Early February 2022, We left Sydney and headed north, up through the Central Coast, into Queensland. Looking back on the photos, there were a few adventures and stories to tell!

Free Camping and Lighthouses

We started off with amazing weather and we were starting to get brave enough to free-camp. The Lakes Surf Lifesavings carpark was the perfect spot. Cafe, toilets – open all night, and showers – though cold. We met a few people doing the same thing and it does feel a bit wrong, but exciting! FatBoy is a bit hard to camouflage, we kinda stand out, but ……… This carpark is right by the beach, it couldn’t be better.

Camping in the carpark – LOVE IT!

Not far from here we found the Norah Head Lighthouse. I am loving seeing all the lighthouses up this coast. There had been a music, food, and wine festival here the night before and we couldn’t imagine how wonderful it would have been to be a singer performing at this amazing location. We didnt attend this festival, but we managed to acquire a couple of souvenirs……

House sit No.2, Big Boy Gus, Caves and Thunder

We so enjoyed the company of Gus. He kept us entertained with his quirky nature and loveable antics. We found a coffee truck that did “doggiechino” never knew there was such a thing! Gus knew! He was such great company for three weeks.

The caves at Caves Beach are so cool. Inaccessible at high tide. Spectacular at sunrise.

And then the rain started….. and the thunder……… and the lightening! This, also, was a spectacular show of natures power – but poor ole Gus! He was so frightened, he would hide in the shower and shake! He would not come out, no matter what. We comforted him as much as we could, and he came out eventually as if nothing had happened.


Oh dear, we must be getting old! Two injuries, one each, at least we are keeping it fair! Walking along the beach with Gus, Chris slipped on a rock and tore his hamstring trying to correct himself. OUCH! Then a few weeks later at Crescent Heads, I took a tumble on a walking track and sprained my ankle. OUCH! Those who know me – this was my good ankle! Its not easy to limp on both feet at once! So feeling like a couple of geriatrics we think we should just stay home and sit on the couch – NAH! Not going to happen! There are things to do and people to meet!

While at Caves Beach, we took a trip into Newcastle to see another lighthouse, this one Nobbys Lighthouse.

Snakes, Kookaburras, Goannas and …………Rabbits??

We eventually left Caves Beach to continue our trip north. Eight nights at four different spots to go, this time paid camping at proper camp sites. We had a couple of unwelcome visitors while camping.

At Booti Booti National Park, this Goanna decided he liked our spot and kept coming back. He especially liked to look of the solar panels and left scratches where he had been climbing over it. He was not the only one there and they were pretty intimidating for these Kiwi’s.

The Kookaburra gave us a run for our money too, they look really cute and are a full-on “sound of Australia”, but, oh boy! watch your meat on the bar-b-q when they are around. Chris didn’t know what struck him when this cheeky bugger flew down, clipped Chris on the shoulder, grabbed a sausage right off the hot plate, then sat on the fence right in front of me and ate it! It was so funny because it must have been really hot, but he kept hold of it and finally swallowed.

This is a little bit of a concern!

Rabbits everywhere in Coffs Harbour! They were all through the camp ground, but not only that, the whole town seemed to be awash with rabbits. So Bizarre! They looked like domestic rabbits, but we couldn’t get that close to them – so cute!

Fact of the day – Pet rabbits are illegal in Queensland

Man make fire

The Racecourse Campground in Goolawah National Park, near Crescent Head was perfect! Right on the beach, long drop loos and cold showers; but peaceful and beautiful. We paid $5 to the warden who gave us this fire pit. Really cool, made from old an gas cylinder. You could see in the clouds though, that there was more rain coming……

And then the rain came down

After almost a week of fine weather, Crescent Head saw the start of more rain, this time it didn’t stop for about 10 days and was the start of the storms which caused flooding in South East Queensland right down to Sydney. We still had 4 more days on the road. Coffs Harbour and Surfers Paradise it just bucketed down and didn’t stop so we didn’t get to explore so much.

We were safe and dry in FatBoy, but had to drive up through some of the worst of the storm. So much flooding and roads closed, it was pretty scary. So many people lost their homes in this storm, so devastating. Very very sad 😦

We made it back safe and sound to Marcoola, back to base. As I write this, we have five days to go before we take off on our next BIG adventure. The borders are starting to come down and we are embarking on the 27 hour plane journey to Puerto Rico in the Caribbean. I know we will have some great stories and fabulous photos to share with you over the next few months!

Thank you so much for reading our story!!