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Queensland Road Trip, May 2022

Let’s go on a road trip! Come with us to Townsville and west on the Savannah Way to Karumba on an adventure in far north Queensland.  

Before we left home, a friend gave me some very important advice. 

“While you’re in Townsville, make sure you go to Juliette’s Gelateria on the Strand,” she said. 

And of course we did – twice!

 Our first visit came after we’d walked the Street Art Trail in the morning and explored Castle Hill in the afternoon, so a double scoop was well-earned. The extensive range of flavours meant choosing just two was difficult.

I decided on caramel biscotti topped with Malteser. Delicious!

The next afternoon we found ourselves on the Strand again, so we returned for seconds. This time I had vanilla choc cherry and chai latte – also delicious.

If you went to Juliette’s, what would you choose?

Up The Hill

Queensland Road Trip, May 2022

Let’s go on a road trip! Come with us to Townsville and west on the Savannah Way to Karumba on an adventure in far north Queensland. 

When is a mountain not a mountain? 

When it falls short of the required 300 metres in elevation by a mere 14 metres.

Castle Hill might just miss out on mountain status but at 286 metres it dominates the city of Townsville. The pink granite monolith, also known by its indigenous name of Cootharinga, is popular with both locals and visitors who can either walk up the famous Goat Track with its 758 stairs or drive up the 2.6 kilometre sealed road to the top. On a steamy 33° afternoon we did not walk up the Goat Track. 

Once at the summit we could easily have just stayed at the car park lookout which has spectacular 360° views – Townsville’s sprawling suburbs spread across the coastal plain, Hervey Range in the distance and Magnetic Island 10 kilometres off the coast.

But after avoiding the long walk up the hill we had energy reserved for the short walks at the top. The Radar Hill walk was closed for renovations so we set off on the Summit Walk to Hynes Lookout. 

From here we could see the CBD, where we’d walked the Street Art Trail in the morning, the busy Port of Townsville and Cape Cleveland far away on the horizon. 

Closer to the coast, Magnetic Island was veiled by a humid haze. 

Further round to the north east the Pill Box Walking Trail, which leads to a relic of World War Two, was our next destination.  

This track and lookout gave us a slightly different perspective on the same views. But it was the history connected to the site which made it interesting. 

A 1942 Observation Bunker, once an important part of Australia’s wartime defence system, now stands disused, a silent reminder of a time when the country was under threat of invasion. 

The people who worked here had huge responsibilities. They also had the best view in town!

Joining Jo for Monday Walks

Street Art in Townsville

Queensland Road Trip, May 2022

Let’s go on a road trip! Come with us to Townsville and west on the Savannah Way to Karumba on an adventure in far north Queensland. 

How often do you find the recommended time to see an attraction is simply not enough?

The Street Art Walking Trail in Townsville’s CBD, featuring 27 works of art commissioned by the City Council, winds its way around six city blocks. The brochure with descriptions of each painting and a map of the trail suggests 45 minutes is sufficient.

Perhaps they didn’t allow for us actually being able to find the paintings and then taking photographs of them. We spent more than two hours wandering through the city seeking out all the spectacular works of art.

Some were tucked away down the sides of buildings or dingy back alleys and sadly, some had rubbish bins and large skips right in front of them or graffiti sprayed across them. Some were on tricky angles, making them hard to photograph. But we did manage to take photos of several fabulous creations. 

This collection of street art continues to grow as new works are added. If you’re in Townsville, pick up a map of the Street Art Walking Trail at the Tourist Information Centre and be sure to allow plenty of time to see them all. 

Croc and Turtle – ROA, 2015

The Barrier – TELLAS, 2017

Sound and Movement Personified – Claire Foxton, 2018

Mother Earth – LEANS, 2017

Girroogul and the Soap Tree – Garth Jankovic and Nicky Bidju Pryor, 2016

L to R:

Concord – James Giddy, 2019

Cat and Mouse – 815K1, 2020

The Smizler – Lee Harnden, 2014

Brolga Dance and Song – Nicky Bidju Pryor, 2018

Under the Sea – HAFLEG, 2020

And this mural of tropical fauna we spotted on a large water tank up on the hill, not in the brochure but still worthy of inclusion. 

