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A Tribute to MACKS the Best Dog I’ve ever known

If you’ve ever owned a dog and grown to love it then you’ll understand the devastation we are feeling of losing MACKS the best dog ever.

We just made the decision that it was time to let our 15 and a half year old, incredibly beautiful Golden Retriever, be relieved from the challenges and difficulty of her arthritis and uselessness of her back legs.

A Tribute to MACKS the best dog for 15 1/2 years

Our sons were just 7 and 9 when MACKS joined our family in January 2002. To put that in perspective, in January 2002:

  • Ansett was still flying in Australia
  • Kelly Clarkson won the first series of American Idol and
  • Sanyo released the first ever mobile phone with a camera built in.

MACKS has been with us a long time and has always been the best dog.

MACKS the Best Dog
MACKS as a puppy

Man’s Best Friend

There hasn’t been much time in my life that I can remember not having a 4 legged mate. Rusty was my first dog growing up and once Adele and I married I brought Snowy home from the markets unbeknown to Adele.

I remember arriving back with our van loaded with the furniture I used to make and sell back in those days. It was fully loaded and I asked Adele to open the sliding door and help unload. As she pulled out a box there was this little white ball of fluff. Adele wasn’t fussed on dogs but from that day on she was sold.

Snowy lasted until he was 9 and a half and died just a month after moving into our current home.

It took us a full 12 months before we got over losing Snowy and came to the conclusion it was time to find another “Man’s Best Friend”. We spent weeks searching, looking specifically at Golden Retrievers.

MACKS standing guard at the front gate
A very Young MACKS


Naming MACKS

MACKS came from a home at Narangba in Brisbane. I’ve always felt she found us, not we found her. There was an instant connection, we were in love the moment we saw her. She was only weeks old and it was hard having to wait until she was 8 weeks old to bring her home with us.

Her name is all our initials because we are hopeless with coming up with names but it turned out to be perfect. Whenever someone asked what is her name we would say “MACKS, but it’s spelt with all our initials”.

Matthew
Adele
Cameron
Kevin
Snowy, our previous dog.

MACKS running on the beach at Dunsborough
Running on the beach near Dunsborough WA. Only 1 foot on the sand.

Each time we would get to explain her name it gave us a sense of pride and positioned her as being a paramount part of our family.

Playing fetch with MACKS

With 2 young boys the yard always had a tennis ball about and MACKS liked to chew them to bits. She also learnt to chase the ball and bring it back, I’d throw a ball and this was how it went.

MACKS at Sue and Noel's in Townsville

First throw, bounds away running after the ball and brings it back
Second throw, runs to the ball, picks it up, brings it back
Third throw, jogs to the ball, picks it up, walks halfway back, gets distracted by the smell of a flower or a passing butterfly, stops for a moment and then brings the ball back.

Fourth throw, jogs to the ball, looks at it, sniffs around, picks up the ball, slowly walks about some more. I have to call her and encourage her, where’s the ball MACKS, good girl, bring the ball. Slowly she’d bring back the ball.
Fifth throw, wanders off towards the ball, does a pee in the corner, has a wander around, picks up the ball, drops it again, looks around some more, picks up the ball, sits down and begins to chew it. I go over and grab the ball.

Sixth throw, she would look at me and look at the ball, look back at me as if to say, You keep throwing it so you go get it……..
And that was that.
Time for me to pour a drink.

MACKS loved the water
Flooded waters in the park at home always provided MACKS a lot of fun

MACKS was the best dog and so easy to train

I had 2 rules with MACKS. No jumping, no licking.

Given I had a Real Estate career at the time I mostly wore black pants and her white hair would cling to my trousers. Also her sometimes muddy paws would make a mess of my clothes, so jumping up wasn’t allowed.

The other one was licking, I really don’t like dogs that lick. Have you seen what your dog licks with their tongue? So that thing wasn’t coming anywhere near me.

MACKS would fetch a stick from the water all day long!
She just loved chasing sticks in the water

Now Golden Retrievers are known for being a little dopey, it’s part of their charm, but they are so easy to train. Want to train a Golden Retriever, just use food.
Confirmation of a good act, just provide a biscuit.
A negative act is a firm No and no rewards.
Pretty bloody easy.
MACKS was no different, because she was so easy to train as well.

Adele and MACKS on her last time at the beach at Lee Point in Darwin
Adele and MACKS on her last time at the beach at Lee Point in Darwin

Adele’s special bond with MACKS

While I was MACKS master and she knew that, it was always clear Adele and her had a special bond. It’s a girl thing. MACKS was the best dog. She was always a very gentle dog, kind, affectionate and eager to please.

Her beautiful nature gelled perfectly with Adele and when she was young, if she saw Adele and I hugging she would bark and glare with an anxious look of concern.

She was definitely in protection mode. She may have known her place in the pecking order but I certainly knew mine too.

Our home in Brisbane backs onto a park and when we lost our last dog Snowy due to heartworm we chose to bury him in the backyard at the gate to the park to symbolise his role in protecting the property.

So it was always intended that MACKS would be buried on the opposite side of the gate entrance.

Like all Golden Retrievers, MACKS loved the beach
Like all Golden Retrievers, MACKS loved the beach

MACKS was the best dog to travel with!

We didn’t expect MACKS would last this long. Golden Retrievers are prone to cancer and often lose that battle somewhere between 11-13 years of age. Fortunately when MACKS got cancer we caught it in time and it was successfully cut out.

Still she seemed to be slowing down in the last year or two at home so when we were asked when are you leaving on your Trip around Australia our answer was “after MACKS is gone”.

As months passed by and MACKS was still with us we quickly had to come up with Plan B. If we took her with us though, she wouldn’t get to be buried at home.

As I thought about it I figured what better way for her to go than by spending whatever time she had left in close proximity to us and she could have endless swims at the beach. It was obvious she had to come with us, I knew she was going to love it.

MACKS was the best dog to travel with, she loved being around us 24/7 and as a result she hardly ever barked!

MACKS at Rainbow Beach, Qld
She spotted these sticks in the water at Rainbow Beach, Qld

MACKS loved the Beach!

Our first stop was Rainbow Beach and wow, she instinctively knew what she wanted. She had never been to a surf beach ever.

We had taken her to creeks and rivers a few times but never to surf and when she saw the sand and the ocean she began dragging me with so much excitement.

MACKS still dragging her legs through the water right til the end

Her absolute love, passion and enthusiasm for the beach never waned, right up until her last Saturday, when she dragged her failing hind legs across the sand until she made it to the water.

It was sad to watch and it was then that I knew her time had come. It was time for me to face the agony of letting go of the most beautiful, courageous, loving animal I’d had the privilege to meet.

MACKS loved people

MACKS was the best dog and loved by all!

Everyone has always loved MACKS. She has always been so popular.

Each time she went to the dog sitters, our greatest concern was they might not give her back. On numerous occasions we were asked, can I keep her?

In Agnes Water, we had to cancel a dog sitter as our neighbor at the Caravan Park insisted they had to look after her for the day.

The couple took her to the beach and fed her steak while we went on the Lady Musgrave Island tour.

Book your Lady Musgrave Island tour here>

MACKS curled up on the lounge during a storm
On the lounge during a storm

Her fear of loud noises

MACKS didn’t like loud noises. Storms and fireworks would make her frantic. She knew she wasn’t allowed on the lounge on our back deck but that’s where we’d find her if there was thunder about.

One New Years Eve we were out and received a very late night call to say our dog was out and had been found by someone.

She had burst her way out and gone to visit neighbours down the street where she felt safe with people around. Again, they loved her.

There’s just so many stories of people’s affection of MACKS to tell.

