Blogs from Northern Territory, Australia, Oceania


Oceania » Australia » Northern Territory » Uluru September 12th 2020

On Wednesday morning I checked out of the hotel and had a couple of tasks to take care of before I left Coober Pedy. I needed fuel first, and then I had to visit the most useful vending machine in the outback. This may exist elsewhere, but it’s the only one I know of – a coin-operated water station. For just $1.00 you can get 30 litres of water. One of my jerry cans was nearly empty so I wanted to fill it up. Unfortunately, the station seems to just start when you put the coin in and keeps going until 30 litres is dispensed. I wasn’t ready, and the jerry can only holds 20 litres so some water was wasted. It probably could be a bit more efficient and allow you to stop and start ... read more
Kata Tjuta from the air
Taking sunrise photos at Kata Tjuta
Taking sunset photos at Uluru

Oceania » Australia » Northern Territory » Darwin September 7th 2020

After a week of busy days we were glad to take it more slowly on Saturday morning. Nevertheless we went down for breakfast at 8-30am. Our first try, last Wednesday, had not boded well. Again we had to wait for a table and then they took a while to serve us. Because they cannot have a buffet because of COVID-19 we had to order from the menu. There was nothing simple on it, no cereals, fruit or yogurt or toast. The big breakfast had such things as kale and baked beans and the rest was not very appealing. We both had French Toast which was very nice but a large serve with berries, pear and icecream. Again it was over 30 minutes until we received what we ordered. We decided we wouldn't bother in the future. ... read more
Plaque outside the Military museum
The entrance to the Museum
One of the displays

Oceania » Australia » Northern Territory » Darwin September 6th 2020

Lucy, Rowan , Sam and Tracey had bought us a trip out to the Tiwi Islands as my birthday and Fletcher's Father's Day present. This was planned for Friday morning. I was sure that the ferry left at 8-30am so we planned to have a taxi collect us from the hotel at 8 and it was only a 5 minute drive to Cullen Bay where the terminal is situated. We went down to the lobby at 7-55 and the taxi was waiting so we set out. I got out the ticket to check and suddenly read that the departure time was 8am! We arrived at the Terminal about 8-02 and while Fletcher paid the taxi driver I ran up the steps and along the quay and could see the ferry just pulling out from the dock. ... read more
Welcome to country
Smoking ceremony

Oceania » Australia » Northern Territory » Darwin » City of Darwin September 1st 2020

After another magnificent lunch we arrived into Alice Springs at 1pm. There are excursions included in the fare and we had opted for the Alice Explorer. There was another out to Simpson's Gap but Ken and Edna had taken us there last year. We were the second to last group off the train and had to wear masks for about 100 metres until we had given our border entry forms to the police on the platform. Then it was into the bus and off. Our driver was very glad to see us as this was his first job for four months.We drove around the town and our first stop was at a Reptile Park. This turned out to be suprisingly good ad the presenter was an enthusiast who knew his stuff. Inside there were many, various ... read more
snake in the reptile park
Black snake

Oceania » Australia » Northern Territory » Alice Springs March 28th 2020

When I lived and worked in Alice Springs, my wife and I would most evenings head off to the Telegraph Station and hike the trails there. I would also to the Telegraph Station on my own and many times set off on the first leg of the Larapinta Trail to Simpsons Gap. Having loved living in the Alice, I decided to go back and finally go on with the trail all the way to its end at the top of Mount Sonder, a distance of 234kms. So having booked my trip with World Expeditions, in August 2017, I set off for a 14 day trek through the glorious Red Centre of the Northern Territory. The first two days to Simpson Gap and on to Jay Creek were quite long days at 23 and 24 kms respectively. ... read more
Troop Carrier, kitchen and everything in between
Day 3 - To Stanley Chasm
Setting up the Camp

Oceania » Australia » Northern Territory » Darwin » City of Darwin August 31st 2019

Having left Komodo Island, we had more sea days as we cruised east to Darwin, our next port of call. We were to arrive around 4.00pm, but we were delayed as another vessel was berthed at our wharf. There are many things that happen along the way while at sea, most are enjoyable and entertaining, but for some, a perfectly good cruise can turn into a nightmare. This cruise was no different. One passenger took very seriously ill about 7 hours after departure from Singapore. Another tripped on the deck and broke an arm. Closer to Darwin, another passenger took ill and the care flight helicopter met Pacific Dawn at sea to winch up a patient and take them to Darwin's Hospital. The evacuation is a slow and precise flight process in co-ordination with the ship's ... read more
Pacific Dawn all lit up
Rescue at sea
Rescue at sea

Oceania » Australia » Northern Territory » Uluru August 20th 2019

Here we are, the 600th blog. Well, I guess if you want to know who I am, you have a serious part of my life on Travelblog! And that's over 25% on my little journey on earth! Finally made it to Uluru. Another funny figure...I decided to play the click game on tripadvisor map...guess what, you've seen 91% of the me, I still have to discover way more than 9% of our beautiful earth! Took me over 15 visits to Australia to make it to Alice Springs and Ayers Rock! It is also a first for Tanya. Put it simply, we are in the middle of nowhere and everything has a cost here. We had our evening flight to Adelaide from Sydney, followed by a short night at Adelaide airport. Next morning, next flight, this ... read more
Those colors...
Kata Tjuta
We decided not to climb...

Oceania » Australia » Northern Territory » Alice Springs August 17th 2019

We arrived in Alice Springs today. An interesting drive down from the Mount Doreen ruins, which appeared to be an old mining operation. First stop was at Yuandemu (incorrect spelling no doubt) for some fuel. $2.15 a litre. Ooooof. It was a funny setup in this community - prepay in the store and when there were enough people wanting fuel a fella came out (Swiss backpacker) who tried to organise the chaos. There was one set of pumps that only went to one side (locked in a cage) and cars coming in from both directions. Took ages to get to us but gave me a chance to chat to the people in line. The carnival that we found out about yesterday had been held here and it was a massive event. Home team won the footy ... read more

Oceania » Australia » Northern Territory August 17th 2019

Pack up was quick and relatively efficient. Up the road for fuel and toward the Plenty Highway. A fairly uneventful drive besides some nice changing scenery and me accidentally stepping on the new dog - didn’t he let out a yelp!!! We fuelled up at Jervois Station and met Mary, whom we chatted to for quite a while (nice lady) and then down toward Batton Hill camp where we set up for the night. It was a heavily corrugated 80km in - not fun. And then there was no-one there to check-in with. Never fear. We were not afraid. So we set up for a feast and many hours of talking rubbish. After the first bit of driving the following day it became very scenic and pleasant through sandy curves and dips. No water in the ... read more

Oceania » Australia » Northern Territory » Tanami Desert August 10th 2019

If yesterday was all about driving then today was…..also all about driving. But it was a more eventual drive than usual. Back to last night. The wind was fair howling after we went to bed. So much so that I got up a few times to add some pegs and remove some somewhat un-required canvas to reduce the damn flapping. Add to that, it was the first night that we separated the two puppies (now five weeks old) for sleeping so when I returned to the tent in the middle of the night, the young fella was keen for a play. I was knackered so he chewed on my ears and beard for a while until we both started dozing. It was still blowing hard in the morning so we did a record quick pack-up and ... read more

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