After our epic lunch and beers at Murray’s (thanks, designated driver Andy), the three of us set out to go sandboarding. We’d planned to do this ever since booking our trip to Port Stephens, although we all had a different idea of what it would be like. Kels figured we’d stand up on the boards, I thought we’d be lying down like boogie-boarding, and Andy thought we’d be sitting. Who would be right?
We drove to the coast where we’d be boarding and parked at the top of Stockton Beach. 32 km (20 miles) long, this seemingly never-ending expanse of sand is part of the Worimi conservation lands, home to the aboriginal Worimi people. We got into a big sandy bus and made the short drive to the dune we’d be surfing. Turns out Andy was right – you sit on the boards. They’re not really big enough to lie on (and you’d get a face-full of sand), and you’d slip right off if you tried to stand. Apparently you can do different types of sandboarding in different places.
We scrambled up the hill (quite the workout!) and the adventure began.
Some runs ended smoothly, while others…
Well, the pictures speak for themselves. At least sand is soft!
It’s got to be a pretty boring job just sitting out in the dunes while everyone boards, so this guy brought a diversion. This picture just screams Australia to me:
We were determined to get the most out of this adventure, so we kept at it.
There were only so many routes to choose from, but we made a go at trying every little spot.
This photo Kels took is one of my favorites:
And here’s the cover photo for our debut album, We Put the Andy in Sandy, by Doc and the Kelseys. In stores near you soon!
Dunes aren’t only for sandboarding, either.
They’re also great for gazing into the distance.
Who could blame anyone, with views like this?
Apparently, these dunes are often used as a filming location, and it’s easy to see why. They have an entirely otherworldly feeling to them, and it’s not a stretch to picture Star Wars or Dune being shot here, to replicate an alien planet.
We decided to walk back along the beach instead of taking the bus.
What an action-packed day! Back at our bach, we relaxed for a bit and went into central Port Stephens for a drink later on. Afterwards, we had the karaoke session to end all karaoke sessions, topped off with sweet dance moves, at our place. Thankfully, I don’t have any pictures to share of that.
The next morning, we packed up, said goodbye to our bach and made for Tomaree Head. Jutting out into Nelson Bay, it’s a popular hill for hikers and runners. You can see why…
Here’s Shark Island in the distance, with Fingal Spit just barely exposed to the right:
The third beach away from us is where we began our walk the day before:
What an incredible place!
It would’ve been easy to spend hours up here, if we didn’t have the drive back to Sydney ahead of us.
Farewell, fabulously epic Port Stephens! Great idea on Kels B’s part. 🙂
On the drive back, we took the coast road and made a beach stop along the way. We had it all to ourselves, besides one woman and her stubborn dog, who refused to go with her back to the car. He wasn’t done his beach walk and had a full on doggo tantrum – pretty funny.
Back in Sydney, we had Thai takeaway and great game night in. On our last day, we had a delicious brunch by the harbor and took a ferry to Manly for shopping and craft beer.
There’s so much to do in Sydney that you could spend weeks (or months) there, but Andy and I were lucky enough to have Kels as our tour guide and get all the highlights in a relatively short visit. I’d recommend this amazing city to anyone and everyone! Sometimes, big cities tend to just seem all the same to me, but Sydney isn’t anything like that. It has its own unique personality and so many hidden gems to discover. We’ll most certainly be back, but it won’t be the same without all three members of Doc and the Kelseys.