So what is all about? Well... hopefully, by the time we are done, it will be a comprehensive journal about a family of 5 who have travelled around Australia to see the sights and also do some volunteer work around the country! In Mid 2010 we started thinking about what it would take to fulfil a life-long dream... We wanted to bundle up our 3 kids, pack-up the house, jump in the car and hit the road - probably for about 12 months. It sounds so simple ... At the start of January 2013, after almost 15 months on the road; we finally completed Our Big Aussie Road Trip. We hope that you enjoyed following our adventures, trials and tribulations as much as we enjoyed having them!

01 January, 2013

Back to the Mainland

It was an early start on Friday 28th December, because we needed to be on the Ferry by 8am (as we were doing a day sailing) and we needed to fully pack the car.  We arrived on the boat with plenty of time to spare, and the boat left about 20 minutes early.  We had booked a four berth cabin on the return journey (even though we could have just got day tickets) because we wanted somewhere to be able to watch a movie and just hang out.  This turned out to be a good move because the kids were all quite tired, and Sam even had a sleep after lunch.

Anyway, once we’d got the car on the ship, we checked out our cabin and then watched Devonport disappear behind us as we left Tasmania.
Saying farewell to Tasmania as we sailed out of Devonport
We had a great cabin – right at the front of the ship so we could see out over the bow.  There were some kids activities onboard during the day, and the kids all got their faces (or arms) painted by a very talented face painter.  The movies weren’t appropriate for our kids, so we sat in our cabin and watched ‘how to train your dragon’ which Natalie had received for Christmas.
Looking through our cabin's Porthole at Devonport

Josh opted for an Eastern Rosella for his 'face painting'

What a beautiful butterfly

Sam was very happy with his crocodile
We all had a rest in our cabin for about an hour or two and then the kids went to do some ‘badge making’. The rest of the time was either in our cabin or around the ship until we reached Melbourne just before 6pm.

Looking into Port Philip Bay as we sailed toward Melbourne

Hello Melbourne!
Once we were off the Spirit of Tasmania, we went to a caravan park in Melbourne because we couldn’t pick up our caravan in Frankston until the following day.  We decided to stay in a cabin in Melbourne so that we didn’t have a large packup the following morning as we wanted to pickup the van and then drive toward Canberra.

It took us all morning to get from our caravan park in Melbourne, pickup the caravan out of storage in Frankston and drive back to the North of Melbourne toward Canberra.  We had lunch at at service centre on the highway North of Melbourne and then continued driving.

We made it to Wangaratta that night and pulled into a caravan park just after 4pm.  We hadn't tried to unpack the car when we picked up the caravan, so we spent the next 3 1/2 hours re-organising the car and caravan so that we had all the things that we needed back in their right spot in the caravan.  It was a lot of work to reorganise everything, and we were surprised that we had it all back in it's place before dinner that night.  Everyone was very pleased to be back at 'home' in the caravan, and we all slept well that night back in our own beds.

We only stayed in Wangaratta for 1 night and then next morning, we drove the 400km's from Wangaratta to Canberra.  About 1/2 way along our drive that day we clicked over 50,000km on our Big Aussie Road Trip!  We certainly have covered a lot of ground in the last 14 months, and that night we headed to Canberra - the last stop before heading back to Sydney and completing our adventure.

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