Sunday, January 15, 2006

Our Mini Holiday

We took a day-trip to visit what is known as South Australia's Fleurieu Peninsula. The Fleurieu is a short drive from south/southwest of Adelaide and is known for it's many wineries, farms and coastal towns and beaches.

We've been in Adelaide for more than 3 years now and this is the first time that we've actually driven around and saw more of the state. We only planned for a daytrip this time and our goal was to reach a town called Victor Harbor which is one of the biggest towns in the Fleurieu boasting of many tourist type attractions. We figured we could take the long way to Victor, stop and have a picnic lunch at a small town along the way, and then go back up to Adelaide in the late afternoon.

The day was a bit overcast when we started and it remained so throughout the day. This actually suited me fine because a blazing summer sun would be sure to have given us sunburn through the untinted windows of the rental car. We started early, around 8:30 and arrived at our first destination, Strathalbyn, an hour later. There we stopped and had a picnic at the park and the kids had a chance to check out the local park and the local wildlife ( ducks! )

Strathalbyn is a small picturesque country town and it had the small country town feel. There were quite a few old buildings and wide open spaces and the folks we saw there were friendly. We managed to strike up a conversation with a couple who were walking their dogs. The kids were a bit shy at first about petting the cute little terriers but they got over it right away.

From there, Victor Harbor was only an hour away and we managed to get their without getting too lost ( ok , I took a slightly wrong turn! ) and we got there on schedule. The sky was still cloudy and it was even a bit cold as we got out of the car which was to me quite unusual for the middle of summer. It's a good thing my wife insisted on bringing warm jumpers for all of us!

We thought we had it all planned out and we'd see a few of the main attractions like looking at penguins and see the Whale Centre but our kids had different ideas. They spied a carnival near the foreshore and I got roped into a Jumping castle with them not 10 minutes after we arrived!

After that, we attempted to walk to Granite Island, a small island off Victor Harbor connected via a railway bridge. We weren't too keen on taking the kids down a 2KM walk over the bridge to look at the penguins so we ended up playing in the sand instead. It's a pity it was a bit cold as the kids would have loved jumping into the water.

We then had a little stroll to the busy Victor Harbor town center and had lunch at a little fish and chips shop. The kids were then a bit restless at this point, raring to burn off some energy so we took them to the playground ( again ) and they had a great time playing with all the other kids there.

By mid-afternoon, we decided to head back to Adelaide. On the way back we stopped and did some strawberry picking. It was a good experience for us as this was the first time we actually got to pick strawberries. We stopped at the Agon Berry Farm shop front along the highway, paid for a plastic punnet ( only $6 which would hold about a kilo of strawberries ) and drove down the opposite side of the shop to where the strawberry fields were.

It seems that it's pretty popular place as most of the strawberries in the nearer bushes were picked clean and we and a few others had to go to the other end of the field to really start filling up our punnet. Of course, both kids had a grand time doing this, searching for the red strawberries and coming to us with one berry at a time! It took a while but we eventually got enough to fill our punnet and then some.

On the way home, we passed lush McLaren Vale scenery. McLaren Vale is home to many of Australia's top vineyards and wine producers and the view from the top of Mt. Compass was a nice change from the view of drab motorways and roads.

The drive back home was uneventful and we got home safe and sound. It didn't seem to bad with the kids in the back seat and because we still missed a few sights and attractions this time around, we would definitely be going back for more next time.


Anonymous said...

the mimi holiday sounds fun!!you should do it more often!! a treat for every one!!how i wish we can see those places too!!
take care-mommy etts

chaz said...

Sure, come down anytime! :)