Heading towards The Great Ocean Road

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November 17th 2015
Published: November 17th 2015
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Sunday 15 November continued

We rested for the afternoon and went out for our dinner at 7.30 pm.

We headed north and came across a Jamie Oliver Italian restaurant, which was really busy. We tried to get a table but would have had to wait for a while so decided not to bother and moved on.

Onwards past all the lovely big buildings and then back into retail territory and restaurants. Pat was hankering for some pasta and fortunately we came across a couple of Italian places either side of a junction. San Giorgio was selected, and straight to a table. Pat chose salmon penne and I had a meat lovers pizza. Another good meal and with drinks was AUS$57.

An amble through the shopping centre and back to the room.

Monday 16 November

Check out was until 11.00 am and our hire car collection time was 12.00.

So our plan was to check out as near to 11 as possible and to walk round to theHertz office slowly and see if they would give us the car a little early.

I had an unsettled night's sleep for an unknown reason and we started to move at 8.30 am.

We got ready, packed bags and sorted ourselves out and were ready by 10.30 so decided to leave the room and go and have a coffee at the cafe / restaurant in the lobby area..

I paid the bill and checked us out and Pat ordered the coffee.

We moved off at 11.00 am and slowly trundled the bags to the Hertz office. It wasn't far and didn't take long. As it happened the office was full of people and we had a short while to wait.

Our turn came and there was no issue with us being early, the paperwork was duly completed and money taken from credit cards and off to our car in the hotel underground car park.

We have a Toyota Corolla automatic 4 door hatchback and it's a nice little number, quite responsive.

We were more prepared as we set off on our journey this time, we had maps and had asked for guidance in how to get out of the city.

The journey we are undertaking will be on what they call 'The Great Ocean Road'.

We got out of Adelaide with no problem and of course Pat's fine map reading.

We got off the major roads as soon as we could and drove through Noarlunga, Maslin beach and then decided to see what Adinga beach was up to and maybe get something to eat, as it was lunchtime and we had not yet eaten.

We drove to the coast and found a beachside cafe called Breeze, which was open and had a number of people in. We both had a 'big brekky'. It was very nice, poached eggs, chorizo, bacon, sourdough bread & butter, roasted mushrooms, roasted tomatos, home made baked beans and home made hash browns. Cost AUS$19.80. A great breakfast.

We headed off again and drove past Sellicks Beach, Myponga and on to Victor Harbor, where we stopped for a while.

A beautiful spot and has a horse drawn tram on a bridge out to Granite Island, which has Little penquins and other interests. This area is one of many to whale watch at the right time of year.

After walking and looking for a while we got on the road again. Heading past Port Elliot, Goolwa, Strathalbyn, Langhorne Creek and stopping in Wellington, about 5 pm.

We stopped just before the River Murray car ferry and saw a sign for a hotel. A room / chalet was available for AUS$110.00 and we said ok. No internet access.

Far from the upper end of the market our cabin has a riverside location and we are looking out at the small car ferry going backwards and forwards. Pelicans are flying up and down and various other river birds. Peaceful if nothing else, if you ignore the ferry sounds.

The scenery along the way today has been vastly different from our recent experiences. Managed fields with grain crops, cattle, sheep, and horses. Even Shetland ponies in one field. Latterley vineyards by the hundreds of acres and as far as the eye can see.

An easier drive, with things changing all the time, it keeps your attention much better. Driving distance 212 kilometres.

We had been advised the restaurant was open this evening 6 to 8.30 pm, so 6.30 ish we headed off. Scnitzel was the special tonight, beef or chicken!

The restaurant was busier than expected snd also the menu was more extensive than I would have imagined.

Pat ordered breaded camembert and I had chilli prawn salad with noodles, with drinks AUS$43.

Funnily enough we had water with the meal tonight as we do usually and the way the restaurants do it is to provide tap water in a glass bottle kept in the drink cooler cabinet. There is no charge for the water. The bottle is usually a wine bottle or similar, tonight it was a Bombay Sapphire Gin bottle, which is of course Pat's favourite gin.

As we left others were arriving with pool cues so it must have been pool night in the Welly hotel.

Back to the chalet and sleep beckons.

Tuesday 17 November

Pat's Birthday.

Never heard a thing last night, dead quiet.

We woke about 8.30 am and didn't pack quite the same as we can sling things in the car for a few days.

We were on the road waiting for the car ferry at 09.43 am. A truck and a car with caravan in front and other vehicles behind.

A short wait and on the way, the crossing only takes about 10 minutes. The other half of Wellington only had a few houses so we had not made the wrong decision last night,

We drove around the lakes and then along tne coast road. At Kingston SE we kept to the inner coast road heading for Robe.

We arrived at 1 pm and had a quick look round and parked at the front. Pat had seen a bakery cafe which we headed back to for a snack.

Pat had a turkey, cheese and cranberry roll and I had an egg and bacon sandwich. Whist sitting and eating we got chatting to an Australian couple who we exchanged stories with.

Back to the car and departed Robe at 2 pm. A petrol fill up on the way out, the car is very economical, but we keep it filled up as places can be so far apart. We were given advice when we first arrived, that if your tank was half empty fill up and it has stood us in good stead.

We have now seen two proper VW camper vans and added hares and alpacas to the animal list.

Pines & vines seems to be one of the main features today. Acres and acres of pine trees on one side and acres and acres of vineyards on the other.

Our destination was Mount Gambier and we arrived about 3.30 pm. We had picked up a town plan from Tourist information in Robe so had a rough idea of the town. We had no accommodation booked yet so headed for a very well signposted Tourist Information and enlisted their help.

Suggestions were given and we drove to a place where there were 3 or 4 motels in a row. The first was full but then the Red Carpet had vacancies and we were in AUS$85.

At 5 ish pm, we went to see a local feature - the blue lake. Only few kilometers down the road it is an area of volcano craters, one filled with water that a certain times of the year is a beautiful blue in colour, luckily that is now.

We returned to the motel and got ready to go out. We had no idea of the standard of restaurants in this town, but parked in the main street and walked a short distance to find a likely looking place, called 1862 wine bar & grill, part of the hotel Gambier.

We had lamb, rump steak, chocolate brownie and cheese & biscuits. Pat had a small bottle of sparkling wine to celebrate, as well as a glass of red wine.

A high standard of food and presentation. The cheeseboard for example was a blue cheese, biscuits, quince paste, slices of orange and a small bowel of nuts.

The whole meal was AUS$105.60 and a wonderful meal with which to celebrate Pat's Birthday.

Back to the room 9 pm ish, with a full tummy and a happy wife.


17th November 2015

Great Ocean Road
If you are travelling the Great Ocean Rd towards Melbourne, I can recommend the Allansford Hotel in Allansford. We stayed there for a night. It was really nice. Food was good as well.
18th November 2015

Hello Both - Lovely Birthday Blog - great pics.

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