PenUltimate Destinations

Canberra Weekend

It was only 2 weeks since our last expedition and we were on the road again. I could get used to this! The nation’s capital, Canberra was our destination this time. We hadn’t originally planned to get away so quickly after our Lake Macquarie weekend, but there WAS a purpose.

Good friend Jill was due to have her first child the weekend previous. Desire to visit and see the new arrival before Christmas, along with a quickly filling festive calendar, meant that this was going to be our only opportunity. A REAL fresh newborn would just be extra special to visit!

My normal Friday afternoon meeting was cancelled (not by me!) and we were able to sneak away from Sydney slightly earlier than initially hoped. This was to be a good thing by the time we arrived in Canberra. With a sinking sun we drove into our first (booked) tourist park and were directed to our campsite. A quick look at what they called a ‘campsite’ was all it took to determine that their definition was significantly different to ours! Payment returned (with no fuss… perhaps this happens regularly) we were off in search of alternative arrangements.

Memories of a reasonable park that my parents had stayed at only 6 months ago in Queanbeyan were fresh, so we decided to head there. The office was closed upon our arrival, but a quick call to their ’emergency only’ number had us choosing our site after driving around the park 3 times. Once those sighting laps were completed, the car headlights were becoming really necessary to see anything! Fortunately we were able to erect the Trackabout in record time (and in the dry!). The kids stomachs were topped up as beds were made, just in time for the poor sleep deprived ones to crash while Rach went out in search of ‘essential supplies’.

The essential supplies (aka Pizza and Beer) were digested, awning quickly erected, and the ‘early night’ call made despite it no longer being really that early.

My favourite modification so far, magnetic bottle opener!

A cool night turned into a spectacular Saturday (and Sunday for that matter) as we decided the day’s activities. The Questacon was to be our morning activity, and the kids absolutely loved it! This place must be one of the best activities we’ve ever done with them. Both Lucas and Ella had an absolute ball exploring and learning. First, in the dedicated 0-6 kids zone, which was amazingly clean and fun for them, but also in the other exhibits and activities. We can’t recommend it enough and will probably visit now every time we’re in Canberra.

Ella and Lucas having the time of their lives!

In the afternoon we caught up with (still stubbornly pregnant) Jill and her husband Brent. It was great to see them, even if it was only the two of them. We made Jill walk around the campsite and did everything we could to encourage labour, but it seemed her little baby was to be blessed with steely determination. I wonder where that comes from???

Another early night followed, as we needed to be packed and gone by 10am Sunday morning. This was going to be a good test of how quickly we could pack up, as previous pack ups have stretched until around midday.

Safety rail so Rach doesn't fall out of bed!!

It might have been the fact that we took less stuff, or maybe we’re just getting more efficient. Probably though, a combination of both helped us to be all sorted and zipping up the tonneau just before 10. No mad rush, and no super early start, just efficient packing. Yep, 2 night stops are easy!

We had a quick visit to Mt Ainslie before beginning the trek home. Lunch at a rest area by the side of the road was the only interruption to a leisurely drive back to Sydney. All relaxed, we were again all packed away and kids washed by about 4:30pm. Still loving our camper, but a little sad it won’t get out of the garage again until the new year.

A quick stop at Mt Ainslie on the way home

And for those who are interested, Jill did FINALLY have her baby. Little Adele was born the following Wednesday. We’re yet to meet her…

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