Sadly, my Bondi to Manly adventure is done and dusted. It is such a glorious experience with every stage of the walk delivering stunning views, intriguing history and a wonderful opportunity to get the heart rate, and daily step count, UP.
Earlier this year I made a rather extravagant statement about 2022 being my “Year of Yes”. I wanted to publicly and privately rebel against the endless ‘No’ and negativity of the last couple of Covid-impacted years.
If nothing else, my plan was to consciously change my mindset from one constantly limited by circumstances beyond my control, to one where I actively sought out things (read: travel adventures big and small) that brought me joy. Unfortunately (or fortunately) I am one of those people who thrive on experiencing new landscapes, cultures and challenges. Yes, I have my homebody moments too, but I always need to have something interesting sitting on the horizon or pencilled onto my calendar.
Sometimes I wish I was more content to take each day as it comes rather than forever looking forward, however, looking forward and being positive is exactly what my Year of Yes is all about.
Believe it or not, the Capertee Valley in Central West NSW is reported to be the second widest canyon in the World!
That’s a pretty big boast for a pretty small part of Australia, but even if it is not 100% accurate it still delivers when it comes to spectacular views and scrambling up Blackman’s Crown is the perfect way to marvel at those views.
Grab your hat, we’re off on a short scrabble and scramble to the top.
Alas, today is the last day exploring the Bondi to Manly path. It has taken a while to find a window in the timetable to slot in this final glorious stroll and, perhaps, a small part of me was reluctant for it all to be over.
Grab your hat and water bottle, we are off for a short stroll around the North Head of Sydney Harbour.
It’s time to continue my love affair with the stunning Holtermann Collection – a 3,500-strong collection of glass plate negatives developed (see what I did there?) in the 1870s.
The Holtermann Museum in Gulgong celebrates the images that were captured during Gulgong’s roaring goldrush days in 1872. An extension of this excellent museum is a small brochure that takes you outside the museum’s walls and onto the historic streets.
Grab your camera and join me on the Holtermann Trail…
By now you may be well aware that I don’t mind a walk when the opportunity presents itself. Even better if the walk is through the Aussie bush and it is a path I have been meaning to explore for years.
When I was a kid, our family were keen waterskiers and we would regularly make the weekend pilgrimage to Burrendong Dam near Wellington in Central West NSW. The road would take us through Wellington, past Mt Arthur and its surrounding hills. Yes, I could have spent the journey admiring the scenery, but more likely I was jumping out of my skin with the thoughts of the day ahead filled with skiing and generally frolicking in the water.
Much time has passed since those days and now it’s high time we make Mt Arthur our destination, exploring the rough beauty of the Aussie bush.
Sadly, for me anyway, today’s stroll is almost the last in my series focusing on our Western Australian adventure earlier this year. This path, and its stunning views, was a fitting way to end our tour and, once again, opened my eyes to the hidden beauty of our sprawling country.
It’s a cooler and slightly overcast day today, perfect walking conditions, but don’t forget your hat and sunscreen.
Unfortunately our Western Australian adventure is coming to an end. Before we wave goodbye to the deep reds of this remote state, we lace up our walking shoes for another couple of short walks in the Cape Range National Park.
There is nothing better or more exciting than arriving at a new place and it slowly unfolds, revealing its history and characters. In my humble opinion a walking tour, either guided or self-guided, is the perfect way to discover secrets, stories and often a little sadness.
Lace up your walking shoes, we’re off to stroll the streets of Perth.
Australia seems to excel at coming up with place names that are both unattractive and pretty unimaginative e.g. Dunn’s Swamp and The Drip. I suspect this is done on purpose to discourage hoards of visitors and to keep these slices of paradise for the use of only those in the know.
Don’t tell anyone about this, but I am about to take you on a glorious walk at The Drip.
That was our first question as we left our hotel room and started to explore Perth’s CBD. It was a weekday and during business hours, and yet the streets were virtually empty and the vibe was so relaxed it was almost comatose.
At last I had the time, energy, and the restrictions of Covid19 were staring to relax, to once again set out on the glorious Bondi to Manly path. So far I had only completed three of the eight stages and it was not calling my name, it was screaming it at full volume!
In the 12 months since I walked the early sections, major changes have been made. New signs popped up at regular intervals and a new app helped keep me on track if/when I became distracted by the beautiful scenery or the signs were not where I expected them to be.
Grab your hat and water bottle, and let’s enjoy some more stunning Sydney sights…
Give me the wide open spaces and country air any day. However, I know my biases make me blinkered and sometimes I need to ‘get over’ myself, and be open to what metro-areas have to offer. When I finally pause and do that, I am very often rewarded with some real gems.
The short hike up to Barrenjoey Lighthouse is just one of those special experiences revealing the hidden beauty tucked away in Sydney’s suburbia.
Growing up on a farm, when things were good and the seasons were kind, we would escape to the beach for a dose of salty sea air and sand between our toes. Invariably the road would take us North to the North Coast of New South Wales (NSW) or even further north into the glitz and bling of Queensland’s Gold Coast.
It is only now that I start to discover the gems I missed out on tucked away on the South Coast of NSW.
If you are visiting Sydney and feel the need to escape the towering buildings and concrete jungle, then include this short stroll on your itinerary. It is sure to blast out the cobwebs with salty, sea air.