The adventure of a lifetime has begun! After months of planning, it’s crazy to think that Alycat’s Walkabout is taking off. It has been an exhausting, but exciting few days since we made our way to Australia. So let’s get you caught up!
We hit the ground running as soon as we landed in Melbourne, Australia. It was Melbourne Cup Day, one of the largest holidays in the country. It is a holiday built around a horse race. Think Kentucky Derby but on a larger, crazier scale. The outfits, the hats… it’s quite a sight! If you love people watching, there is none better! So it was decided that a trip into the city to enjoy the celebration was in order. After spending a little time figuring out how exactly driving on the other side of the road worked, we were off! Melbourne is a fun city full of character and charm. Alley ways have become canvases for local artists and are dotted with a variety of cafes. Modern, colorful architecture line the main roads. Art, include the lock bridge, can be found all over the city. If you ever plan to visit Australia, I highly recommend a stop in Melbourne. Our first full day was spent working with the great staff of the Nature Conservancy. They have began a new campaign called “Nature needs people” to highlight how important the human/ mother nature relationship is. We spent the day photograph different people enjoying some of the great outdoor locations around Melbourne. Here are a few of my favorites. The plan for Day two was to head up to the James Whyte Nature Reserve to work with Conservation Volunteers of Australia then drive along the Great Ocean Road. When we stopped for breakfast, we stumbled upon on of the most endangered species in the world… a Blockbuster! Given how rare they are, it surprised both Hannah and me to see one out in the ‘wild’. Once at the James Whyte Nature Reserve, we took a tour of the grounds. The land, referred to as “The Island”, was donated to Conservation Volunteers after the owner decided to no longer used it for cow grazing. Since the land butts up to a national park, the group set out to reintroduce native species of plants to the land. This was not an easy task give the location and lack of water. That makes the work they have accomplished that much more incredible! The plastic covers protect new seedlings from the weather and kangaroos. The hills are dotted with them. The Great Ocean Road… oh my, words really can’t begin to describe the beauty! The Great Ocean Road runs along the southern coast of Australia between Melbourne and Adelaide, cutting through the rain forest and ocean cliffs. The views were just spectacular! Of course, there was wildlife everywhere! It finally sunk in that we were really in Australia when we stopped to see a group of Koala bears hanging out in trees along the road. It was so cool! This momma even came down from her tree to get a closer look. While she kept a safe distance, she took a few moments to size us up, allowing me a little time to snap these photos. Once she was safely back up in a new tree, we took off to see the sunset at the Twelve Apostles. What a way to end another fabulous day. The more time I am here, the more I fall in love with the people, the culture, and the world they are surrounded by. We are on our way to the outback today to again work with Conservation Volunteers of Australia. It should be a hot, but exciting weekend! More photos and updates to come!