Southern Highlands, NSW, Australia

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Road Trip to Sydney Part One

Monday 16 March

After having the house sprayed for insects, spiders and checked for white ants we headed off to Stanthorpe for the night before continuing on to Armidale, Windella and Sydney.

Stanthorpe is a three hour drive up through the ranges and into the Granite Belt. The sky turned dark and we .......

.......went through a storm.

The sky was changing all the time and we were hoping it wouldn't be a bad storm or a hail storm. We were lucky to escaped with heavy rain, which had stopped by the time we arrived. We booked into a motel and walked next door to Anna's Restaurant. It is a very popular Italian Restaurant. Lucky we had made a booking from home.
We had stuffed mushrooms followed by cannelloni. It was delicious but I felt guilty eating so much as I'm putting on weight.

Tuesday 17 March

The next day we had a walk around Stanthorpe. We loved the park. Bill has an idea for a movie.

Up here in the ranges it is cooler and some of the trees change colour in Autumn but we are still having warm weather and not many trees have turned yet.
Old hotel and post office buildings in Stanthorpe. The Stanthorpe area is renowned for its wineries, but as we have visited them quite a few times in the past we didn't bother this time. Then we drove for two and a half hours down the New England Highway to Armidale crossing the border from Queensland into New South Wales on the way.

We stayed in a little cabin in a tourist park.

We walked through the parks and town of Armidale and I was disappointed that the trees have not got their Autumn colours yet.
There are many old historic buildings. Armidale is a University town and there are boarding schools for the outlying farmer's and station owner's children.

Wednesday 18 March

At Uralla we left the New England Highway and headed down Thunderbolt's Way to Gloucester. It is supposed to be a picturesque alternative route to Sydney. Captain Thunderbolt, (Frederick Ward) seen here on his horse was a famous bushranger in the 1800's. That's a real magpie on his hat. He was known as the Gentleman Bushranger, as he never killed anyone and was kind to battlers. So we are following his way through the mountains.
The countyside was beautiful. Rolling green hills dotted with cattle and sheep at first. Then we climbed through eucalyptus forests over The Great Dividing Range.

We stopped at a lookout, unfortunately it was a bit hazy.

After a about three hours we came to another country town, Gloucester. We had lunch and then drove another hour through the beautiful green countyside of The Hunter Valley region to our friend's house at Windella, where we have been invited to stay for the next two nights.


  1. Seems so strange that you're going into autumn and us going into spring. Your trip looks and sounds wonderful. The landscape is so beautiful and all those great side trips to wander about and see. Wish I was there.

  2. Diane, I get excited each time I come here knowing that with my camera I too can do this now. Why oh why did I wait so long to go digital?
    Enjoy your time away ....

  3. wow, great photos, I remember being out that way, lovely. I love to have a driving holiday you see so much more and I find it fascinating. Thanks for sharing!

  4. Lovely post Diane....good to see you are not starving on the road....must say I like the look of that dish.....


  5. A delight
    lizzie b.

  6. How beautiful as always! It is even more beautiful to have you back posting again. Welcome home.

  7. YUM-O - that dish looks incredible :-) Again, I loved the tour - I am such a computer-chair traveler - the cabins look darling - looks like a lot of fun!

  8. Thanks all, sorry I haven't had time to read all of your posts while we are on the road but will catch up when we are home in about 3 or 4 days.

  9. More great photos thank you heaps for sharing......

  10. I can see why so many SAs think Australia and SA are so alike, your photos totally tugged at my heart strings and made me miss home, there is a sort of rugged beauty in your photos that just isn't there here. It's pretty sure, but not diverse and beautiful.