At Port Lincoln Vet with Geriatric Vestibular Disease
At Port Lincoln Vet with Geriatric Vestibular Disease

MACKS battled through Geriatric Vestibular Disease

The dose she had of Geriatric Vestibular Disease just before Christmas last year really aged her. She no longer looked like a young puppy after that. It was a harrowing time and we are quite amazed she has lasted a further 6 months.

I woke up in the morning and got out of bed. As MACKS would always do, she figured that meant it was time for her to be fed.

She tried to get to her feet and immediately crashed to the floor with a thud. Further attempts she made to stand up were in vain, she couldn’t move and within a minute she knew she was in trouble.

She trembled in fear, a look of terror was in her eyes. I held her head as her eyes looked at me so scared. None of us knew what was happening, I just tried to keep her calm.

Recovering at caravan park in Port Lincoln
Recovering at caravan park in Port Lincoln

A frantic 5 hour drive to the Vet

We were in Ceduna in South Australia and there were no vets in town. After googling, we found the closest vet was an hour away in Streaky Bay. We quickly packed everything and took off, Adele in the back with MACKS all the way.

I looked in the mirror a few times to see the tears streaming down Adele’s face. Adele thought she’d had a stroke.

We arrived in Streaky Bay and drove straight to the Vet, we were so relieved MACKS was still alive. To our horror we found a note on the door, the clinic was only open a few days a month, we would need to drive another 4 hours to Port Lincoln.

We filled with fuel and asked if there was another Vet closer but they told us that’s where they have to go too.

What a nightmare.

MACKS enjoying the beach at Moonta SA
MACKS the best dog ever – enjoying the beach at Moonta SA

The Port Lincoln Vet Clinic were excellent!

For 4 more hours we drove all the way to Port Lincoln where we came across what must be the best Vet Clinic in Australia. They were amazing. Immediately they diagnosed her with Geriatric Vestibular Disease and put her on a drip.

For the next 6 days she was cared for by the Vet staff and force fed water and food. We booked into the Port Lincoln Tourist Park and visited MACKS as much as we could.

After 6 days she wasn’t responding but clearly we could tell she liked our visits. It was decided she might respond to being with us and back in familiar surroundings.

The Vet said it was the most severe case they had ever seen. We took her back on the Monday and we would attempt to force feed her but she just fought back. She hated the recovery food!!

MACKS in the flooded creek with our son Cameron
MACKS in the flooded creek with our son Cameron

Getting MACKS to eat and drink again

On the Wednesday we went back to the Vet to let them know we hadn’t had any luck. MACKS still wasn’t eating or able to move.

Therefore, it was decided that if she hadn’t begun to eat and drink by Friday, we would need to “consider her options”. We all knew what that meant.

One suggestion they provided was to sweeten her water with a little cordial and it was the first thing we did when we got back. My next thought was instead of providing her nice food like chicken and meat, go for what she knew as a treat.

I was having some biscuits and dip and knew how much she loves them so I offered her a Chicken Crimpy biscuit.

It was a winner!!

Saved by a Chicken Crimpy!!

Saved by a Chicken Crimpy!!

Deadline thwarted

She then drank some cordial and that night enjoyed some of our roast dinner. We were delirious with excitement.

In the morning it was our scrambled bacon and eggs which got shared. She was back on the road to recovery and the Friday deadline was thwarted.

Even though she was so sick, being in the water at Moonta made her so happy
Even though she was so sick, being in the water at Moonta made her so happy

A slow recovery for MACKS

It took weeks to recover. We left Port Lincoln to Moonta and the next time we took her for a swim she fell over and ended up upside down under the water.

I quickly grabbed her. It happened 2 more times but we knew each time to be close by and we were right beside her.

Slowly she got her balance back but ultimately it had taken a big toll. Life for MACKS just got that little tougher with each day from that moment on.

MACKS last dinner
We all ate on the floor together for her last dinner

Our special last 24hrs with MACKS

Her last 24 hours we tried to make as special as possible. We cooked for 4 that night, she ate what we ate and then we sat on the floor and ate dinner with her.

We ended up sharing parts of our meals with her as well.

She had a feast.

Bathed and drying off in the sun
Bathed and drying in the sun

We gave her a bath the next morning and got her spotlessly clean. Then we sat together in the sun, letting her dry out. MACKS was no fan of the bright sunlight so I put my sunglasses on her.

Then we decided she would wear my Indefinite Leave cap, to symbolise she would always be with us on our adventures no matter what.

Ice creams all round including one for MACKS
Ice creams all round

An Ice cream Treat for MACKS the Best Dog Ever!

Next it was a trip to Maccas. Debbie has been following us since the beginning of our trip and had fallen in love with MACKS as she had an identical Golden Retriever herself.

A photo of us at an ice cream shop in Robe brought a comment from Debbie, did we buy MACKS one too?

We had never thought of her having an ice cream, so her last morning was a trip to Maccas for an ice cream cone.

She wasn’t sure of it at first, she sniffed it but I think she thought she’d get in trouble if she took it. I kept offering it to her and then when I said, it’s ok, have it MACKS, she took a lick and she loved it.

She licked it down to the cone and then I put it on the ground and she swallowed it. She was so excited.

Making memories with MACKS before her farewell

Photos with MACKS the Best Dog to treasure forever

It was almost time to make the Vet appointment but Adele had noticed a park with a lake and fountain close by and she decided she wanted some last photos there. At first MACKS trembled from the sound of the fountain as the water propelled into the air.

MACKS was the best dog, she was so gentle natured and scared easily. We took lots of photos and gave her lots of hugs and kisses. She was the brightest we had seen her in awhile. All these treats and being near water gave her zest once again but her legs were struggling as bad as ever.

We had to carry her back to the Motorhome.

Final moments with MACKS
Kev's final hugs with MACKS
Nightcliff Jetty - Reflecting after we farewelled MACKS
For the rest of the afternoon we sat at Nightcliff Jetty in Darwin and let the tears flow.

I’ve never loved an animal this much. She really was one of a kind. MACKS was the best dog we’ve ever known!!

We will always miss you MACKS and we will always remember you.

Love always,
Matthew
Adele
Cameron
Kevin
Snowy

From all of us at
Indefinite Leave

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Photography and Socials

Our camera equipment we use for all our photos and videos are:

Samsung Note 10 Plus Phone – http://ebay.us/9vMXEH – Most of our photos are simply from our phones. The Samsung phone cameras are pretty insane. Our phones have 512gb storage in ours but the 256gb in this one is heaps. We have sourced this one which is approx $500 less than we paid for ours.

Canon 800d – https://ebay.to/2XQYnsk – the latest DSLR Canon 24mp camera, buy here to save.

Lenses

Canon 50mm lens – https://ebay.to/3nx5pyG  This is the lens I use the least, ideal for still, close up shots.
Canon 24-105mm lenshttps://ebay.us/br9MeO This is my all round, everyday use, zoom lens. Amazing quality, great price.
Canon 70-300mm lens – https://ebay.to/33xYeht – I use this one a lot for long range shots.
Sigma 10-20mm lenshttp://ebay.us/zWvfuI  – My wide angle lens for all my inside photos & video plus lots more, love this lens.

Our Go Pro 9 Hero Black – https://ebay.us/6CQOVC  –  is an awesome piece of equipment. I use this for all underwater, action video and some general use. Buy here brand new and great value.

Mavic Pro Platinum Drone – https://ebay.to/2ARPxTo  This is an absolute ripper of a drone. The Fly More Combo will provide you with everything you will need. I use this for all my aerial footage and this price is well below other retail stores.

