about 1h 10min to drive there. Katoomba is the most visited town in the Blue Mountains and it got known when the Katoomba Coal Mine opened in 1879 (source).



We parked in the centre at first and after a small walk around, we went to the Visitor Information Centre located in the town. The guide we spoke to was very knowledgeable and told us where to park for free (Merriwa St. and Carrington Avenue) and how to walk to Echo Point to see the Three Sisters and how there would be a scenic walk (Prince Henry Cliff Walk), which would take us back to our parking spot. He also talked about seeing a Lyre Bird, but we unfortunately didn’t see one. The walk on the other hand was great!

So we walked from our parking spot to Echo Point via Cliff Drive, just as we were told. At Echo Point were many, many tourists. We had some coffee and ate our lunch. Then we started our part of the Prince Henry Cliff Walk, which was about 2 km and took us about an hour. From Echo Point you can see the Three Sisters, a rock formation and our walk took us right past them.


The Three Sisters


I wanted to add the second photo to show how I sometimes “cheat” with photos and cut tourists out of them, which, I guess, is basically what everyone does.


Another view from Echo Point


There were some animal sculptures on the way like this one!


You could even walk into rocks (The Three Sisters), which we didn’t because there were tons of people and the walkway was small.


View from the Lady Carrington Lookout




The walk was indeed very nice and we enjoyed it a lot! There weren’t many people (almost none) and the views were amazing. If I could go back I would probably do the whole walk, which is about 7 km and takes about 3 – 4 hours (source).

If you start the walk at Scenic World (like it’s suggested here) you end up close to Leura, which is were we went next (by car). Leura is a small suburd town and also known for it’s gardens (source).




We went to a bookstore (Megalong Books), which I always do when I see one (my boyfriend teases me for that). I really enjoyed this one, it was small, but well organised and had a great choice of books (even if the name suggests otherwise: they also sell shorter books 😀 It’s actually named after the street).

Leura itself was adorable with their houses and flowers and blooming trees. We went into a few other small shops as well.

It was a very beautiful and interesting day trip to Katoomba and Leura. I would definitely go there again!



Katoomba –

Prince Henry Cliff Walk – NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service

Prince Henry Cliff Walk –

Leura –






Australia Day 23: Smiths Lake, New South Wales

Hello again,

hope you’re all healthy and well!

Our trip to Smiths Lake took place on our second day in Seal Rocks, in September last year. We didn’t do much that day, the weather wasn’t the best, it was a bit cold and the sun only came out later.

The drive to Smiths Lake was about 20 minutes from our campsite in Seal Rocks. We had decided to have breakfast at Frothy Coffee Boatshed. It was a lovely café at the lake and also a boat hire. It was very nice to sit outside, even with the weather not being so nice. We had coffee and then, because I believe every tourist in Australia has to try it at least once, we ordered vegemite sandwiches. We told the waitress (or owner?) that it was our first time and she told us how to eat it (with lots of butter). It tasted extremly well!


Frothy Coffee Boatshed



When we paid, the waitress gave us a few small vegemite packs to take home, which was so very nice of her! If we had more time, I would have loved to try their burgers (presumed they have a vegetarian one), they look amazing on their homepage!

Then we walked a bit at the lakeshore and enjoyed just being there. I love being at lake or the ocean, maybe because at home, close to us, there is almst no lakes and definitely no ocean!




Funny little turtle, it looked like a helmet at first!


After a bit of a time there, we drove back to our campsite and spent the rest of the day at the beach and directly on the campsite. Then, we went once more for pizza at Hueys at Blueys, a pizza I described extensively in my last post. And, in memory of this amazing pizza, we will have a similar one tonight! It’s definitely going to cheer us up with all that Coronavirus pandemic and staying inside all the time.

Thanks for reading my post, hope you enjoyed it!


Number One Beach Seal Rocks, right in front of our campsite!

