Travelling Australia
Wayne & Pam BENTLEY

Sunday 1st October 2006 to Tuesday October 3rd 2006

Sunday 1st October 2006

The bay in which Lieutenant James Cook landed on 24th May 1770 - Now in the town of 1770
Swimming bay in the town of 1770

With intentions of visiting the town of 1770 and taking the long way to get there we were up and on our way by about 8:15a.m. this morning. Although our destination was South of Tannum Sands, we headed North into Gladstone and found our way onto the road that took us West over the Bruce Highway and through the town of Calliope, before we turned South for the first time.

As we made our way South we passed through Barmundoo, Nagoorin, Ubobo and a place called Littlemore... We think it must have been named Littlemore because there is 'little more' there now than there was before Lieutenant James Cook landed at 1770 in the year 1770. From here we continued down the road through Builyan then stopped in Manypeaks. We then retraced our steps back almost to Littlemore where we tuned East and made our way along a mainly dirt road up into the ranges and down the other side.

As we neared the bottom of the ranges we came around a corner and found an older model Nissan Patrol rolled over onto it's side and there was a woman, two girls and a man beside the vehicle, fortunately we quickly established that no one had been hurt but the vehicle had rolled over with the woman driving and the girls and a boy in it. The male wasn't in the vehicle at the time, although he had been traveling with then just prior to the accident. Once we had established the occupants were ok, ( the boy had set off walking to find help somewhere ) we pulled out our snatch strap, hooked up to the vehicle and pulled it back onto it's wheels. It then started very easily and was moved off the edge of the road where a front tire had to be changed. At this time we drove down the road further until we located the boy walking and brought him back to the vehicle. On our arrival back to the scene of the rolled over Nissan, the local Police Officer had arrived and was in control of everything so we were no longer needed. As we were the first on the scene, we are not sure if the police officer was called or just came across the accident, but it was a good break for us and we then said goodbye and good luck to them all and went on our way.

We continued down the road until we came to the Bruce highway where we only joined it for a few hundred metres before turning East again at Miriam Vale. It was about another fifty or so kilometres before we came to Agnes Water which is really the commercial town near 1770, then it was about another 5 kilometres North to the town of 1770.

We drove around Cook Drive in 1770 and found our way past a couple of beaches on the estuary or inlet near the point where Lieutenant (later to be Captain) James Cook anchored in the lee of the point of land on which the town of 1770 in now located. We stopped long enough to take a few photographs in the area before returning to Agnes Water where we stopped at the visitors Centre so 'One of Us' could find a fridge magnet with an association to the town of 1770 on it, then a paper was purchased at the local newsagent.

By this time it time was getting on so we decided to set off for Tannum Sands and the caravan and to do this we had to back track our journey out as far as Miriam Vale, then headed North on the Bruce Highway through Koorowatha, Dragonhau and Bororen (where we think the 'Other One' picked up a dose of food poisoning on our 2004 trip, ) before turning in toward Tannum Sands.

On arrival back in Tannum Sands we stopped to post a letter to daughter Jay, then made our way to an Ampol Service Station in Boyne Island where we topped up the Patrol with diesel as we had traveled three hundred and sixty kilometres during the day. We then returned to Tannum Sands Beach along the esplanade where we stopped for a look at the local beach and took a few photographs there to remind us of the area at some later time.

Once we arrived back at the caravan (around 2:10p.m. we enjoyed a light lunch then took it reasonably easy for the rest of the afternoon. Tomorrow we will hitch up the caravan again and make our way further South down the Queensland coast. maybe to Hervey Bay but that decision can be made whilst we are on the road tomorrow.

Vally view from the ranges near 'Littlemore'
Valley view from the ranges near 'Littlemore'

Cairn commemorating the visit of Lt Jame Cook - 1770
Cairn commemorating the visit of Lt James Cook

Monday 2nd October 2006

Another moving day today, where too we were not quite sure, but the first thing we had to do was get packed up and out on the road with the caravan in tow. As we did not know where our days destination would be we started out a little earlier than usual and were pulling out of the caravan park by about 8:06a.m. and heading out toward the Bruce Highway once more.

It was only about thirty kilometres to Bororen then about another twenty kilometres to Mirian Vale but that was the last town we passed through for around another 100 kilometres when we reached Gin Gin. Last time we passed this way we thought Gin Gin looked like a friendly little town and as it was the signs said it was picked as the 'Friendliest Town for 2004'. We stopped in the town for a short time to take a photograph or two of the war memorial and the main street, however 'One of Us' was kept out of the shops by the 'Other One' so we didn't end up experiencing that friendly approach of the people of Gin Gin.

Along the way we had talked about the last time we came this way and how we were impressed with our short visit to Bundaberg ('One of Us' loved her visit to the Bundy Bear!!) so on the spur of the moment (well, on the spur of 'One of Us') we decided to call in to Bundaberg again for a couple of days.

From Gin Gin we left the Bruce Highway and headed South East in toward Bundaberg, a further fifty one kilometres away. Before arriving in Bundaberg we passed through the small communities of Bullyard, South Kolan, Bingera and Sharon, arriving in Bundaberg and pulled into the Apollo Gardens Caravan Park by about 11:00a.m. It may be noted that the caravan park is in walking distance of the Bundaberg Rum Distillery, wonder who picked that park to stop in (She likes a Bundy and Coke she says!!!). The caravan park proved to be a good one with individual en suites for every powered site and not a long way from the city centre.(See our visit in 2004)

Once we had settled in and were somewhat organised, 'One of Us' suggested we go into one of the shopping centres and purchase something to put on the BBQ for dinner tonight. Yes... you guessed it, we went via the Information centre (to find out where the biggest shopping centre was) then after spending some time in the Hinkler Central Shopping Centre, we came out with two pieces of steak, a shopping trolley full of other 'Must have that's... three new tops from Susan Grae and a pair of pink Homy Ped sandals (No prizes for guessing who they were for) from Soul Pattinson Pharmacy. The 'Other One' did get something from the shopping spree though... A lighter wallet!!!!

