A Travellerspoint blog

This blog is published chronologically. Go straight to the most recent post.

Day 40: Melbourne. Monday 7th June 2010

Today we travelled into the city by tram and went to the Titanic exhibition at the Melbourne Museum. It revealed much about the construction of the ship, its size and great oppulence – no expense was spared. The exhibition included artefacts from the ship and the belongings of some of the passengers who were on it which had been retrieved from the wreck.

There were life size re-creations of the main staircase, the corridor from the first class area, the passenger galley and the different cabins for first, second and third class travellers. Other sections of the exhibition told the story of the ship’s departure and voyage up until the fateful collision; and told many of the passengers stories, some of whom survived, some who didn’t. Many passengers had been transferred to the Titanic because a coal strike had caused other ships to cancel sailings. It was shocking to realise they had halved the number of life boats originally intended for the ship so that there were not enough for everyone to escape the sinking ship. Of the 2200 people on board only 705 survived.

Glenn and me on a replica of the Titanic’s main staircase

Then we watched a 3D documentary in the IMAX theatre about the exploration of the wreck 4.5km below the ocean surface using deep sea capsules and remote opperated vehicles to film and retrieve objects.
The exhibition was very good though, even with timed entry, it was very crowded and moving through was very slow. The documentary gave a real sense of what the wreck looked like and how it had deteriorated under water over time. They predict that in 40-70 years what currently remains will implode and collapse.

We visited a couple of bike shops in the city and will return tomorrow to check out more. Tonight we had dinner with friends of Glenn.
Our last night before catching the ferry home…

Posted by Jo vanEmmerik 23:45 Archived in Australia Comments (0)

Day 41: Melbourne. Tuesday 8th June 2010

Today I packed everything up for the last time. People often comment on the amount of gear I have compared to Glenn. My trip has been for 6 weeks with camping gear and Glenn’s trip has been 2 weeks of staying in motels so there’s a bit of a difference!

I love how, when in Melbourne, we can park on the footpath. It is so convenient. We visited more bike shops. It is always an interesting (and often expensive) exercise.

We went to the Victoria Market and ate and explored, then rode to Federation Square where we visited the Australian Centre for the Moving Image which had a display about the history of film, television and internet. We walked around Southbank and then rode to Port Melbourne to board the Spirit on Tasmania.

Once on board and settled into our cabin we sat back in the with a drink to watch the ferry depart. Each drink came with a raffle ticket and, much to our delight, we won – the prize: a $250 voucher for travel on the Spirit. We will have to start planning the next trip!!

Posted by Jo vanEmmerik 23:48 Archived in Australia Comments (0)

Day 42: Devonport – Hobart. Wednesday 9th June 2010

We were greeted by very cold weather coming off the ferry. Welcome back to Tassie!
We stopped in Campbell Town for morning tea and took some time to warm up, but there were no other stops and we headed straight home. The next few days will see unpacking, washing and sorting galore, but for the rest of today: a hot shower, reuniting with my kids and my cat, and sleeping in my own bed tonight!
Final day’s distance: 280km

Total trip distance: 11 278km

It has been a fantastic trip and I have many fond memories. Some of the images that will stay with me forever include the kites gliding in circles overhead and the red ant hill dotted all over the landscape. They looked like headstones, which seemed appropriate given the harshness of the country.
My worst accomodation: Waikerie – where we could hear the rats scratching in the ceiling all night – and camping in Threeways – no electricity in the bathrooms, very basic sites and facilities.
My favourite accomodation: Darwin :-)
Worst place: Tennent Creek
Favourite places: those that had the spectacular formations – Ubirr, Ayers Rock, King’s Canyon, Devil’s Marbles and Litchfield National Park.
I most enjoyed a new appreciation for, and realisation of the vastness of my country, and the multitude of new places and experiences I encountered.

Posted by Jo vanEmmerik 23:49 Archived in Australia Comments (0)

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