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18 Comments

18 Comments

  1. Peter

    June 22, 2017 at 9:35 pm

    This is just a beautiful story and shows how much Macks impacted your lives in such a positive way and how much you loved her. Got to go now and give my Mia a big hug. Thank you for sharing.😢😢😢

  2. Lianne

    June 23, 2017 at 5:58 pm

    Thank you for sharing such a wonderful and heart breaking story. I’m so sorry for your loss. Sending love and strength from the hearts of our family to yours.

    • Indefinite Leave

      June 23, 2017 at 11:01 pm

      Thank you so much Lianne. We appreciate your kind words. Kev & Adele

  3. Maureen Bieder

    June 23, 2017 at 10:54 pm

    I have tears in my eyes reading this beautiful story of Macks. There is no love like the love of your dog. I am not looking forward to losing any of my three poodles. They are my family but are now 12, 13 1/2, 14 1/2.
    Thanks for sharing your story!

    • Indefinite Leave

      June 23, 2017 at 11:02 pm

      Thank you Maureen. Wow they’ve had a great life but hopefully have a little longer to go yet 🙂

  4. Emma

    June 24, 2017 at 10:51 am

    awww Macks …. I’m going to miss you and your adventures xxxx thanks for sharing her with us Adele, Kevin, Matt and Cameron

    • Indefinite Leave

      June 24, 2017 at 10:21 pm

      Thank you Emma. Yes it’s just so sad. We are missing her like crazy. Safe travels Kev & Adele

  5. Brenda & Peter

    June 25, 2017 at 10:17 pm

    Oh dear Kevin, That was just beautiful. Dear dear Macks, she was a beautiful dog such a lovely nature. You will be left with so many happy memories of your time with her. Love to you & Adele & Matthew. ♥♥♥ From Brenda & Peter I feel so privileged to have met her. Dogs are one of the best of Gods creatures. They are so very loyal & ask nothing in return.

    • Indefinite Leave

      June 29, 2017 at 8:38 am

      Thank you so much Brenda & Peter. It’s been 3 weeks now and missing her like crazy. Thanks again, Kev & Adele.

  6. Jenny Watters

    July 8, 2017 at 7:14 pm

    So sorry for your loss, what a wonderful dog she was.

    • Indefinite Leave

      July 14, 2017 at 6:19 pm

      Thank you Jenny. We really miss her a lot, she was such a great dog and really loved by us all.

  7. Andrew

    January 18, 2018 at 2:01 pm

    We are lucky to have these beautiful animals be part of our life. I too have had to let go my retriever who suffered similar weakness in the back end. I now have a 12.5 yr old and a 2.5yr old. Awesome dogs. Will you get another?

    • Indefinite Leave

      January 24, 2018 at 12:07 pm

      Hi Andrew, sorry I’ve taken so long to reply. Yes we are. Goldens are just the best dogs. No, we want to spend a lot of time travelling now, both here and overseas and it’s much easier without a pet. 🙂

  8. Roxanne

    November 5, 2018 at 2:08 pm

    Awwww what a special story of unconditional love! I have no doubt that she will always have a very special place in your hearts and you truly gave her a beautiful life…✨

  9. Maree

    November 12, 2018 at 11:25 am

    I just read your Facebook post about tick medication which brought me here. What a lovely tribute to your gorgeous Macks. I am onto my 4th goldie now – have always had 2 at a time to give me some protection when one leaves me. It helps. Your story of Macks reminds me of my Zoe, who has been gone just over 2 years. She was diagnosed with a brain tumour at age 13, given only a few months but we actually got over 2 more years with her. She too was a beautiful, gentle girl, terrified of storms, but a big fan of balls & especially the water. She would have loved a trip like your Macks had. We hope to one day take Harriett & Ruby travelling with us. That bond you describe with Macks & the one I have had with my goldies is one of the most special things in life. Keep enjoying your travels xx

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Adventurers Diary

Rollingstone Camping, Free Camp with all the Facilities

The Rollingstone Camping Ground named Vincent “Bushy” Parker Park after a local war hero, Flight Lieutenant Vincent “Bushy” Parker, is a great place to stay just north of Townsville in Queensland.

For a Free Camp, the Rollingstone Camping area has a lot on offer, loads of facilities with easy access and plenty of space to park.

It’s simple to find however some people do report that google sends them directions which takes you under a low bridge.

Read on and we will tell you how to get there safely.

Rollingstone Camping Ground Facilities

While the nearby Rollingstone Beach Front Resort offers all the amazing bells and whistles for an overnight stay the Rollingstone Camping area is a basic Free camp but very good.

There are a number of potable water taps available providing drinking water to use.

A toilet block is onsite and is regularly maintained and kept clean by Townsville Council. There is also a dump point at the Rollingstone Camping Grounds.

Rollingstone Camping Ground Amenities and Dump Point
Rollingstone Camping Ground BBQs and Picnic Tables

Picnic tables are also available along with a BBQ and bins are here too. Please ensure all rubbish is placed in the bins and the area is kept clean and tidy.

We had 3 bars of 4G Telstra coverage while we were at the Camping area.

There are steps down to the nice, shallow creek alongside the Rollingstone Camping area which is perfect to wade into and cool off on a warm day.

Other Facilities near the Rollingstone Camping Area

Rollingstone has it’s own small general store offering fuel, food, a post office and a few other supplies.

Are Pets allowed at this Rollingstone Camping Area?

It is pet friendly and therefore dogs are permitted to stay at the Vincent ‘Bushy’ Parker Park Rollingstone Camping ground.

Shallow Creek running alongside the Rollingstone Camping Ground
Shallow Creek running alongside the Rollingstone Camping Ground

How to book your stay at this free Rollingstone Camping Ground

There is a Booking system for staying at any Townsville Camping Ground including Vincent “Bushy” Parker Park, Rollingstone Camping Ground.

On arrival, you can simply scan your smart phone on the sign at the entrance to the park or go to the website here – https://www.townsville.qld.gov.au/facilities-and-recreation/parks-beaches-and-community-venues/parks-trails-and-camping/camping-caravan-and-rv-sites

The Campground does get busy and therefore it’s best to arrive and book in early to secure a spot.

Cost to stay is Free. You can stay for 48 hours maximum within a 7 day period.

We didn’t stay but we went for a look on 12th of August 2021.

Rollingstone Camping Ground Entry

Vincent ‘Bushy’ Parker Park Rollingstone Camping Contact Details

Phone: 13 48 10
Address: Rollingstone Street, Rollingstone, Queensland
Website:

How to get to the Vincent ‘Bushy’ Parker Park Rollingstone Camping Ground

From the Bruce Highway take the Whalley Cres exit over the rail line and go right into Rollingstone Street.

Follow Rollingstone Street through the township to the entrance to the Vincent ‘Bushy’ Parker Park Rollingstone Camping Ground on your left.

Don’t take the first Rollingstone Street exit heading north as it takes you under a low 2.4m bridge.

What popular attractions are in and around the Rollingstone Camping Ground?

Big Crystal Creek

Big Crystal Creek otherwise known as Paradise Waterhole is just an hour north of Townsville and just under 21kms from the Rollingstone Camping Ground.

Located in the Paluma Range National Park this fabulous waterhole is an easy 2 minute walk from the Crystal Creek Campground and Recreational Day Use Area. The deep crystal clear pool is perfect for cooling off on a warm day.

Little Crystal Creek

Just  away is Little Crystal Creek which also has crystal clear waters making it another awesome spot for a refreshing swim on a hot day.

The water cascading under the heritage listed stone arch bridge built back in the 1930s makes a very picturesque setting.

Balgal Beach

Balgal Beach is just 4.7kms from the Vincent ‘Bushy’ Parker Park Rollingstone Camping Ground. Only a 5 minute drive and you go from bush to the beach.

The Balgal Beach is a patrolled beach with a swimming enclosure making it a safe place for swimming during the stinger season. Stinger season in North Queensland extends from November through to April/May.