We returned to the caravan park by about 3:20p.m. and called it a day, tomorrow we will look at a visit to either the Bundaberg Ginger Beer Barrel and/or the Bundaberg Rum Distillery and see if we can find Bundy the Bear. May stick to beer and wine for Happy hour tonight though.


War Memorial in the main street of Gin Gin
War Memorial in the main street of Gin Gin

The Gin Gin Hotel
The Gin Gin Hotel


Tuesday 3rd October 2006

We carried out our first task this morning with a lot of commitment and enthusiasm. That task was to have a bit of a sleep in and not get too busy too early in the day. We did achieve our aim but eventually we had to call it a morning and we were both up by about 7:30am.

With the luxury of the en suite, the shower worked quite a lot longer than the one in the caravan and in the end we were just like Beauty and the Beast. (Let you work out which one was which!)

Around 9:30a.m we drove out of the caravan park and made our way about a kilometre out the Bargara Beach Road to the Bundaberg Barrel, the home of Bundaberg Ginger Beer and a range of other similar products. On entry into the 'Barrel' we paid our $5 entry fee to their 'True Brew Experience Tour' which is a self guided interactive display tour which follows the history of ginger beer, from Marco Polo to the drink so many people enjoy today. It has interactive touch screens to show what happens to the humble ginger root as it is mushed, crushed, brewed and fermented into the ginger beer we buy in a bottle. It also has a fifteen minute 3D hologram adventure called "Doug's Promised Land". All of this is presented in a fun way and ideal for the family and younger children.

Once through the 'tour', there is the opportunity to sample a small drop of all the products (all non alcoholic) ranging from Lemon or Apple Ade, including diet versions of the drinks, right through to the well known Bundaberg Ginger Beer. This is done in a way that children are able to stand up at the counter and taste the drinks along with their parents and is a great experience for them. There were quite a number of families there when we were, as it is school holidays in Queensland at the moment.

After the sampling process we purchased a fridge magnet and two 6 pack containers (at $7 each) and were able to fill them up with our choice of the products we had just tasted. 'One of Us' chose Peachee, Lemon and Apple to fill her pack and the 'Other One attempted to get a range of samples, however as the woman behind the counter stated that each one went well with some form of alcohol or other, maybe the chances of getting the samples home may be very slim.

After leaving the Bundaberg Barrel 'One of Us' expressed an interest in visiting another shopping centre for another dose of therapy and the 'Other One' knows what the word 'interest' means, so off we went out to Sugarland Shopping Town (a large shopping centre) where we found parking and visited a number of shops within the walls of that centre.

Whilst there 'One of Us' became a little distressed because she couldn't find anything to buy so the 'Other One' escorted her back to the Patrol and quickly located a Hungry Jacks fast food store to provide a quick induction of food to offset this attack of the blues... It appeared to work but total rest was prescribed for the next couple of hours so we made our way back to the caravan for the rest of the afternoon that remained until we had to head off to the Bundaberg Rum Distillery for a tour we had booked that commenced at 3:p.m.

Unfortunately no cameras, or anything metal or with a battery, not even coins are permitted to be taken on the tour of the distillery so there could not be any photographic evidence that we have been on the Bundaberg Rum Distillery tour, until of course 'One of Us' had the opportunity to sample a few drops of the liquid, then the 'Other One' was be able to capture the results on a digital image.

The tour was the same as we went on last time we came through Bundaberg in 2004, but it was just as interesting the second time around. Unfortunately they made rules that stated there was no swimming in the vats but rum bottles could be worshipped (and purchased at the end of the tour). The sugar cane comes in to the distillery from surrounding farms and it is processed and the resulting molasses is stored in holding tanks at the distillery. The process continues fairly quickly for a start until the rum liquid reaches 78 percent proof alcohol, then it is stored in oak vats for a period of three years before finishing and bottling. The tour followed the process through the distillery for about 45 minutes, then ended up in a bar where each of the people on the tour were provided with two drinks of their choice as a sample of the end products.

'One of Us' was very quick to front the bar and started with a full strength Bundy and Cola, then went back for a Bundy liquor that contained all sorts of goodies such as chocolate, coffee and caramel. This is only available at the Bundaberg Distillery outlet and can not be purchased anywhere else in the world, but as we still have a bottle from our last trip (and the fact it costs $50 per bottle, we took pity on others and did not buy any this time.

It was then time to get 'One of Us' out of the bar as she was hanging all over the Bundy Bear, but she was disappointed that there were no little Bundy Bears available in the gift shop for her to add to her collection. The 'Other One' was relieved about that as there is no room for him on the bed in the caravan as it is, without adding more 'friends' to the collection that take most of the bed. He managed to get her out of the bar by about 4:20p.m. and it was only a short drive back to the caravan where we called it a day.

Our plans for tonight include the Happy Hour prior to an evening of relaxation in preparation for a little more activity tomorow. Our plans for tomorrow include a drive out to Bargara Beach, but we also hope to remove some dust and grime from the exterior of the caravan and the Patrol if we can find time to do that.

The Ginger Beer Barrel in Bundaberg
The Bundaberg Barrel (Ginger Beer)

Hologram played out in the barrel
Hologram played out in 'The Barrel'

Chidren at play in 'The Barrel'
'Children' at play in 'The Barrel'

Pammy hanging over Bundy Bear
Pammy hanging over Bundy Bear after the drinks

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