Hot article Driving into El Questro Wilderness Park

Ten Things From My Travels So Far

Happy Christmas everybody!

Aaahhh it’s that time of year again and I’ve been reminiscing over my time in Australia with the Best Jobs In The World. This isn’t a Top Ten List, just ten things that I’ve really enjoyed doing over the past four months in W.A. I could do another Ten Things List tomorrow and it’d be completely different.

Purnululu National Park

Purnululu National Park - Bungle Bungle Range Walk In This is the Bungle Bungle Range in Australia’s North West. It’s about 350 million years old. 350 MILLION YEAR’S OLD!! I had to sit down to take that in. I was lucky enough to see it from the air as well. It’s truly spectacular.

Mud Crabbing at the Dampier Peninsula

BBQ Mud Crab at Cape Leveque Ahhh, my first day at work! Catching huge mud crabs with Indigenous guide Brian Lee up at Cape Leveque. Here we are cooking them over a beach barbie after catching them armed only with a long metal pole and hessian sack.

The Homestead at El Questro Wilderness Park

A bath with a view at El Questro Homestead

I think this has been my favourite place to stay in Western Australia so far, I was lucky enough to spend a couple of nights at the El Questro Homestead in the Kimberley. They only have space for 18 guests and you’re situated right in the heart of one million acres of wilderness park. And you can have a bath outside.

Margaret River and the South West

photo This is Fraser Gallop winery in Margaret River, one of the up and coming stars of wine making in the Australia’s South West. I didn’t realise how green it was in this corner of the country, with rolling hills and woodland. The area’s known for its premium vineyards, great beaches and world-class surfing breaks.

The Margaret River Gourmet Escape

2391The Margaret River Gouremt Escape is the best food and wine festival I’ve EVER BEEN TO. It has top chefs, great brunches, lunches and dinners, master classes, Q and A’s and is set amongst spectacular countryside. There’s just LOADS AND LOADS of fun stuff to do. If I’m in Australia next year, I’m gonna hire a house for the weekend in the South West and hang out there with a load of mates and go to the Gourmet Escape.

Kalgoorlie and the Goldfields

"Inside Australia" Lake Ballard I like a bit of history stuff and I like a bit of art stuff, so travelling round the 965km Golden Quest Discovery Trail in the Golden Outback was perfect. You learn all about the gold mining rush of the early 1900s and visit actual prospector’s tin houses from the day. En route you’ll also get to see Antony Gormley’s fantastic living art exhibition “Inside Australia” at Lake Ballard salt lake.

Fishing and Foraging in Shark Bay

IMG_1398 Look at this picture. LOOK! On those rocks are oysters and we chiselled them off with a hammer and screwdriver, chucked them on a beach BBQ and had them for tea. I also caught a Blue Bonefish on a hand line and we ate that too. This is at Shark Bay on the Coral Coast, at a secret location I’m not allowed to divulge.

Perth and Rottnest

1628 Perth is such a welcoming, friendly City it’s gonna be hard to leave when my contract ends in February. A 30 minute ferry ride off the coast is Rottnest Island. I think EVERYONE here has had family holidays on the island. Rotto Fast Facts:

  • No cars allowed, only mode of transport is bicycle.
  • The Quokka, a small friendly marsupial, is native to the Island.
  • Rottnest has over 63 beaches and 20 sandy bays. Yowsers.

The Gascoyne Dash

....And they're off! You can’t see me, but I’m sat in the passenger seat with my new pal Bradley Cooper at the wheel (he’s Western Australia’s off-road racing Champion). We drove at over 200km/hour around a dirt track in preparation for the annual Kickstarters Gascoyne Dash. It’s a 500km race across the desert starting from Carnarvon on the Coral Coast.

Cygnet Bay

This is from the Giant Tides Last Light Tour at Cygnet Bay Pearl Farm in Australia’s North West. They have the second largest tidal movements in the world up there, and we were witnessing it all from a speed boat. It’s not in the picture but after the tour we were treated to an eight course pearl meat degustation feast. Lucky buggers.

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Mark “The Black Olive” Olive

Mark Olive is a man with a plan.

And it’s a far GREATER plan than just teaching us how to cook pancakes with muntrie berries and wattle seed (although they were really tasty).

Mark is a renowned Indigenous Chef and part of a plan at the Roelands Mission to teach young Indigenous adults how to cook using ingredients from the bush. But much more than that, it’s about teaching vital social skills and life skills.

Whilst driving through Australia’s South West we popped by to hear about the great work they’re doing and to swot up on bush food and Indigenous ingredients.

Situated about 160km south of Perth, there’s a ten strong team at Roelands teaching not just cookery, catering and hospitality, but helping the younger Indigenous generation understand important lessons about their history. Old craft techniques are taught and stories are told through music and spoken word, reconnecting them back to the land.

The confidence and sense of identity these teachings instill give the students a brighter opportunity for the future.

BUT ANYWAY, back to those pancakes!

A lot of bush fruits are quite tart making them great for desserts. In our pancakes we used a combination of muntrie berries and wattle seed. The berries have an apple and cinnamon taste adding a lot of flavour, and we mixed the ground down wattle seed with cold water to add a touch of savoury.

If you’re in the area and have the chance, pop into the Roelands Mission and say hello. They’re doing great work for the local community and any support they receive is greatly appreciated by the fantastic team they have working there.

And you may even be allowed to flip a few pancakes.

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The Pinnacles

Howdy folks,

Well today’s Taste Mastering adventure sees me on a bus trip to the other-worldy, sci-fi-esque structures called the Pinnacles.

So all aboard and buckle up as we set off on the 500km round trip from Perth to explore the eerie landscape of the Pinnacles Desert.

Here we go!

Hang on a minute…why am I holding a 15 year-old 30kg wombat?

Ahhh, first stop is the zoo! Nobody told me that! Caversham Wildlife Park is a family operated business and houses the largest privately owned collection of native wildlife in Western Australia. It’s also a regular stop off on this trip. I must’ve missed the memo.

OK, now it’s time to see the Pinnacles!

So how come I end up doing this?

…Is someone playing a joke on me? This doesn’t look like the Pinnacles from the photos I’ve seen?? It looks much more like I’m holding a giant $200 Grade H 2.5kg rock lobster above my head and pointing for the cameras.

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