891 posts categorized "Travel"

July 17, 2013

Fossicking for Kangaroos and hopping gold at Hill End :-)

CLD_8924SonnySo after Orange, we arrived on dark at little historical town, Hill End ( gets dark at 5:30 here in winter now, crazy ) Next morning and the scene outside our bedroom, frost everywhere. We stayed upstairs in Hosie's old grocery store CLD_8925Sonnybeautiful day coming up, but a cold one CLD_8928SonnyAs it was dark when we arrived, I go for a little morning stroll before breakfast, and look what I spot on the block of land across from Hosie's CLD_8932Sonny
some kangaroos grazing in the morning sun CLD_8934Sonnytrying to get closer to one of them CLD_8936Sonnyrelatively tame for a wild kangaroo CLD_8939Sonnychurch service CLD_8940Sonnycouple more, probably enjoying the warm sun rays as much as I am CLD_8941SonnyHey ! No fighting outside church CLD_8942Sonny

party's over CLD_8947Sonnyoff they hop CLD_8951Sonnybig old pine tree where a church used to be, in its hey day, Hill End had some 52 pubs ( licensed and non licensed ),now only one left & well over a dozen churches and from memory, a population of up to 8000 at one stage, now just under a 100 remain CLD_8953SonnyAfter breakfast we drive up to one of the look outs,Beaufoy ( named after a local 1870's photographer ) and this is what it was all about Hawks Hill, see all the gravel on the side, there were about 20 mines along there and in the middle of that hill is where one of Australia's largest nuggets was found some 50 meters underground weighing in at close to 300kg, strike it rich CLD_8954Sonnythe end of Hawk Hill and at the bottom of the photo, a still operating mine CLD_8956Sonnyquite a lot of small alluvial gold is still found around these parts, so best we have a go to CLD_8959Sonnywe got our pans and some one optimistically thought we would each need one of these jars to collect our small pieces we would find...for sure CLD_8957Sonnywe gave it a go, but involved getting our hands wet and dirty ( dirty was not a problem ) but th water was ice cold, I think we might have to come back on a warmer day, say early autumn :-) CLD_8960Sonnyall (cold ) hands on deck CLD_8961Sonnyeven though all is bushy, you can tell there was once a thriving community out here, judging by this old orchard CLD_8962Sonny
amazing blue sky day today CLD_8964Sonnyfinding lots of old artifacts, but.... CLD_8966Sonnyafter spending well over an hour here, still nothing in these little jars
we leave empty (cold) handed CLD_8967Sonnydriving down the blue mountains, back to Sydney CLD_8969Sonny
"There's gold in them hills"


July 16, 2013

Duntryleague , Orange

CLD_8899SonnyAfter our bush walk in Lithgow, we planned to have the most amazing vegetarian dinner in Orange, about 50 km west of Bathurst ( sorry no photos - Jacqui will do a post of the dinner soon ) We discovered it about 3-4 years ago on our way to Dubbo zoo. Bodhi Garden in Orange it's called, and I'm guessing they are Tibetan, such a variety of dishes, all vegetarian and still some taste like chicken dishes and others like beef, very yummy. So when in Orange next, visit Bodhi Garden for a healthy meal. Speaking of Orange always wondered why it was called Orange, as there it is not an Orange growing district, so why the name.
It was first called Black Man's Swamp, after John Blackman who was guide, employed by Captain Percy. Then later on in the 1820's , surveyor Sir Thomas Mitchell, who served in the Peninsula war as a aides des camps to the Duke of Wellington alongside, Prince William from Holland royal House Of Orange. So Thomas Mitchell named it after his dutch friend who went on to become the King of Holland.
Aniiiiiiiiiiiway, we stayed at the Duntry League historic house, always nice to stay somewhere like this as opposed to the sterile motels. Beautiful place just on the outskirts of Orange on a golf course. CLD_8901SonnyI've seen building before like this, but did not realize that those posts are solid cast iron, I just always thought it was a hard wood. So these iron posts were cast in Sydney and then shipped out ( some 290km ) to the country, back in the day, amazing stuff CLD_8902Sonnybeautiful tiled floor, all individual pieces too, these are not tiles with a pattern, they pieces to make a pattern CLD_8904Sonnyoutside out room for the night ( yes, they did have an actual bathroom and we did not do it old school ) CLD_8908Sonnyview from our room in the morning, they had a family room that we all fit in CLD_8910Sonnylove me a good old iron lace verandah CLD_8911Sonnywould look nicer in summer ( the barren trees ) CLD_8914Sonnyinside CLD_8915SonnyAfter breakfast, see-ing as we are in wine country we visit some of the local vienyards CLD_8917SonnySpring flowers are up early CLD_8921Sonnyon one of the vineyards they had a little animal farm, Belle managed to touch one of the newborn lambs, only a few days old. Now drive of to Hill End.

