Off the Tourist Trail #5 – Mandorah, via Darwin, Northern Territory

Mandorah, via Darwin, Northern Territory

Yes, we’d crossed the portal into a parallel universe. But at least it was Tropical-Paradise-Cliché universe! Balmy breezes wafted through the open walls of the pub where we kicked back, drinks in hand, admiring the endless white sands, tropical palms, blue water and skies. Bob Marley played in the background. ‘Best in the world’ (albeit self-nominated) barra* and chips** on

Read more

Aussie Icons #2 – Cooper’s Creek

Cooper's Creek, Outback Queensland

Studded with campfires in the late evening dusk, the creek banks were alive with the sounds of trucks thundering across the bridge, beer cans popping and that combination of braggadocio, loud laughter and hi-jinks peculiar to any random group of three Aussie males on a boy’s own adventure. Yes, Cooper’s Creek earned its Aussie-rite-of-passage status in the June 2009 week

Read more

Signs #11 – What’s the Problem?

What do overseas visitors make of Australia’s more esoteric pictorial instructions? Space constraints mean non-English wording is often limited – or non-existent! So the sign designer is stuck with conveying important, but sometimes obscure facts and instructions with stick figures. Their success necessarily relies on reader ability to immediately interpret the pictures correctly and heed their warnings and messages without

Read more

7 Days … on the Southern Yorke Peninsula, South Australia

Swimmers Beach, Yorke Peninsula, South Australia

South Australia’s Southern Yorke Peninsula (SYP) can get pretty tedious – day after ho-hum day of blue skies, mile after punishing mile of spectacular coastal scenery, more and yet more (almost) deserted beaches. Seal and dolphin watching, fishing, museums, shipwrecks, snorkelling, surfing, wildflowers, markets and country shows. A well preserved, documented – AND fascinating history. And it all comes with arguably

Read more

Australia’s Scenic Public Toilets #11 – Stansbury, Yorke Peninsula, SA

Australia’s beaches don’t all look like the pre-tropical-cyclone-Yasi* paradisical wet dream of white sand, palms and crystal clear water! While this may fill some reader’s hearts with dismay, there’s no way the southern beaches, especially those of South Australia’s Yorke Peninsula, could be mistaken for their northern counterparts! But this isn’t necessarily a bad thing – Stansbury’s stretch of beach

Read more

OZ Top Spot #6 – Starlight’s Lookout, Longreach, Queensland

Puffing and panting, we haul ourselves up the rocky path, our feet sliding on the dusty gravel. Another few metres and we reach the base of the rocky outcrop at the summit. We peer through the gap. We’ve climbed Starlight’s lookout – a mound rising high above the surrounding plain – and the view stretches for miles and miles and

Read more

Weird Stuff #3 – Quorn, South Australia

Desperately seeking sewage ponds (as one does!), we whizzed down a dirt road behind Quorn, in South Australia’s mid-North, only just keeping ahead of the clouds of dust we were generating. And the squalor of the sewage pond? Does that quantify Quorn’s quintessence?? Of course not! Our quest will be no surprise to quantities of inquisitive birdwatchers who regularly add

Read more