I think it best you sit back with a cup of tea, or coffee for this one…it’s long!
A great thing about being a singer is that I work with organists. The even better thing is that one of my organist friends is a pilot. And what’s the greatest thing of all is that he asked me to come along for a joy flight to Rottnest Island to bring in 2017 on a high!
I was pretty enthusiastic about the idea and dragged my wonderful friend and singer Belinda along for the ride, whether she liked it, or not!
Rottnest Island, off the ‘shipwreck coast’ of Perth was found by Dutch sailors as far back as 1610. It wasn’t given it’s name (‘Rotte Nest’) until 1696 though, by Captain Willem de Vlamingh. The name means ‘rat nest’ in old Dutch, because the unique little marsupials, known as ‘quokkas’, on the island were confused as giant RATS! I don’t know how it’s possible, quokkas are far more adorable!
But enough of the history lesson!
Down to business.
Belinda and I met at Jandakot airport, probably a little earlier than anyone would like to be on new years day. (11am *cough cough*)
Before we were met by Andrew, our flight captain for the day, who lead us onto the tarmac.
Captain Andrew naturally all suited up in his uniform and ready to go.
Before he showed us our ride for the day – a twin engine little beast.
And we threw our stuff in the boot…I mean, back door…and took our seats!
Generally being way too excited…
Next minute, after all the safety checks, we were taxiing …
And then taking off!
(Excuse the dirty window!…Couldn’t quite pop my hand out and clean it down.)
We could not have picked a better day for it! Sunny and perfectly clear. The visibility was superb!
While the trip to Rottnest is actually very short and straight forward, Andrew treated us to a scenic flight, getting clearance to circuit Perth CBD before we flew over the Indian Ocean.
Giving us a fantastic view of the Swan River as he was getting there.
(Good ol’ UWA with all those fine terracotta roofs ^)
Before long the city was in our midst. And it was spectacular!
The casino swimming pool looking like an oasis on my right.
Andrew then set our course for Rottnest.
The ocean growing closer…
Miles and miles of sandy beaches to the left and right of us!
Soon our sights were set on the island though! It’s turquoise coral-ly water looking so enticing.
I love the place for it’s beautiful water. It reminds me of the gorgeous water of Malta right in the middle of the Mediterranean, yet it’s half a world away!
Rottnest has two lovely lighthouses on it. (If you don’t know already, I like a good lighthouse.) The larger one is in the centre of the island, and another is sitting near a beach, which I’ll show you later, don’t worry. (That’s if you’re as enthusiastic about lighthouse aesthetics as I am.)
We circled the island, before it was (sadly) time to land.
We got out and headed for the village, after a GoPro selfie of course!
And passing some pretty impressive trees.
Belinda and I were straight up ready for our breakfast (at lunch), so we headed for the very popular Rottnest Bakery.
And ordered a few too many carbs for what we required, but ate it all anyway!
After, we headed off to meet the others at the beach.
And this is where you meet the other lighthouse!
What a cutie!
And what a beach!
We got ready to take the plunge!
I’m about honesty here…. The water was FREEZING! But once you got in, it felt great!
Thoroughly refreshed, we headed for the village again, as the others were ready for lunch.
We hit the pub for some fish and chips, but sadly they were nothing to rave about and a little overpriced. But next, everyone was keen for ice-cream! And Simmo’s ice creamery is pretty reputable, though also overpriced. But it was good. I got the salted caramel pecan crunch and it was very rich, so watch out, if you aren’t up for lickings of caramel.
Melting in the sun, it had to be devoured fast!
With the loads of sugar, caramel and dairy, I felt thoroughly satisfied.
Next minute though, we find visitors right beneath our feet!
Quokkas! Scavenging for food.
For the sake of a good story, let’s call him Corey the Quokka. ^ He was certainly a bold little fellow, possibly lacked some manners, but nevertheless stole my heart!
With our new-found friends leaving us, we decided to leave as well. Taking one last stroll to the beach to enjoy the view.
Before bumping into another little friend!
(Courtney the Quokka ^).
They are just so tame and friendly.
Moving on, we sat ourselves down on the sand.
Took in the view one last time, before heading airport bound.
This time I shotgunned the cockpit!
Up we flew through the evening sunlight. Everything looking that little bit different with the changing sky.
And truly beautiful!
Before we hit the WA coast and our absolutely fabulous trip came to an end.
I love what I call ‘mini-holidays’ – doing something different, going somewhere new – based somewhere right near where I live. It makes you appreciate where you call home more, gets you out of the humdrum of life, lifts the spirits and peaks the imagination. I’m pretty good at them, but this, my friends, topped them all!