Lithgow glow worm tunnel

CLD_8845Sonnystraight off the plane and out to the country we go, this time to Lithgow, the track in the national park to the glow worm tunnel, which is actually an old railway tunnel from back in the mining days CLD_8847Sonny
So arrived yesterday, and today in the country, love it. But sadly we were out Lithgow way for a funeral, but as it was school holidays, we turned it into a little trip for the kids as well. CLD_8895SonnyThe dark space in the middle of those ferns is the entrance to the tunnel, its a big tunnel ( big enough for a train )it has just become very overgrown with these lush ferns leading to the entrance CLD_8851Sonnyinside the tunnel, and yes, we saw lots and lots of glow worms, but just could not capture it on camera. I t was pretty spectacular CLD_8852Sonnythat's 3 kids, one with a tiny torch, and the other two lit up, but alas, no glow worms captured CLD_8855Sonnylight at the other end of the tunnel CLD_8856Sonny

CLD_8858Sonnyagain, very lush on the other side, feels like we arrived in the " lost Land " CLD_8859Sonny

CLD_8860SonnyJacqui and Evan tunred back to the car, while the girls and I continue on exploring CLD_8863Sonnyvery lush out here CLD_8867Sonnywalking along the track, so much dampness in the air ,even though it is a blue sky day. Would be nice to come back one day on a hot summer day CLD_8871Sonnycrossing little creek on a tree branch CLD_8875Sonnythe entrance to the tunnel on our return journey CLD_8876Sonny
the girls at the entrance CLD_8878Sonny

CLD_8882Sonnyat the entrance still but this time, me inside looking out CLD_8892Sonnyafter 5 min in the dark, we arrived back at the start of the tunnel CLD_8893Sonnymade it. Lithgow's Glow worm tunnel, well worth a visit, bring a torch, but not a big powerfull one, small one will do, let your eyes adjust to the darkness, and you will see thouands of glow worms

July 15, 2013

Hong Kong > Sydney

CLD_8773SonnyQuick Shower and steamed bun and off again CLD_8776Sonnynot familiar with Hong Kong, but I guess this must be that new airport on an island of Hong Kong CLD_8777Sonnystill a lot of apartment buildings CLD_8781SonnyDiscovery Bay CLD_8786Sonnyhong kong's disney land CLD_8790SonnyAp Lei Chau with Lamma Island, so if I was sitting on the left hand side I would get a great view of Hong Kong I guess CLD_8792SonnyAberdeen marina, with what looks like an amusement park CLD_8791Sonnyzoom in, yes, Hong Kong Ocean Park CLD_8795SonnySouth China Sea CLD_8801Sonny