Toomulla Beach

Another nearby beach is Toomulla Beach which is just 12kms south of the Rollingstone Camping Ground.

Toomulla Beach is a popular spot for fishing and bird watching. It also provides a free camping area with a maximum 48hr stay.

Toomulla Beach

Other great places to stay in the region:

Pin – Rollingstone Camping

Have you free camped at the Vincent ‘Bushy’ Parker Park Rollingstone Camping Ground? Tell us about your Rollingstone Camping experience!

Safe travels

Kev & Adele
Indefinite Leave

We are Adele & Kevin, an Aussie couple from Brisbane in Queensland Australia who have embraced our adventurous spirit and ventured out to explore the world around us. We had spent so much time overseas we decided it was time to see our own truly amazing country and we needed to take some time to see everything it has to offer.

Our Aim is to inspire others to travel and help design the greatest adventure they can experience.

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Photography and Socials

Our camera equipment we use for all our photos and videos are:

Samsung Note 10 Plus Phone – http://ebay.us/9vMXEH – Most of our photos are simply from our phones. The Samsung phone cameras are pretty insane. Our phones have 512gb storage in ours but the 256gb in this one is heaps.

Samsung s21 Phonehttps://ebay.us/QAdwva – this looks an insane camera within a phone. We have friends and our son who own one and it seems quite extraordinary with their camera quality. If you’re after a new phone this is what I’d be looking at.

Canon 800dhttps://ebay.us/Q0UV1z – the latest DSLR Canon 24mp camera, buy here to save.

Nikon Coolpix p1000https://ebay.to/37cORUV – We have the Nikon P900 and this is the new model. The zoom lens is unbelievable and so awesome when travelling and you want to capture photos from a distance.

Lenses

Canon 50mm lens – https://ebay.to/3nx5pyG  This is the lens I use the least, ideal for still, close up shots.
Canon 24-105mm lenshttps://ebay.us/br9MeO – This is my all round, everyday use, zoom lens. Amazing quality, great price.
Canon 70-300mm lens – https://ebay.to/33xYeht – I use this one a lot for long range shots.
Sigma 10-20mm lenshttp://ebay.us/zWvfuI  – My wide angle lens for all my inside photos & video plus lots more, love this lens.

Our Go Pro 9 Hero Black – https://ebay.us/6CQOVC  –  is an awesome piece of equipment. I use this for all underwater, action video and some general use. Buy here brand new and great value.

Mavic Pro Platinum Drone – https://ebay.to/2ARPxTo  This is an absolute ripper of a drone. The Fly More Combo will provide you with everything you will need. I use this for all my aerial footage and this price is well below other retail stores.

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Follow us, Subscribe, Like, Share, and Comment on our website and social media here:-

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Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com.au/indefiniteleave/

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Adventurers Diary

Is it Time to Go Home

What a magnificent country this is that we get to call home.

Wow….!!

We feel so absolutely blessed that we were privileged to have been born an Aussie. Why would you want to live anywhere else?

Touring our country by road gives an all new appreciation of it too.

The rugged landscapes, the dry red dirt outbacks, the exquisite world renowned beaches, the magnificent rainforests and stunning Gorges with waterfalls and swimming holes so pristine they could all be the Garden of Eden.

Then there are the people.

The great Australian characters you meet, the kind warm and generous people who you befriend at Happy hour or they offer their assistance just when it’s needed the most.

It’s impossible not to be proud of being an Aussie.

Taking to the road and putting the rubber to the bitumen for so many years now has given us time to re-assess life. We keep asking ourselves the question, are we ready to go home yet!!

We think of all the positive reasons to say thank you to our tenants but we are coming home.

Most of all, we miss our families so much when we are away and of course our friends who we miss very much too.

Kev could possibly be playing rep cricket given over 50’s is now a thing since we left and his mates are playing.

The first thing we would do is buy another dog, we miss MACKS so much and would love another Golden Retriever.

We’d buy a boat and possibly a jet ski and spend a lot more time at Moreton and Fraser Island. Yes, we’ve thought about it, quite often actually.

But the answer keeps coming back, definitely Not!!

We sure weren’t unhappy in our life back home in Brisbane. The business was good, Adele had a great job she loved and therefore we had a reasonable income.

We were never wealthy, some failed business ventures saw to that, but we were doing ok.

Painted Silos outside Monto

Something was missing though, I didn’t know what that was but I knew I was searching for something in my life that had meaning, something that gave me purpose.

I felt there had to be a reason for living, I couldn’t just go through life and it was over one day and there was no substance.

Plenty of times I’ve heard the saying, He who owns the most toys wins!!

I always considered that one of the dumbest sayings ever.

The more toys you want to accumulate the longer and harder you commit to living a long life working your guts out to repay the debt.

I could never understand how you can be truly happy and fulfilled while each day your life is driven and owned by your employer, your clients and your customers.

Is it time to go home - the answer keeps coming up no for us

These words were said to me once and I’ve never forgotten them – The Man who works the hardest will be fondly remembered by his widow’s new husband!!

Some mates we met while travelling lived on the Gold Coast. They weren’t on a canal block but they did live in a street nearby.

I remember Mick telling me he’d go up the canals in his little tinnie and look at the mega mansions, the big pools and huge boats.

What he noticed was no-one was swimming in the pools, the boats hadn’t moved since the last time he went past, nobody was home.

These owners were in so much debt they worked and worked and never had time to appreciate the toys they borrowed money to buy that just committed them to their jobs.

Is it time to go home - the answer keeps coming up no for us

Why have we become this society where we think we have to have everything to be happy.

We don’t need so much stuff!!

Every time we pull out the credit card, every time we go to a counter and spend money at the till, we need to ask ourselves, do I need this?

Because every time we get out our wallets it means we stay in debt and we commit to more hours at work.

Growing up I remember hearing stories of Men who worked hard all their life. They retired at 65 and passed away just a short time later. I always found that so sad and was determined that wouldn’t be me.

I always knew even as a young boy at school, my life had to be more than that.

My brother retired at 31 years of age.

Yep, he never worked a job another day, EVER.

He was smart and careful with his money and avoided debt.

Les passed away in 2020 aged 74, the Vietnam War had finally got him. He hadn’t had a “job” in over 40 years.

I didn’t want to be him, we were very different, but he showed me what was possible.

If it was possible for him why couldn’t it be possible for me?

Is it time to go home - the answer keeps coming up no for us as we continue to discover so many amazing places

Some of the big lessons we have learned from travelling

There are so many lessons to be learnt driving around this magnificent country we call home.

The biggest lesson of all has been we don’t need a lot of those things we used to think we did.

We’d rather spend more time with our parents and children than be in the daily grind. We’d rather gather experiences and memories than a bulging bank account.

The day my Father died in 2008 sent me on this journey to find myself, to find what was really most important for me in my life.

I figured out that chasing the dollar was getting in the way of all the things I felt most important to me. For decades, in fact all my married life, I didn’t have the balance right.

I then set about changing my life.

5 Essentials – Camera Equipment

The Mavic Pro 2 will provide you with everything you will need for all of your aerial footage

Our Go Pro 9 Hero Black – https://ebay.us/6CQOVC  –  is an awesome piece of equipment. I use this for all underwater, action video and some general use. Buy here brand new and great value.nd some general use.

We both love our Samsung Phones. Most of our photos are simply from our Samsung Phones. Now there’s the new Samsung s21 out and we have friends and our son who have one and they look insane for photography. If you’re looking for a new phone for your road trip I’d be going for this.

The distances you can shoot with the Camera – Nikon P1000 are simply amazing. It has an incredible optical and digital zoom!

