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Published: March 21st 2015
We drove along Princes Highway from Port Fairy and entered South Australia, our seventh and final Australian State. After crossing the border we shortly arrived in Mount Gambier. We stopped at the Visitor Information Centre to find out where and what the main attractions were in the town. It is worth saying that we have found the Visitor Information Centres, in virtually every town across Australia, to be excellent. Manned by friendly helpful staff we have been able to find out detailed information about attractions, restaurants, accommodation and much more about the town and surrounding area, we have been able to obtain free WiFi, use clean well maintained restrooms and buy a wide variety of souvenirs. With the information supplied we were able to see the Umpherston Sinkhole - an amazing garden created in the depths of a sinkhole which was formed following collapse of a limestone cave. Next we visited the Blue Lake, the most famous feature of Mount Gambier. The bright blue lake, which is only blue during the summer months, within a volcanic crater, contrasts markedly with the dull grey/green colour of Valley lake just over the road - apparently the colour variation is due to differences in
temperatures, minerals and light wavelengths!
We rejoined the Riddoch Highway and headed north, driving through typical South Australian countryside of parched dry grassland dotted with sheep, and clusters of Eucalypt trees - this looked like it should also be kangaroo country - but we didn't see any!! Soon we arrived at one of Australia's most famous wine regions - Coonawarra - where wonderful deep red Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon wines are produced. The vineyards occupy a fairly narrow strip of land, either side of the road, within a band of deep red rich soil, which covers only a small area but is ideal for growing this type of vine. We stopped at Wynn's Cellar Door, a well known winery, and bought a bottle of Shiraz for later in the evening. We arrived, in late afternoon at our overnight B & B, a super cottage in Naracoorte, with views over the countryside.
Next day we headed to another of Australia's famous wine producing regions - the Barossa Valley. We enjoyed a wine and gourmet food tasting tour the following day, visiting eight wineries. We sampled many of the Barossa valley wines ranging from flavoursome valley floor Shiraz to lighter
Grenache and lovely dry white Rieslings & sauvignon blanc interspersed by samples of local cheese, pate & bread. No evening meal was required!!
The final day of out driving road trip took us through the picturesque Adelaide Hills, with small villages and towns many showing architectural influences of the early Lutheran German settlers and finally into Adelaide.
The final highlight of our trip was attending the quarter final of the ICC Cricket World Cup at the Adelaide Oval between Australia and Pakistan. A memorable game with some good batting by the Australians under the floodlights, with fiery fast bowling by the Pakistanis. Australia won with relative ease, by six wickets, which pleased the home crowd.
We have had a wonderful time during our long Australian adventure seeing many amazing sights along the way. We enjoyed Jackie's company during the three week 'Discover Australia Tour' when we saw the major Australian icons. Our road trip gave us the freedom to wander along the smaller roads and visit smaller towns of South East Australia. In all the road trip covered 3852km (2400miles) mainly along well maintained relatively quiet A-type roads, with occasional sections along dusty gravel roads when deep
Arriving at the Adelaide Oval
For the Quarter Final of the ICC Cricket World Cup between Australia & Pakistan
in the countryside. We stayed at many great B & B's where we received a friendly welcome. We are now packing for the final time and will be enjoying a leisurely lunch before relaxing in the warm South Australian sunshine prior to our long overnight flight home.
Accommodation - Possum's Paradise Cottage, Carolynnes Cottages B & B Naracoorte
- Lanzerac Country Estate B & B Tanunda Barossa Valley
- Crowne Plaza Hotel Adelaide
Weather - Sunny / Cloudy 24c in the Barossa Valley.
- Mainly sunny with only occasional clouds 22 - 30c in Adelaide
Tot: 1.449s; Tpl: 0.053s; cc: 12; qc: 55; dbt: 0.0321s; 1; m:saturn w:www (188.8.131.52); sld: 2;
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