Friday, 12 June 2015

Ghan Holiday Day 9-11 - Adelaide

We arrived in Adelaide and wandered down Rundle street in the afternoon, and ending up eating a noodle place which was quite decent.

I also wonder, why there are coins embedded in the footpath...

Adelaide zoo sounded like a fun family place to visit and we walked there - phew, it seemed likea longer walk then we thought! There was bird life aplenty, as we saw Hyacinth macaws, Orange Bellied Parakeets and the pandas. Adelaide zoo is nice, but it seems like the population of the animals is aging.

That's not a tawny Frogmouth!

THIS is a tawny Frogmouth!
I also got to  meet up with my World of Warcraft friends.  Crooked I met up with for dinner at Adelaide Central Market, which was full of cool gourmet food things.  There was a food hall which was a rather ordinary one, but it was cheap and at least had somewhere we could sit down and chat.

Jazz and Nath I caught up with the next day and ate at Grill'd.  There are few burger places in Adelaide, and this one is a chain that is also in many other places, including Sydney.

We also visited the Botanical gardens.  Adelaide is lovely how they have gardens and parks surrounding the city.

A trip to Haighs was in order too and we got to eat lots of chocolate on the tour and see how labour intensive it was to make chocolate.  I couldn't help myself, I spent lots of money on chocolate when we visitedthere.

Glenelg was at the end of a tramline and the kids had fun playing at the beach and we took a ferris wheel ride to get a higher view of the beach.  We ate dinner at a Teppanyaki restaurant there, and my son was so amazed at watching the food being cooked he ate every single scrap that was given to him. Very impressive!

We had a bit of time in the morning of our last day so we decided to go to the Japanese Gardens, which was towards the south-east end of the city parklands.

Having walked that direction previously we knew that it wasn't overly strenuous.  Getting INTO the gardens proved to be a bit of a challenge as we approached it from the wrong direction, but once inside, it was almost like a secret garden.

Outside the garden there were a lot of parrots in a large tree outside and at first we thought they were rainbow lorikeets but on closer inspection they were musk lorikeets!  Good spotting by hubby!

The Japanese gardens had a pond with koi and turtles in it and that kept the kids entertained as we walked around it.  There was also a Zen garden as well, and the entire place was rather tranquil and beautiful - a lovely place to read a book.

Then it was back to Sydney.  It was a very memorable trip and the kids talked about it constantly for the next week.

Ghan Holiday Day 7-8 - The Ghan

After we checked out of our hotel we went to the Olive Pink Botanic Garden and some more cool birdlife and even some kangaroos.

A Western Bowerbird with the distinctive purple tuft on the back of his head was on the road and his bower was not far away.

Australian Ringneck
Kangaroo and joey
Black Kite
Then it was time to make our way to the legendary Ghan!

The Ghan we were riding was 758m long with 32 carriages.  The kids and I walked from one end to the other taking pictures of the train, but none could capture the sheer length of the beast.

We stayed in Platinum rooms which were the largest rooms and had a double bed.  It was like a tiny little hotel room and the service we had was excellent.

At night they even folded down the sheets for us and the kids each got a Ghan teddy as a free gift!

The meals were good on the train - not excellent, but the portions seemed right for breakfast and lunch.  The dinner portions were way too big, I thought.  We ordered one of each thing and the kids ate the adults meals where they could.  There are no children specific meals if your kids are fussy eaters in the platinum dining car.




At night we hopped off the train for a bonfire and some stargazing. We had to wake the kids for that one but they took it all in stride.  Not a bad stopoff really - but in the future it would be better if we could have some light alcohol outside to enjoy by the fire.  Licensing issues, I heard.

We got into Adelaide after almost 24 hours on the train.  The trip was an experience, a rather expensive one but I'm glad we had done it.  The sleep on the train wasn't a great one if you're a light sleeper because of the rocking the train cha-chunk noises, but if that doesn't bother you then it's a rather pleasant trip.  Bring a book to read though or some board/card games.  No phone or internet reception on the train!