Our Trip Down South - Part 6

Melbourne for two days, what did we do?
Lots of Trams!
Looked at old buildings.

 Went to the oldest building in Australia actually...

 Walked through more beautiful gardens...
Admired the beautiful St Patricks Cathedral and lit a candle...
 Went to the Australian Centre of the Moving Image and saw the developments over time.
 Went to Federation Square and Yum Cha in China Town and shopping at the Queen Victoria markets and in beautiful old grand lane ways and in department stores found nowhere else in the country, this is the place to shop in Australia!.
A great trip, a good opportunity to see and do things we haven't done before.
Now start saving for the next adventure.

Our Trip Down South - Part 5

Day three in Canberra was spent at the War Memorial, which is an amazing place and HUGE.
Plenty of stories, plenty of information, plenty of things to interact with and plenty of old aircraft...

We were given a lovely introduction to the Museum by Sandra in the Education department and a bag full of information to take home.
We placed a poppy and said goodbye.

That was the end to our stay in Canberra. We then sat at the airport for quite a while (thankfully in the QANTAS lounge) before heading off to Melbourne.

Our Trip Down South - Part 4

 Today we went to Parliament House for a tour with a school group, to learn something !
(Pigeon Parliament)
We did learn something (I did too).The tour guide was excellent, he was a fast talker but to the point and did a fabulous job. The group were year six students, so we got plenty of information that I was looking for and after the tour, J participated in a role play with the other students on how the House of Representatives works. He played the Clerk, the Government was trying to get a Bill through and there were some excellent debates.

 Our Danish tour guide!
 The beautiful tapestry.
 After New Parliament House we walked to old Parliament House and you can understand why they wanted a new one, when you walk around inside.
Then it was on to the Museum for lunch and a wander.

Later we walked to the National Art Gallery, where we saw Monet and Seurat artworks amongst other magnificent pieces, but you really need a day here I think.

A busy day, full of information.
We also had much fun driving around the Embassy streets looking at what country had what residence, how much security, how big, etc etc. The PNG House had overgrown weedy grass, the KIWI house had metal cow statues and no big security gates, The Norwegian House was architectural and the USA Embassy, well it took up most of Canberra of course.

Our Trip Down South - Part 3

The next morning we were up early to hit the road south to Canberra.
The scenery reminded me of NZ (or was that the weather? perhaps both).

We had read about Lake George and eagerly awaited to see if it was looking like a lake, but this was it...

Quite lovely even though it was empty.
But then we got to Canberra and saw a full Lake...

A clear, still morning with beautiful autumn leaves painting the sidewalks...
 and Cockatoos welcoming us...
 We stayed at Capital Hill, which is walking distance to Manuka shops, Parliament House, Art Gallery etc. Good central place for what we wanted to do in the following days.
That evening we went to Jamie Olivers' Restaurant, which we thoroughly enjoyed and best of all the kids meals are served in an appetising and interesting way with a viewfinder as a menu!

Our Trip Down South - Part 2

We headed off from Sydney and made it to Bowral in good time to stop at Gumnut Patisserie
to join the masses who were wanting something delicious and pick up Dads birthday cake. Then on to Fitzroy Falls via beautiful gardens, driveways and cottages to arrive at our (smiley) cousins new house. 
How lucky and delighted were we to arrive to a warm hot roast lunch, it was not expected at all!  A warm meal with friends on a very chilly day is wonderful, but when you have just moved into a house and have an 18 month old in tow, well that just makes it more appreciated by us...thankyou!
We were definitely looked after over the two days we were in the area and had a memorable time seeing their beautiful home and glorious gardens, and the views from Fitzroy Falls lookout were brilliant, the most fabulous antique shop and not to mention the guided tour to Berrima. 

(where is Ollie?)

We stayed at Walnut Cottage in Burrawang, I definitely give this historic cottage a thumbs up.
 When we arrived the cottage was cold, the day was cold, well for us it was extremely cold, but Dad got the fire roaring and we soon warmed up (heated car seats help also!).

Everything is well presented and extremely clean in this cottage, there was nothing missing at all. The old bath was the most comfortable I have been in, the beds dreamy also. The gardens full of flowering trees and a large area for running and swinging.

There were plenty of board games and old books, magazines etc along with good music to play.

The kitchen had modern facilities and everything you could possible need.
 The cottage is within walking distance to Burrawang, but it was way too cold for us wimpy QLD ers to venture out in the evening without the heated car seats, so that night we drove to the Burrawang Pub to see what we could find for dinner. Unfortunately they don't open for dinner until 6.30pm and after sitting in the cold room for a few minutes we decided to head out in search of somewhere warm. I think this pub would be a good place in summer or on a sunny day, but without people it lacked the atmosphere that we had hoped for.
 The next morning we went in search of breakfast supplies and once again headed into Burrawang to the General Store, but were too early as breakfast starts at 9am (?) although they did agree to feed our starving boys some toast. This store is actually not a store now sadly, but a beautiful old building and worth visiting nevertheless.
Lesson learned...If you do decide to stay in this lovely village, which I do recommend, make sure you bring supplies, unless you like to eat late.

 After toast we headed off to meet our friends again, because they kindly suggested they take us to Berrima and on the way we spotted a wombat hole! Yes a fresh giant hole on the side of the road (sadly I saw a dead wombat the next day).
 It was another cold day in Berrima, but the autumn colours put on such a wonderful show and the old buildings are so, so beautiful. Plenty of places to visit here.

 We were also taken to one of our favourite bookshop chains (not really a chain at all) Berkelouw Books. This is a fantastic setting, with vineyards and gardens and books and restaurant all in one.
Later that day we went to Bowral to have a look around the shops and were surprised at how busy it was, I think half of Sydney was there that day.
We picked up  some supplies for dinner and enjoyed the scenery on the drive back to Burrawang.

 We loved our time in this beautiful part of NSW, but it would not have been special without the kindness and generosity of our friends who dropped everything and gave us their time to help make our trip memorable...thankyou.