Joining Marsha for Photographing Public Art and Jo for Monday Walks

Let’s Go!

Queensland Road Trip, May 2022

Let’s go on a road trip! Come with us to Townsville and west on the Savannah Way to Karumba on an adventure in far north Queensland. 

After a relaxing week at Golden Beach on the Sunshine Coast, it was time to hitch up the caravan and head to northern Queensland. The day we left home was cold and rainy – jeans and jumpers weather. As we headed north-west on the Warrego Highway the temperature rose and we didn’t need our warm clothes again until the very last day on our way home.

Our first destination was Townsville in far north Queensland and to get there we travelled through towns we’ve been to before. This time we passed through Miles, Roma, Springsure, Capella, Emerald and Mackay without needing to explore.

Even though this part of the journey was familiar, there was still plenty to see along the way. We only drove for 2½ hours before stopping for our first morning tea of the trip, at The Creek Café in Miles. One of Glen’s travel goals is to eat a vanilla slice in every café in Australia and this one lived up to his expectations.

The playground at Capella comes with warnings: don’t take your horse in to play and watch out for snakes!

These four legged lawn mowers were grazing in the backyard of the Tourist Information Centre in Proserpine. Llamas or alpacas? We didn’t know and neither did the lady inside.

Bowen is famous for its delicious mangoes. We saw rows and rows of mango trees but it wasn’t mango season, so the only fruit was this giant-sized beauty on the way into town.

Sugar cane, farmed all the way from Bundaberg to Mossman, grows on both sides of the Bruce Highway.

Not far south of Townsville we crossed the Burdekin River, still in flood after many months of rain.

Finally, after driving 1,474 kilometres over three days, we arrived in Townsville. The tree-covered slopes of Hervey Range made a beautiful backdrop for our free camp site.

A stunning bush sunset, the first of many on this trip, was the perfect welcome to north Queensland.

*some photos taken through the car windscreen by the passenger

#26 Pavement Art

I’m joining Becky in her February Square Photo Challenge over at The Life of B. The rules of the challenge are simple: most photos must be square and fit the theme word Odd, referencing one of these definitions: different to what is usual or expected, or strange; a number of items, with one left over as a remainder when divided by two; happening or occurring infrequently and irregularly, or occasionally; separated from a usual pair or set and therefore out of place or mismatched. Look for #SquareOdds.

While we didn’t travel as much as usual in 2021, we were fortunate to enjoy several holidays in our home state of Queensland and one short trip over the border into New South Wales. Join me this month in a retrospective look at the very odd year of 2021. 

 Queens Park, Toowoomba QLD, September 2021

The beautiful floral displays at Queens Park during the Carnival of Flowers were complemented by some clever and colourful drawings on the footpaths.

This quirky creature was one of many fantastical characters decorating the walkways.

#20 Winter Trees

I’m joining Becky in her February Square Photo Challenge over at The Life of B. The rules of the challenge are simple: most photos must be square and fit the theme word Odd, referencing one of these definitions: different to what is usual or expected, or strange; a number of items, with one left over as a remainder when divided by two; happening or occurring infrequently and irregularly, or occasionally; separated from a usual pair or set and therefore out of place or mismatched. Look for #SquareOdds.

While we didn’t travel as much as usual in 2021, we were fortunate to enjoy several holidays in our home state of Queensland and one short trip over the border in New South Wales. Join me this month in a retrospective look at the very odd year of 2021. 

 Warwick QLD, July 2021

As part of Warwick’s Jumpers and Jazz in July Festival, these trees were decorated by children from local kindergartens.

The children used recycled materials, creating quirky ornaments to hang from the bare branches of the winter trees.

