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Australia - 2005-05-14 - Rottnest Island - Ferry Ride & Bicycle Tour (Page 1)

We got a plan set that we would leave the hostel May 17 to start the traveling. However, since Rottnest island was accessible from Freemantle (a suburb of Perth who people there call Freeo) we decided to see it while still in Perth. Also there were weekend markets that Sayoko wanted to see & which Freemantle is famous for. So we got the truck ready & hit the road. The markets were ok, but nothing that great. I did end up buying some fruit, some creamed leatherwood honey from Tasmania & a pair of sun glasses. It was cheap there, but nothing amazing. Sayoko likes looking at markets, because she sells the postcards & T-shirts she designs at these markets. She is also a person who likes to see & touch things, but not necessarily buy them. I was always raised not to touch things unless you expect to buy them. However, her culture seems to not have that rule. Sometimes as you travel you have to realize that people have different backgrounds & accept things. Another interesting thing is the leatherwood honey from Tasmania. When I was in Tasmania I had bought this honey that was great for peanut butter & honey sandwiches. Yeah I know what you are thinking, but it was REALLY good. Anyway as Adrian & I started traveling he thought I was weird until he tried one. After that we went through the creamed honey in no time. It was what he wanted for lunch just about every day & I loved the stuff too. I had not seen it since, but when I saw it at this market I bought it even though it was $10 for a small container. Sayoko laughed at me about it, but she ended up loving the sandwiches as well :)

After going to main markets & a smaller market near the ferry terminal we found the ticket booth & got the next ferry available. We also talked to the people & decided the best way to see the island would be by bicycle. There are very few residents & even fewer vehicles. The first two pictures are of the boat & harbor. After that is the island jetty & where we first landed. We got of the boat got our bicycles, helmets & a map from the visitor center & headed out. There is not a specific path it all ends up being how you choose to go about it, but from looking at the map we had an idea of a small loop that we would try to do. We knew we would not be able to make it around the entire island. The rest of the pictures on the first page & the first picture on the second page are of Phillip Point which was the first place we stopped & was not that far from the Jetty. It provided a nice area to walk on the beach, interesting rocks & views of Freeo & the ocean. The next six pictures of the palm tree & Quokka were taken near Kingstown Barracks. I had never seen a wild Quokka before although this one did not seem to mind us that much. I think they have gotten really used to people. After that we went to Bickley Swamp which is where the next 6 pictures including the ones of the Australia Shelducks were taken. There was a path there that we could walk around to see the swamp. It was interesting that a swamp was that close to the ocean, it just seemed out of place.

After that the rest of the pictures on the second page until about halfway on the fourth page were from the road following the coast line. It was places like Dyer Island, Porpoise Bay, Jeannies Lookout, Parker Point & Salmon Bay. These pictures are amazing, it shows the shades of blue the water displayed. In the beginning of these pictures you will see two objects in the water. The first one is ok a small wreck of some kind, I still am not really sure what is was. The second is much more interesting. Starting with picture 61 you can see an eagle ray. It was right by the beach, we got to sit & watch it for at least 10 minutes, it would go & come back. It was in a beautiful spot so even when we could not see it we would have great scenery to view. Picture #69 is of interest because it is one of my favorite pictures from the trip. It shows the clarity & contrast of the water & even a small island in the distance. It is the picture that I currently have as my background on my laptop (been there for about 6 months). It is one of the few pictures that I can say actually shows the true beauty of what I saw. I don't want to short sell any other pictures, this is just an amazing one. As a group I have viewed these pictures myself more times than any other group of pictures I took on the entire trip.

We had taken our time on the beach because it was so great, but we still wanted to get to the Wadjemup lighthouse because it looked interesting & we thought it would provide a great view. We took the paths we thought we correct, but were not able to get far on the bikes. So we had to abandon them & walk the last part of the journey up the hill. The lighthouse was very interesting & did provide a great view, but I prefer the close view of the ocean & its wonderful colors. After being there for a little while we knew we needed to get going to make the last ferry back to Freeo. So we got back on the bikes & headed back. It had lots of uphill parts. I have rode bike for years, even trained for it a few times so this wasn't bad for me. However, Sayoko had issues being able to get up the hills. So what we would do is that she would grab my arm & I would pull her along, then when I started slowing down I would sling shot her & she would pedal a little while while I rested a bit. It was good because I ended up getting a great workout & she did not die from exhaustion :) We did this quite a bit on the way back. The only things we stopped for was Herschel & Government House Lakes & for some Quokka we saw on the side of the road. We made it back on time to catch the last ferry, we even had some time to spare. After getting back to Freeo we headed back to town. It was an amazing day with great scenery, Rottnest Island is place I would go several times & there is still more than 2/3's of it which we did not even see!

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Larger Version - 01 - Ferry
01 - Ferry
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Larger Version - 02 - Freemantle Port
02 - Freemantle Port
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Larger Version - 03 - Rottnest Island
03 - Rottnest Island
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Larger Version - 04 - Jetty
04 - Jetty
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Larger Version - 13 - Freemantle in the Distance
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