Sunday, 7 July 2013

Darwin

Oil changes and new tyres are a necessary evil when you travel long distances and we made contact with the BMW service agent, in Darwin, well in advance of our arrival on 29th June. $2300 later and Devil (F650GS Twin) and Dwarf (R1200GS) were back in our care. If everything is still working when we are 1000km down the road we’ll forgive them for making us feel like we were ripped off.

We arrived in Darwin just in time for firecracker night. This once a year event is held on Territory Day and punters take the opportunity to buy fireworks and enjoy their own firecracker show. We stayed home on the 1st July, but unfortunately our home was next door to the show grounds which were a designated “safe” zone for letting off crackers. Consequently from 5pm until midnight we were subjected to a continuous barrage of bangs, cracks and pops. The following morning, news radio reported that the fire brigade attended 200 call outs and eight people were taken to hospital with minor injuries; only in the Territory.

Sunset from Seafood on Cullen,
Cullen Bay Marina, Darwin.
Dining out in Darwin can be an inexpensive experience if you pick the right places and we made the most of our city stopover and gave the caravan park barbecue’s a rest. We fully recommend the all you can eat steak and seafood buffet at Seafood on Cullen; at $38.50 this meal represents excellent value. We gorged on salt and pepper squid, scallops, chilli mud crabs and garlic prawns.

The Darwin Sailing Club still makes visitors feel welcome and we thoroughly enjoyed sitting in the shade and looking out over the yachts anchored in Fanny Bay. Twenty years ago, when we were travelling aboard our yacht, Roma II, most of the visiting yachts anchored off the Darwin Sailing Club and the club was a hive of cruising activity. These days, Darwin boasts three marinas and the visiting yachts are spread far and wide in the Northern Territory capital; we felt a little of the cruising charm has been lost as a result.

Our week in Darwin seemed far too long, however I always take something with me from every place we visit. From Darwin I take the knowledge that white ants are not ants, they are cockroaches.

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