On our last day over the long weekend we went to Illawarra Fly Treetop for the afternoon.
We drove up from Kiama which is a scenic drive. It is a lot cooler up there so make sure you take a sweater to pop on. We had signed up to do the zip lining which included a ticket to do the Treetop walk.
At the entrance there is a cafe and lockers. Make sure you have your camera or phone on a strap you are allowed no loose items on the zip line. They do sell covers with a string for phones at the ticket office.
You go into a hut for a safety brief and to have all your equipment fitted. I am really afraid of heights and I have been working on this. The safety talk really helped calm my nerves…plus seeing 6 year old children in the group helped me think I could do this.
You walk to the start of the course which is on the side of the valley. The course consists of 3 zip lines and 2 suspension bridges. The bridges were my biggest challenge as I had to look down to get across. There is someone at each station to help you set off and someone to help you land safely from the zip line.
The course goes across he valley and you are at one point around 35 meters high. The views are great and flying over the trees is a lot of fun. The zip lines are clamped on to the tree to prevent damaging it. They also have people out to make sure nothing is damaging the forest. It goes across the valley because they didn’t want to move any trees for the course.
After the zip-lining we did the Treetop walk which has the most amazing views. If you are brave enough you can walk up the tower and to the end of the suspension walk which does move around in the wind.
Unfortunately we didn’t have anything for our camera to be attached to us so we have no photos….just one of the trees on the drive up!
Summer is starting to appear which means… camping season is here!!!
We have already dusted off the tent and went away the long weekend at the end of September.
Having left it last minute we really struggled to find a campsite…FYI long weekends in Australia book up so fast don’t do what we did. Luckily our friends who are also tent warriors went camping to Kiama and let us know about a site they stayed on and it so happened to have a few spots left on the long weekend.
The campsite Killalea is in a national park which is home to two Surf reserves. It’s only a hour and a half drive out of Sydney. Perfect for a weekend escape out of the city. There is a locked gate if you arrive late at night and your access code is in the confirmation email ( we did not figure this out and tailgated someone in) don’t tail gate as you can get a fine. The sites are all marked out with logs and have a fire burner on each site. The reception sells fire wood. There is also a kitchen and a bathroom block. We didn’t use the kitchen apart from the kettle and the sinks to wash up. But the grills were always busy so must be in good working conditions.
You can walk to both beaches. We walked to Mystic beach and then drove down to “The Farm” beach. The beaches are beautiful long stretches and obviously the sea is full of waves and surfers. It is not a swimming beach but its great to go and lay out and watch the surfers. You are provided a map and there are also signs to the footpath for the beach. You are a 10 minute drive into Kiama which is the nearest town.
Kiama is well known for the blow hole (also Kiama is aboriginal for blow hole). It is a small coastal town very pretty and has old style shops. There are lots of places to eat. We ate at the Hungry Monkey for breakfast – great food and great service. Ritzy Gritz for dinner – the food was okay nothing special but we did have good service. Thai @ Kiama – we had our last dinner there which was really good Thai and good service. You just need to book on a weekend in this town. We didn’t on the first night and struggled to get in anywhere.
We spent the day on the beach at the campsite on one of the days. Sunday we explored the area. We walked over to Cathedral Rocks which are a jagged rock formation on the coast. There were lots of fisherman on the rocks so watch out for there catch of fish in the rock pools. To get to the rocks we walked through Boneyard Beach. We tried Bombo Beach but again it was rough seas for surfing not made for a dip. We decided to head back to Boneyard beach as the water was calm and we could lay on the grass. Added bonus there were loads of dogs around. MK was brave enough for a dip and did a but of snorkeling. He said there were a few fish but it was to cold to stay in there for to long. The shops in Kiama are full of vintage treasures, home made food, English treats (yes there is a English shop), candles, dream catchers and many more well being hippie type of shops….which we love!
We will be back down in Kiama in November with the surf board and hopefully warmer water 🙂
A couple of weeks ago now I packed up the car and hit the road last minuet for a camping trip with a friend. We did not want to travel far but needed a break from the city.
I asked one of my camping pro friends and she suggested Coledale Camp Site so we decided to check it out.
I keep all my camping stuff in a big plastic box and clean it after every use…this was extremely handy this weekend. We set off Saturday morning and I threw the plastic box, table and tent into the car.
The drive was easy and scenic. We merged onto the coastal road and winded through lots of small coastal towns until we hit Coledale. The campsite is right on the beach and has all the basic facilities you would need. The campsite is close to the RSL and the town making it a short walk for a drink or dinner.
It was extremely windy when we arrived. We set the tent up battling the wind and then headed into the town for lunch. Most of the cafes stop serving at 2PM but we did eventually find one in Thirroul called Revive 2515. The cafe does sandwiches cakes and wraps. We grabbed a sandwich and got a cake to go. There is also a Coles in Thirroul were we grabbed some last minuet things.
The rest of the night consisted of making dinner a walk on the beach and a fair bit of wine! On the Sunday we ha d a quick breakfast at Earth Walker which very tasty. Then back in the car with a pit stop we planned. We stopped in Helenburgh to see the abandoned train tunnels.
There are three tunnels in total. I would recommend wearing good shoes as it is extremely muddy. The tunnels are super creepy but make for good photos they look like they have come right out of a American horror movie.
Any of these towns around Coledale are ideal for a weekend escape with your tent. From the inner west it took us just over a hour to get there it was short and pretty drive. It was cold but we had enough blankets to keep us warm and a hot shower in the morning to warm us up.