Flying from Perth to Adelaide took 3 hours. It was Anzac Day (similar to Remembrance Sunday, but actively observed everywhere in Australia with marches and church services). We collected a more modest-sized campervan this time for our drive through South Australia, Victoria and New South Wales, ending in Sydney (after about 3,000km). In Adelaide we met up with Ali from our Central American trip earlier this year, who looked as great as ever and we talked non-stop happily throughout lunch. After Ali & Adelaide, our next highlight was the Great Ocean Road, which has to be one of the most spectacular drives in the world. On the western half there are large limestone islands which are continually battered by the wild winds and the big seas of the Southern Ocean, so that the coastline is constantly changing. Cape Otway is the dividing point, and the southernmost point of Australia. To the east the road closely follows the coastline, curving like a giant sea-snake, from one pretty bay to another. Inland, there's plenty to see as well, with giant forests and a treetop walk where you can look down from the forest canopy on ancient trees and tree ferns whose ancestors could
have grown there in the days of the dinosaurs, when Australia was still attached to Antarctica. We took a 40-min ferry ride across the entrance to Port Philip Bay, thus bypassing Melbourne, and continued through Victoria, spotting koalas, galahs, crimson rosellas and unusually attractive crested doves. Victoria is much more densely populated than either WA or SA, and it was a relief to cross the border into New South Wales, with better roads and fewer people. Next stop was Merimbula (to see an old friend from the time we lived in Australia while Bob was flying helicopters with the Royal Australian Navy) and Sydney, where the Opera House looked smaller than we remembered as many more tall buildings have sprung up around the point since we were last here.
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