A Travellerspoint blog

Entries about farms

Walpole, Denmark, Albany and Esperance

Great southern land!

Will start this blog with a Wicked camper slogan.
wicked - worth a thought for those who are working!

wicked - worth a thought for those who are working!


This blog is dedicated to all those people who have responded and made comment on our blogsite. Thanks we do appreciate and enjoy your commentary

Have put a map of the area at the end of blog. Denmark and Walpole are in between Manjimup and Albany. This is the area we believe should be the winery areas instead of Margaret River. We arrived in the forest area. Trees of many shapes and sizes and had no idea what they were called. After a day or so, we got to recognise some of them. They also have wineries along these areas and cheese factory, meadery, chocolate 'lounge' etc. The drives through the forests were awesome. You can take a scenic loop of around 86 kms in the forests but we opted to do around half of that. In between the forests were scattered farms for cattle and sheep. Our caravan park at Walpole was beautiful. We stayed at a place called Coalmine Beach and it was surrounded by peppermint willows. Such a pretty tree. The park backed onto a beach with the dune to buffer the winds. It is pretty cold in this area and the winds didn't help. Of course I loved this climate. We got a huge area to ourselves in the park.
our motorhome in amongst the peppermint willows

our motorhome in amongst the peppermint willows

the caravan park at Coalmine Beach

the caravan park at Coalmine Beach

inlet at Walpole - our caravan park at Coalmine Beach

inlet at Walpole - our caravan park at Coalmine Beach

From Coalmine beach we could walk into town through the heathlands which were full of wildflowers and again the heathlands. Beautiful but not the flies that came with it. Have bought a 'magic cream' which apparently the flies hate. Tested it and it is not too bad. Now they only sniff our skin and fly away. Walpole is a very small town with beautiful gardens all around and surrounded by forest. They had a nice little bakery there which was good for lunch and meat pies!
walk through the heathlands

walk through the heathlands

walk through the heathlands to town of Walpole

walk through the heathlands to town of Walpole

marron going for a walk?

marron going for a walk?

bent 'black boy'

bent 'black boy'


In the forest they have these huge karri, jarrah and tuart trees. We climbed a karri tree which has a house halfway and another at the top. It was about 30 metres high and pretty scary. They use this tree when the forestry/fire people need to see where the fires are. You must not have a fear of heights. It looks not too bad from the ground.
treehouse on a giant karri tree

treehouse on a giant karri tree


Have a look how far Geoff got!
Geoff didn't get very far

Geoff didn't get very far

We also went to the 'land of the giants' which had a walk above the trees. The giants were mainly red tingle trees. It was cold and rainy but stunning.the sign says it all -visiting the forests and particularly the red tingle trees

the sign says it all -visiting the forests and particularly the red tingle trees

the walk above the treetops

the walk above the treetops

red tingle tree giant

red tingle tree giant

red tingle fairy!

red tingle fairy!

pushing the tree roots apart - what a strong man!

pushing the tree roots apart - what a strong man!

the next Wiggle!

the next Wiggle!

one of the giants

one of the giants

top half of the giant

top half of the giant


Along the way we met some really nice people from Mt Gambier. We met them in Margaret River and shared a few beers/wines and dinners. We thought they were a pair of 'wily old codgers' because they had planned their washing day on a sunny day and knew all the good spots to stay at and see. Useful for us young things that are novices at this camping life. Had lots of fun with them and definitely will be catching up with them in the future if not this time round. (They weren't really that old)!
dining with some wily old codgers!!! Hi Marie and David.

dining with some wily old codgers!!! Hi Marie and David.

We were also told about Peaceful Bay but check out the sign and the beach conditions. It was far from peaceful and in fact the inlet there was called 'Foul Bay'.
Peaceful Bay warning sign!

Peaceful Bay warning sign!

Peaceful Beach at Foul Bay

Peaceful Beach at Foul Bay


On the way to Albany we stopped at a beautiful place called Denmark - it is the Byron Bay of this area. Lots of organics, yoga, hippies and ... you get the picture.
Denmark river

Denmark river


When we got to Albany the town didn't look too inviting. It is a 'large port' town and looks like a lot of heavy industry there.
Albany and the black swans

Albany and the black swans


Once we settled into our caravan park at Middleton beach we started to see how beautiful this area is. There are so many walking/cycling tracks around and really pretty following the coastline and heaths. We went for a scenic drive and what we saw was stunning. Verve energy also have a wind farm there supplying 80 percent of power to Albany. The walk around the wind farm area was stunning.
scenic drive along the coast of Albany area

scenic drive along the coast of Albany area

spectacular views of the ocean at Albany

spectacular views of the ocean at Albany

walk around the wind farm

walk around the wind farm

the gap rock formation

the gap rock formation

Albany's electricity supply - wind farm by Verve energy

Albany's electricity supply - wind farm by Verve energy

the views from scenic coastal drive Albany

the views from scenic coastal drive Albany

the walking track at the wind farm

the walking track at the wind farm


One of the shopping centres was called 'dog rock' and you can see why?
dog rock

dog rock

We also had a fantastic fish and chips at the jetty/marina of Emu Point. It was called the 'Squid Shack'. You can bring your own grog at no extra charge and eat in the shack or takeaway. It was really delicious. We enjoyed this meal with our 'old' friends David and Marie. It was a fun night and definitely recommend eating there.

