Thursday, December 31, 2009

Day 6 Sea world

The day at Sea World was drove from Mullumbimby to Surfers Paradise - we managed to gain and lose an hour during the day or was that lose and gain, either way meant that we didn't have to get up so early.

The whole day was tremendous it is difficult to identify and pin-point the best parts following are a couple of the highlights.

Generally there is a large amount of environments for reef fish, sharks, rays and the like that you can view both under the water level and in rock pools. There is even the places where you can pat some sting rays, I found them to be interesting as they were slimy.

We then looked at Polar Shores where there was a large polar bear that was swimming in the water doing summersaults. The bears are amazingly large and strong.

The Imagine dolphin show was amazing to watch. They are very intelligent and I wonder who is smarter? them or us? The show was may have been very routine for them, but they seemed to not have any hesitation doing 'Tricks' .

Then we decided to go on some rides these rides involved getting wet and going up and down steep hills boo boo thought that this was scary but it was good fun.

The two rides that we went on were called Bermuda triangle and Vikings revenge flume, fortunately for me the Jet Ski rescue and new roller coaster were not running so Simon couldn't drag me on them.

After all that wandering around the heat was getting a little to much so we decided to take on the Water park and played on the slides including the Tube ride pictured - Boo boo even had lots of fun on them, and went on them all more than once even tho there were queues.

Even if that did cost the frugal caravaners another $10.00 - on the costs the best way to get tickets is if you are a part of an organisation such as the RACV we saved about $15 for the day pass (for 2) and of course they manage to suck that all back with the extras such as 'can not take food' etc. However enough of the whine about cost, sometimes you just have to do it and ensure that you enjoy the day which we did!!

Day 5 Byron Bay

We sorted the van out on Wednesday morning and then dropped the washing to Nareda's to get those domestics out of the way then disappeared to Byron Bay for a wander and to check out the beach.

The rolling hills are leading via the back roads from Mullim into Byron are as magnificent as I remember and it was harder than I last remember but this is the busiest time of the year being new year and all of that! It took 30+ min to drive 6 km into the township - so we have yet to visit the lighthouse and hope to have the time if to fit in before we leave.

Dinner was at the local Mullimbiby RSL club, always great value and in this case the venue was exceptionally clean, the food good and service efficient.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Day 4 Tamworth to Mullumbimby

Departing Tamworth at 7:30 it was good to get going with the long days journey ahead. We stopped at a little town called Uralla which has one of the best set ups for the driver reviver that we had seen it was a building with a small television and tea and coffee of course. It was nice to talk with the locals and interesting that the Driver reviver are self-supporting and largely ignored by governments at all levels (guess there is no method to tax it!)

Armidale for breakfast, continuing the undulating roads up the mountains to Glen Innes following the New England Highway to a town called Guyra where the highest caravan park in the country is located according to the signs.

We travel further down the road to a small place called Deepwater to have a cup of tea and change drivers we decided to stop for a while to rest up for the journey ahead.

Lunch was at Tenterfield where we pulled the van into the Cricket ground and had a cup of tea, we then went to look at the Tenterfield saddler but when we finally found it the store was closed. Many of these small towns could learn from putting some clearer sigage as it was difficult to find and stopping at the information centre with a caravan was not an easy task.

Then we drove from Casino, Lismore,then through to Ballina where we saw the big Prawn while it is still an icon - there is much talk in the local press about keeping the 'Big Prawn'

Traveling from Ballina to Mullimbimby we arrived at our destination in the late afternoon, in fact much later due to the persistent rain and possible longer way via Tenterfield.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Tip - Fuel Dockets

Use these as much as you can ~ especially when you are running on GAS as this 8% ~ 10 % savings depending on the pump price.

Peak hill to Tamworth Day 3

Morning started with early to rise then we set off to Dubbo, arriving at Dubbo we were able to look around the town, fill with gas then headed off to Gilgandra.

At Gilgandra, we stopped at the information centre and looked at the coo wee exhibition about the soldiers who marched of parts of country New South Wales into Sydney to join the forces fighting in WW1.

From Gilgandra we travelled to Coonabarabran was interesting with the large amounts of water on the side of the road I believe that 75% of the water was absorbed into the ground, the roads, rivers and paddocks were surrounded with water.

We stopped for lunch at Coonabarabran for lunch in the van then it was off to Gunnedah.

I wanted to see the big tractor at Gunnedah but we were disappointed because we could not find it.

I needed a cup of tea before Tamworth so we decided that we stop at a small town called Sommerton, we parked the van at the town hall because there was no rest stop.

We could hear loud music playing from an old house there so we walked around the front of the town hall to see all of the names of those who from the town went to war and it was amazing how many of the same family went to serve in both wars from this little town.

The man who was playing the music asked us to stay with him and celebrate his birthday with him we politely declined then headed to Tamworth.

We made it to Tamworth in the late afternoon backed the van on the site because we were late arriving there we set up then went straight to the Golden Guitar.

We then looked around the town for a while before returning to the van for a feast of Pork Chops, salsa and salad.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

DAY 2 Jerilderie to Peak Hill

Day 2 of out adventure started with a loverly fine day in Jerilderie , there was rain then rain and more rain from there on it was a long day but there were many highlights.

