Coral Bay & Exmouth Roadie

21 Oct

On my last break Mandy and I took ‘Wario’ on a 3,300km 8 day round trip roadie up to the beautiful beaches of Coral Bay and Exmouth on the Central Coast of Western Australia. (click on Western Australia Map above if you want). 

Wario was the name of our ‘wicked’ campervan that we hired.  You would of seen the wicked campervans littering the highways over Australia and New Zealand. They are painted up with pictures and quotes and have usually seen better days.  But it was great, passing other wicked campers on the road with a wave, starting up conversations with wicked drivers, usually starting with “do you think she’s going to make it back to Perth”?.  The funniest one was 3 Irish guys pushing their van backwards out of a car park and the Irish driver hanging out the window as his mates pushed and shouting “she only goes forwards, theres no reverse”! 

Luckily for us Wario had reverse, but lacked in other areas. Major failings of our valiant Wario were firstly no air conditioning (pretty big factor in 40 degree heats), the noise of Wario’s motor constantly competing with the ipod for the sound title and winning and Wario seemed to have a hole in his petrol tank when you went over 80km/hr.  “So why not hire a normal van”? “hey man its all about the journey not the destination dude……….rock on Wario”

So enough of Wario, the road trip. To sum it up, amazing weather, beautiful golden beaches, turquoise water, good food, no work, diving, wildlife, sea-life and bright yellow pants all made for a memorable trip.

The first leg of the journey was 1200km from Perth to Coral Bay. We spent the first night on the side of the road sleeping beside a wheat field and getting attacked by Bull ants – they bloody sting as well.

After stopping in Kalbarri for Breakfast, and meandering up the straight desert highway avoiding the dead kangaroos we stopped in Carnarvon to have lunch and stock up with supplies. 24 pack of Stienies (for the uneducated Steinlager is the flagship of New Zealand export beer) was only $44 – SWEET!

Then we straight-shooted it through to Idyllic Coral Bay where we set up camp for 4 nights. We did two dives and basically relaxed on the tranquil beach.  That was until school mates Jamie, Jared and wife Lauren turned up and we did some catching up on old times – good times.

Then we left to head up to the tip on the peninsula for more diving on the renown Ningaloo reef, where we set up at Exmouth.  The diving was great, with heaps of sealife; sharks, bull rays, sea snakes, turtles, tropical fish etc.

We spent our evenings at Exmouth by the lighthouse on the hill watching the whales pass on there pilgrimage to far away waters as the sunset over the Indian Ocean whilst we lay in Wario with a refreshing beverage – ahhhhh life was a bitch.

Then like a prick in a cherry the bubble burst, and it was time to make the 1400km return voyage to Perth.  But not before a bit of my Hap luck rubbed off on the car side of things. Deciding to go off road (theres a strict policy with wicked campers to stay on sealed roads – for obvious reasons) to explore an isolated beach for lunch-and wash ourselves. It all went sweet getting in, I carefully choose a firm track avoiding the sand on the way in. But after a tummy full of freshly cooked pasta I was in dreamland and straight-lined it to the road forgetting about the sand. And literally I had a “sinking” feeling. Yep, stuck. 

But luckily good people attract good people (luckily Mandy was with me). So after 40 mins of me putting to practice my vehicle recovery course skills I had recently learnt (digging the wheels out with a frying pan weren’t actually taught on the course) a lovely elderly couple arrived in there more off-road appropriate campervan and towed us out.

Then after sleeping a night under yet another light house in Geraldon is was up early and back to Perth to clean the campervan (cheeky buggers charge you $100 if you don’t bring the van back washed inside and out – I hope they didn’t check the roof). Then it was off on the plane back to work, feeling exhausted and ready for another holiday!

Oh and before I forget, with every little journey there is always a lesson learnt.  The lesson learnt on this journey was that when using public showers, you do not put your toothbrush with paste already on it (I forgot my toothpaste so I pre-applied Mandy’s paste before going to the shower) on the shower bench. Because after the shower when you are brushing your teeth and you pull out a short curly hair, theres a pretty good chance that its not yours, and it certainly isn’t Martha’s from Sweden, but more likely the overweight bald guy that used the shower before you!

So don’t put your pre-pasted toothbrush on the communal shower bench! oh, and I totally recommend a roadie to the western coast of Australia, we can’t wait to do the same this coming summer, except on the south west coast.

Nuthin but love Hap

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