Hiking Weekend: Bucket-List 2013 – Hike to the cradle mountain and experience being a tour guide for few hours along with visiting the place called ‘Bay of Fire’

Hllo My Lovely Fellow Bloggers and Friends,

A smile and hug from Sydney. I am back to share some stories and experience with you including my bucketlist adventure. Here is a link for my bucket list if you haven’t read it yet.

My Promise to live life – My BucketList 2013

A little bit different and another post about the fears I have in my life with a reflection of other reader’s experiences along with it.

My Fears

Item Number #38 Vsit one of these – Cradle Mountain / Wineglass Bay /Bay of Fires in Launceston, Tasmania

One of the must do when you are in Tasmania is to walk up to the summit of Cradle Mountain after visiting the beautiful blue Dove lake. It was on my bucket list and I am really glad to tell you that I did experience this when I was in Tasmania. It was a short trip and I was determined to see few places when I was in Launceston, Tasmania. Hence I booked a tour as I don’t drive and it became another memorable tour of my life really. It was windy and cold when we got there but I was lucky to have a really good weather when we reached to the Marion’s lookout. There is a very famous overland track that starts from there and we met a lot of hikers doing that six days track as well with big backpacks. I might like to do it one day if I stay in Australia for long I think.

But anyways it was a steep climb at few places but there were chains that you can hold on to while climbing for assistance so I think most of the people with average fitness can do this walk and at least going to the Marion’s lookout is definitely worth doing. As you would be rewarded with beautiful views of the valley as well as many lakes that are visible from the summit. On the way back the tour guide asked us to take another route and he suggested that he would dive the van to the other location for us. Somehow others managed to make me a temporary tour guide after seeing my skills in bush walking which took me by surprise but I loved the job for next one hour or so and made sure everyone is happy and safe on the way back. But it was really nice to meet so many new people on this walk. I did have some funny tour guide moments when I thought a waterfall that our tour guide was talking is nearby and I literally told everyone that the stream of water was the so called waterfall whereas in another few minutes we were able to spot the actual one 😉 A bit cheeky of me, I know and everyone had a good laugh at that. And then we met our tour guide on the suggested location after a nice hike and a good workout.

Also I had a chance to go to the beautiful place called – Bay of fire, a beach in Tasmania. This should be another must do thing when you are in Tasmania. I am sharing the pictures of this place as well. Although it was cold and I end up lying in the beach with my jacket and jeans on but I loved it whatsoever. I love Tasmania so much that I would go there any time I get a chance in future. Its not just the place but people there are also so lovely and warm. Also as the space here in wordpress is filling fast hence I upload more pics on the facebook page as of now till I get a proper website up and running for my blog. So kindly join me on facebook to see more pictures and get some very exciting updates from Talking Experience 🙂

Regards,

Kavita

Bucket-List 2013 Week 25 – 25.Visit atleast one historical town in Australia (Armidale)

Hello My Lovely Fellow Bloggers,

A smile and hug from Sydney. I had an amazing weekend this time like many others and I am back to share some stories and experience with you including my bucketlist adventure. Here is a link for my bucket list if you haven’t read it yet.

My Promise to live life – My BucketList 2013

A little bit different and another post about the fears I have in my life with a reflection of other reader’s experiences along with it.

My Fears

This time I had a wonderful time in a city called Armidale, located in the northern tableland in New South Wales, Australia. It has population of around 25,000 people and is known as one of the higest city in Australia at 1,110 meter above sea level. It is a beautiful area covered by world heritage national parks and it has also got an airport at 1,084 metres (3,556 ft), the highest licensed airport in New South Wales. It is 5 hours 30 minutes drive from Sydney, but I don’t drive so I caught the Greyhound bus in the evening from Central, Sydney to get here. It is a bit cold in Armidale due to it’s high location hence it is advisable to carry few warm clothes usually.

I think this is one of the most relaxed and happy weekend I had for quiet a while. And as I look back, I feel that the time I had spent here in this little town was blissful. Why do I feel blissful? A number of things happened on my trip to Armidale this weekend and I was content and happy after such a wonderful weekend with few  hiccups. I left Sydney around 5:30 PM on Friday evening when everyone was getting in the party mood in the city. People were leaving work on time or even early to start feeling Friday fever. I was in the bus waiting to get out of the city and get a snooze before I arrive in Armidale at 2:30 AM in the morning. It was a nice bus ride where I met this French couple who were spending their honeymoon travelling around the world for 6 months. What an awesome way to celebrate I must say. I love meeting people from different culture as you can see and we instantly hit it off and shared a lot of experiences from past travelling. I was lucky to get the next seat free in the bus as it was enough for me to curl up and get some sleep on my way to Armidale. As this was the first time I was going there so I checked quiet a few times with the driver about where we were and that made him wonder why I might be going to this little town where he himself hadn’t been for ages. Anyways finally I was there. The moment I left the bus a wave of cold air took me by surprise. It was around -2.0 C which I was not quiet prepared to be honest and the warm clothes I was carrying were mainly for the bus in case the AC was too low which sometimes is the case when you take a bus. But I was very glad that I did have few warm clothes and I tried to wear all of them to make myself more comfortable in this cold night.