The first one was the first morning tea stop at a loverly little town called Grong Grong it is a tiny town with a nice park.

From Grong Grong we then took a detour off the highway to Ardlethan for a driver reviver cup of tea and a walk around the town, while we are watching the pennies a donation for the driver reviver was a good thing to do while helping a country town.

Ardlethan to West Wylong was a tough trip with lots of much needed heavy rain for the farmers but to travel in was a pain,we found the only petrol station and was amazed by the rudeness of some people!.

After a gourmet feast of Ham and Turkey sandwiches (frugally stocked in the Van from the Mumma's Kitchen before leaving Melbourne) and Leigh Tea we headed onto Forbes then Parkes.

Our overnight stay was at Peak Hill Caravan Park.

What a great house this would be ~ Peak Hill

Daily Tip

Stopping at MacDonalds ~ free WiFi Internet!!!

Boo Boo and the Lump at the dish

Well, here we are at the Dish near parks, Booboo and the lump are here - the frugal option is to drive in - take the photo and run! no cost except for the little gas off the main highway!!

No - really it was that we arrived at 4.05 and the place closes at 4.15 so not much point to stopping and going further than the classy photo op.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Day one - 2009 XMAS holiday

Melbourne to Jerilderie.
Day one started with getting up sleeping in to replenish our selves from the Christmas celebrations.
Having prepared the van as much we could possibly could we had a little work to do but we had the van on the road outside the house within an hour all hooked up and ready to go.

The frugal caravaner has so much planning to do before a trip with with christmas being yesterday there we were sent off with a large piece of ham and some Christmas turkey so there was plenty of filling for sandwiches.

So that we can avoid having to pay for those expensive coffees and that small pot of tea from the coffee shops that you pay $3.00 for that I am sure that costs all of .70 cents we made sure we had lots of Lan Choo tea on board and Moccona coffee for Simon.
We stopped for lunch at Nagambie in a caravan parking space in the middle of the town , The only thing that I would say is that I would wish people would read the signs that say caravan and trailer parking as I am sure to people reading this blog would understand is that people that do not have caravans or trailers should not use them.
Having bypassed Shepparton because we had no need to go there and it would avoid the driving further and therefore saving some money that is important to both of us on our travels.
We then stopped at a delightful little place that is a Wughnu this is between Shepparton and Numurkah I like stopping there. There is a little place that you can stop off for a cup of tea and a piece of fruit cake which is Simon`s favourite.
The journey to Tocumwal was good with there being little traffic on the road,we then headed onto Finely then finaly onto Jerilderie.

Jerelderie is a nice town with a history of Ned Kelly being here.
Staying at the Jerilderie Motel and Caravan Park we have found a lovely little well presented Caravan Park with very clean facilities and lush green drive through sites.
[photo in the morning]

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Welcome to our blog!

Welcome to our blog Caravaning on the cheap.
As the proud owner of a 17ft 1987 Hallmark Caravan I enjoy traveling and seeing different areas and talking with different people.

I have been traveling in a caravan since about the age of 5 or 6 and has always enjoyed the idea of the freedom of being able to go where you want to.

My precious (the caravan) is pictured at Pambula Beach.

But traveling does not have to cost a great deal, to me it is just a matter of thinking about what you spend before that hard earned money leaves your wallet, any yes some people accuse me well lets say tight or a miser that is not necessarily true , I just think sometimes there is a cheaper alternative that will achieve the same result.

Are you a caravanner that has any ideas of how to make traveling cheaper?
Feel free to post your comments on here.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Holiday a trip planning?

Holiday a trip planning?

Which way to go? – I find that the only way short of the expensive and messy (and error prone) way of buying maps - scrap paper, calculator and a fare deal of guess work is all resolved with everyone's friend 'Google' specifically Google maps.

This wonder of the modern world allows careful planning and detailed routes to be planned all from the comfort of the lounge room. We like to moderate our days travel to about 400-500 when in the outback or under 400 on the coast due to hills. Maps - allow searching for parks and the like in the area what's more 'street view' gives an impression of the park to see what is around and if it looks ok.

We like inland as it is quieter and you guessed it 'Cheaper' the average that we will be paying on the inland route to Mullimbimby will be $22~ the coast route would be costing at least double that per night...

Not only that the distance is shorter - roads mostly flatter so this all ads up to less spent on items that we don't need to waist on and maybe a little more on items we want to enjoy.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

A couple of photos on some travels.

This photo was of our last annual trip to Pambula Beach Caravan park.

This was at Pambula Beach

Tuesday, December 1, 2009


Planning to write about our travels ~ how to do this economically some would say on the cheap, we would like to say that this is actually frugal
1 a hard-working, frugal woman thrifty, economical, careful, cautious, prudent, provident, unwasteful, sparing, scrimping; abstemious, abstinent, austere, self-denying, ascetic, monkish, spartan; parsimonious, miserly, niggardly, cheeseparing, penny-pinching, close-fisted; informal tightfisted, tight, stingy. See note at economical . antonym extravagant.
2 their frugal breakfast meager, scanty, scant, paltry, skimpy; plain, simple, spartan, inexpensive, cheap, economical. antonym lavish.