Posted by: Malpass Oz Adventure | November 14, 2011

On the Road Again

In the words of Willie Nelson, who I was subjected to so often as a child… we are “On the Road Again”! I’m not going to say it was easy leaving my brother and sister-in-law’s place in Perth. We had two fabulous weeks living a stationary life, spending time with family and generally just hanging about in between schooling sessions. The kids really loved the time in Perth for all different sorts of reasons, but I have to say that the instant access to television had to rate pretty highly for all of them.  Jake in particular hardly had that TV off in the time we were there! Tobey couldn’t get enough of all the things that move – the buggy, the ride-on-mower and the horses. Indianna loved being with her cousin Anastasia, and because they are five year old girls I think their relationship certainly benefitted from Anastasia having to go off to school through the week!  Both Indi and Tobey loved the dogs, but I am certain that the dogs are a little relieved to see the back end of Indianna, there is only so much cuddling and patting and walking that any dog can stand.

Go-cart mayhemGo-cart mayhemGo-cart mayhemMore TV pleaseIndianna grooming the ponyTobey astride 'Fletch'

Tobey and Indianna were both lucky enough to tag along with Anastasia to her pony riding lessons and a pony fun-day which they absolutely loved. They both have big plans for the menagerie that we’ll have once we’re settled again.

Anastasia, Indianna and Tobey about to go out on Pony fun dayIndianna playing pony gamesTobey racing the pony

We did very few touristy things while in Perth, an afternoon at Kings Park and a few hours at Fremantle was about the extent of it, but we did have some more regular outings – like the movies, barbeques, bike rides, car servicing, Saturday night motor-cross and I even made it to the hairdresser for the first time in ten months.

Tobey at the Roundhouse old Goal in FremantleFremantle wharf with Nanna

Mum has also come to stay while we were in Perth, it’s Nanna and her offspringthe first time in eight years since Mum, Tony and I have been together – the definite downside of living at opposite sides of the country and Mum being across the Tasman. We’ve managed to squeeze a space in the car for Mum to travel with us for a while, so as we set off from Perth Ben has his wife, three children and mother-in-law crammed into the car… he’s not so sure he’s currently “living the dream”! Any wonder he spent so much time with Tony in the shed while we were in Perth, just preparing himself for the next leg of the journey.

Our first stop Moths at Contofrom Perth was the Margaret River region and because everything is so close here we decided to set up camp at Conto campground in the Leeuwin-Naturaliste National Park, about 20kms south of Margaret River itself. There are a huge number of campsites at Conto, set out in four different loops with camp kitchens, fire rings and wood on-site. We ended up staying here for five nights with the only down-side being the millions of moths that came out at dusk and hid in any partially dim space when the sun rose in the morning. Our morning ritual was to flap the moths out of the folds in the chair before sitting down for breakfast.

We had a few sunny days in the Margaret River region, but on the whole the weather has definitely been a lot colder and wetter than expected at this time of the year.  Apparently unseasonably cold too… brilliant that we time our visit for an unseasonably cold year!  None-the-less we did manage to get a few rays of sunshine and the kids managed a swim or two, even I managed to get in one day at Prevelly for a brief dip while the boys surfed a few little waves.


 The Whale cruising at Meelup Beachwhales are still moving around the edge of the country and we were fortunate to see many water spouts from the shore. One day we even saw a mother and baby very close into shore at Meelup beach near Dunsborough. Such a beautiful sight that you always feel very privileged to see.

We spent an “a-maze-n” day at the A-Maze-n Maze just out of Margaret River getting lost in the hedge maze and playing all sorts of games. The entry fee was fairly steep, but the facilities were really good and when you consider that they have been growing the hedges for 17 years before opening the maze you get some appreciation for the invested capital needing to provide a return!

Which way?More gamesOur little angelWe rounded the DSC_0055bottom of the Cape Leeuwin Peninsula to bring our visit to the Margaret River region to an end.  You certainly could spend a whole lot of time here visiting all manner of drinking and eating delights, but your food and drink budget would certainly need to be a lot heftier than ours!  We settled for ice-creams, nougat and chocolate and shockingly steered clear of the wineries – a decision I’m sure we will look back on in disgust.



  1. Hi Malpass family. It looks like the time around Perth and Margaret River was ” a-maze-n”! Kings Park is one of my favourite spots in Perth!

  2. Goodness – I’ve just realised that we were in Parry Beach at the same time!

    Indianna and Anastasia met our dog Buffy, and we had a discussion about which colour was our favourite, pink or purple. The next morning the girls came to visit, and ask if Buffy could come out to play. They are both adorable – I just wish I’d known they were yours!

    We have just left Albany, and are headed for Esperance, so perhaps we may cross paths again 🙂

    Best wishes

    • How funny! Yes, the girls were out on puppy hunt at Parry’s beach, I think all the dog owners were scuttling away when they heard their high pitched voices coming down the track! We are leaving Albany today, but will head up to Kalgoorlie before Esperance. I’m sure Indianna will do a great job of looking out for Buffy if we happen to cross paths again… this time we’ll know to stop and chat!

      Take care and safe travels

  3. Are you across the Nullabor yet? I am in Eyre Peninsular very beautiful & weather just perfect – blue skies & perfect temperature. Heading off to Yorke Peninsular tomorrow – thought you maybe over this way soon?

    Your journey is nearing its end – it must have been lovely for you all to be together with your Mum.

    Take care & keep travelling safely

    • Hi Cathy, We’re not quite there yet. We’re in Bremer Bay, between Albany and Esperance at the moment and still have a couple of weeks I guess before heading across the Nullabour. Maybe we’ll bump into you again, which would be great. What are your plans for the next month or so? Maria

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  4. HI guys, Tim and Jo Riegels here, we are good friends of Ben and Wendy, they told us about you. We are doing the big lap in Oct 2014. Can not wait!! We will go in a camp trailer, we want a walk through one though and not for about six months, got to pay a car off first. I will have a good read of your trip when I get a chance. Just wanted to touch base. Ben and Wendy loved their trip around and said they had a great time with you lot. Cheers, Jo

    • Hi guys, great to hear from you and very excited to hear of another family making their plans for the big lap! Hope the plans go well and if we can help with any advice please let us know, although I’m sure Ben and Wendy have that covered. Would love to hear how you’re getting on with everything at some stage – it’s certainly been one of the best things we have ever done, made all the more memorable by meeting great friends like the Cullens. All the best with the next 18 months of plans! Maria

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