Australia Day 22: Seal Rocks and Sugarloaf Point Lighthouse


still locked out from the world (though we’re allowed to go on walks with the people we live with, something my boyfriend and I do these days, it’s kind of a daily highlight). But I try to see the positive aspects: for now, nobody I know is infected with Corona virus, the sun is shining and boyfriend made his wonderful vegetarian lasagna. Also, I’m looking at photos of our Australia trip and getting kind comments on my last post! Althogether it’s hard though, to really stay positive, these days. But here we go,…

The night before we had arrived at our campsite in Seal Rocks, New South Wales, where we would be staying for two nights. For some reason I always had trouble with the name, in my head “Seal’s Rock” made much more sense (I don’t know why). Seal Rocks has its name because there’s often seals on the rocks in this small town! (source)

We stayed at Reflections Holiday Parks Seal Rocks, which was a very nice campsite. You could cook at a kitchen close to the beach and relax looking at the beach, without even leaving the campsite. There also was a giant chessboard.



We even found this little guy on our first day!

Months before we went to Australia, I saw the movie “Adoration” (2013) on Netflix, starring Robin Wright and Naomi Watts. If you haven’t seen it, it’s basically two female best friends, living at the most beautiful spot you could imagine and hooking up with each other’s sons when they’re grown. It was a bit awkward to watch at times, but I totally fell in love with the beach and the town. And then, before we went to Seal Rocks, I found out that it was filmed there. We even saw the wonderful house Robin Wright lives in with her son in the movie. It’s this one right here:


Not having read a lot about Seal Rocks before we went there, just going because a friend of my boyfriend had suggested it, I had expected shops, restaurants, hotels, anything the other towns we stopped in had. But Seal Rocks is very small and there was only one shop:


And the village is indeed beautiful and nice and quiet. It’s mostly a holiday village, especially for surfers.


Tiny village Seal Rocks

The first day in Seal Rocks we decided to walk up to Sugarloaf Point Lighthouse. It’s not a long walk (I remember being scared of Dingos) and they even have accommodation facilities there.  The lighthouse is located in Myall Lakes National Park. We walked from the campsite up to the lighthouse and it took us about 30 minutes, including photo breaks.


A kookaburra welcoming people to the national park


Sugarloaf Point Lighthouse


View when walking back from the lighthouse

At night, after we were back at our campsite, we decided to get some food. The closest restaurants were in more than 20 minutes driving distance. We chose pizza and got a very, very delicious one at Hueys at Blueys. It was so good, that on our second night in Seal Rocks, we ordered a pizza and picked it up, then ate it at the campsite. Both times we had the “Cellito” pizza with spinach, semi dried tomatoes, feta cheese, spanish onion, basil pesto, olives and garlic. One of the best pizzas I’ve ever had!

We really enjoyed Seal Rocks, but if you’re not surfing or looking for a quiet place to calm down, maybe one night is enough. We were still happy that we went, though!

Hope you enjoyed my post and stay healthy!

More information on Seal Rocks:

Aussie Towns Seal Rocks

Australia Day 21: Dorrigo National Park

Hello readers,

since I am now basically only going outside to get my groceries (which my boyfriend and I did two days ago and we bought more than usual, so we won’t have to go too often) because of the Corona virus, I have plenty of time to catch up with my travel blog. I hope there will be a cure for Corona virus soon and everything will get back to normal!

Also, since we cancelled both our spring trips this year because of Corona, blogging about our trip to Australia last year cheers me up a bit and also helps me not to worry too much, about my family staying healthy and also everyone else not getting infected and if they already did, still getting proper treatment.

So, a sad start of our actually wonderful day at Dorrigo National Park in New South Wales, Australia. In Coffs Harbour, at the campsite, we had met a German couple, who was also travelling around and they had told us that the national park is really worth seeing!


Since it was only about an hour from Coffs Harbour, we went the next day, before going to Seal Rocks. We had made some lunch and drove there with our van. Park entrance was 2 AUD. First we went to the Skywalk lookout and since we were quite early, there weren’t many people.


