Travel Story | Birthday weekend

by Flip Flop Wanderers

A new week, a new blog from us. There ain’t no better way to start the week! On Sunday 14th of May it was Manon’s birthday, 28 already! Of course, we had to celebrate this, so Bram had planned a weekend away towards the North. It’s getting more winterly and up north is a just a tad warmer. It wasn’t just a weekend, no we went for 4 days in total. Bram didn’t have to work these days and Manon didn’t receive any days from Randstad. Of course, we camped in our car again.

We have seen a lot in 4 days: We have been sand-boarding in Lancelin, saw an insane desert landscape at the Pinnacles, had a look at Jurien bays beach, saw very weird strombolites, visited a stunning National Park in the middle of the outback and of course celebrated Manon’s Birthday in an appropriate way!

Read on quickly to see what these days looked like 🙂

The Pinnacles

On Saturday the 13th of May, we left early towards the North. The week before, Bram already cleaned the car and prepared everything, so we good leave straight away. Our First stop: Yanchep National Park. It is a 45 minutes drive from our apartment. Actually, it is a huge park where you can barbecue and such. There is also a lot of wildlife, but in the middle of the day, the kangaroos won’t show themselves. But you can tell by the many droppings on the ground that you can find them here regularly. There is a little reserve here where 10 koalas live in the trees. We managed to spot 8 of them!

After this visit, we continued to Lancelin, another hour towards the North. The area from Lancelin to Port Denison is also called the Turquoise Coast. It is famous for its little fishing towns, beautiful beaches, exceptional geological formations, wild national parks and vastly diverse flora. And we have to say: the whole area here is really amazing! Just a little bit different than the rest of Australia, how is that still possible. We immediately fell in love with the outback which directly adjoins the impressive dunes by the sea. I can not believe that we saw the outback this close to the sea somewhere before! Our two favourite places (beach and outback) just next to each other, it can not get much better! And then all those strange plants and the fact that you can find millions of wildflowers here during spring… Yes, we will come back here once for sure!

The Lancelin Sand Dunes

In Lancelin we first went to the General Store to rent a sandboard. Lancelin is known for its many really huge sand dunes. You can also cross over with your quad, motorbike or 4WD, but with our ride, we didn’t do it. And sandboarding is really cool as well! Although it didn’t go great 😛 The sand was very loose so you didn’t really move forward very fast.

Still, we had a lot of fun and after many photos, we brought the board back.

Meanwhile, it was getting pretty late and because it was getting dark already, we quickly drove to Cervantes where we had booked a campsite. The campsite was so luxurious! A mega big camp kitchen, a huge pool with beautiful lights (for which it was way too cold right now) and luxurious showers. We had never seen anything like this 😉

The next day it was Manon’s birthday! And she was really lucky with the weather: It was 25 degrees and sunny! According to the forecast, it would be colder and cloudy and rain, but luckily it was not the case!
The first surprise was that Bram had decorated the car from the inside with balloons and garlands!

The second surprise were gifts! From Bram, Manon got some new Havaianas flip flops and she soon may look for a wetsuit. That will come in handy with surfing and diving.

After unwrapping the gifts we went to eat a cake towards the afternoon at a little cafe here. And it was so good!!!

After the nice surprises, we went to the Pinnacles Desert in the Nambung National Park. This sand plain near Cervantes is known for its many limestone formations spreader all over the yellow desert landscape, which creates a Mars-like landscape. Some of the pinnacles are even over 4 meters high!

You can drive a nice route through the Pinnacles by car, and that was the first thing we did. We were amazed by how beautiful this landscape looked like! So special. In between, you had several spots on the autoroute to stop and of course, we did so to take the necessary photos!

You can also walk through the landscape on a walking route. Of course, we didn’t skip that one. It is super fun to walk around between these pinnacles.

Some of the formations had really weird shapes 😉

Because the sun sets early during the winter, we also enjoyed the sunset at the Pinnacles. A beautiful moment to be here!

We drove back to Cervantes where we went out for dinner for once. Normally we never eat out here, because it is too expensive but Manon’s birthday was an exception. After a good meal it was pitch black (and cold!) and so we went just chilling in our car! It was a very successful birthday!

The next day there was falling water from the sky and it was mega windy… We do not like that. We visited the Thirsty point lookout: a viewpoint over the sea and the town, but it wasn’t really impressive with the dark skies!