We use our HP Sphere 360 Laptop with 8th Generation Intel Core i7 processor for our everyday use and for editing our photos

Bald Rock

Now after over 5 years travelling Australia it’s crazy to think that everything we yearn to own is in our little home on wheels therefore will we ever feel it is time to go home?

We’ve never been happier than we are now with the least amount of possessions we’ve ever had surrounding us.

The old me that still lives in my brain thinks it’s just bizarre.

We have so little yet we feel so rich!!

Our hearts and our souls are overflowing with joy. We find it really difficult to explain it most of the time.

We keep being told we’re living the dream and we don’t know how to respond or add to that. All we can do is just say yes, and we’re still loving it.

Is it time to go home - the answer keeps coming up no for us

It’s true, we really are living a dream and long may it continue.

We can’t fathom why more people aren’t doing it

I want to scream to my mates and friends back home, you guys are mad. I want to tell them to buy a Caravan or Motorhome, or even a Yacht and go find adventure and fill your boots with happiness.

Discover why you don’t need all that stuff overflowing out of your garage, in the back shed and piled floor to ceiling in rooms and cupboards.

And you don’t need Foxtel or Netflix, a bigger boat you rarely use, a new BMW, the latest technology, a new home because you want a theatre room and more space to collect more stuff and dust.

Get out and create your own life full of excitement and adventures. Reality TV is rubbish, go make your own reality.

Great Keppel Island

OK, it’s not our place to tell you how to live your life but given how often we get told, we wish we had your life, the truth is we were just like everyone else before we left on our 2 year adventure.

We aren’t special….

We just made the decision and did it and now all these years later we still love it just like that first day when we drove away, completely unaware of the impact our decision was going to have and what life was going to be like on this epic journey.

Never for one moment did we ever expect to question ourselves if it is time to go home. We had always planned an end date before embarking on our adventure but over the years those plans have changed. It is becoming more and more difficult to contemplate going home!

My points are:

If you’re not completely excited about life each day then make a change.

Consider the impact on what you buy against if you need it and if all those hours you worked hard this week were best spent by purchasing it.

Live your best life, we only get one of them.

Is it time to go home - the answer keeps coming up no for us
The question for us – Is it Time to go Home?

Here are a few more words for what they’re worth:

  • Do more things you love to do and less that makes you unhappy
  • Contact your family and closest friends often
  • Don’t bother telling them you love them, they know that and your actions speak louder than words. Hug them, wrap your arms around your parents, your children and your friends as much as you can
  • Don’t live life by default, choose the life you want to live
  • Take control of your destiny
  • I may not have as much money now, but I own my time
  • We don’t fear dying, we fear having not lived a full life
  • Dare to Dream!

Pin – Is it Time to go Home?

Are you currently travelling like us and loving it but wondering how will you know when it is time to go home?

Let us know your thoughts and whether you are having to consider if it is time to go home and face the prospect of settling down again permanently!

 

Safe travels

Kev & Adele
Indefinite Leave

We are Adele & Kevin, an Aussie couple from Brisbane in Queensland Australia who have embraced our adventurous spirit and ventured out to explore the world around us. We had spent so much time overseas we decided it was time to see our own truly amazing country and we needed to take some time to see everything it has to offer.

Our Aim is to inspire others to travel and help design the greatest adventure they can experience.

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Photography and Socials

Our camera equipment we use for all our photos and videos are:

Samsung Note 10 Plus Phone – http://ebay.us/9vMXEH – Most of our photos are simply from our phones. The Samsung phone cameras are pretty insane. Our phones have 512gb storage in ours but the 256gb in this one is heaps.

Samsung s21 Phonehttps://ebay.us/QAdwva – this looks an insane camera within a phone. We have friends and our son who own one and it seems quite extraordinary with their camera quality. If you’re after a new phone this is what I’d be looking at.

Canon 800dhttps://ebay.us/Q0UV1z – the latest DSLR Canon 24mp camera, buy here to save.

Nikon Coolpix p1000https://ebay.to/37cORUV – We have the Nikon P900 and this is the new model. The zoom lens is unbelievable and so awesome when travelling and you want to capture photos from a distance.

Lenses

Canon 50mm lens – https://ebay.to/3nx5pyG  This is the lens I use the least, ideal for still, close up shots.
Canon 24-105mm lenshttps://ebay.us/br9MeO – This is my all round, everyday use, zoom lens. Amazing quality, great price.
Canon 70-300mm lens – https://ebay.to/33xYeht – I use this one a lot for long range shots.
Sigma 10-20mm lenshttp://ebay.us/zWvfuI  – My wide angle lens for all my inside photos & video plus lots more, love this lens.

Our Go Pro 9 Hero Black – https://ebay.us/6CQOVC  –  is an awesome piece of equipment. I use this for all underwater, action video and some general use. Buy here brand new and great value.

Mavic Pro Platinum Drone – https://ebay.to/2ARPxTo  This is an absolute ripper of a drone. The Fly More Combo will provide you with everything you will need. I use this for all my aerial footage and this price is well below other retail stores.

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Adventurers Diary

Why Bundaberg is definitely worth visiting

There are so many great things to see and do in and around Bundaberg which is why Bundaberg is definitely worth visiting.

Bundaberg doesn’t just evolve around Bundaberg Rum and Bundaberg Ginger Beer, it is also the landmark of the southern most part of the Great Barrier Reef and is notable for its sugar industry.

It is also famous for its close locality to Mon Repos. Mon Repos has the largest concentration of marine nesting turtles on the eastern mainland of Australia,

Plus, it’s fast becoming the ‘Drinks Capital of Australia’ with the introduction of a microbrewery, cider house and gin distillery in recent years.

Table of Contents

Bundaberg is worth visiting for its Drink Places

Bundaberg Rum Factory

The Bundaberg Rum Factory is one of the main reasons why Bundaberg is definitely worth visiting for a lot of people.

If you are a keen Bundaberg Rum Drinker like Kev, or even if you are not a non-rum drinker at all like Adele, you will enjoy doing a tour of the Bundaberg Rum Factory.

Tours of Australia’s most famous rum distillery, which was established in 1888, run Monday to Friday from 10am – 3pm and from 10am – 2pm on Weekends and Public Holidays.

The tour goes for approx. 1 hour.

Bundaberg Rum Tour

Book your Bundaberg Rum Factory Distillery Experience here>

Bundaberg Rum Distillery Museum

It is recommended you arrive 30-45 minutes prior to the commencement of your tour. This enables you have time to check out the museum beforehand.

Both the museum and the tour are really interesting.

Kev thought he would score Adele’s 2 free tastings at the end of each of our tours and both times he dipped out!

Adele is definitely not a rum drinker but she discovered she likes the Bundy Tropics especially the Mango & Passionfruit which she sampled on our first visit in 2016 and now the Banana & Toffee Royal Liqueur on our most recent visit.

You can always just drop into the Retail Store and purchase a drink from the bar and make any purchases from the extensive range of Bundaberg Rum, Liqueurs and merchandise.

Bundy Rum Factoery is one of the reasons why Bundaberg is definitely worth visiting
Kev feeling very much at home at the #homeofbundy
The Bundaberg Barrel
The Bundaberg Barrell is another reason why Bundaberg is definitely worth visiting

Bundaberg Barrel

Take a tour of The Bundaberg Barrel. It is one of Bundaberg’s drink places not to be missed.

It’s perfect for all ages and is interesting and educational. It is a self-guided hands-on tour with lots of interactive displays.

Learn all about the history of the classic Bundaberg Brewed Drinks which date back for generations to 1960.

At the end of the tour, you are offered tastings of their entire range. 19 delicious flavoured soft drinks, including the famous Bundaberg Ginger Beer!

They have a huge selection of the Bundaberg Brewed Drinks and selected merchandise available for purchase and you also have the option to create customised labels.