Next stop was Esperance about 480 kms away still south and further along the coastline. Another fantastic location. You think that you would have enough of all those cliffs, heaths, farms etc but the colours are just so stunning. The southern area is much colder due to the wind chill factor. My camera doesn't do the colours of the ocean justice.
trying to capture the colours of the ocean

trying to capture the colours of the ocean

Twilight Bay which was voted one of the world's top 10 beaches in 2006

Twilight Bay which was voted one of the world's top 10 beaches in 2006

Esperance

Esperance

the spectacular drive along the ocean and cliffs - 34 kms.

the spectacular drive along the ocean and cliffs - 34 kms.

what adventurous people we are going along the coastline here!

what adventurous people we are going along the coastline here!

they also have white silica beach here

they also have white silica beach here

whistling rock and it did whistle the sounds of the ocean

whistling rock and it did whistle the sounds of the ocean

the contrasting colours of the ocean but too cold to swim

the contrasting colours of the ocean but too cold to swim

Lucky Bay at Esperance

Lucky Bay at Esperance

at Le Grand national park

at Le Grand national park

I think this is a honeyeater that eats wildflowers!

I think this is a honeyeater that eats wildflowers!

We are off to Kalgoorlie next and after that take the long crossing over the Nullarbor plain from Norseman to Ceduna. Will be out of range with phone and internet but may be pleasantly surprised if there was any Telstra connection.

Perth to Adelaide

Perth to Adelaide

And I will close by 'sealing this with a 'kiss' for those people who have commented on our blog - pardon the pun.
Sammy the seal waiting for some fish off the jetty at Esperance

Sammy the seal waiting for some fish off the jetty at Esperance

Posted by blondnomad 16:23 Archived in Australia Tagged beach farms forests Comments (5)

Margaret River area (the south west)

All those wineries ...did I mention the food?

We left Perth after staying there for over a week. Had to get the motorhome serviced and luckily there is not a thing wrong with it. Before I start this section I have to say that now we are getting back into colder climate, wind and sometimes rain. Probably in summer this changes but not for this time of year. So you will notice a lot of pics of beaches but not us swimming in them.

Will put a map in at end of this blog. We headed to the the south west of WA - Margaret River area. Had heard a lot about it - in particular about the wines. On the way there we passed Bunbury and the turn off to a town called Collie. When our family first arrived in Australia we lived in this small town but I have no desire to see the place again. It was a 'dump' and fortunately my parents decided very quickly to move us to Queensland. We then passed through Busselton and the only point of interest here was the 1.8 km long jetty. It has an underwater aquarium at the end but unfortunately it was under repair. The jetty had a huge history about when they were going to pull it down and then it broke and then it became longer etc.
1.8 kms jetty at Busselton

1.8 kms jetty at Busselton

the souvenir shop on Busselton jetty

the souvenir shop on Busselton jetty

the underwater aquarium - what it would have looked like if it was open

the underwater aquarium - what it would have looked like if it was open

We stayed at Margaret River and it is what you would expect of a wine growing area. Plenty of vines and also farming country. A pretty area. The shops had some good stuff for women shopping and were really reasonably priced. It is a small town made to look cute. The fudge factory was really yummy! I was hopeful to find some cheeseries which is of far more interest to me. The cheesery was pretty ordinary. What was really yummy was the 'nuts and cereals' factory - it had these beautiful mueslies of varying sorts and biscuits. The chocolate factory was also pretty good. The chocs however come from Belgium and they melt it down to various tastes and shapes. You are only allowed to taste the choc chips - so everyone was helping themselves to spoonfuls of the stuff. I only had 2 glasses of wine in the whole area and visited 4 wineries. We have to say that of far more interest was the architecture and landscaping of these places.
Margaret River

Margaret River

marron in the river

marron in the river

wine estate viewing!

wine estate viewing!

a thorn among the roses

a thorn among the roses

the landscaped gardens at Voyager

the landscaped gardens at Voyager

Cape Dutch style architecture

Cape Dutch style architecture

smelling the roses at Voyager estate winery

smelling the roses at Voyager estate winery

Leeuwin Estate winery entrance

Leeuwin Estate winery entrance

entrance at the tunnel to winery

entrance at the tunnel to winery

list of entertainers who have performed at Leeuwin estate

list of entertainers who have performed at Leeuwin estate

Our caravan park was a farm (Taunton Farm) so we had these lovely views of farmlands and the animals. They were fed every day at a certain time and of course kids loved to feed them. I also had to have a go on the jumping pillow which is for kids and adults. Had to wait for the kids to be gone so I wouldn't embarass myself! Great fun and good exercise.
farm animals at Taunton farm

farm animals at Taunton farm

donkeys being fed by kids

donkeys being fed by kids

me exercising on the jumping pillow

me exercising on the jumping pillow

The trip to Augusta was beautiful. Again the lovely heathlands meeting the ocean. It is the southern most tip of WA. They called this tip of South west Australia Cape Leeuwin National Park, recognising the Dutch explorers. The tip north of Margaret River was called Cape Naturaliste National Park to recognise the French explorers. Both ends had a lighthouse and walks along the cliffs to view the ocean and the heathlands. There is also a Cape to Cape mountain bike race held once a year which is a distance of approx. 135 kms and goes over a period of 4 days. You can also walk this track!
lighthouse at Augusta

lighthouse at Augusta

Dutch person exploring Cape Leeuwin

Dutch person exploring Cape Leeuwin

Augusta heathlands

Augusta heathlands

Smiths beach in the Yallingup

Smiths beach in the Yallingup

lighthouse at Cape Naturaliste

lighthouse at Cape Naturaliste

walk along the cliffs at Cape Naturaliste

walk along the cliffs at Cape Naturaliste

Margaret River and Augusta is just below it

Margaret River and Augusta is just below it


All in all we think Margaret River is overrated. Have seen nicer wine growing areas around the Barossa and Vic areas as well as New Zealand and South Africa. I am not a wine buff but hopefully the wine is good. Prettier areas (growing wines as well) we found along the southern coastline of WA with the added attraction of the forests.

Posted by blondnomad 15:52 Archived in Australia Tagged beach farms wineries Comments (4)

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