February saw Becky, Ben, Kia, Evie and Austin arrive from the UK for a three week holiday. We stayed at the Karrinyup Waters Resort in Western Australia. We had a powered site and the family stayed in a lovely roomy cabin.
We are going to hand over the rest of the story to Becky……….
Our Pommy adventure with the Smiffs began on the 5th of February 2017 and lasted for a jam packed, action filled, amazing 3 weeks. We stayed in a cabin at the beautiful Karrinyup Waters Resort with Dad and Jude who pitched up just a few doors down. The site was clean, very spacious and had 3 great swimming pools, play park for the kiddies and BBQ facilities on site. We spent a day or two settling in and then the fun began…….This is what happened……
Our first week consisted of mainly visiting family, and rain!…. Yes rain! This was the week that Perth was hit by torrential downpours and flooding, it’s second wettest February on record – but this didn’t stop us! Luckily the week started off bright and sunny and while the sun was out we got to enjoy The Maze at Bullsbrook which was fantastic for us adults as well as the kids! Lots to see and do and we even managed to cook up a little BBQ in the park for lunch. The kids thoroughly enjoyed the splash park which was also located within the park…. these types of places are always so great for the kids and such good value for money which is one thing that is very different from the UK!
As the week continued we caught up with family and friends for lunches, dinners and drinks and during this time we also celebrated Austin’s 3rd birthday at Aunty Nettie’s and Uncle Jock’s place in Baldivis. We enjoyed a feast of traditional party food consisting of ‘little boy’ sausages, fairy bread and of course an ice cream birthday cake. We played pass the parcel and had a pinata to keep us entertained… even if Daddy (Ben!) did have his knuckles wrapped a few times! Ouch!… We always feel so at home here and when we visit family and friends it is always home from home. We are very lucky to have such a loving, extended family who we know will always welcome us with open arms
We also caught up with Kathy and Michael for a BBQ tea. There was lots of great conversation and laughter, yummy food, and various backyard games. We first met Kathy and Mike when they come over for Dad and Jude’s wedding in the UK and they have treated us like family ever since. We get spoilt by their amazing hospitality… They also came to the airport to see us off until the next time. Thank you guys!
As our second week came around the weather began to cheer up and we looked forward to our trip to Adventure World in Perth on the Monday. This has become a traditional trip for us and we endeavour to go every time we visit! This time there were lots more to do such as The Abyss ride, The Inferno and not forgetting The Kraken!! We also caught up with our friend Jaye who used to work with dad at the City of Melville. We hadn’t seen Jaye for three years and it was awesome spending time with her at Adventure World. We all love this place and it will be somewhere that I am sure we will have membership for when we finally make our home in Aussie land!
Also during this week we visited Hillary’s Marina where we had the most yummiest burgers and had a great time on the beach and playing around on the pontoon and slides which sit out on the water in the harbour. This is also home to Nemo’s fish and chip bar that does the best battered feta… a very very naughty treat! The kids love to try and catch the little fish and Evie eventually, after much perseverance and patience, managed to catch a fair few… she was extremely proud of this and the other kids on the beach started doing the same and they ended up with a little aquarium going on!
On the two Thursday evening’s, Ben had a chance to train with the Fremantle Swan Dragon Boat Club team which was an amazing experience for him. Ben participates in a Dragon Boats over here in the UK for a little team in Tunbridge Wells so this was a big deal to him. He absolutely loved this chance and I would say that this was one of the top highlights of the trip for him. To say he was battered and bruised is an understatement but the smile and the knowledge he brought away with him is priceless. Again this would most definitely be Ben’s hobby when we are finally there…..
The week ended with a sleepover with cousin Arienne which the girls really enjoyed… even if not much sleep was had!
Our final week started with the most amazing trip ever….. Swimming with the wild Dolphins! This has got to be one of the best experiences we have ever done… Rockingham Dolphin encounters tours are by far the best way to get up close with these mystical creatures. We managed to see a fair few and got some good footage on the GoPro… until you watch this back you don’t realise just how close they come up to you! This trip is just great and one that I know will stay with me forever. Definitely one to do again!
During this week we also visited Peel Zoo. This is an amazing little zoo that gives you a real hands on experience! We have visited before and we just love it! You can get in with the Kangaroos and even make the Cocky’s dance! (we do have this on video, one of Jude’s little talents!)…. Another great family place and also somewhere for the kids to not only enjoy but also learn from too. Its great going back to places because we get to see the animals we have seen in previous years which just goes to show how well these animals are looked after. A super day out!
We next visited two of my favourite places…. Fremantle Markets and Cottesloe Beach!
Fremantle markets is just full of life, wonderful smells and a fantastic array of stalls full of all kinds of treasures! Yes you get the tacky ones like anywhere with a bit of tourism but here you also get beautiful homemade products from clothing to cheese boards (which we purchased!). Kia had some beautiful henna done here at a very reasonable price so she was very pleased with her purchase! The fruit stalls are to die for and we highly recommend the sweet mangos! Yummo!
After all that shopping what better place to go but to the beach……
Cottesloe Beach was around 30 mins from the resort and it is one of my faves…. We hired a paddle board for this trip which was great but the area where you paddle is very wavy so not so great to swim. Just along from here is the swimmers bay which is much calmer and just perfect for the whole family. We love it here.. It’s clean, white sands are super soft and the water is crystal clear… Lots of reassurance from the life guards which makes this beach great for safety. Plenty of beach shops and lovely cafes to grab lunches and of course ice creams! One of the best…..
We also made a visit to friends Sue and Doug where we also celebrated Sue’s birthday and again Austin got in on this one too! We have met Sue and Doug a few times and they too make us feel like family. Thank you guys!
As our final week came to a close we knew it was nearly time to say goodbye ….. We hate this bit but we had had the best, fun packed 3 weeks ever with lots of amazing memories to take home with us. We miss our Aussie family so so much and we miss Australia with a passion, but this is what spurs us on to work that little bit harder and push that little bit harder to get out there too…. One day in the next couple of years we aim to be settled in Australia with our family and friends around us all the time but until then….. it’s not goodbye, its ‘see ya later’
Thank you Dad and Jude for the love, time and amazing memories…. We miss you everyday but if it wasn’t for you moving out all those years ago we wouldn’t have had these chances to visit. We will also look forward to seeing more of Australia, just like you are doing now, in the future…. Safe travels! and see ya soon! xxxxxx
Thank you Becky for such a glowing and detailed report! We too had such fun and miss you more than words can say. We look forward to the next visit, or indeed, you all emigrating to Oz!! Love you all millions and millions, Pop and Mummy Roo. xxxxxxx