I have always thought Australia was a land of barrenness, brown, flat landscape. I was pleasantly surprised and happy to be proven wrong. Victoria has some beautiful landscape for those willing to drive out a bit. And I’m definitely happy to do that anytime, just for some peaceful getaway to another place with a whole new scenery and feel to it. I guess I also really wanted to do things differently this time round and to scope out parts of Melbourne / Victoria that I have not been before. With this in mind, this season back in Melbourne has been quite eventful.
- Bicycle rides along Marybrynong River in Summer – Check
- Singing class- Check
- Walks around Abbortsford Park – Check
- Visited boxhill – Check
- Melbourne Zoo – Check
- Trek in Yarra Ranges – Check
- Vivid festival in Sydney
- Girls getaway to Bright-Check
- Snow trip to Falls Creek and stay at Mount Beauty-Check
- Weekend getaway to Grampians – Check
Today, let’s talk about Grampians! I had been there 5 years ago, with a tour group in the middle of winter. I remembered it was too cold, rainy and all I wanted to do was get back in the coach. Maybe I was in flipflops and not properly dressed ( I know, silly me from the tropics just can’t give up her flipflops and wore them happily around in her first winter, brave oh young me.) , but I did not enjoy Grampians that much then. However, having heard from some friends who recently went out and had an amazing time, I decided that I should give it a go again, and I am glad I did! Our getaway to Grampians was quite an impromptu plan, gathering a few friends who wanted to get away, booked an apartment on trusty AirBnB and off we went! Day One We left at around 9am on Saturday and got to Ararat at around 2pm to check in to our lovely AirBnB house 🙂 Ararat is a 30 minutes drive to Grampians and is a more cost effective accommodation area if you are looking to save in the budget department. Our drive there was quite pretty 🙂 The clouds were so low, it felt like snowy mountains in the distance We had lunch around our rented house pretty late and that meant we only reached Grampians at around 3.30pm. The guide at the visitor’s centre told us the sun was setting so pretty much only got to do Venus Bath, which was where some hikers would soak their feet during summer. A 15 minutes walk there and back so great for kids! It started to get dark at 5.30pm and we decided to head to Kookabara Bistro and Bar. Definitely must try as it was delish! The prices are about $35.00 for a main course so not on the cheap side, and sharing such lovely food with a few buddies was a good way to go. The mustard sauce for the Kangeroo steak was really good and I could easily have that over rice, anytime. ( You really can’t take the Asian out of this girl !) Headed back to our humble abode, had thai tea and girls talk before tucking in for a full day the next day! Day Two Rise and shine and off we went. We decided on The Pinnacle trek as it was one of the must do on Tripadvisor and did this via The Grand Canyon walk and it was sure worth the hour trek up. Definitely do this on a non-rainy day as the rocks are quite slippery and can be dangerous if it does rain. Valleys of mountains, definitely pleasantly surprised to see this in Australia. We headed back to the lake near the visitor’s centre and had our packed lunch to this view. Even though it was a man made lake, it was still beautiful and very calming. Wished I coud have this view daily! Next up, Barosa lookout – Definitely must see! View was stunning with the lake in view sandwiched by mountains 🙂 Doing this by yourself and with friends definitely takes it up to a whole new level where you can wander around at your own time and do the sights that you actually want to do. Day Three Drove back and stopped by Balleret. A sleepy town (or maybe it was a Sunday) with a beautiful gorgeous lake! loved it. A good stop over to break the drive up. All in all, a great trip for the weekends! To be free from all the crazy and to be out there forgetting everything, breathing, taking it all in, whose in? Me. Me. Me.