Time off the road for a few days was just what we needed and got while in Darwin. After being on the road for a few days we were looking forward to a rest with more than a one night stopover. When Murray rang his cousin Sharon in Darwin to see if we could visit sometime she suggested we stay with them as they lead a very busy life and that way we could actually get some rest and catch up with the Forsyths properly. After arriving in Gunn on Monday 23rd May we headed around to the Forsyth’s, we were happy when our trailer fitted up the side of their house quite comfortably as this meant we could stay with them.
Being here was like a resort, hence we called it the Forsyth Resort. Everyday we took a dip in the spa pool, enjoyed drinks in the shade with no ants crawling on us or in the trailer, and we were treated to culinary delights that sat quite well on the palate by Neil, Masterchef extraordinaire. Each day we got cuddles from the dog KT, she loved sleeping outside the camper and would try to get in once she knew we were awake, she would stick her head in when we unzipped the door and was hard to get out. We got snuggles with the two cats Stewie and Lexi, who warmed to us very well and are very spoilt but sweet little things.
It was fantastic to have the privilege of staying with them as they truly do have the busiest of lives with netball. Sharon and both girls Emma and Clare do training, coaching, playing and umpiring in this sport over four nights of the week, the girls also have hip hop dancing twice a week and Saturdays are netball again for the whole family in some capacity. Neil is the run around man in the evenings and afternoons and as I said before the Masterchef as well. He loves experimenting and even though we were happy to cook for ourselves he loved the fact we were only too happy to taste test for him.
Tuesday saw me get washing up to date once again and do a recon of what we needed to take for the rest of our trip into WA. We couldn’t stock up on too much fruit and veges as we had to declare them at the border. This was a list making day and I also caught up on a blog or two. Murray was able to repair our water tank which had been damaged on the Plenty Highway and we got the car clean inside and out. I also went to Sharon’s hairdresser friend and got another good haircut. That’s two out of two I am happy with, next one will probably in Broome.
Even though we were in Darwin to have a long overdue catch up with the family they were only too happy to recommend things for us to see and do, if we felt so inclined, through the day while they were away. Wednesday, on their recommendation, we went into Darwin for a few hours. Darwin is a lovely city not huge like Sydney or Melbourne and quite easy to get around. One of the things suggested were the World War II oil storage tunnels. These were built after the newly completed above ground storage was bombed during the Japanese invasion of Darwin, but due to water sealing issues and the end of the war they were never commissioned. It was fascinating to read about and look through these huge tunnels and to realise just how much of an impact WWII had on Australia in the Top End. After we went for a walk around the waterfront we had lunch and a quick look through the shopping mall then we went for a scenic drive around the town and out to East Point along the beach front. Such a pretty place but it was very hot so we headed back for a swim at our resort.
Thursday we decided to head to Litchfield National Park for a look around. We drove back down the Stuart Highway, about 130kms, and turned right into the park where our first point of interest was the Magnetic Termite Mounds. These are fascinating, built on a floodplain, made by these tiny termites, that aren’t found anywhere else in the world, which have constructed them to align in a north-south position meaning that one side is always in the shade allowing the temperature inside to remain cooler for its residents. They are a flatter shape unlike the other mounds which are made by the cathedral termite, therefore are constructed in a cathedral style shape.
From here we headed to Florence Falls for a walk and swim. From the car park its an easy 150 steep steps down to the plunge pool at the bottom of Florence Falls. A picturesque area out of the heat of the day, refreshing and relaxing to swim in after the walk down. We sat on the rocks after our swim and enjoyed our lunch then took the 1.5km walk back out along Shady Creek. This area goes from a tropical paradise to a hot Savannah landscape as you climb and meander along the banks of the creek. By the time we returned it was 36 and we were once again lathered in sweat ready for the next swim at Buley Waterhole.
Back in the car and up the road a few kilometres then about a 100m walk in to find another picturesque and refreshing swimming hole or rather several of them. If you sat in a little hole in the third pool you got a lovely massage from the waterfall. What more can I say about this place other than magical, we were so glad we came here for the day. Litchfield NP has a lot more walks and waterholes, you can camp in there too but we were ready to return to our resort for another swim in the pool and a drink or two.
Friday was shopping, ticking everything of the lists and finishing another blog before we left here. We were looking forward to the evening as all the family was home together for the first night all week and Neil was cooking lamb on the spit. Mmmm. Friday night for this family is footy night, AFL. A big night was planned with nibbles, drinks, amazing lamb, wonderful company and swimming. Excellent night had by all. Although we were looking forward to heading to the West we were sad to say goodbye to another great week with wonderful people. Thanks Sharon, Neil, Emma, Clare and our little furry friends.
Saturday we headed for another free camp at Matheson Rest Area. We ran into a little German man who is travelling alone on a pushbike, we also saw him at Daly Waters. He is about eighty and he likes to do quite a few kilometres a day. He was just heading off to do a couple more hours before he rested for the night. The next day we saw him 70kms up the road from where we were. He was unreal. Toilets herewere drop but ladies was nearly full so a bit on the nose and we ended up with lots of ants on and in the trailer but it was quiet and we certainly weren’t lonely as it was full.
Sunday we will cross the border to WA and spend a few days and nights at Lake Argyle.