CLD_8810Sonnysomewhere around the Phillipines or Indonesia CLD_8812Sonnyland ahoy, that would be Australia CLD_8814Sonnyon the right, Croker Island , just of the Northern Territory in the Arafura Sea CLD_8815SonnyThese Islands, just near Croker Island, the big one is called Mc Cluer Isladn and the small one I can't find a name for, but anyway, thse islands, even though they are in a sea as opposed to an oceam , appear to have the possibility for surf, maybe not often, but still CLD_8817Sonnyzoomed in, and that's definitly waves hitting the outer reef CLD_8818Sonnythe group of Islands of Croker Island CLD_8821Sonnyno wonder it was so hazy CLD_8826Sonnyremote part in the north, Arnhem Land at Junction Bay CLD_8827Sonny copywoauw, and look at the path of the river :-) CLD_8827Sonnyzoom in Arnhemand a screen grab from google earth CLD_8828SonnyLiverpool river near West Arnhem CLD_8830SonnyEdward Island in the Gulf of Carpenteria CLD_8832Sonny
Maria Island CLD_8833Sonnywest tip of west Island CLD_8834Sonny
West Island CLD_8836Sonnybeautiful, but wary of crocodiles, also, would be lots of crabs CLD_8838Sonnythe ridged backs of crocodiles formed million years ago in the landscape CLD_8842Sonnyand another day draws to a close CLD_8844Sonnya few hours out of Sydney. At least on this flight, as opposed to all of Qantas flights now, I am arriving in the evening, and not at the un godly hour of 5 or 6 in the morning ( depending on daylight saving ) And as well as now not being mr zombie jet lag all day, I got to see some amazing australian landscapes, have some dinner and go to bed :-)

London > Hong Kong

CLD_8741Sonnyof we go again CLD_8742SonnySomewhere near Poland I think CLD_8743SonnyThe way the windows are set up, or rather the seats in Cathay Pacifics 747 is so annoying, I really have to stretch and contort my body to try and look out the window CLD_8747SonnyRussia CLD_8749Sonnygoing into night time CLD_8752Sonnychina CLD_8754Sonny

CLD_8759Sonnynearing Hong Kong CLD_8763Sonnynever been to Hong Kong ( transiting Hong Kong airport does not count ) and I guess there are a lot of Islands around Hong Kong CLD_8771Sonnyand lots of boats

July 14, 2013

Brussels > London

The Schelde River making its way through Belgium into Holland and North Sea CLD_8732SonnyThe bend in the river schelde at Antwerp CLD_8731Sonnycloser look, anyone living in Antwerp will know exactly what we are lloking at here CLD_8733Sonnyfurther down river, Doel CLD_8734SonnyFrom one smoke stack in Doel to another in one of London's suburbs, although this is more disaster looking, looks like a house fire CLD_8737Sonnygreat shot of London CLD_8736Sonnyzoom in CLD_8739Sonnyanother look at that fire CLD_8738Sonnyhope everyone involved are alright

July 09, 2013

Milan > Paris

CLD_4569Sonnyphotosnice summer colours on this departure day CLD_4570Sonnyphotoslove this shot CLD_4575Sonnyphotos like a challenge :-)
CLD_4576Sonnyphotoslove it CLD_4579Sonnyphotosone of the many lakes outside Milan at the foothills of the alps CLD_4582Sonnyphotossnow and melting lakes CLD_4583Sonnyphotossee-ing more of the Alps as opposed to on our way over to Milan CLD_4584Sonnyphotos




CLD_4596Sonnyphotoswe were descending to land, and as I looked out the window, I thought , why is the captain accellarating to land ? And off we went again CLD_4597Sonnyphotostht plane you see in front there, well, it was taking a bit too long to take off for this captains liking, adn he felt it un safe to land, when it was still on the tarmac , slowly taking off, so he did a TATA, turn around try again CLD_4599SonnyphotosWill be going there soon for Raf Simons show at the Bourget Airport, where Gagosian has anb art galery set up CLD_4600Sonnyphotoswell , with this Tata, get to see Paris CLD_4602Sonnyphotosdisney world

June 28, 2013

Paris > Milan

DSCF1314sonnyphotosand we're off again, so many planes diDSCF1321sonnyphotosthis time Milan for the men's shows DSCF1322sonnyphotosLugano airport, there wasn't much to see of the Alps this time, covered in clouds DSCF1323sonnyphotosLugano and lake Lugano. Did you know that part of Lake Lugano belongs to Switzerland DSCF1324sonnyphotosheading down to Milan DSCF1325sonnyphotos





ok, so I know have 6 days of footage of photos from our surfing trip to the Maldives.
But with no real internet on the boat and instead having to use the limited bandwidth to upload photos for Tommy Hilfiger, it did not leave me with much time to keep this blog updated ( ooops, sorry )

