Photographs and Adventures

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  • London Bridge on the Great Ocean Road
  • Mt Gambier Blue Lake
  • Gypsy
  • TAILEM BEND-1
  • Egret taking flight on the Mary River.
  • 21. Lara Wetlands-1
  • This was the view from our 'front door' at one of the waterholes where we camped.
  • 19.Lawn Hill-1
  • Early morning reflections on the Gregory River.
  • Brolgas in front of termite mounds. The young one doesn't have the red on it's head.

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The Great Ocean Road, Victoria

The Great Ocean Road runs for 243 kilometres between Torquay and Allansford on the south eastern coast of Victoria, Australia. It is heritage listed and is one of the worlds most scenic coastal drives.

Great Ocean Road

Stunning coastal scenery along the Great Ocean Road.

London Bridge on the Great Ocean Road

London Bridge. Originally there were two arches but one has since collapsed due to the erosion of the waves.

Loch Ard gorge

Loch Ard gorge close to where the clipper ship Loch Ard ran aground in 1878.

Loch Ard gorge

The sandy cove at Loch Ard gorge where the two survivors of the shipwreck managed to get ashore.

Rugged cliffs and rough seas.

Rugged cliffs and rough seas.

The Razorback, Great Ocean Road

The Razorback on the Great Ocean Road is a thin wedge of rock, steadily being eroded away by the action of the sea.

Stormy afternoon over the Southern Ocean.

Stormy afternoon over the Southern Ocean.

 

Mt. Gambier, South Australia

We visited Mount Gambier, South Australia, which is famous for it’s Blue Lake that changes colour to a brilliant blue colour in November and remains that colour over the summer each year. Since we visited in winter, the colour was not the same vibrant blue, but it was still interesting to visit the lake which is formed in a crater, and you could definitely see the difference in colour between the blue lake and the lake in the adjoining valley.

Mt Gambier Blue Lake

The Blue Lake in Mt Gambier

Umpherston Sinkhole

Umpherston Sinkhole in Mt Gambier is well worth a visit.

The sinkhole was originally on a private property, where the Umpherston family developed the gardens in the 1880’s. Umpherston Sinkhole was once a cave formed through dissolution of limestone and the sinkhole was created when the top of the chamber collapsed downwards. Now the topsoil down on the floor of the cave forms the perfect environment for the sunken garden.

Umpherston sinkhole, looking up

Umpherston sinkhole, looking up you can see the shape of the original cave.

Mt. Gambier is built on the slopes of an inactive volcano and features several other sunken cave gardens as well as nearby attractions such as Tantanoola Caves with it’s pink dolomite caverns. The area is known as the limestone coast and many buildings are constructed from blocks of local limestone, which makes it a most attractive town.

Gypsy and the Trumpet

Gypsy and the Trumpet, which actually don’t have all that much to do with each other, apart from happening on the same day…

Lunchtime serenade

We made a short stop at Nhill where Peter couldn’t resist the rotunda in the middle of the main street.

Gypsy

Gypsy is such a sweet dog, and is loving her travelling life.

Gypsy resting

Gypsy takes a rest after her busy day exploring.

 

Tailem Bend in the winter

We are just having a quick winter getaway and camped at Tailem Bend on the Murray River for a few nights. After a stunning sunset it was a bit chilly at night and we were pleased to have a campfire.

 

TAILEM BEND-2

Ducks and cloud reflections on the Murray.TAILEM BEND-3

Last rays of light.TAILEM BEND-4

Sparklers after dark.TAILEM BEND-5

It is easy to make photos like this with a tripod, and around a 5 sec exposure at ISO200. I found I needed to focus manually on the spot where the sparkler-holding-person would stand.

Tailem Bend campfire

Campfire on the banks of the Murray River at Tailem Bend, South Australia. A cosy way to end the day.

Maryborough, Qld

We finally made our way across to the east coast and to Maryborough which is a lovely town in which to spend a night. It has been quite a while since we stayed in a town! Being boaties, we opted to put our van next to the Marina on the Mary River for the night so that Peter could look at the boats; he has been missing his boat and the sea. Once we were set up, we went for a walk through the beautifully kept Queens Park, which is one of the oldest botanical parks in Australia. Nearby is the historic court house, and beside it …

The Sausage Tree (Kigelia Pinnata), a native of South Africa, was propagated in about 1850 by botanist John Bidwill. It is a very rare specimen  and is on the Heritage Register.

