Ssss…Subiaco and Scarborough on a Saturday and Sunday

While in Perth, we stayed with my Nanna and Grandad in Claremont. It was so lovely catching up with family and just hanging out, and for me it felt as though it were just yesterday that I was there. Hard to believe it has been a whole year since I was in Perth, finishing up my uni placement.

Claremont is a stone’s throw away from Subiaco, which is the home of a weekly farmers market every Saturday morning. We took the train over one morning to check them out.  It’s a great little farmers market, with a lovely vibe. As we walked in, we were greeted by the Subiaco Ukelele Free For All (SUFFA) group playing – mad deja vu to the Cruelty Free Festival this time last year. They are fabulous and never fail to bring a smile to your face.

We wandered around the markets, picking up the odd bit of fruit and veg and browsing the different wares. We found one little stall (that I can no longer remember the name of) that was selling a range of little cakes and treats, mostly raw. Billy picked up a little pecan tart and I chose a gorgeous little blueberry cake. Billy’s was being digested before I could even reach for my camera. Mine survived long enough for this shot…

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Billy’s was a little bland, but mine was packed with flavour. It was almost just a blueberry puree, and rich like a jam. Just lovely!

After the markets we wandered around the op shops, then completed our morning with a trip to Gelare, as we had heard rumours of a couple of vegan flavours. We weren’t disappointed. Not only did they have the usual vegan sorbet flavours, but they had vegan chocolate, cappucino and coconut flavours. We shared a cup of coconut and cappucino.

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Yum! The cappucino was awesome, and for me it was necessary to balance out the coconut which I can find a bit overpowering sometimes.

The following evening, we decided to check out a place in Scarborough called the Wild Fig for dinner with my Nanna and Grandad. We had read a bit about the place (and it’s sister cafes – the Naked Fig and the Pickled Fig, in Swanbourne and Fremantle respectively). While the website declared that the menu changed seasonally, there appeared to be several delicious sounding vegan dishes. I was quite excited.

The Wild Fig is a nice open space, looking out over Scarborough beach. It was just starting to get quite busy when we arrived, as it had been a warm day, and being the weekend, many people were migrating up from their day the beach.

Looking over the menu I was surprised to find that the two main vegan options I had been eyeing off were nowhere to be seen! In fact, the only vegan dish apart from the sides was the bruschetta. I was a bit disappointed to have no choice after such a promising online menu (that included an amazing sounding lemon and thyme polenta dish and a szechuan pepper and cashew crusted tofu dish, as well as a vegan pannacotta…YUM), and was told by the waitress that they have a vegetarian night on wednesdays with plenty of veg options. I couldn’t quite understand why at least one of these was not made available on a regular basis. Aaaanyway.

We started with a trio of dips with bread, which we were assured were all vegan. You’ll have to excuse the TERRIBLE pictures, as the lighting was just starting to get dim around this time.

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These were nice, I particularly liked the centre dip – a sundried tomato based one.

Next up I got the bruschetta. As it was an entree, I decided to get a side of chickpea salad, as I thought it would be quite small.

Again, please excuse the horrible pictures here. It’s all I got.

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This wasn’t what I expected at all. The bruschetta was a mix of tomato, red onion, sweet potato, pumpkin, rocket and balsamic. This was decent, albeit a little plain compared to the other dishes I was teased with. I was disappointed by the plain toast arranged on top of the veggies, somehow I thought it should have been a nice thick slice of something rather than a flat piece of toast, particularly given the price.

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This was nice, but again, a little plain. It was dressed with olive oil and did not have a whole lot of flavour. In fairness, it was just intended as a little something on the side. It was nice and fresh though, I’ll give it that.

The service was okay, but seemed to be quite disorganised. Our dips came out quite quickly, but there was a big gap in between until a different waitress came over all of a sudden and asked if we were ready for our mains. There was also an extra main added to our bill, though the waitress noticed the mistake as she gave it to us. It wasn’t at all a bad experience, in fact, despite what I’ve just said we had a pleasant time. I just couldn’t help be disappointed by the lack of vegan options on the regular menu, after seeing so many listed. I would still love to go and try some of them on their vego night.

Subiaco Farmers Markets
Subiaco Primary School
271 Bagot Rd, Subiaco
Every Saturday – 8am-12pm

Gelare
51 Rokeby Rd, Subiaco
Mon-Sun – 9am-6pm

Wild Fig
190 The Esplanade, Scarborough
Mon-Sun – 6am-10.30pm

People and Animal Welfare Society (PAWS) Cafe

One sunny day in Perth (aren’t they always sunny here?), we decided to head into town to visit the PAWS (People & Animal Welfare Society) cafe to grab a spot of lunch. PAWS is a community not-for-profit organisation, which is founded upon the notion of non-violence. What I like especially about this is the incorporation of both humans and animals into this broader idea in a bid to promote a more peaceful planet for all of those who live on it.

