It was a quiet start to the New Year - we were apart over the Christmas holiday and only reunited on 30th January so enjoyed a glass (or two!), of champers and each others company on NYE, sedate and simple. Thanks to a full diary in terms of "sits" we hit the ground running and we were actually house and pet sitting right up until the day before we flew out to Western Australia!
We had arranged to leave the car at a B & B which offers parking and overnight accommodation near to the airport;
www.heathrow-cottages.co.uk We didn't need a room before our trip but took advantage of a lovely comfy stay and yummy breakfast on our return! Airport transfers were included so our journey from Bristol to London Heathrow on 28th February was plain sailing.
Our flight with Singapore Airlines, Airbus 320, left on time at 1005hrs and so followed the long flight to Singapore.
We watched some movies, read a little, slept a little and ate more than is good for you at 35000ft and in the middle of the night!! We arrived in Singapore ahead of schedule and after a very brief time in transit we caught our connecting flight onward to Perth arriving in the early hours of 1st March.
We had organised a pet and house sit for our first week in Perth and the lovely owner kindly offered to put us up on our arrival - given that this meant she had to get up at 2am to let us in we were very appreciative to say the least!
Our first week in Perth was over in a flash! A heatwave meant temperatures were in the high 30s on most days so we were thankful for the air con! We spent the first few days getting over our jet lag. Despite having undertaken numerous long haul flights we still suffer with adusting to the time differences and for the first few days of most trips we find we are a little "foggy"!
We just took it easy, exploring the local area at our own pace and visiting the City and environs after some restorative sleep.
We were impressed with Perth. The city itself is compact and sits on the Swan River - the skyline is very attractive, especially at night when the lights are reflected on the water.
We went to King's Park where the views of the Swan and Canning Rivers as well as the city are breath taking. It was also a great place to be in the heat as there was a nice breeze, albeit a warm one!!
It had been suggested to us that we visit Fremantle for some respite from the hot temperatures, a lovely harbour town benefitting from the "Fremantle Doctor" or sea breeze. We went and we wandered and we loved it! Another recommendation was to visit "Little Creatures" brewery - we headed there for lunch and it was packed, always a good sign. The place was humming and it was quite an experience. The food was delicious and the local brew slipped down easily!!
All too soon our first week came to an end and we moved on to stay in a friend's house a mere 5 minute drive away!
Given that a couple of weeks before our departure we weren't sure if we were going or not, the fact that we secured a house and pet sit and then our dear friends offered the use of their home for a week was just so lucky for us. We will always be grateful for the generosity and kindess bestowed upon us - it really did make our stay special.
The first day of our second week we headed over to Rottnest Island which is just off Perth, a 30 minute boat ride away. The day we went it was very windy but very warm so the breeze was welcome. We hired bikes and explored the island as much as time allowed. It was a fantastic day but we just did not have enough time to see as much of the island as we would have liked. It certainly gave us a taster though and if we have the good fortune to return in the future then we will opt for an overnight so that we can visit the other side of the island.
A day lazing by the pool followed, catching up with our journals and dozing in the shade. There was an exhibition of art work at the local beach so we made our way over there on the Friday night and enjoyed fish and chips out of the paper(!) and a bottle of champers as we watched the sun set over the Indian Ocean.......good times.