What better way to end the year than a camping trip for two?
We are both very lucky that our respective agencies close for the festive period, giving us the best Christmas gift of all – 10 days of holiday! As tempting as it was to use this time to get away, we decided to make the most of summer in Sydney and enjoy a staycation. After a huge overseas trip in May to the UK, France and Hong Kong, and our family and friends due to arrive next month, a relaxing holiday at home was just what we needed. That being said, after roadtripping along the Great Ocean Road in the last days of December 2015, a little adventure was needed to end 2016 right.
After recommendations from several friends, we booked a spot at The Basin campground, Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park, put on our holiday hats and set on our way.
Not accessible by car, we got the ferry from Palm Beach wharf on Thursday morning across Pittwater to the campground.
It was clear as soon as we landed on the beach that we were well and truly novices with our 3 man tent which barely fit our Queen size air mattress. Our neighbours were clearly professional campers with full kitchens, solar energy and even bunkbeds! Not that we were worried at all, we were in it to switch off our phones and relax for a couple of nights.
The trip crept up on us after the Christmas festivities and we packed in a rush. Inadequate meal planning on my part meant we survived on a diet of sandwiches – vegemite, peanut butter & banana and my absolute favourite, crisps! I was pretty happy to have an excuse to eat like a student to be honest!
The view from our front door.
Hello there Mr Wallaby!
We spent the day exploring, stopping to swim, read, nap, in that order.
Phones on airplane mode and used for photographs only.
As well as wallabies and bush turkeys, huge goannas roamed like displaced dinosaurs between the tents.
Having finished The Little Paris Bookshop (which I loved) and running out of library books, Oli picked out Bright Shiny Morning for me to read. I loved James Frey’s A Million Little Pieces and My Friend Leonard so was confident it would keep me entertained. I whizzed through his novel on the city of Los Angeles and the people that choose to live there in two days.
The prettiest light.
Reading until the last light. In bed at 8.30!
We woke up and got the first ferry back to the mainland in search of coffee. The weather had been forecast to be unbearably hot for our trip and although the cloud cover gave us some respite from the hot sun, it also made the landscape transform from sunny to moody in a matter of minutes. Fluctuating throughout each day.
Seeing as The Basin is conveniently situated just a stones throw across Pittwater from our wedding venue, we bee-lined it straight to The Boathouse for breakfast and good coffee. Only when we got there did we realise that in exactly 9 weeks to the day, we would be back there celebrating our wedding day!
After two meals of sandwiches, the coconut bircher made my mouth water.
After breakfast we dunked ourselves in the water to escape the heat while waiting for the ferry back to camp. We spent the rest of the day doing much the same as we had the day before, and falling deeper into relaxation.
We awoke on New Years Eve to the pitter patter of raindrops on our tent after a restless night; the heat thwarting our attempts to sleep. We packed up our little home away from home and sat on the jetty to await the first ferry of the day. We were relaxed and happy, but needed coffee, hot showers and a sleep in our own bed!
While waiting I spotted this rare Australian sea snake in the water…or perhaps a piece of orange rope!
Contemplating what to have for breakfast (The Boathouse again), where our next camping trip will take us, and what 2017 has in store.
Happy, relaxed and ready for the new year.