Then we started the Wonga Walk Circuit Track, which is 6.6 km and takes about 2 – 3 hours. With taking pictures and a short rest, that was about right for us with approx. 2.5 hours.


There were many interesting trees to see and some really great waterfalls!



Crystal Shower Falls


You could even walk behind this waterfall!

After the longest part through the rainforest, we came to a lunch spot with another great lookout. We decided to eat lunch at the shop/entrance, because there also were benches and tables.



Then we took the way back leading through the “Walk with birds boardwalk”.



That was the only bird we actually could take pictures of, though we heard many of them and even saw a few more.


This was my post about our trip to Dorrigo National Park, I hope you enjoyed it!

Stay healthy!



Dorrigo National Park Homepage


Australia Day 19+20: Coffs Harbour

Day 19 of our trip to beautiful Australia started with coffee at our favourite coffee shop in Suffolk Park, Byron Bay (Suffolk Bakery, if you’re wondering) and a trip to the grocery store to get some chocolate as a ‘thank you’ for our neighbours, who had helped us immensively when we were locked out of our van the night before. We were super tired, because we waited a long time for someone sent from Spaceship Campervan Hire to unlock our car.

Then we drove all the way to Coffs Harbour, which is just about under 3 hours. In Coffs Harbour we did our shopping and then drove to the campsite (Big 4 Coffs Harbour). A lot of people told us that Coffs Harbour is a bit boring and there was only the big yellow banana to see, but we went anyway, because we found no better stop between Byron Bay and Seal Rocks. And, in the end, we did enjoy our time in Coffs Harbour!

On our first night, we went to see the nearby beach, then we cooked Halloumi with vegetables (a lot of Halloumi eating on this trip, I notice!) and ate it in the camp kitchen. Then we went to bed, read for some time and went to sleep.

On our only full day in Coffs Harbour we went to a place called Ernie’s Kitchen for coffee and breakfast. I remember the sky being dusty/grey because of nearby bushfires. Right in front of Ernie’s Kitchen we went to the beach, where we sat a little, it was very hot and sunny and just wonderful.




On the way back to our campsite to have lunch, we saw another wallaby!


In the afternoon we went to Muttonbird Island, where we drove by car and then walked to from our parking spot. Muttonbird Island is not huge, but very nice! You can walk up and watch the ocean and maybe even see some whales (we did!).





Here you can learn how the birds are nesting


Lookout in the middle of the island

When went back to leave the island we saw a whale jumping out of the water at the spot on the picture below. We then went all the way back to the lookout on the other side of the island, where we also found other people watching the whales. Unfortunately taking a picture didn’t work (they are very fast in and out of the water).


I really enjoyed Coffs Harbour and especially Muttonbird Island, it’s definitely worth a visit!

Australia Day 17+18: Byron Bay Centre

After seeing the lighthouse on our first day in Byron Bay, we went to the centre on our second and third day.

On the second day we did some walking in the centre and tried to buy matching sweaters, but couldn’t find any nice ones. They don’t sell a female and a male version of the same sweater very often and if they did, it didn’t match our style (or one of our styles!).

For lunch we went to have burgers and both had a Halloumi Burger. It was OK, but not the best Halloumi burger I’ve ever had! I think with burgers, it’s so much about the dressing.


I took some pictures of the centre and the shops, but you can see mostly cars and people, so they’re not that interesting! The shops offer mostly surf clothes and summer clothing (who would have guessed?). The people that walked around all seemed very stylish, in a surfer or hippie kind of way. It made me want to copy their style.


Back at our campsite we saw a wallaby! The poor thing wasn’t as happy to see us as we were to see it. A worker from our campsite told us that it lives there, in the bushland next to our campsite. We saw it two nights in a row, when taking our evening walk.


On our third day in Byron Bay we went to a flea market, it was a nice atmosphere, but since it would be cold in Austria when getting home and the people almost exclusively sold summer clothes, we didn’t buy anything. But I love flea markets and second hand stores, they’re are my thing! I get much happier when finding a great piece there than in a regular store.

