School Holidays are here again and another camping trip has been organised. This time we will be giving Miranda and Siannah a taste of touring. Instead of going one place and staying there till we go home, we will be staying at two different places during our time away. This would be more than enough moving around while traveling with a four month old.
Obviously Alec and I are old hats at touring. However Miranda and Siannah haven’t done much of this sort of traveling. With the possibility of doing some much larger trips in the future, this will give us a chance to figure out what works and what doesn’t.
We will be spending half our time in the bush and the other half at the beach. A good mixture.
Cania Gorge will be the bush part of our trip. Located 500km north/west of Brisbane, in the North Burnett region. It is a pretty little spot with some bush walks and a lovely relaxing caravan park to stay at.
Our second stop will be the beach side town of Woodgate. It located between the towns Harvey Bar and Bundaburg. Woodgate will be a new experience for both of us as neither of us have been there.
We left on the first Monday of the school holidays, a day behind schedule. Our original plan was to split the drive to Cania Gorge in two, stopping overnight along the way. That’s if we got all the packing done. But the packing didn’t get done so we decided to leave on the Monday.
Leaving on the Monday was a good call. We were far more relaxed and organised than if we had pushed ahead with leaving on Sunday. We got away at a good time and headed north. We followed the Bruce Highway to Gympie then turned west and traveled inland and further north along the Burnett Highway.
We stopped regularly, timing them with Hayden’s feeds and of course wee and meal breaks for the older passengers. Hayden was a champ and slept most the way, the other two children only fought and got cranky about half the time. Not a bad effort.
We got to camp a little later then expected but still plenty of time to set up before night fell.
The following day we didn’t do much at all. It had been a big day of traveling to get to Cania Gorge and everyone needed to settle in and have a easy day.
The kids had fun riding there bikes around the park and making new friends. In the afternoon we went to the daily bird feeding done by the caravan park. I think we did this every day that we were at Cania Gorge.
On the second day at Cania Gorge we decided to do a small bush walk. The two older kids needed a little bit of motivation at first but were mostly fine once going. Hayden got the easy way out. Miranda carrying her in the baby back pack.
After our walk we headed into town to pick up some groceries and grab some lunch. Monto is your typical small county town. The main street is home to a small grocery shop, the usual variety of shops that services the locals and of course the standard county pub. Two in Monto case. One either end of the main street.
On our third day away we went for a drive further into the Cania Gorge National Park. We admiring the rocky cliffs that make up the gorge. At the end of the gorge is Cania Dam.
I also managed to fit in a bike ride.
Our last day at Cania Gorge was spent at camp. Resting and getting organised for the following day of packing up camp, traveling and then making camp again. This will be a test for the family.
Miranda and I both got up early on our leaving day, well earlier than we had been. We started the morning choirs of sorting breakfast and getting everyone dressed. Then the pack up began. We had done a small amount the night before but the majority of it had to be done in the morning.
By ten o’clock we were driving out of Cania Gorge retreat and heading to our next destination.
We back tracking a little down the Burnett highway then turned left and headed east toward the coast. The going was a little slow as we negotiated some hilly areas. The Patrol with the camper attached struggles a bit on the hills. We stopped at a little town called Mount Perry and spoiled ourselves by having lunch at the Mt Perry Federal Inn. If you are in the area it’s worth a visit.
We arrived a couple of hours later at Woodgate to a very busy caravan park full of families making the most of the school break. We checked in and then squeezed the camper into our spot between the other camper’s and caravans. It was a bit of a shock after the wide open camping we had at Cania Gorge.
We used our first day at Woodgate to get to know our surroundings and of course having some beach fun. Which happens to be across the road from the caravan park.
After our day of relaxing it was determined we need to do some grocery shopping. The local convenience store at Woodgate just wasn’t going to cut the mustard when feeding a family of five. The nearest major town was Bundaberg a forty minute drive north of Woodgate
It wasn’t all chores while in Bundaberg. While in town we figure we couldn’t bypass a visit to the famous Bundaberg rum factory. The Factory run regular tours.
The tour started at the museum then onto the molasses storage shed which is supplied from the sugar mill next door. We were then shown the process of fermentation and last but not least we got to taste the finish product at the bar. I am more of a scotch drinker but I found the tour interesting and the tasting of some very special rums wasn’t to bad either.
The weather had turned for the worse on our third day a Woodgate. Windy and overcast with the occasional spot of rain. However we couldn’t complain as we had seen how dry it was during our travels and any rain was sure welcomed by everyone. So we made the best of the weather. Knocking out some chores in the morning while the kids had fun riding around the caravan park.
In the afternoon we thought we would check out some beach driving that we had been told about. We set off to the southern end of Woodgate beach and found the vehicle entry point. With the tide out and plenty of hard packed sand to drive on, we toke the risk of not letting the tires down and careful drove onto the beach.
It was smooth running as we drove down the beach till we reached the inlet to the Isis river. At this point the beach swung inland as it following the river. A little further along the river our progress was blocked by lack of beach. We turned around and found a spot on the main beach to get out and have a play. Making sure you didn’t get blown away by the strong winds.
After a short and but windy beach play we went for a explore around the Woodgate area and worked out a plan for the next day.
We woke up on our forth day at Woodgate to much better weather for holidays than the previous day. Weather perfect for the plan devised the day before. Another day chilling on the beach.
On our explore the day before we found a great little swimming area at Therodalite Creek, located at the northern end of Woodgate beach.
We spent a good part of the day swimming, making sand castles, playing ball games and just chilling.
Our fifth and last day at Woodgate we decided to have one last beach trip. We spent the morning at Woodgate beach right across the road from the caravan park. The weather was perfect, the water temp was perfect and the beach perfect. Geez it’s going to be hard to go home.
We spent the rest of the day procrastination, finding better things to do than start packing for the trip home the next day. Bike riding, playing in the park and having one last ice cream by the beach was much more fun.
For dinner we treated ourselves at the local Hotel.
Our last day of our holidays was spent packing up camp and driving home. The four hour trip straight down the Bruce highway gave us a chance to look back at our trip away. While Cania Gorge was loverly we were totally blown away by Woodgate. We will definitely be back.
As a family we survived the camper trailer for two weeks. We came away with a better understanding on what we need to improve for future larger trips. Maybe something a little more adventures next time.