Adelaide provided a warm welcome to our friend, Heather Moe, as she left the airport in 41C temperatures. A stark change to the -25C weather she left in Calgary. In the next 16 days she would experience extreme heat, record rainfall, and many of the wonderful things Australia has to offer. Between the two of us, we probably took 2,000+ photos. Here is a sampling...
The first morning I took her to the Botanic Gardens, which is a stone's throw from our apartment. Heather loves plants, but it was the lorikeets having a bath in the fountain that really captured her attention.
|This row of Grange wine is worth $10 million. The Chinese market is snapping up high end wines throughout Australia.|
|The first of many thumbs up after wine tastings!|
The next thing on Heather's wish list was to snorkel with dolphins. We went on the same catamaran that Roger and I did in December, but this time, the weather was much better for us and the water was a lot warmer. The Temptation snorkel cruise is very eco-friendly and while we weren't allowed to touch the dolphins, many came very close.
|Ready to jump in the water!|
|We had lots of close up encounters, and could hear them speak to each other when we put our masks under water.|
The Barossa Valley is probably the most well known wine region in South Australia and where Wolf Blass, Penfolds, and Jacob's Creek wineries make wine that is sent around the world. Our favorite wineries though, are the smaller ones like Langmeil.
|Roger tasted the premium wines at Wolf Blass, including one vintage right out of the barrel.|
|Shiraz grapes at Langmeil Winery are more than 100 years old|
|Pure delight as Heather tastes some Shiraz grapes right off the vine|
Adelaide hosts festivals of all descriptions, and this time of year, there are several on the go. We attended the Cellar Door Wine Festival one evening, and tasted wines from wineries throughout South Australia -- fortunately it was held within walking distance of home!
|Cellar Door Festival held at the Convention Center|
|Roger even found a micro brewery at the festival!|
|We had never been to a night parade before -- and we loved it.|
|This guy would be awfully dizzy by the time he rolled to Victoria Square|
|It was really quite magical seeing everyone lit up at night|
|A wardrobe malfunction seems to be just a big breath away|
|And what would a Fringe Parade be without a stripper pole?|
|Clockwise from top: Wendy, Heather, Carolyn, Roger, John, Rowley.|
Unfortunately, most of the kangaroos we've seen have been dead on the side of the road, and we have never seen koalas. To make sure Heather saw them alive and well, we went to Cleland Wildlife Park in the Adelaide Hills where kangaroos and emus roam freely.
|A joey with its mum|
|We were able to feed the roos, which was really quite a thrill|
|A hop, skip and a jump!|
|Apparently emus like kangaroos food|
|The kookaburras cackled loudly from the trees|
|Koalas are pretty mellow and don't like sudden movement or loud noises. Could be because they are a little high from chewing on eucalyptus leaves.|
|The coastline around Robe is stunning|
|The obelisk at Robe|
|Sunset at Beachport -- great view from Craig and Wendy's|
|Picture perfect morning walking the beach at Beachport!|
|Blue Lake at Mount Gambier changes color with the seasons. It is at its peak of "blue-ness" now.|
|Kym choosing one of Cape Jaffa's fabulous wines from his wine cellar|
|Great friends, wine, and food --- the makings of a special afternoon|
|Lime trees at the retreat's entrance|
|The house surrounded by beautiful grounds and grape vines|
To those who thought we merely drank wine in different venues throughout Heather's visit...well...you would be right to a certain extent, but I did take her to Central Market, the South Australian Museum, and to the Adelaide Gaol.
|LOVE this sign. I think a "reasonable amount of time" would be about...one minute.|
|One of the many random signs around the Festival area. The asylum issue is as complex as is it controversial.|
We went to the Festival along with Carolyn, John, and their friend from the UK to see the show, Limbo. It was held in a circus-like tent, and we had a raised booth that gave us a perfect view of the circular stage. Limbo just finished a 5 month run in London, and was one of the best live shows we had seen. It was a fabulous mix of vaudeville, Cirque de Soleil, illusions, circus in an action packed show.
|The main festival area just a block away from us|
|A little something for everyone|
|Fun atmosphere with prime people watching|
Before we knew it, Heather's two weeks in Adelaide came to a close. Our last night was spent at Sosta's, one of our favorite restaurants.
Heather and I flew to Sydney so I could give her a whirlwind tour of this beautiful city. We hit the ground running, and grabbed the ferry to Watson's Bay where we had lunch at the famous Doyle's Wharf restaurant which opened in 1885.
|View of the Harbor Bridge and city from Watson's Bay|
|We walked to the other side of the bay to see the rugged coastline|
|The Sydney Opera House seen from the water|
|Darling Harbor has great shops and restaurants|
|St. Mary's Cathedral|
|The sign is at the entrance of King's Cross --- a suburb of the city that has a vibrant red light district.|
|Some Darwin award winning contenders were jumping into the waves that were crashing against the rocks|
After a full day, we went to a seafood restaurant at Darling Harbor and feasted on prawns and Moreton Bay Bugs.
|Moreton Bay Bugs taste very much like lobster. Fabulous!!!!|
|A final glass of wine before we each hopped on planes going in different directions.|
"Some people go to priests; others to poetry; I to my friends."