After going to the flea market, we had breakfast at Top Shop, which was very good, but expensive. There were tons of people and a brush turkey ate a guy’s Halloumi off his sandwich, when he just turned around. Gotta be really careful with those!

My boyfriend then went off to take a surfing class for beginners. I didn’t feel so well, so I didn’t join him, but walked around in the centre, took some pictures, wrote postcards and read my book.

There was a small free concert at the beach and people were sitting on the grass, it was lovely.


IMG_0486 (1)

At night something bad happend to us. Before going to bed (at about 10 p.m.) we managed to lock ourselves out of our van. We closed the doors with the keys inside and then couldn’t get back in. It was getting cold, we were in our sleeping wear, sitting in our chairs, waiting for a maintenance person to help us. Our neighbours kindly gave us blankets and warmer clothes and we waited until about 1 a.m. Now we laugh about it, but back then it sure didn’t seem funny to us!



Australia Day 15+16: Byron Bay Arrival and Cape Byron Lighthouse

On our last day in Brisbane, we went to get our “spaceship”, which was a van we rented from a company called Spaceships Rentals. We went by bus there, which was a bit exhausting with all our luggage, but an Uber would have been much more expensive. The van wasn’t the least luxurious one, but it was still only a van, not a real bus with toilets or anything. It was basically a big, long car with a 140 x 200 cm matress in the back and a fridge in the trunk (under the matress). We saved a lot of money, renting this van and not renting a car AND paying for hotels. We never stayed on free campsites, because we wanted to have the amenities of a paid one: toilets, shower, laundry rooms and it would, to be honest, be less scary for me. We were altogether quite happy with our spaceship, except that it gets tiresome sleeping in a van after some time and you long for a real bed!

My boyfriend drove all the twelve days that we had the van, even though we paid for me being an extra driver. I did drive about 200m at another campsite, just to try it, but driving on the left – and to us, wrong – side of the road was a bit too much for me, not being a regular driver at home anyway.

Our first camp site was in Byron Bay, in Suffolk park. It was called Suffolk Beachfront Holiday Park and right next to the beach (as the name suggests), but a bit outside the centre of Byron Bay. The camp site was very nice, we cooked almost everyday in the little hut with the kitchen and ate and read books in the heated area in front of the hut. It was quite cold at night in September!

In the supermarket we noticed that the prices were higher than in Brisbane and Sydney, but since we didn’t bring any food from Brisbane, we had to buy it all in Byron Bay.


I really can’t remember the first night sleeping in the van. I always found it quite cozy, getting ready to sleep and then read our books in the van, even though there really wasn’t much space and parts of my body (for example my neck) got stiff after some time. I read “A lifetime of impossible days” by Australian author Tabitha Bird and I quite enjoyed it. Now I also know what a Queenslander is! If you don’t: It’s a kind of house with a special type of porch in front, often seen in Queensland. We also saw houses like that on the side of the road, for sale, many of them. You can obviously buy them, take them and then bring them to your piece of land. That’s quite strange to us, because in Austria, all of our house are built on the land directly by laying brick!

On our first official in Byron Bay we went to have coffee at Suffolk Bakery – Number 1 coffee shop in Suffolk Park according to Tripadvisor (and “more than just a bakery” according to their website)! And, I have to say, it’s very nice there and a super popular place! In the supermarket next door we were lucky to get a huge water container, made for camping. After that we starting buying cheaper water at Aldi and filling it into the container from this supermarket, because it was great to use with its spigot (a word I definitely didn’t know before writing this post!).

After having coffee (I didn’t like the Macadamia milk in mine, but the next time I chose Coconut milk and it was perfect) and buying a KeepCup with the company’s logo (I always wanted one and you got a free refill), we drove to the centre of Byron Bay, parked somewhere where it was free and walked from Clarke’s Beach via The Pass and Wategos Beach to the Cape Byron Lighthouse, which is probably what Byron Bay is famous for, next to hippies, surfing and maybe now Chris Hemsworth.


