(First part Greg’s observations)
The most impressive thing about our trip across the Nullarbor Plains is the constant changing scenery. I had images of desolate country, boring, arid desert and long, straight dusty roads. Well, apart from long, straight roads (one stretch is 146 kms straight ahead), the plains run fairly close to the Great Australian Bight. They are far from boring, the colours, nature and country is spectacular. A big part of this land is Indigenous land, Yalata Aboriginal Community look after a large section along the plains.
We pulled in for our first night at a little town about 10 kms sealed road and 12 kms unsealed (dirt roads). As we drove in, the sights of huge white sand dunes fill our vision. It is a little seaside town with very little, except a few heritage homes, caravan park and store.
It is a quiet place, stunning with the sand dunes as the backdrop. Julz and I climbed up the top of one and watched some people tobogganing down the dunes.
The next morning we headed off along the road and drove off the main road to a Whale watching platform and conservation area, called Head of Bight (Great Australian Bight). The season for whale watching here is between May and End of October, so we paid the small entrance fee to visit the edge of the cliffs and we’re all blown away by the stunning formation of the coastal cliffs and the aqua colour of the open seas.
Even without the whales, this area is spectacular. Ron said that he was more impressed with this than the Great Ocean Road along the Victorian coast line. It was the vastness of the cliffs and the open sky and country that left us with a fabulous lasting impression.
We then stayed at the caravan park at Border Village, where South Australia finishes and Western Australia starts.
The next day we took turns driving over 700kms to arrive at Norseman, where we are tonight, before heading off for a couple of nights at the mining town of Kalgoorlie – Boulder.
Highly recommend the Nullarbor Plains as a must see item for any local or overseas visitor. 10/10.
The funny part of the journey was when Ron, whilst swatting flies in the passenger seat with is good hat, flipping them out the open window and whoosh!! Out goes the hat at 100 kms an hour down the open road. I was driving and the look on Ron’s face – he cried out, “me hat, me hat”. It took me 5 minutes to slow down with the weight of the caravan and he and Julz ran back to retrieve it (about 1km behind us) 😉
(Now Julz observations)
Last day on the Nullarbor…
My god! There is a ‘Chef’ at the Border Village Caravan Park Roadhouse!!!! We had an exquisite vegetarian pasta, very yummy and unexpected! This was our first ‘eat out’ meal of the trip!
Just gone through the quarantine checkpoint into WA, had to get rid of ALL my flora collection for my natural dying – Dad is very happy, as he says makes the van ‘lighter’. Oh well, will have to start again 🙂
The landscape is quite harsh, with different coloured greenery still abundant, however the land is mostly rock and sand. At the beginning of the trip at Border Village, we don’t see the roadkill kangaroos, emus and goats etc that we saw when we first drove into SA, however, further on we see the very sad sight of wombats adding to the roadkill toll. There is an enormous amount of large skid marks of ‘trying to miss’ animals on the road, I am hoping that these have been successful in missing them!
At the end of the today, 715 kilometres, and we are all feeling the toll – we are stuffed, however, we are at Norseman and the Nullarbor has been completed. I was very nervous that we would be driving in the dark, fortunately, we arrived here just on sunset. The caravan park is the most expensive we have been in and charged a surcharge for Sunday! Never heard of that before in a Caravan Park!!! They recommended the Motel next door for dinner – extremely crappy meal, would not recommend it. Vegetarian meals are rare, am very glad we are not vegan – you would not be able to go to the restaurants….as there is limited fruit and vegetables used on the menus anywhere. It is really sad to see such limited availability of healthy foods – most of the stops have the requisite hot dogs, chips, chico rolls etc. I am grateful that we are preparing our meals and are rarely eating out.
Tomorrow, we are heading to Kalgoorlie, as we have been told that the Super Pit Mine Tour in Kalgoorlie should not be missed.