And now it is Paris men's fashion week, finished Milan already.
So my dear friends, I will put Maldives onhold for a second as there are a lot of you fashion fiends out there keen for some boys in clothes, as opposed to pics of me surfing in the Maldives

Chrispagebut I just can't resist putting this pic up Chris Page from MAgic Seaweed took of me surfing, just look at that backdrop !!
Thanks Jonathan for the loan of the fins by the way


Lisbon > Dubai > Male

TOM_8337SonnyphotosSurfShackLisbon airport, so after yesterday's surf lesson, it's of to the Maldives today with a very excited crew TOM_8342SonnyphotosSurfShackand we are off TOM_8350SonnyphotosSurfShackflying over Portugal TOM_8356SonnyphotosSurfShackinto Spain TOM_8366SonnyphotosSurfShack

TOM_8368SonnyphotosSurfShackwoauw, check it out, dam on top of mountain ? TOM_8370SonnyphotosSurfShackthis is looking familiar, yes, it is Gandia, half way between Javea and Valencia TOM_8373SonnyphotosSurfShackand yes, there we have it, the distintive mountain Montgo de Toscamar and Javea TOM_8376SonnyphotosSurfShackwoauw, looks so small from up here, can see the main beach, and the area my parents live TOM_8379SonnyphotosSurfShackleaving Sapin behind TOM_8384SonnyphotosSurfShackoh, but first the Island Sant Francesc de Formentera that sits alongside Ibiza ( can't see Ibiza as we are right over it ) TOM_8386SonnyphotosSurfShacklooks like we won;t be getting many more photos now TOM_8388SonnyphotosSurfShackwe did fly along the coastline of Algeria and Libya, so I got to see some of it , but too dark to take any photos TOM_8391SonnyphotosSurfShackwe landed at Dubai at 4 in the morning, so now, 5 hours later ready to take of to our destination, the Maldives, exciting, never been TOM_8394SonnyphotosSurfShackSharjah, just suburbs north of Dubai TOM_8396SonnyphotosSurfShackgroup of man made islands of Jumeirah, Dubai, which will look like a map of the earth once done, so if youhave the money, you can literally buy a country as an island TOM_8397SonnyphotosSurfShackaaah, Dubai TOM_8401SonnyphotosSurfShackJumeirah beach and the famous Burj Al Arab TOM_8405SonnyphotosSurfShackouter suburbs of Dubai TOM_8407SonnyphotosSurfShackcrazy how much development goes on here TOM_8408SonnyphotosSurfShacksand dunes turned into mini cities, complete with high rise building and villa's with lush green grass TOM_8409SonnyphotosSurfShackand another sub divisionm ready to go TOM_8410SonnyphotosSurfShackbut looks like some time has passed between asphalt and first brick TOM_8411SonnyphotosSurfShackroad to Oman TOM_8413SonnyphotosSurfShacknear Hatta TOM_8415SonnyphotosSurfShackcoast of Oman TOM_8416SonnyphotosSurfShackflying over the Arabian sea for a few hours and then we should be there TOM_8418SonnyphotosSurfShackand yes, after a few hours first Atoll sighting TOM_8424SonnyphotosSurfShackwoauw, Atolls everywhere, and the colours TOM_8430SonnyphotosSurfShackamazing even in overcast and rain TOM_8434SonnyphotosSurfShackwonder if that's our boat for the week TOM_8436SonnyphotosSurfShackfast forward landing, customs control, baggage collection, meeting Jacqui ( yes, she flew over from Sydney day before and met us at airport ) buy sim card and now we are on our Dhoni boat to meet up with our boat for the week TOM_8439SonnyphotosSurfShackeveryone is excited to get onto our boat, but we are all also very tired, the anticipation is keeping us awake TOM_8440SonnyphotosSurfShackand there she is TOM_8451SonnyphotosSurfShackclouds start to break up in time for our first sunset, we were all a bit dampened by the arriving in a downpour of rain, wondering if we would see any sun on this trip, but this sunset is a promising sign