Another point that is really worth a visit is Lake Thetis. In this lake live Stromalites, a million years old organism. A bit like we saw down south, but then way more boring haha.

We had seen that quickly so we drove another half an hour to the North to Jurien Bay. Jurrien Bay is a small fishing village with about 1500 inhabitants. First, we visited the Turquoise Coast visitor center to get some information about what we can’t miss in this area. They advised us to drive a round trip towards Green Head, another 30 minutes North of Jurien Bay and then head land inward to drive back to Jurien Bay via Lesueur National Park.

And that’s what we decided to do. First, we visited the Jurien Bay Jetty. Ah well, jetties! There is an old and a new jetty. The new one is boring, but the old one is very photogenic. There were still hanging very thick clouds and we were almost blown away by the wind but that did have a nice effect on the photos! There is also a snorkel trail at the jetty, but as you can see on the photos it wasn’t a great idea to do that now 😉 And of course, it was way too cold anyway!

Meanwhile, it started to pour down with rain and because of that, there wasn’t much else to do in this town. So we went to the supermarket for some shopping and there we found a super cute painted wall.

Afterwards, we drove to Green Head via the Grigson lookout, where you had a beautiful view over the surroundings! in Green Head we visited the Dynamite Bay. Sea lions are regularly spotted in this bay, but not when we are there of course. We strolled around and there were some nice viewpoints along the coast. Because of the weather which was still pretty bad, we decided to look for a campsite in this town, and then tomorrow, with hopefully some better weather, we want to visit the national park. That’s how we arrived at the campsite in the afternoon already, which gave us some time to edit a lot of photos.

After a lot of strong winds and rain, the next morning the wind eased down and when it was dry again we drove to the Lesueur NP. To get there we had to drive via a beautiful gravel road.

In the park itself was a paved road, where you could drive a nice round trip via different viewpoints. We had a look at Mount Lesueur where we had a great view.

We also noticed that they have very strange trees here. They have a short trunk, and then there grow some long grass blades out of it, and a very long stem, kind of a reed plume.

This NP is known for its many different plant species anyway, and in spring it seems to be so beautiful here with wildflowers.

The unpaved road around the National Park was just as good as the park itself, so we had to take some necessary shots with an Echidna sign. There seem to be quite a few wild echidnas here but of course, we had not seen them.

After the National Park, it was (unfortunately) time to go back home, back to Perth. It was still a 3-hour drive from the Lesueur NP. We drove the same way back as we came here and in Cervantes we saw a beautiful landscape with the same weird trees. Here they looked even more impressive because it was a whole field full of them and the plumes were even higher. Luckily there was a parking so we could stop for some photos. It was here where we found out that the official name of these plants is Xanthorrhoea (try to pronounce that the right way…) In Australia, they also call it grass trees.

After this, it was really time to drive straight back home. We drove through beautiful landscapes: outback with impressive high dunes along the sea in the background, which was a good way to end this weekend trip. Even though it wasn’t that long this time, we really enjoyed these days!

At this moment we are back in our apartment in Perth and everything is just going normally. As told in our previous story, we are both working. Bram still works casual, about 3 days a week. It goes well, and he really likes the job. About Manon, she works for Randstad, but she never hears something from them. She asks for shifts very often, but there isn’t much going on at the moment. That doesn’t really work… Luckily she has another job interview at another childcare center as an Early Childhood Teacher so hopefully, that works out!

Fun fact: last weekend we bought a deep fryer and we have been to the Dutch Shop, so we can make our own chips with Dutch deep-fried snacks. We are so happy!

Oh and, in the meantime, it had really become winter here! The moment I write this it is only 17 degrees. Brr, really cold for us! It won’t be the beach or the pool for us the upcoming months, but hard working and doing fun indoor stuff. But, maybe there will be a warmer holiday for us this winter 😉 Stay tuned!

Hopefully, you enjoyed this update and we will talk to you again next time! Don’t forget that you can sign up for our newsletter by registering in the sidebar 😉

See ya mate!


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1 comment

Mario May 30, 2017 - 7:39 am

Een hele leuke verjaardag gehad! In stijl met ballonnen, slingers en taart!
Veel plezier en succes met de sollicitatie.

Groetjes, Papa


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