Where is the lighthouse?


I really can’t remember what’s up with boyfriend’s hat here!

I think with taking breaks for photos and sitting and enjoying the views it took us about 2 hours. Couldn’t get enough of these views!






You also walk past the most easterly point of the Australian mainland, marked by a sign.



On our way down we went through the woods basically, right next to Lighthouse Rd and I remember being very scared of snakes, but we couldn’t see any. We exited close to our parking spot.

After that day we found out that a young Belgian backpacker had gone missing in the area, just months before. His name is Théo Hayez and there is a podcast about this very sad story called The Lighthouse. I truly hope that he will be found, can’t imagine how it must be for his family and friends.


This photo I actually took on another day in Byron Bay and it sort of looks like it’s been taken from the same spot as the very first one above from our walk, the houses are the same and everything, but on the first one you can’t see the lighthouse. It’s probably not mysterious at all, just being covered by the trees, but it got me wondering for a second!

Hope you enjoyed my post about Byron Bay!







Australia Day 14: The City Botanic Gardens in Brisbane


On our 14th day in Australia, we visited the City Botanic Gardens, at night we had our last sleep in a normal bed, because afterwards it would be sleeping in a van for almost two weeks! This is gonna be a short post about that last day in Brisbane.

The City Botanic Gardens are very nice, we even had lunch at one of the tables. There was preperation everywhere because there should have been the event “Brisbane Fire Gardens” in the days after we visited (in September 2019), but it was cancelled due to the total fire ban.


The City Botanic Gardens were first established in 1855 and occupy 20 hectares (source), but we didn’t see all of it. They are Brisbane’s “original botanic gardens” (source). We walked around, took some pictures and enjoyed the nature in the park (also some funny lizards!). You could even have coffee in the middle of the park (we didn’t, because we brought our own food and drinks).





These days when I think of Australia, I feel very sorry that people, animals and nature altogether are suffering from bushfires. We enjoyed our time so much in this beautiful country and that makes it even sadder for us. I hope it will be over soon!

Hope you enjoyed my little post about our day in Brisbane!



Homepage City Botanic Gardens Brisbane







Australia Day 13: Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary

This is gonna be one of my favourite posts about our trip to Australia…so many koalas! We took a bus from Brisbane for 3,70 AUD (they have some system with consecutive trips, so you can’t really say what you will pay because it depends on what buses you’ve been taking before and what you paid for them). The entry was 28 AUD since we had booked (and printed) the tickets beforehand.

It was a beautiful day and since we had gotten there at about lunch time, we started by having our premade wraps at the river. There are picnic tables and the view is quite nice. But also we were quite eager to see some koalas. And there are a lot at the sanctuary!







The koalas are not behind bars or in cages at the sanctuary, but they usually stay in their trees (at least I haven’t seen any roaming around). You could have your picture taken with a koala, but we chose not to, because I would feel kind of bad disrupting the koala. In the coffee place there is lots of pictures of famous people having their pictures taken with a koala.

We had some (very good!) coffee there and bought food for feeding the kangaroos (2 AUD the bag), which was almost for nothing, because the kangaroos were not hungry at all. A lot of people had bought the kangaroo food, so they weren’t in need for more. We fed one kangaroo and then gave the bag to a couple who hadn’t bought one to try their luck.



Resting area – no entry for people! 🙂

There were also wallabys and emus (I’ve been kindly corrected in the comments that those aren’t ostrichs :)). And a wombat who was in an extra area with lots of tunnels!



We spend the rest of our day in the sanctuary walking around and looking at animals: platypuses, snakes, dingos, reptiles, farm animals and many more.

There were lots of lizards (if they’re not called that, please correct me, I know way too little about them!) just walking around and looking funnily at us. A person with a camera must be a weird thing to animals: what the heck are they doing?


We enjoyed our day at the sanctuary very, very much! I still get very happy, just looking at the koala photos. Hope you enjoyed them as well!



Homepage Lone Pine

Ticket prices