Port Macquarie has become more of just a stop off to break up the train journey up the coast. There’s not too much to do here and even less in the pouring rain so I didn’t do much on my first day other than locate a Coles and buy dinner. However, I did go a walk along the beach and harbour front and found that there’s an odd tradition of painting one of the rocks along the breakwall with a message or picture as a mark that you were here. Whether its actually legal is questionable but it makes the front very pretty though some rocks were clearly painted better than others. Sadly I had left my tins of paint back at the hostel so couldn’t add my name to the wall.
Day two and the sun had managed to escape the cloud so I decided to head out on a whale watching boat. On the way out you ride the waves as the boat jumps them which is pretty fun but that’s really where the fun ended. After an hour of searching we found no whales and came back ashore. Up until our trip out including the boat before us (or so they told us) there had been 100% success of whales since June but we managed to ruin the company’s statistic and they weren’t too pleased. Once we returned they sent out spotters so they knew where to find the whales. Would have been nice if they had done that for us. So having returned with photos of empty sea I was very disappointed and felt pretty out of pocket. It didn’t help that the man running the tours told us that last year they did a money back guarantee on sightings for the whole of the season but they never had to use it. Helpfully they hadn’t run that offer this year.
My afternoon was spent down at the Koala Hospital where rescued koalas are looked after until they are well enough for released back into the wild, usually after being hit by a car or attacked by a dog. Some of the stories where quite sad as we got a tour around the place but most koalas do get to go back home. We did get to meet the oldest known koala in the world and a very cute three legged one. There were some little orphaned joeys as well who were adorable and quite lively as koalas go. I’m looking forward to my koala placement at Christmas after today but that’s still quite far away.
Tomorrow I move on again to Coffs Harbour which claims to be the banana production centre of the world. There’ll be cheap bananas then.