2nd March to 11th March
We chose the shorter 2 hour inland route as opposed to the longer, car sick inducing 4 hour Great Ocean Rd route to reach our next destination, Warrnambool, or ‘The Bool’ as it commonly known. We arrived just after lunch at Surfside Holiday Park, to a glorious sunny day, so we quickly set up (haha), then headed for the beach for a swim.
The next day forecast was showers and 20 degrees, so it was designated to school work…………but that quickly changed as I went for an early walk and noticed it was perfect conditions for surfing and swimming!! Within 30 minutes of me arriving home from my walk we were down the beach having some fun. The girls and Nik had a ball in the water, while I sat and watched. We headed back to the van for morning tea, 2 hours of school work then off to the shops for the weekly food supplies and an evening walk around Lake Pertube and surrounding playgrounds.
As we had missed the drive along the GOR on route to Warrnambool, we decided to backtrack to the 12 Apostles (about 1 hour) and sight see our way back to or campsite. We arrived at the 12 Apostles looking forward to a coffee, unfortunly the café was closed as the ‘system was down’……….thankfully the scenery cheered me up 🙂 We spent the morning taking lots of photos, stopping at all the attractions including the 12 Apostles, Thunder Cave, London Bridge, Loch Ard Gorge and the Grotto. We were in awe of the water and the size of the waves, commenting on the amount of force and power the ocean has and how it has to be respected. Just quietly Nik and I were pleased that the girls have obviously learnt so much about the good and the bad of the ocean through lifesaving. We also stopped in at Port Campbell and headed to a café for lunch. $70 later I think I reminded myself (for the 100th time) that whenever we head out we MUST take a packed lunch, otherwise it costs a fortune!!!! When we got home the girls spent the afternoon playing 40/40 whilst we sat in the sun, tough work…….
Well the day had finally arrived, the whole reason we are still in Victoria, Lifesaving Junior State Championships. The state champs are a held over 2 days, with individuals being on the Saturday and team events on the Sunday. The girls had a fun, successful weekend, Bec’s highlight was coming 7th for the 1km sprint, Zoe came 5th in the ironwoman and 3rd (bronze medal) in the swim team, Abby came 5th for individual swim and 3rd (bronze medal) for swim team whilst Jess’ age group don’t compete, but she filled in on the Sunday for the Under 9’s to make up a sprint team and wade team, smiling the whole way. Overall it was a tiring weekend, the girls competed well and we all got to catch up with our friends from the lifesaving club.
After a very slow day on Monday we had a final dinner farewell with friends at the Memorial City Bowls Club, highly recommended, great variety, great food and great gluten free selection!!! On Tuesday after a final play at the park and beach our lifesaving buddies brushed the sand off their feet and finally ventured home whilst we packed up a bit.
Our final night was spent at the Flagstaff Hill Maritime Museum. The museum run a nightly sound and laser show called ‘Shipwrecked’. It tells the story of the ill fated ship Loch Ard and its journey to Melbourne and it’s subsequent shipwreck at sea a day short of it’s destination. There were only 2 survivors of the ship, Eva Carmicheal and Tom Pearce, who washed ashore at the now named ‘Loch Ard Gorge’ along the Great Ocean Rd. It was an interesting story and the girls really enjoyed it as it was quite interactive and the laser show was great as well, which means a lot considering Nik and I are harsh judges with anything like that!!! We did laugh as we were the only ones under 65!!!
So our time at Warnambool has come to an end, nippers season has finally finished and we are off on to our next destination on our Ozlap……………..