Bundaberg Brewed Drinks
Taste testing 19 delicious flavours of Bundaberg Brewed Drinks
Why Bundaberg is definitely worth visiting
Kev chatting to owners Zoe & Josh of Ohana Cider House & Tropical Winery while enjoying a tasting paddle

Ohana Cider House & Tropical Winery

We love popping into Ohana Cider House & Tropical Winery! Josh & Zoe, the founders and owners of Ohana Cider House & Winery are very welcoming and we always enjoy a chat over the bar.

Be sure to get a tasting paddle along with one of their cheese and bikkies platters. We can highly recommend their tropical wine, fortified wines and ciders.

Adele loves the Mango Moscato and Kev liked the fortified wines so much, he bought two of each to take with us after polishing off a tasting paddle all on his own!

The Ohana Cheeky Tiki Ciders are widely available at different outlets throughout Queensland and at every Queensland Dan Murphy’s store.

Plus, they will soon be launching into New South Wales.

Ohana Cider House & Tropical Winery
We couldn’t walk away from Ohana Cider House & Tropical Winery without buying a bottle of Mango Moscato for Adele and 2 bottles of each of the Fortified for Kev
Kalki Moon Distilling & Brewing

Kalki Moon Distilling & Brewing

Founded in 2017, the Kalki Moon is one of the most recent additions to Bundaberg which is fast becoming the ‘Drinks Capital of Australia’.

This family owned and operated distillery is the first ever gin distillery in Bundaberg.

Not only do they offer gin which comes from the cane fields of Bundaberg, they also produce vodka, liqueurs and soon they will be launching their own rum creation.

Kalki Moon’s Gift Shop and Cellar Door are open 7 days a week. Just check with their experienced staff regarding distillery tours and tastings.

Chatting with the staff at the Kalki Moon
At the bar with the staff of the Kalki Moon Distilling & Brewing Company

Bargara Brewing Company & The Brewhouse

Although the Bargara Brewing Company was founded in Bargara it is actually located at The Brewhouse in central Bundaberg.

The Brewhouse is where all of the brewing of the Bargara Brewing Company’s beer takes place. Inside this micro-brewery is a busy restaurant, bottle shop and a retail outlet.

There’s 8 different taps of freshly brewed beers. They also have an on-line shop.

Update 2021: The Ballistic Beer Co has purchased Bargara Brewing therefore the Bargara brewery in Bundaberg is now one of the 5 Ballistic Beer Co breweries.

The range of beers is even bigger than before.

Mon Repos Turtle Centre is one of the main reason s why Bundaberg is definitely worth visiting

Bundaberg is definitely worth visiting for its awesome Attractions

Mon Repos Turtle Centre

The Mon Repos Turtle Centre is definitely worth visiting. 

As well as being one of Bundaberg’s most awesome attractions, it is the best place to learn about turtles.

The Turtle Centre is open from 9am – 12pm – 7 days per week with the exception of Christmas Day (25 December) and Anzac Day (25 April). During turtle season, it is also open 7 days per week from 7pm until 12am.

Turtle Season

Turtle season at Mon Repos is from November through to March. The best viewing times for the nesting turtles are from November through to January.

For the turtle hatchlings the months from January to March are best.

You can experience either the turtles laying or witness the hatchlings digging their way free and scampering down the beach to the water.

Witnessing the hatchlings at Mon Repos
Turtle hatchlings following the light of the human runway as they clamber to the water

Entry is free into the Hatchling Hall and Gift Shop. Tickets must be purchased online for any one of the three daytime sessions of Turtle Tales.

Sessions are at 9am, 10am and 11am and go for 45 minutes.

Nightly Turtle Encounter ticketholders are entitled to free access into Hatchling Hall, Gift Shop and Turtles Tales on the night while they are waiting for the turtle event.

The Turtle Discovery Centre is very interesting and educational. Learn all about the different types of turtles, their migration paths, what they eat and so much more.

Turtle Facts

Here are just a few ‘turtley awesome’ facts:

  • Turtles come ashore several times to lay hundreds of eggs in a nesting season.
  • They come back to the same location to lay their eggs but not necessarily each year.
  • After epic migrations at sea, turtles return to the exact spot where they were born to mate and lay their own eggs.
  • Only around 1 in every 1,000 hatchlings survives to adulthood
  • The sex of the turtle is determined by the temperature of the nest
Adele and Turtle at Mon Repos - Why Bundaberg is definitely worth visiting
Turtle Encounter Tours

A Turtle Encounter Tour is one of the reasons why it is definitely worth visiting Bundaberg.

It’s one of the most awesome attractions that the Bundaberg region has to offer.

It is absolutely an amazing once-in-a-lifetime experience and one we can personally highly recommend!

Touching a Turtle Hatchling on the Turtle Encounter Tour
Adele Getting up close and personal with a turtle hatchling

The most fabulous experience for us was witnessing the baby hatchlings up close.

We were also very fortunate to be all chosen to be part of a human runway as the hatchlings scampered over the sand following the light between our our legs and at times over our feet to reach the water.

Although, we are yet to see a turtle laying her eggs, we have seen turtle tracks on the beach at Mon Repos made the previous night by laying turtles.

Nesting turtle tracks on the beach at Mon Repos
The tracks made by a nesting turtle on the beach at Mon Repos

Note – Bookings for the Turtle Encounter Tours are essential! Tours are hugely popular and often very booked out.

So be sure to book well in advance to avoid disappointment.

Bookings can be made through the Bundaberg Visitor Information Centre

Beautiful farmyard surrounds at Tinaberries

Tinaberries

Tinaberries is a strawberry farm located in Woongarra and is just under 15kms from the heart of Bundaberg.

They warmly welcome guests to their farm to enjoy icecream and strawberries.

OMG, the ice cream at Tinaberries is devine! It was only on our 4th visit to Bundaberg that we discovered Tinaberrries.

We are so pleased we have found this delicious ice cream!

It has just skyrocketed to the top of the charts as one of our favourite ice creams that we have had in nearly 5 years travelling around Australia.

Meeting the owners of Tinaberries
We met Bruce and Tina the owners of Tinaberries

Flavours vary on the day depending on the fruits in season.

Strawberry and Passion Fruit were the flavours of the day of our visit. We bought one of each so we could sample both.

Others flavours include – Dragon Fruit and Lime, Mango and Passion Fruit, Strawberry and Mint, Passion Fruit and Ginger and Blueberries just to name a few.

Tinaberries is another reason why Bundaberg is definitely worth visiting
OMG – the ice creams at Tinaberries are awesome!!

Lady Musgrave Island

Although we did our day trip to Lady Musgrave Island from 1770, you can also make your way out to the Southern Great Barrier Reef from Bundaberg.

Lady Musgrave Island is the second most southern island in the Great Barrier Reef and is great spot for snorkelling around acres of coral.

Book your Lady Musgrave Island Day Trip from Bundaberg here>

Lady Musgrave Island is one of the reasons why Bundaberg is definitely worth visiting
Our day trip to Lady Musgrave Island
Hinkler Hall of Aviation is one of Bundaberg's attractions definitely worth visiting

Hinkler Hall of Aviation Museum

The Hinkler Hall of Aviation is definitely worth visiting even if you are not an aviation enthusiast. It is a must visit for all ages.

Located in the Bundaberg Botanical Gardens, this amazing museum celebrates Australias’s pioneer Aviator Bert Hinkler.

Everyone will enjoy the interactive displays and unique exhibits while learning the history of flight in Australia and the incredible life of Bert Hinkler.

One of the attractions why Bundaberg is definitely worth visiting
Bert Hinkler’sAvro Baby’s first flight was in April 1919

The flight simulator is great fun and you can recreate Bert’s first flight hovering over Mon Repos.