…is the Sausage Tree (Kigelia Pinnata), a native of South Africa, which was propagated in about 1850 by botanist John Bidwill. It is a very rare specimen and is on the Heritage Register.

It is easy to imagine a brass band playing in the rotunda in Queens Park.

The band stand in Queens Park is quite lovely and ornate and it is easy to imagine a brass band playing in the rotunda to an appreciative audience.

The miniature railway line runs between the hanging roots of the ancient Banyan  tree in Queens Park.

The miniature railway line runs in and out between the hanging roots of the ancient Banyan Fig tree in Queens Park. The Banyan Fig is well over 100 years old and quite spectacular with its huge system of roots.

Maryborough has lots of nicely restored historic buildings, but also some modern art such as this water wall near the art gallery.

Maryborough has lots of nicely restored historic buildings, but also some modern art such as this water wall near the art gallery.

Egret taking flight on the Mary River.

Egret taking flight on the Mary River. Kind of blurry, but I like it!

The sun sets after another busy day!

Looking up the Mary River, our caravan is the little white blob on the right, next to the marina jetty.

And the sun sets after another busy day.

Lara Wetlands – Barcaldine, Qld

Lara Wetlands came highly recommended by WikiCamps, and since we were passing through Barcaldine we decided to go the extra kilometres, spend a few dollars and find out for ourselves. Jo, who runs Lara, is a delightful and welcoming person who has put so much effort into establishing the camping area and thermal pool. It all looks great and it was a peaceful and relaxing place to spend a bit of time.

The artesian bore at Lara ensures a permanent waterhole.

The artesian bore at Lara ensures a permanent waterhole.

The artesian bore feeds the thermal pool which is the perfect place to relax at the end the day.

The artesian bore also feeds the delightfully warm thermal pool which is the perfect place to relax at the end the day.

Looking towards the shower and toilet block. There are flushing toilets (such luxury!) but you need to set a fire under the donkey hot water service if you want a hot shower.

Looking towards the shower and toilet block. There are flushing toilets (such luxury!) but you need to set a fire under the donkey hot water service if you want a hot shower. But it is all so cute!

Around the other side of the lake is the 'funny funny'...

Around the other side of the lake is the ‘funny dunny’…which you can use if you are so inclined!

Storm clouds gathering at the end of the day.

Storm clouds gathering over Lara Wetland at the end of the day.

Lara is also a working cattle station and is a very interesting and welcoming place to stay.

More free camping…this is getting to be a habit

The longer we have been on the road (over two months now) the more we have come to realise the benefits of finding a decent free camp to set up for a day or two. We use WikiCamps to help us discover what places are suitable then choose according to location and comments from other users.

This was the view from our 'front door' at one of the waterholes where we camped.

This was the view from our ‘front door’ at one of the waterholes where we camped.

At a free-camp, you are also free to collect firewood for a campfire, and then cook yourself a meal in your camp oven. It doesn't get much better than this!

At a free-camp, you are also free to collect firewood for a campfire, and then cook yourself a meal in your camp oven. It doesn’t get much better than this!

While you are spending time relaxing at the free camp, you are also often surrounded by birds and other wildlife. These brolgas were feeding at the waterhole mentioned above.

While you are spending time relaxing at the free camp, you are also often surrounded by birds and other wildlife. These Brolgas were feeding at the waterhole mentioned above.

These finches often flocked around water sources, whether it was a waterhole or just a dish beneath a tap.

These honeyeaters often flocked around water sources, whether it was a waterhole or just a dish of water collected beneath a tap.

Black-winged Stilts in flight over the waterhole.

Black-winged Stilts in flight over the waterhole. I love their trailing pink legs.

This little Black Fronted Plover was feeding in the shallows.

This little Black Fronted Plover was feeding in the shallows.

I have learned to recognise quite a few new birds on this trip, but nothing in comparison to one of our travelling companions who has photographed and identified over 80 species he hadn’t previously seen. It definitely helps to have a bird identification book along on the trip.