Coastline, Campervans and Cups of Tea: An ‘on the cheap’ winter week off work.

As a lover of micro adventures and weekend get always it is sometimes difficult or expensive to go adventuring if you do not have access to a car. To reach those untouched locations out of the reach of public transport. However hope is not lost if you have the patience and willing to escape the drone of the city traffic and escape to open vistas and stary skys.

Recently a friend and I found a relocation deal on a campervan needing to be back in Melbourne by the end of the following week. Most major car/camper rental companies have these deals where you get massively reduced rates on rental, some as low as $1 a day. We grabbed at the opportunity as we could see the possibilities unfurling in front of us with the use of a car. All in all the rental was $15 a day each once insurance was added on, a toe tinglingly low amount considering we would not need to pay for any accommodation on the trip and they also threw in a free tank of fuel!

We set off from Sydney on a stormy Sunday morning driving down the coast and across the Sea Cliff bridge. A truly stunning piece of architecture hugging the jagged cliffs and rounding the headland. We jumped out into the rain, keen to get some good photos with the moody clouds shadowing the bridge and the choppy sea beneath. We found a track to beneath the bridge where the best views of the bridge itself can be seen.

After drenching ourselves we continued on to Jervis Bay (whitest sand in the world) where, despite the torrential downpour we went for a speedy dip in the chilly waters. After a quick cuppa and with the heaters on full we ploughed on through the rain and made it to Akolele in the darkness. We parked up in Camel rock car park and with alarms set for the morning we got some much needed z’s.

Still in darkenss we awoke and set off along the beach to find Horse Head rock. The tide was higher than we had expected so had to scramble and climb round a few small headlands to stay clear of the oncoming icy waves. We rounded the last headland just as the clouds were turning amber and pink and showed us Horse Head Rock in all its glory. As the tide had come in we had to stay on the beach for 2 hours until is lowered enough for us to return to the car (Ample time for photographs and exploring the beach and caves there).

From there we hit the road with the tunes blaring and drove down to Wilson Promontory National Park stopping at Eden for another cuppa (true Englishmen at heart) and a spot of whale watching from the lookout (they must have had the afternoon off). We reached the National park in darkness and while we were glared at by a few kangaroos we found a car park at the base of Mount Oberon to park up in and sleep for the night. We awoke to our alarms in darkness again as threw on our walking boots and headed up the winding well-paved track up Mt Oberon for sunrise. The weather was not in our favour once again, however the 360 panoramic views of most of the coastline around the Prom and the surrounding summits was spectacular, even beneath the cloud cover.

The Big Drift was next on the agenda and it was surprisingly easy to access from the Stockyard Campsite near the entrance to the park. The well signposted path takes you through rolling green fields that made us think we were back in the English countryside until you round a bend and the path disappears into a wall of sand. We spent an hour or so here exploring the dunes with the view of crashing waves on the coast in the far distance. It was great for a few photos as for the first time the sky had opened up and it was glorious sunshine. If we’d had another night we would have stayed there and explored the dunes at night and lay under the stary sky with a bottle of wine but alas we had to be going. Another cup of tea and we were off. Heading to up to Melbourne to hand the car back and finish off our adventure.

Essential gear required:

  • Campervan or car and a good tent
  • Head torch
  • Lots of layers for the chilly mornings
  • Any camera
  • Waterproof for the rainy winter weather

Activities:

    • Swimming
    • Hiking
    • Scrambling
    • Beautiful driving

How to get here:

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Skill Level:

Beginner-Intermediate (Depending on activities you do at the stops)

Distance covered:

Roughly 1245km covered