The Hinkler Hall of Aviation is open 7 days Monday to Sunday from 9am – 3pm. 

Don’t miss seeing the Bert Hinkler House, a recreated from his home in England by the Museum here in Bundaberg.

Hinkler's House
Bert Hinkler House

Bundaberg Botanical Gardens

The Bundaberg Botanical Gardens in North Bundaberg has over 10,000 trees and shrubs within its 27 hectares as well as a wedding chapel.

There are magnificent lakes that attract up to 114 different species of birds, shaded picnic areas and a nature themed playground.

The Bundaberg Botanical Gardens - why Bundaberg is definitely worth visiting

The best way to explore these fabulous botanical gardens is to take a ride on the steam train. Australian Sugar Cane Railway conducts train rides every Sunday.

They also operate Tuesdays, Wednesdays & Fridays during school holidays and on most public holidays.

Contact the Australian Sugar Cane Railway for ticket prices and further information.

Bundaberg Botanical Gardens is also home to the Hinkler Hall of Aviation, The Fairymead House Sugar Museum, Cafe 1928, the Australian Sugar Cane Railway Museum  and the Bundaberg and District Historical Museum.

Bundaberg and District Historical Museum
Bundaberg & District Historical Museum

Fairymead House Sugar Museum

The Fairymead House, built in 1890, was originally the Manager’s residence at the nearby Fairymead Sugar Plantation.

In 1988, Bundaberg Sugar Ltd who were the owners of the Fairymead Sugar Plantation, gave it to the city of Bundaberg as a Bi-Centenial gift.

It was carefully transported in six pieces and relocated to its new site in the Bundaberg Botanical Gardens.

This grand old plantation house which is heritage-listed, has been restored and repurposed as a museum dedicated to the history of the sugar industry of Bundaberg and its pioneering families.

Opening hours are from 10.30am to 12pm Mondays to Fridays.

The Fairymead House - One of the attractions why Bundaberg is definitely worth visiting
The Fairymead House
The Hummock

The Hummock Lookout

The remnants of a low-lying volanco is what is commonly known by Bundaberg locals as ‘The Hummock”.

Although it is only 96 metres above sea-level, the Hummock is a great spot to take in the views over the whole of Bundaberg.

To the east, the ocean is visible. Sugar cane fields can be viewed to the west.

View of the Hummock from the cane fields
View of The Hummock from the cane fields

5 Essentials – Outside RV Accessories

  1. To plug your RV with standard 15amp in to standard residential 10amp power source you will need a converter. We love our waterproof Ampfibian and after over 4 years it’s still perfect.
  2. Most people carry a Generator for back up power. 4wd Supacentre has a good low cost and popular generator while the Yamaha 2000w is a robust yet quiet excellent performer.
  3. A 20m 15amp Power Lead will ensure you reach your power source in Caravan Parks and Campgrounds.
  4. You will want a good blue Drinking Water Hose. Your typical green garden hose is not suitable for drinking from.
  5. A 4 way tap handle will help you find water whenever you need it

Nearby Beaches are another reason Why Bundaberg is definitely worth visiting

It is definitely worth visiting Bundaberg for the number of great beaches nearby.

Being in close proximity from the city centre to the beach is awesome as you only have to drive 15 minutes from Bundaberg and you are at the beach!

Bargara Beach is one of the beaches and why Bundaberg is worth visiting
Bargara Beach

Bargara Beach

The Bargara Beach is the closest of the beaches to Bundaberg. Bargara offers an ideal beachside lifestyle with oceanfront dining.

The kids will love playing on the beachfront playground which is in the shape of a turtle.

Bargara Esplanade
Bargara Esplanade
Can you swim at Bargara Beach?

During normal conditions, both Bargara Beach and Kellys Beach are considered to be relatively safe for swimming but it is safest and best to swim within the flags in the two patrolled areas.

Bargara & Kellys Beach are popular spots for local surfers as well.

How far is it from Bundaberg to Bargara?

By road it is just over 13kms from Bundaberg to Bargara.

Why Bundaberg is worth visiting for the nearby beaches
The Beach at Elliott Heads

Elliott Heads

Elliott Heads is one of the best beaches near Bundaberg. It’s actually our favourite beach in Bundaberg.

It offers both a surf beach and calmer waters at the mouth of the Elliott River where the river meets the sea.

With Elliott Heads right on the door step of Bundaberg, it is a great place to visit for the day for a swim or a picnic or to stay for a number of days while you explore all the best things to do in and around Bundaberg.

A drone view of Elliott Heads
Can you swim at Elliott Heads?

Both the beach and the river are great for swimming.

The surf beach at Elliott Heads is patrolled from September to May but is considered relatively safe other times of the year. You just need to be cautious of the current in the river.

It is also a very popular spot for kite surfers and jet skiers.

Elliott Heads where the river meets the ocean
How far is Elliott Heads from Bundaberg?

As it’s only 20mins out of Bundaberg, Elliott Heads has the best of both worlds. Not only is it a great spot to stay right on the beach, you are so close to town as well.

Dr Mays Island

Just across the mouth of Elliott Head River is Dr Mays Island. From 1 September to 30 April each year, it is closed to the public.

Very rare birds visit this area for breeding and other birds rest and feed there after flying thousands of kilometres from places as far away as Siberia and the Arctic Circle.

Dr Mays Island

Burnett Heads

Burnett Heads is where river meets the sea and it is home to the Port of Bundaberg.

It is also easily identified by two historic lighthouses.

The original lighthouse was built back in 1873 and now stands next to the Burnett Head Lighthouse Holiday Park. In 1971, the old wooden lighthouse was replaced with the new octagonal concrete structure.

Burnett Heads original Lighthouse
The original wooden Burnett Heads Lighthouse
New octagonal lighthouse at Burnett Heads
Burnett Heads new octagonal concrete lighthouse

Burnett Heads is also very close to the Mon Repos Conservation Park.

Can you swim at Burnett Heads?

Oaks Beach, a 200metre long beach and South Head just 100metres of sand and rocks are the two beach areas just south of Burnett Heads with only 500metres between the two.

These two beaches are not patrolled by Life Savers.

Conditions in these areas are often choppy and prone to rips especially when the surf is up. Therefore people are advised to swim at patrolled beaches.

Burnett Heads
How far is Burnett Heads from Bundaberg?

The distance by road from Burnett Heads to Bundaberg is 16.2kms.

One of the reasons why Bundaberg is definitely worth visiting - Woodgate Beach is nearby
Loads of shells washed up on Woodgate Beach

Woodgate Beach

Woodgate Beach is a long white sandy beach approximately 45 mins out from Bundy.

The southern 6 to 7 kilometres of the beach which is part of the Burrum Coast National Park provides 4WD access for beach driving.

Locals warn the sand is muddy and much softer near the Isis river mouth and is a common area for vehicles to become bogged.

Burnett Heads north of the boat ramp
Woodgate Beach north from the boat ramp
Do you need a permit to drive on Woodgate Beach?

You do not require a permit to drive on Woodgate Beach.

There are two access points onto Woodgate Beach.

One south of the Woodgate township and the northern entry off Walkers Point Road takes you down a broken, wooden board track where you need to take care if towing a trailer.

How far is Woodgate Beach from Bundaberg?

Woodgate Beach is just over 57kms from Bundaberg.

We drove out from Bundaberg and enjoyed lunch overlooking the beach and the boat ramp and continued south through Childers stopping at Mammino Gourmet Ice cream, for one of our favourite ice creams in all of OZ.

Memminos Gourmet Ice cream is at nerby Childers and why Bundaberg is definitely worth visiting

Bundaberg is definitely worth visiting for RV Travellers

RV Travellers will definitely find Bundaberg worth visiting as it offers a Free Camping area.