#3 Dinner at the “Brekky Creek”

I’m joining Becky in her February Square Photo Challenge over at The Life of B. The rules of the challenge are simple: most photos must be square and fit the theme word Odd, referencing one of these definitions: different to what is usual or expected, or strange; a number of items, with one left over as a remainder when divided by two; happening or occurring infrequently and irregularly, or occasionally; separated from a usual pair or set and therefore out of place or mismatched. Look for #OddSquare.

While we didn’t travel as much as usual in 2021, we were fortunate to enjoy several holidays in our home state of Queensland and one short trip over the border in New South Wales. Join me this month in a retrospective look at the very odd year of 2021. 

Brisbane, January 2021

The iconic Breakfast Creek Hotel at Albion was built by William MacNaughton Galloway in 1889. It was successful from the beginning and is still a popular dining destination.

It seems fitting that a sign for Queensland’s most famous beer sits atop Queensland’s most famous hotel, although its neon brilliance contrasts with the hotel’s classic French Renaissance façade.

While the flashy neon sign atop the Brekky Creek hotel may seem a little out of place, there was nothing odd about our delicious anniversary dinner. We chose a tender wagyu beef burger and a huge chicken parmi.

You can’t get a more traditional Aussie pub meal than that!

#2 Going Our Own Way

I’m joining Becky in her February Square Photo Challenge over at The Life of B. The rules of the challenge are simple: most photos must be square and fit the theme word Odd, referencing one of these definitions: different to what is usual or expected, or strange; a number of items, with one left over as a remainder when divided by two; happening or occurring infrequently and irregularly, or occasionally; separated from a usual pair or set and therefore out of place or mismatched. Look for #OddSquare.

While we didn’t travel as much as usual in 2021, we were fortunate to enjoy several holidays in our home state of Queensland and one short trip just over the border in New South Wales. Join me this month in a retrospective look at the very odd year of 2021. 

Brisbane, January 2021

It would be a reasonable expectation that a couple celebrating their wedding anniversary with a few days away would spend their special day together. But when the Queensland Cultural Centre at Southbank was hosting two exhibitions on completely different themes, it was an easy decision to go our own way for the morning.

For him, at The Gallery of Modern Art: The Motorcycle. Design, Art, Desire – an exhibition of 100 motorcycles, spanning 120 years of development and design. The exhibits came from Australian and international collections.

For her, at The Queensland Museum: I do! wedding stories from Queensland – a collection of 43 wedding ensembles spanning more than 100 years. The display included family memorabilia and personal items on loan from Queenslanders and garments and accessories from the State Collection.

While our decision to go our separate ways on our anniversary might seem strange, it shows how well we knew each other after 38 years.

And we did meet up afterwards for lunch!

#1 River Views

I’m joining Becky in her February Square Photo Challenge over at The Life of B. The rules of the challenge are simple: most photos must be square and fit the theme word Odd, referencing one of these definitions: different to what is usual or expected, or strange; a number of items, with one left over as a remainder when divided by two; happening or occurring infrequently and irregularly, or occasionally; separated from a usual pair or set and therefore out of place or mismatched. Look for #SquareOdds.

While we didn’t travel as much as usual in 2021, we were fortunate to enjoy several holidays in our home state of Queensland and one short trip over the border in New South Wales. Join me this month in a retrospective look at the very odd year of 2021. 

Brisbane, January 2021

We started the year with a few days in Brisbane to celebrate our wedding anniversary. Our hotel, located at Hamilton on a bend of the Brisbane River, was aptly named View Brisbane. And our river views didn’t disappoint – downstream in an easterly direction towards the Gateway Bridge and upstream towards the CBD.

While there is nothing odd about these gorgeous late afternoon river views, my panorama shot looks a little unusual. In an effort to capture the broad expanse of the river, my camera gave this straight stretch of Kingsford Smith Drive a distinct curve.

It doesn’t really look like that!

Living in a Tree House

Jumpers and Jazz in July, Warwick Queensland

Of the more than 100 decorated trees in this year’s Tree Jumper competition, our favourite was the Tree House. Inspired by the Tree House series of books by children’s author Andy Griffiths, the creators of this work of art incorporated many details from his stories.

Life in this tree house would definitely be an adventure.