Australia – Part I

We’re back!  And Australia was very interesting, and not at all scary (except for their love of polyester, which was very alarming!), and most enjoyable.

The first part of my holiday was pure, brainless holiday: sleeping in, long walks on the beach, visiting national parks, etc.

Mr Dreamy on the coast

The dreamstress by the sea

Being me, I was most interested in and excited by the wildlife.  We saw birds and beasts and bugs and it was all most excellent.

Right outside our hotel their was a baby myna bird in a lauhala (pandanus) tree, cheeping like mad and making his parents constantly scurry for bugs to feed him.

Spoiled little myna-bird

Further away, in the parks in the hinterland (anything 15 minutes drive from the coast!), there were birds that had found an easier way to get food: just bug the humans for it!

Female bush turkey. Common as muck.

It was most disgruntled to find I was offering it a leaf. You aren't allowed to feed them.

There were also more attractive birds that didn’t remind you quite so much of rats or pigeons.

Kookabura sitting in a...(well, I don't know what it is, but it's not a gum tree)

Then the beasts:

A shy little pachymelon

We were extremely privileged to see not one, but seven pachymelon, which are miniature rainforest wallaby (and wallaby are miniature kangaroos).  Pacymelon are very shy and solitary, and hide in the trees, so are quite hard to see.  We saw two mothers with joeys just out of their pouches, which was particularly lovely.

I was so thrilled and excited to see the pachymelon, and thought that would be our highlight.  At the visitor centre I was told that I wouldn’t see wildlife outside of a zoo – there was no-where to go for herds of kangaroo (OK, I don’t think that is the proper collective noun), except the zoo.  How dull.  How touristy.  But we drove out to a secret valley in search of a permaculture centre, and what did we find?

Herds of kangaroos!


Well, not herds, as the proper collective noun is actually court (what a great collective noun!).

Kneeling roo grazing a few metres from me!

While I communed with the courts of kangaroos and acclimated to the distinctive stinky-curry smell they have, Mr D had a nap.

Mr D with lantana flowers

I woke him up by sprinkling lantana flowers all over him.

I also saw a koala up a tree, but couldn’t get a photo of it.  And later in the trip I saw a water dragon.  I almost stepped on it!  But it ran away before I got my camera out to take a photo.  And I didn’t scream!

In addition to things that flew and hopped and scurried and crawled, we saw some spectacularly beautiful scenery (taking into account that what appeals to me is quite bucolic and gentle and pastoral).

The Glass-House Mountains stick up from the coast

Hayley mentioned that one of the loveliest things in Brisbane this time of year are the jacarandas.  They were even lovelier in the country up the Sunshine Coast

Jacarandas and gold & silver trees are two of my favourite things

Pretty pretty jacarandas

There were also staghorn ferns, which remind me of my childhood.  I climbed a tree and made Mr D get a picture of me with one.

Look at my fern!

In a few days I’ll tell you about the rest of the trip, the best part, where I got to meet Steph and share creative ideas.

And that was the holiday.  It was hot and sunny and lovely and I want to go back (but maybe in the winter when it isn’t so hot).

I still don’t want to go to the outback though!



  1. I’m so glad you had a good time and weren’t eaten by spiders! 🙂

  2. Stella says

    Pleased you had such a great holiday! You’ve made me all jealous now.

    • I didn’t realise the coast would be so green and pleasant! I just wish we had gotten as far up as Bundaberg; I’d love to come visit you next time! And I’m a huge fan of Bundaberg gingerbeer. It and Peachee are about the only soft drinks I like – they are my summertime guilty pleasure! I just bought the first fourpack of the year and put it in the fridge yesterday 🙂

  3. And I always thought it was a “mob” of kangaroos.

    I live in Canberra where there are plenty of kangaroos outside of zoos – I’ve seen them hopping down suburban roads at rush hour. *g* Seriously. It is the “bush capital”, after all!

    Anyway, I’m delighted you had a great holiday and saw lots of wildlife. Maybe you’d like to travel a bit further south next time?

    • I believe mob is also an acceptable collective noun for kangaroos, but I just like court better!

      I do want to see more of Oz now. Still not sure about Canberra though. You might have to sell me on it a bit more 😉

      • Well not being the ACT tourist bureau, I’ll just say that if you like wildlife, there’s a lot of it about in Canberra – sometimes in places you don’t expect it. And of course we’re surrounded by nature reserves, which are an easy trip from the more civilized parts of the Territory. 😉

  4. looks like you have fun, although i think the wallaby things you saw are probably paddymelons, not pachymelons, could be wrong though.

  5. Natalie says

    What a trip! I had no idea Australia could be so green, nor did I have a sense that clover, which grows here, where it snows, also grows there, where there are tropical plants.

    You caught some great shots. The little kookaburra was my favorite, along with the roos, of course; he is a kooky little thing, with his overlarge beak. We sing about him and his gum tree a good bit in this house. It’s an excellent song for dispelling the blues.

    Very best,


  6. Hayley says

    Oh I do love the Glass House Mountains! I climbed one of them last year, was spectacular. So glad you ended up having a lovely vacation in a lovely part of Australia!

    I just spent a few days camping on Stradbroke Island, funnily enough I am also entranced by Australian wildlife and finally was with someone who could tell me what all the different creatures were (usually they shrug and say “It’s a bird”) – I saw huge goannas, willy wagtails, dolphins, things-that-look-like-ducks-but-are-actually-geese…. and unfortunatly, March Flies.

    You know how everything in Australia wants to kill you? March Flies are ggggiant flies that suck blood, and actually chase you. I have over 29 March Fly bites and it’s torture.

    Also, the Australians I was with were talking about the ‘greenness’ of Australia – they’ve been in a drought for 10 years that broke 2 years ago, so most of them can’t remember it ever being this lush. I arrived just as the drought broke, so I’ve only ever known the greener version of Queensland.

  7. I enjoyed all of your photos — and the pic of the Glasshouse Mountains makes me look forward to my trip next month to Brissie.

    When I was in Tasmania, my bf and I got to see tons of pademelons. Boy, are they ever cute. Totes jelz you got to see joeys!

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