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Sovereign Hill in Ballarat

The last stop on our roadtrip was gold miners city Ballarat. Sovereign Hill is the main attraction there and gives you an impression of what Ballarat looked like at the times of the gold rush: Vintage buildings and local people dressed up like from the 19th century, you can visit a gold mine, watch how a gold bullion is poured, etc. It was fun to spend a day there and I finally had the chance to pan for gold on my own. Not as easy as it looks but after a while you gain some practice and have the first small nuggets in your pan ;-)

- Bernd -

Grampians National Park
Visting Steve in Adelaide
Cage Diving with Rodney Fox Shark Expeditions

On October 21 we finally departed from Port Lincoln on board of a vessel operated by Rodney Fox Shark Expeditions and headed for the Neptune Islands.
When it comes to great white sharks Rodney Fox is the most popular person in the world. He is the guy who was bitten by a GWS in 1963 and survived. Despite of severe injuries he went back into the water only a few weeks after the incident and has become a legend since then. He did not only provide footage for the movie Jaws at a time where shark tourism did not yet exist and there was hardly any documentary film about the GWS. He also became a symbol for the protection of sharks lateron. So it was an easy descision which tour operator to choose for the trip.
We spent three days and two nights on the sea. Besides the surface cage Rodney Fox has an ocean floor cage for certified scuba divers which is lowered to 20 meteres where we had even more shark activity than at the surface. I spent some hours in both of the cages and had the chance to take a few pictures. You can see one of them in the gallery below, the rest of them will be realeased via my Instagram account soon.
On the way back we stopped at Hopkins Island for snorkeling with sea lions. You can imagine that it felt strange snorkeling with them just a few kilometers from where we saw the great white sharks ;-)

- Bernd -

Port Lincoln

Port Lincoln is definitley Great White Shark city. I thought that cage diving was a minor spectacle there but the city identitfies itself with the shark tourism. In the reception area of our hostel there was a life-size model of a shark cage including a (small) great white shark. In the harbor you can see ads promoting the cage diving tours everywhere. And there is even a bad-tasting Cage Diver Beer. Ready for takeoff! :-D

- Bernd -

P.S. Did I mention, that we found a blue-tongued skink who agreed with a photo shooting? Those little guys are everywhere along the road but usually gone before you can stop your car and get the camera ready!!

Arkaroo Rock
Driving to Flinders Ranges National Park
Western City Quorn

Quorn was a suprise. The city has been used as a movie set several times and in fact you feel like you are part of a Western movie. We stayed two nights in the Great Northern Lodge which was another suprise. They have a vintage saloon-like restaurant where we met Steve and Lisa, a couple from Adelaide. On the other hand they have very modern and clean rooms. The owners were also very friendly. Both the city and the hotel are a big recommendation!

- Bernd -

Alligator Gorge
Kapunda
Wine Tasting @ Barossa Valley

On our way to Flinders Ranges National Park we stopped by at Kaelers Cellar Door for a short wine tasting. Good products if you like sweet white wines. They also had fortified white wine (taste is similar to port wine and sherry) which I liked the most.

- Bernd -