Bundaberg has also repurposed the old Showgrounds into a low cost RV Park managed by CMCA.

Hinkler Lions Park

The Hinkler Lions Park in Bundaberg, aptly named after the aviation icon Bert Hinkler, is a great place to stay for free as it is only a few minutes from the main city centre.

Hinkler Lions Park is one reason why Bundaberg is worth visiting for travellers
Hinkler Lions Park Free Camp

There’s plenty of space and easy parking for self-contained vehicles.

For caravans the suggestion is to go anti clockwise to make it easier to reverse park. It even took us a few turns in our Motorhome.

There are toilets, a drinking water tap, a dump point, bins and even a kids playground.

We did find it a little bit noisy with the airport across the road and with it being on one of the main roads into Bundaberg.

How long can you stay at the Hinkler Lions Park in Bundaberg?

It is a 24 hour stay at the Hinkler Lions Park. 

Are Pets allowed at the Hinkler Lions Park?

Hinkler Lions Park is pet friendly.

Read all about our stay at: Hinkler Lions Park

Hinkler Lions Park
Hinkler Lions Park Free Camp

Bundaberg CMCA RV Park

The Bundaberg CMCA RV Park is a great spot to stay.

Its central location is why it is definitely worth staying here enabling easy access for exploring Bundaberg.

For CMCA Members it’s just $3 per person per night and $15 per vehicle per night for non-members.

It is located at the old Showgrounds behind the Bundaberg Multiplex Sports & Convention Centre.

CMCA RV Park at Bundaberg
How long can you stay at the Bundaberg CMCA RV Park?

Maximum Stay is 5 nights in any 21day period.

All vehicles must be self-contained as there are no toilets and no showers. You must also contain your grey water.

Sites are all unpowered but drinking water and a dump point is available.

Are Pets Allowed at the Bundaberg CMCA RV Park?

Yes, it is pet friendly.

There’s heaps of space and it is quiet.

Best of all, it is very central and is handy to most places in Bundaberg.

Read about our stay at the: Bundaberg CMCA RV Park

Bundaberg CMCA RV Park campsite
Bundaberg CMCA RV Park

Why Bundaberg is definitely worth visiting for the beachside Caravan Parks

Big 4 Bargara Caravan Park

On our first visit to Bundaberg we stayed at the Bargara Caravan Park.

Bargara Beach is just a 15minute drive into town which is why its definitely worth visiting Bundaberg.

We enjoyed the best of both worlds being close to town and we were also able to enjoy camping by the beach.

It was an easy drive into Bundaberg to hit up all of the popular tourist attractions including the famous Bundaberg Rum Factory and The Barrel.

Beach directly opposite Bargara Caravan Park
The Beach directly opposite the Bargara Caravan Park

Bargara Caravan Park is ideally located right across from the beach and the Bundaberg Surf Life Savers Club making it perfect for a swim after a hot day exploring Bundaberg.

The Park is suitable for all sized caravans and RVs, allows tent camping and 1 and 2 bedroom cabins are also available.

Powered and non-powered sites are available. You can choose from grassed or concrete slab sites as well as sun or shaded sites.

Are Pets Allowed at the Big 4 Bargara Caravan Park?

Yes, the Big 4 Caravan Park is dog friendly however it is seasonal so best to check regarding dog access prior to arrival.

Beach at Bargara Esplanade
Bargara Beach near the Esplanade
Drone view of Elliott Hds Holiday Park
A drone view of the Elliott Heads Holiday Park

Elliott Heads Holiday Park

The Elliott Heads Holiday Park was the perfect location to stay when we were visiting Bundaberg the second time around.

Located right on the doorstep of Bundaberg’s most beautiful local beach and just 20 minutes from town, makes it an ideal base to explore Bundaberg as well as a great spot to just relax and unwind by the beach.

The Amenities are in great condition and the park has all the expected features -Water, Power and a Dump Point.

The sites are all powered and are a good size with a choice of slab or grassed sites.

Just across the road from the Elliott Heads Holiday Park is a great café and a sheltered picnic area.

Elliott Heads Holiday Park - Why Bundaberg is definitely worth visitng
Our site at the Elliott Heads Holiday Park
Are Pets Allowed at the Elliott Heads Tourist Park?

The Elliott Heads Tourist Park do not allow dogs.

It was not possible for us to stay at the
Elliott Heads Tourist Park on our first visit to Bundaberg as we were travelling with our dog MACKS.

Read about our stay at: Elliott Heads Holiday Park

Elliott Heads is one reason why Bundaberg is definitely worth visiting
Beautiful Elliott Heads

Burnett Heads Lighthouse Holiday Park

On another of our visits to Bundaberg, we stayed at the Burnett Heads Lighthouse Holiday Park in Bundaberg.

The park is very handy to Mon Repos to see the turtle hatching and is only 15 minutes from the centre of town.

Sites are a good size, it’s close to the ocean and like all of the other Caravan Parks around Bundaberg, there is no pool.

Why Bundaberg is definitely worth visiting - Burnett Heads
Burnett Heads Lighthouse Holiday Park located right on the water’s edge

Although the amenities and facilities at the Burnett Heads Lighthouse Holiday Park at the time of our stay were tired, they are clean.

The camp kitchen is good with BBQ’s, Microwave, frying pan and other features ideal for cooking.

A tennis court is available onsite also.

Are Pets Allowed at the Burnett Heads Holiday Park?

Yes, dogs are allowed as it is pet friendly.

Read about our stay at: Burnett Heads Lighthouse Holiday Park

Our site at the Burnett Heads Lighthouse Holiday Park
Our site at the Burnett Heads Lighthouse Holiday Park

Pin – Why Bundaberg is definitely worth visiting

Have you been to Bundaberg? We have found first hand why Bundaberg is definitely worth visiting as each time we visit we find new and exciting things to see and do.

Check out these other great blogs:

Safe travels   

Kev & Adele
Indefinite Leave

We are Adele & Kevin, an Aussie couple from Brisbane in Queensland Australia who have embraced our adventurous spirit and ventured out to explore the world around us. We had spent so much time overseas we decided it was time to see our own truly amazing country and we needed to take some time to see everything it has to offer.

Our Aim is to inspire others to travel and help design the greatest adventure they can experience.

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Photography and Socials

Our camera equipment we use for all our photos and videos are:

Samsung Note 10 Plus Phone – http://ebay.us/9vMXEH – Most of our photos are simply from our phones. The Samsung phone cameras are pretty insane. Our phones have 512gb storage in ours but the 256gb in this one is heaps. We have sourced this one which is approx $500 less than we paid for ours.

Canon 800d – https://ebay.to/2XQYnsk – the latest DSLR Canon 24mp camera, buy here to save.

Lenses

Canon 50mm lens – https://ebay.to/2yQwPed  This is the lens I use the least, ideal for still, close up shots.
Canon 24-105mm lenshttps://ebay.us/br9MeO This is my all round, everyday use, zoom lens. Amazing quality, great price.
Canon 70-300mm lens – https://ebay.to/2XlOZ0I – I use this one a lot for long range shots.
Sigma 10-20mm lenshttp://ebay.us/zWvfuI  – My wide angle lens for all my inside photos & video plus lots more, love this lens.

Our Go Pro 9 Hero Black – https://ebay.to/38wMc7V  –  is an awesome piece of equipment. I use this for all underwater, action video and some general use. Buy here brand new and great value.

Mavic Pro Platinum Drone – https://ebay.to/2ARPxTo  This is an absolute ripper of a drone. The Fly More Combo will provide you with everything you will need. I use this for all my aerial footage and this price is well below other retail stores.

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