I met some locals and made some really good friends I must say. It was just such a nice trip if I look back.  I went for a walk/run to enjoy the atmosphere and that took me to the University of New England in Armidale, where there was some function taking place. Then I also visited the city and the Dangar waterfall that is 20 minutes drive from Armidale, a very serene place. There are few other nice places to visit that I didn’t get a chance to go but worth seeing if you have few days in Armidale:

• Oxley Wild RIvers Nationalpark
• Zoology Museum
• Museum of Antiquities
• New England Regional Art Museum
• Hillgrove Museum
• Cathedral Rock National Park
• Dangars Lagoon and Racecourse Lagoon
• Deeargee Woolshed
• Eastview Estate Winery
• Geraldine 4WD Recreation Park
• Mount Mutton Walking Trail
• Mount Yarrowyck Nature Reserve
• Thunderbolts Rock
• Uralla Heritage Walk
• Wollomombi Falls – This is one of the highest fall in Australia. Wollomombi Falls are located less than one kilometre south of the village of Wollomombi and approximately two and a half kilometres by road. The access turn off is one and a half kilometres from Wollomombi on the Waterfall Way towards Armidale.

World’s End is here, what you are going to do? Please don’t Jump at least – Part 4 (Travel faster or Fast Travel – Sri Lanka in 7 crazy days)

Yes I really mean it – don’t jump when you see World’ end. You will see what I mean. So in continuation of my last three posts here is the fourth one and hopefully we will finish with the journey soon. Here are the links to my old posts in the series in case you are interested, although there is no as such dependency hence you can enjoy just this post as well.

Part 1: https://talkingexperience.wordpress.com/2013/04/21/travel-faster-or-fast-travel-sri-lanka-in-7-crazy-
days
Part 2: https://talkingexperience.wordpress.com/2013/04/22/go-go-go-rest-of-sri-lanka-is-waiting-part-2-travel-faster-or-fast-travel-sri-lanka-in-7-crazy-days/
Part 3: https://talkingexperience.wordpress.com/2013/04/28/time-to-slow-down-wait-one-more-day-to-go-before-that-part-3-travel-faster-or-fast-travel-sri-lanka-in-7-crazy-days/

And now that we have enjoyed one of the most amazing train ride to Nuwara Eliya, time to explore this city located at an altitude of 1,868 m (6,128 ft) and one of the most important location for tea production. So do remember to drink tea here 🙂

It was almost 3 AM when I got here so first thing I wanted to do was to find a place to live. As always I depended upon the local expert advice and got a home stay after some research around the area – close enough to be able to walk to the main market and far enough to get it in budget. But it’s a very expensive place to live as compared to other towns as most of the things are imported in this town. But after talking to locals they feel it’s worth as the water here is purified and tap water is drinkable as compared to the other towns and many other good things about the town in spite of high taxes. After arranging my stay in a small lodge, owned by a very friendly family, I headed to find my favorite Sri Lankan food – Kottu (roti/bread made with various vegetables). I try to look for places where locals eat as such places have got more authentic food and also you get to meet locals at times. I end up meeting few people who could speak Hindi (my native language) in one of such local restaurant. They treated me like a VIP, and to be honest after such a long and tiring day I just loved it. They also told me a little bit about how to get around and places worth visiting here. I was lucky to witness a festival, a Hindu procession, that they were celebrating that day in the town as well. And then I visited a local temple.

I bid goodbye to my new local friends in the restaurant and it was time to mingle with the family where I was staying. I had a really nice conversation with them and they told me about a place called – ‘World’s End’. I listened to the name and that’s it. It was something I had to see as the name was so fascinating that I had to see what’s it all about. Now to remind you, in Sri Lanka there is entrance fees on most of the things. And the this was one of the most expensive places to visit. As there is no public transport to get here so you have a choice from hiring a car to an Auto-rickshaw. Also it takes at least 3 hours (with speed) to visit this place and 1.5 hours to get here. So in total at least 6 hours time is needed. One more tip: This is actually a very high place (you will see the details soon), and the weather here is clear mostly in the mornings only so the earlier you start, the better it is. Also if you can get some locals to show you around then it is awesome because the fees for local is lot less than foreigners (4500 Sri Lankan Rupee) and 3500 Rupee for Auto-rickshaw hire. So here I was, about to start my journey to the world’s end and was about to find out the truth. Is it really the end of the world? I was so excited and it reminded me of movie 2012. Is it going to be more adventurous than that. Lol, lets find out.

There are two main places here – World’s End (870 m) and Mini World’s End (270 m). Depending upon which way you choose, you will arrive at one of them first and then another 0.5 KM will take you to the another spot. Its about 8 KM walk that also includes a waterfall called – Baker’s Fall. A very beautiful and scenic place but requires some climbing down to it. Although locals makes it looks simple even in their floaters but be careful as it might be slippery and steep so keep your stuff in a bag and good shoes will help as well. And do not worry about getting dirty in the mud as it is also a possibility. Weather wise this place is amazing as every half kilometer the weather changes and you might get a chance to see sun, rain and fog all in few hours. So keep a jumper and a rain jacket with you in case you prefer to stay warm and cozy.

Now that I am running out of space in this post so I will continue in next post with the closing of this series. But next destination is full of natural places that you can visit for free. And also a very heart warming story is waiting for you that melted my heart as I was about to get a bit frustrated of being treated like a tourist (money spending machine) all the time. So hold on as I will be back soon. Till then Stay healthy and keep smiling 🙂