The journey begins! On planned schedule, we headed out of Perth and heade up through the city of Joondalup - an area that quite simply wasn't there 20 years ago!
Mum and I have been absolutely staggered at the growth of the urban area north of Perth - we drove through one area and all we saw was homes under construction with only the odd one occupied - a trades mans paradise! Those blokes and their utes were everywhere!
In just a couple of days we have also seen those huge Masters stores under construction - and right next to huge Bunnings stores also under construction! In Pat's words - massive!
The weather in Perth has been horrible - starting with a 3am thunderstorm which woke us both up - clap of thunder directly overhead!
Took us a while to get up and about with being up early whilst WA time caught up with us. Headed out firstly towards where I used ot live 25 years ago and called in there to drop off a couple of photos I had of when we built the house. No-one home so just dropped them in the letterbox.
Headed from there over to the coastline so we could follow the coast down to Fremantle rather than just whiz down the freeway. There is SO much growth in Perth it's amazing. It was very windy and rough on the ocean but stopped anyway for a few minutes just to check out the surf and a couple of photos of course.
I arrived in Perth about 12.30pm after a great 5 1/2 hr flight from Brisbane to Perth. Hardly a bump at all.Caught up on some website work that hadn't been a priority but I had a solid 4 hrs to tend to it so it was a constructive flight if nothing else.
Organised the previously booked hire car - end ed up with a Nissan 4WD XTrail - not into those big things but seems what you book doesn't always mean thats what you get! But am very impressed - drives really nicely.
Got the GPS switch on and headed out to the Swan Valley to our Accommodation at "The Vines". Kemm and I ahve stayed here before - ideal apartment accommodation on the golf course and close to all the San Valley Vineyards.
This transcontinental adventure offers an unsurpassed view of Australia - North to South over three unforgettable days.
Travel by rail between Adelaide, Alice Springs and Darwin and you are embarking on one of the great train journeys of the world. Named after the Afghan cameleers who once traversed this route, The Ghan will take you from one edge of this continent to the other, through the very centre of Australia.
Now in Darwin - nanna napping - I think we've walked 10kms this morning! Found ourselves a nice over the water lunch spot (as we do) and a nice bottle of white (as we do) - otherwise all good and nothing to report!
What Kemm once knew as a bunch of mudflats is now all open space park, wave pool, beach, restaurants, cafes etc and all very new. Wether is absolutley delightful - 27, gentle ocean breeze and no humidity.
Have booked ourselves a car for tomorrow morning and will likely head down to Adelaide River territory in the morning and see whats in that vicinity.
Looking forward to boarding the train on Saturday morning though.
Left Alice Springs 7am with the APT bus to head out to Uluru.
It was a cold start to the morning and sun only came up behind us whilst we were on the road.
Alice springs runs along the now, bone dry Todd River and sits on the end of the McDonnell Ranges.
First stop an hour out of Alice is the camel farm - great I guess for overseas tourists but many on this bus seem to be Australians to whom a camel is something we've all seen before! Okay, been there - 25 min stop, camels, dingo, emu and the necessary toilet stop, takeaway Food and oh, souvenirs - of course! What did I partake in? The toilet!
Next stop - the supposed geographic centre of Australia - Erndula??
Just another quick pit-stop and we're on the road again.