Our very first road trip up North striked the Big Little Life idea. Yet what we didn’t know back then was that it’ll be more than long talks by the fire. It was just a dream, but doesn’t it always start with one? To come back to these places was very sentimental and special. This time we have Oliver with us, and our home on wheels. And what’s even more exciting is that our little family adventures in Australia’s North West is just a beginning of this slow living on the road…
We felt that we barely explored enough the areas during our last trip in Exmouth, Coral Bay & Kalbarri. And so we decided it would be great idea to go back. Now that we are still travelling and already stayed in Exmouth for two weeks, we can easily say – our little family needs come back to this spot. It’s just impossible to do and see absolutely everything while you’re also trying to slow down, be in the moment and unwind. Let alone when you have a child to look after too.
It takes longer to get ready and leave the house. A lot depends on the sleep you got (or in our case didn’t get) last night and day naps, etc. Now we are not complaining, but life has changed since Oliver joined our pack. As much as we love adventuring with him, it can get tricky sometimes. But enough of that. Our family adventures in motorhome now are better than ever anyway!
We needed to stock on food, water, and other supplies. But as soon as we finished our shopping and other boring stuff, we headed to the Carnarvon’s favourite tourist attraction – the cactus garden! It’s definitely something worth a visit if you ever in the area. Not every day you come across so many cactuses in one spot. Most of them are huge in size, too. Since cactus is not native Australian plant and doesn’t grow in deserts, it’s quite unique to find them here.
Of course we always have to break the drive and camp somewhere for a night or two if it was a longer trip. And whenever we are heading towards Ningaloo region, we like to stop at Manilya rest area. It’s great, cause you get the reception. Which is something we always need for work, social media, etc. To find any sort of campsites, free or not, we always use WikiCamps app which works perfectly offline too. Highly recommend that one if you haven’t got your hands on it yet!
It was a great decision and we enjoyed our stay there. It’s close to beaches and Cape Range National Park. P.S. If you have any tips on reception and internet while living on the road in Australia – please share! We had many dramas with that, and even Telstra doesn’t cut the mustard when you need to check your inbox, etc.
So to go back to Exmouth is definitely in our plans. We both loved snorkelling in Turquoise Bay, and other secluded beaches that we found there. We had it all to ourselves and the coral was amazing. Chris even came across a reef shark, and we both saw plenty of other sealife.
In our opinion, it was also great timing – just after the winter peak season and right before school holidays. Many places that usually would be cramped with people were quite empty. So we made the most out of it!
So one afternoon we packed our picnick blanket, grabbed bottle of wine and some snacks, then headed to Shothole canyon. Such an amazing spot, yet there are quite a few of those to explore! We only did one, so that’s something else we’ll have to come back for! If you are keen for some spectacular hikes, make sure you have these on your list: Yardie Nature Trail & Yardie Creek Gorge Trail, Shothole Canyon, Charles Knife Canyon, Mandu Mandu walk, Badjirrajirra Loop Trail, Vlamingh Head.
After our time was done in Exmouth, we packed our stuff and hit the road again. At that time we found ourselves at crossroads as we weren’t quite sure where to go next. Our initial plan was Broome. But we decided it might be a waste of time and money. We much rather prefer sunshine and tropical climate than cold, but the spring is here and it gets rather too hot in Kimberley area at this time of the year. It didn’t feel right to put Oliver and Boris through this. Yet due to the heat, we probably wouldn’t have been able to explore much anyway.
It’s such a wonderful place, and another on the list to come back for! Since Oliver just turned 7 months old, we weren’t able to do most of the hikes yet. But we have made our bucket list and have a clear idea of what to see next time we are around.
Our top spots to check out again would be: Dales Gorge, Weano Gorge, Knox Gorge, Hancock Gorge, Joffre Gorge, Fern Pool, Fortesque Falls, Mount Bruce, Oxer & Junction Pool Lookouts. You can find more information about the National Park here.
We check the area hashtags or some of our favorite fellow travelers accounts such as saltytravelers, wildroadwanderers, kunuthebus, etc. Most of them geotag the locations too, which is very helpful and sometimes can be like a rabbit hole. You find yourself going through the geotag and thousands of other people photos in the end. But it’s fun! And it’s part of the adventure.
After our adventures in Karijini were coming to an end, we decided to go back to the coast. We spent a week in Warroora station, and yesterday we wrapped up our almost two weeks at the Red Bluff. It’s just the best to be parked right in front of the ocean, with the private pathway to the beach right at your doorstep. But more about that in our next post!
P.S. Don’t forget to check our Instagram page too! And thanks for reading. Soon we are bringing some video vlogs of our adventures to you. So stay tuned!