***The photos from the first part of my Perth Trip were accidentally deleted, so unfortunately I do not have much of the first half of what I did. Thankfully I did take some photos on my phone***
Two weeks ago I arrived in Perth. It is a small city, but similarly resembled most other cities I have been so far in Australia. They all seem to have the same similar lay out. With a botanical garden, huge lane arcades (another word for outdoor mall in the middle of the city), beautiful beaches, and restaurants by the sea.
One thing that struck me about Perth was it’s beautiful Botanical Garden called “Kings Park” that overlooked the city. It was quite a beautiful view as you could see the skyline, the river, and the rest of the busy little city from this pretty park. King’s Park is one of the biggest inner city parks in Australia.
The day after I arrived in Perth, I set off on my own on a four day excursion up to Monkey Mia which is located about twelve hours north of Perth.
The first day we drove up to “The Pinnacles”, which are lime stone formations in the middle of sand dunes. It was pretty cool to see, but I think when I visited the Great Ocean Road in Melbourne, that those limestone formations were a bit more spectacular, as they were right on the ocean’s edge, and they were enormous.
As we got further and further away from the city, the flies multiplied and became unbearable when walking outside. Their would be at least 20 of them on your back at a time, and would constantly be flying around your face, in your ears, around your eyes. It was the most irritating thing I have ever experienced. By the end of our four days, I actually thought I was going to go mad. I cannot imagine living permanently in a place where the flies are as extreme as that.
We then travelled to some sand dunes and went sand boarding. At first, I was kind of afraid that I would get hurt and wipeout, but I worked up the courage and it was so exhilarating! By the time I reached the top of the sand dune, I was out of breath. It actually is so hard to climb the sand dunes and it takes more out of you than you actually think. Sand boarding reminded me of tobogganing, except with sand. And instead of getting snow in the face, and getting soaking wet, you get sand in your face, and everywhere else you wouldn’t want it to go! We were covered in sand all day, no matter how hard we tried to get it off. We then headed to our night accommodation, made a huge stir-fry, and played cards the rest of the night.
In the morning, we travelled and did some hiking into the valley, where we walked up to a rock formation called “Nature’s Window”, and then hiked down into the valley and down to the river. Nature’s Window
At this point, the flies were unbelievable. They even were so distracting when climbing down the steep cliffs. Dangerous little buggers.
We stopped in a town, which is known for being extremely windy, as it is on the water’s edge. Because the town is so windy, most of their trees and plants have adapted to the strong currents of wind, that some grow on their sides.
We continued our journey up to Monkey Mia. Right before we arrived, we took a brief detour to “Shell Beach”. This beach was made completely of shells. No sand, just tiny little white shells. It was too sharp and jagged to walk bare foot, so you had to wear your flip-flops. It was so beautiful, and extremely cool that all of these little shells, over the years washed up onto this beach.
Just before Monkey Mia, we stopped at a beach where the first living thing on earth was found. They are living and breathing “rocks” called straematolites.
In the late afternoon we finally arrived at our destination, Monkey Mia Resort. Monkey Mia is apart of a World Hertitage protected site, as it is home to many different marine and wildlife that are protected. Monkey Mia is famous for their close encounters with dolphins. They come and visit the shore every morning to be fed. As dolphins do not have watches or any concept of time, they can come from anywhere between 6:30 am – 9:00 am. So we were told to wake up and be at the beach for 7 am, and wait anxiously until they decide they want to be fed.
I arrived at the beach at 6:30 a.m. as I wanted to see the sunrise. When I arrived, I noticed one dolphin swimming back and forth right along the beach. It was quite amazing, as I was the only one on the beach watching the sunrise, and it was such a special moment with just me and the dolphin. It was extremely peaceful.
At about 7:30, the family of dolphins began to make their way into shore after playing around in the distance for about an hour.
They took their time as they approached the shore, as they try to get a feel of how many people are in the water, and if it is okay for them to come closer. If you are lucky, you will see one swim right in front of you.
When the crew decide it is time to feed them, the dolphins know that it is time when they see the tin buckets come out, and into the water. On the beach, there were about 16-17 different dolphins swimming around, about 4 babies too. The feeders only feed 4 adult females everyday, as if they were to continuously feed all of them, they would not learn to fend for themselves, and learn to feed and teach their young in the wild. The crew chose people in the crowd to feed them. Sadly I was not chosen, but was close enough to see them.
After the dolphin feeding, we went on a boat for two hours, and cruised the harbour.It was such a beautiful day, and we were able to see the dolphins swim out in the sea. Once they would spot out boat they could chase after it and keep up with us, jumping and playing around.
On the boat we also saw some sea snakes, a stingray, and a huge turtle.
Another really cool thing on the boat was this thing called a “boom net”, where they placed a net at the back of the boat and people sit in it, and go for a ride as they speed up the boat. It is almost like we were shark bait…waiting for a BITE! At first, I was pretty afraid to do this, OBVIOUSLY of what was going through my head. But I decided I couldn’t let such a fun experience pass me by, and I jumped to the opportunity to be the first batch on.
The ride was so much fun! It was really bumpy, and a few times seaweed would creep up and would give you quite the scare, but it was so much fun, and kind of fun being scared.
After the boat ride, we left Monkey Mia and headed to our last destination which was a farm stay in the outback. When we arrived it was pitch black, and it was kind of creepy. It reminded me of the movie “Wolfe Creek”. If you have not seen that movie, it is about 3 backpackers taking a road trip out into the outback, and their car breaks down and they are saved by a man who takes them back to his place in the outback. I don’t need to go into details to what happened, but I am sure you get the point. The place we stayed at, reminded me of that movie…freaky! All in all, it was such a cool experience. The place we had dinner and hung out in was an old sheep shearing shed, which isn’t used anymore. It was pretty cool to see old artifacts, and old tools. Because we were in the middle of the outback, of course we saw tons of creepers. A HUGE Woodsman Spider, tons of crickets, and of course flies galore. For dinner, the owner made us an amazing Kangaroo Shepard’s Pie. At first, I was a little hesitant, but it was delicious! For the rest of the night, we hung out in the shed and played card games into the early hours of the morning.
In the daylight it looked a lot less creepier.
Early in the morning we set out and drove to a place in Western Australia that is it’s own actual “kingdom” called “The Principality of Hutt River”. In the 1980s a man named “Prince Leo” and his wife “Princess Shirley” made a micro nation because he was against paying taxes on their wheat farm. This ‘kingdom” has it’s own currency, post office, church, and flag.
It was actually quite hard to believe that someone actually took the time to do something like this, but it was also pretty interesting hearing his story, and how he succeeded to create his own “country” and find a loop hole in the government’s system.
I got to take a picture with the prince. He was such a nice little man.
Our last stop of the trip was at a wildlife centre that is situated in the outback outside. We were lucky enough to feed all the animals.
There were kangaroos, dingos, sheep, ducks, chickens, snakes, and birds.
There also were three baby kangaroo joeys. I got to hold one!
The next day we set out back to Perth. The trip was really fun, and I met a lot of great people. It was fun to get back into the backpacker mode again, after working for so long.