i woke up quite early, took a bath, made a coffee and ate some donuts, woke up zack, went outside the cabin and was fairly surprised that the winter frost was everywhere. i took some photos of the cabin and walked to the main road for some more pictures. i got back inside, woke them all up and while they were preparing to pack, got myself a bottle of water to run it and let it warmed up and defrosted the frozen windshield. by 8:30 am, fully rested, we left the cabin in high spirits.
▼▼ the cabin in the morning of day 2
▼ from the cabin park towards churchill ave.
▼ entrance to the park
▼▼ frosty and cold morning
▼ companion #1
▼ inside the cabin
◄ bunk beds
master bedroom ►
▲ alif and sleeping yomi on sofa bed
because we loved the place so much, we went back to bright town centre for zack to get some souvenirs and food.
▼ ireland st. facing south
▼ our favourite bakery
▼ cobden st.
▼ yomi ands zack at the end of burke st.
▼ yomi in her cheap sleeping pyjamas from jusco
at porepunkah (a small town on the great alpine road between bright and myrtleford), we explored through buckland valley road to get some countryside views of pines and cattles and also to see mt. buffalo from afar.
▼ at buckland valley rd., near porepunkah, with view of mt. buffalo
▼ pastures & cattles!
while driving back through the great alpine road, i had to stop at a fuel station in myrtleford as alif needed to go to the loo. we lost another 20 minutes there. we left the alpine national park and got into hume freeway southbound towards melbourne around 11:30 am.
my original plan was to use highway a300 through benalla – shepparton – bendigo – ballarat stretch but since we were already late, we had to scrap the plan and use hume freeway instead. we had to get to melbourne, used the same road as the day before but went a bit far through m8 towards ballarat. the reason was that the last time i was there, in 1983, my 8 year old self thought that it was the most beautiful place on earth and i simply wanted to see it again. and to support that decision, we planned on seeing some endemic animals as well since we were already in australia.
▼ near rest area off hume freeway
we arrived at melbourne around 1:30 pm, didn’t stop anywhere except to refuel the car, and at another rest area stop to get lunch (i think at another mcdonalds), and i had to drive another 110 km northwest and successfully parked in front of ballarat wildlife park without getting lost at around 3:00 pm. the weather was cloudy and the place was devoid of any visitors as it was on monday and nearly dark already. we went inside, paid the admission fees (quite expensive since we had to pay for 4 adults), bought some animal feed and went inside the animal compound. we were greeted by a group of 4 kangaroos which we hugged and fed and stroked. all of them (humans and animals) were so excited. we were later informed that those four were actually wallabies as they were a bit smaller in size and friendlier. no wonder when we got to the far end of the compound, we were surrounded and mobbed by a large group of (actual) red kangaroos that we had to run away from them, some of them were even fighting among themselves. we also saw the lazy/sleeping koalas, wombats, tasmanian devils, crocs, emus, pythons and many others. later on zack, ija and aina shopped souvenirs where aina bought a 27 dollars kangaroo plush which alif claimed to be his and kept to this day! we left the place around 4:30 pm and it was already dark as we cruised back towards tullamarine.
▼ greeted by endemic residents
▼ shaking hands
▼▼ a croc and a snake!
▼ mobbed by the roos
▼ no intro needed
▼ feeding the wallabies
▼ alif with snow cap from bright
▼ time to go
about 2 hours later, after stopping at some rest area to get supplies for dinner and surviving traffic jams on the western ring road, we arrived at our motel, ciloms airport lodge motel, about 3 km from the airport, after missing the turn and had to circle the airport once. i drove 520 km that day and I was all pumped up for the days to come. the room was quite nice with 1 double bed and 3 singles. i showered, had my instant noodle and zzz’ed.
▼ instant noodles
next» soul searching road trip oznz – day 3 (08/06/2010)