Playing tourist with my sister

If you follow me on Instagram you will know that I’ve got my sister from the UK visiting and we’ve done some touristy things which I thought would be worth mentioning for general interest or in case any readers might pay us a visit here in Perth.

My sister has visited us Perth many times, so we tried to find new things for her to do. We managed to get the tail end of the Memorial Day poppies in Kings Park.

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She hadn’t seen Elizabeth Quay, so that was an essential visit too. I love this sculpture!

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It was a pretty blowy day but I managed to wear my Lottie dress with modified neckline and an unblogged sneaky shrug (tutorial here) made from luscious linen knit from Knitwit. Gill is wearing a blouse I gave her. I got it free and modified the back into a corset style drawstring (blogged here)

We went to Albany to see the Field of Lights at the Avenue of Honour, Mount Clarence, which is another commemoration of WWI and the ANZACS who fought in that war and what a sight it is. 16,000 lights are spread over a large area and they transition between green, yellow and white, which represent the kowhai and the wattle blooming after rain, which are the New Zealand and Australian national flowers, and the lights are intended to depict wild beauty, sacrifice, courage and honour.

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I took a lot of photographs but it is so hard to show the extraordinary impression these lights leave one with. It was quite an emotional experience.

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We visited the Albany Heritage Park, Mount Clarence, in the day and the views are just amazing.

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The entire park seems to be a memorial to various service men and women and has a lot of really interesting buildings and statues. This one replicates actual letters written from service personnel to their loved ones, and my heart broke when I read them. It was almost my favourite part of the entire park.IMG_0037

Albany is a great place to visit at most times of the year, but if you can get it on a day when the sun is shining and the wind isn’t blowing a gale, then it’s gorgeous. We had mixed weather, but no rain and light winds, so we were really lucky.

We dragged my sister to all the touristy spots, including the Natural Bridge and the Gap.

IMG_0061My photos of the Gap aren’t great as I don’t enjoy hanging over a railing with my phone.

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The city of Albany has some lovely buildings and lots of interesting areas to visit, especially in the historical quarter. This is the Town Hall, which was the first civic building constructed in the town being opened in 1888.

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York Street has lots of little alleys and they have some gorgeous street art.IMG_0026

This little rotunda just sits on the side of the road. Some investigation shows that it was built as a bandstand but the size of it was reduced to make room for roadworks. It is really pretty, but probably wouldn’t function as much more than covered seating now. That’s my sister parked on the seat!

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We became very enamoured of the painted silos when we drove across Australia earlier this year, so I was really pleased to see this example of silo art in Albany.IMG_0032

By chance we came across a chainsaw sculpture park belonging to a local artist. The entrance was rather unprepossessing, but once we were inside we were entranced with the whimsical nature of some of the sculptures. Some of them are fashioned from stumps in the ground like this one.IMG_0087

and others are using bits of scrap and introduced wooden sculptures. IMG_0090

Some of them are frankly a little creepy

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And others are just plain fun. This is a dog with its head down in the dirt and three little creatures having a good giggle at it. IMG_0073

Young or old, this is a fabulous place to visit. It is free, but there is a donation box. We stayed in an Airbnb and I was surprised that our host didn’t know about it.

One of the nicest beaches we’ve ever visited is Little Beach. It’s a 30 minute drive from Albany but so worth it. Gill and I had a frolick on the beach

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and Mark climbed a rock for a spectacular viewIMG_0104

Places to visit on the way there or back are the Williams Woolshed, and the Rose Maze at The Kodja Place, Kojonup. As you walk through the maze you are led through a series of plaques, mosaics and striking pergolas ranging from old sheep yards to the mission brown 1970s pergola, the Woodhenge to the ‘deaths in custody’ pergola. 

The Rose Maze weaves together the stories of three women: Yoondi; the Noongar woman, Elizabeth; an Englishwoman, and the Italian woman; Maria, depicted by this statue. These women highlight the hardships of early life in country Australia, and it’s quite a moving tribute. IMG_0108

I once visited my mother to find her sitting with a snake around her neck, a dingo at her feet, and a koala sitting in a tree. The wildlife zoo is a visitor to the Fremantle Markets and I visited with both my sisters, as well as my niece and great niece. This is my niece and that hand is my snake fearing sister patting the snake. IMG_0115

She really enjoyed the comatose koala though!IMG_0122

We’ve had the most brilliant time with my sister. I don’t see her very often but we have a real connection, sharing a very similar sense of humour. We had some sad things to do, such as scattering our parents’ ashes and those of all their dogs (we had a lot of ashes stashed away!), and sorting through our mother’s possessions, but we had lots of laughs, did a lot of sewing (another post) and some cooking (if you follow me on IG, you will have seen me making fruit mince pies). She picked up the Tunisian crochet blanket I’ve been making from scraps of wool, and pretty much doubled the size of it. As I contemplate her going home I feel very sad, but cheered by the thought that we’re going to go and freeload off her next year at some point!

 

 

 

 

 

Fadanista

10 thoughts on “Playing tourist with my sister

  1. I really enjoy local touristy posts like this one as your country is so far away and exotic to me. The wood sculptures are amazing and so is this pearl white sand beach! You and your sister do share a family resemblance. She must be a lovely person!

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    1. She’s seven years older than me and I was very young when she went off to boarding school and she never came back home to live, so we’ve spent very little time together, but it always amazes me how we just click. Sadly it’s not like that with my other sister, who is nothing like Gill or I.

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      1. We don’t really choose which of our siblings we get along with. I have four sisters and I love them all, but only one is my confidant. Besides, when I met you (and Suzy) I really felt we were real sisters! xxx

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      2. I feel sad that the sister I am closest to lives so far away whereas the one that lives close to me isn’t on the same wavelength. I agree about the connection that you and I have though!

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  2. Time with our sisters is such a gift. I’m 10 years older than mine which meant we didn’t really know each other when we were younger but we love time together now. It looks like you two (three if we count Mark!) had a great time – and thanks for the vicarious tour 😁

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    1. Gill is 7 years older than me but went to boarding school when I was very young and then we came to Australia leaving her behind. It’s quite interesting that when we get together we have an instant connection.

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