The PAWS cafe is open for lunch seven days a week with a variety of cheap vegan dishes (as well as a little grocery with many of your frozen, refrigerated, pantry and toiletry vegan needs). There is an open area inside with couches and tables and chairs (much like a school common room, or the wholefoods at my old uni) as well as a few tables outside. As for food, they have a raw food bar, hot food box (curries, etc) and a snack bar which overall provide a great range to choose from. Last year when we visited we hit up both the hot food box and the raw bar, so this time it was all about the snack bar. That’s right, burgers baby!

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I ordered a good old fashioned cheeseburger, while Billy went for some kind of double whammy with extras. I was totally jealous of his fixings.

Now let me lay it on the table, these are no gourmet burgers – they are vegan fast food. But they do the job. I reckon you could have fooled any omni with these. The patties were of the pre-packaged variety and topped with a slice of tofutti cheese as well as some pickles and sauce for mine, and some extras like tomato and lettuce for Bears. Ooh la la! AND THEY WERE GOOD.

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And what better way to finish off our burger meal than with a vegan soft serve?! Seriously.

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I have this thing where I have to eat vegan soft serve whenever I find it. I try to walk away but the soft serve always pulls me back in. So soft and creamy. And I could get a choc-vanilla split in a waffle cone. How could any sane vegan refuse?

It was really really good, too.

Oh – I almost forgot! We also had a green juice. Just to balance out the burgers and ice cream, y’know?

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PAWS Cafe
120 Beaufort St, Perth
Open 7 days – 11am-4pm

Fremantle Eats: The Juicy Beetroot and The Raw Kitchen

As I said, I’ve got a series of eating out related posts to come from the time we’ve spent around Perth over the last week or so. I’m amazed at all the wonderful new (and old) places popping up around the place here.

I had the opportunity to visit Fremantle two days in a row during the week – once with family on an op-shopping mission, and once on my own, wandering aimlessly about.

The first day, we started with lunch at the Juicy Beetroot – a cosy little cafe tucked way down at the end of an alleyway, almost out of sight. It is 100% vegetarian (and very vegan friendly).

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I visited the Juicy Beetroot with Billy and my mum this time last year when we were here, and it concreted it’s place in my mind as a cosy little place to get wholesome, yummy food at a reasonable price. The main menu features a range of salads and a range of hot foods which you can mix and match in a bowl. I got a ‘small’ bowl for about $10 and was able to choose six different salads to squeeze in there.

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Yeah I know, not the greatest picture. But it was good. And really filling. I had a variety of different salads, from roasted mushrooms to tahini broccoli, to tofu and sprouts and more. Topped of course with some chili sauce.

You can get a huge bowl for about $13, but I wasn’t quite hungry enough for the big salad (sorry Elaine).

The following day I missioned back to Freo, spending my morning visiting the lovely Arts Centre. I remember coming here as a child, the beautiful limestone buildings and green shady gardens – it really is a charming place. Over the warmer months they hold free Sunday afternoon music sessions in the courtyard which would have been cool, but we weren’t able to make it. Next time!

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I wandered around the galleries for a while, pretty much having the whole place to myself that early in the morning (aside from an older gentleman who was super enthused about one of the exhibitions and kept making comments about the pieces as we passed each other – his happiness was infectious!)

Afterwards, I sat in the courtyard of the cafe for a coffee and a bit of quiet reading time.

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I spent the next few hours browsing the streets of Freo – shops, markets, buskers and more. Around lunch time I ducked over to the beloved Raw Kitchen for a bite to eat. I got in just before the big rush – the place is so so popular. They are in the process of relocating to a larger shop which will be really great for them, although it’s on a street rather than in an arcade/courtyard so they will lose all the outdoor seating – bit of a bummer.

Anyway…I was having some mad cravings for their raw pizza, so I ordered a piece and a chai smoothie pronto.

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(Again, not the most inspired photo).

The pizza was just as I remembered – topped with stacks of basil and big dollops of smooth delicious cashew cream, as well as olives, sundried tomatoes, fresh tomatoes and mushrooms. I wasn’t hungry enough to go for the two salads on the side (nor did my wallet want to cop that one…).

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The smoothie was a little sweet for me, and I was a bit bummed I hadn’t gone with the choc-mint or choc-chili that I’d tried before and liked. But noooo, I had to try something NEW! If they had eased up on the agave and let the lovely spices shine through, I think I would have enjoyed it a lot more. Personal preference I guess.

On the way out, I picked up a cappucino cake to go, to share with Bear later.

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Oh. My. Gosh. Let me tell you….it was incredible.

I had tried quite a few of their desserts last time I was in Perth – namely the choc-mint slice, two different cheesecakes and a macaroon. But this one quite literally took the cake!

Well, the choc-mint slice is probably on par (I can’t go past that flavour combo!), but what I loved about the cappucino cake was the strong coffee flavour and the texture – beautiful silky smooth without being as rich and dense and the cheesecakes that I’d tried before. It was just divine.

The Raw Kitchen is a bit of a favourite amongst locals, with delicious healthy food and wonderful happy service. I was sort of disappointed to hear along the line that they didn’t necessarily use organic produce though. While they aren’t exactly marketing themselves as an exclusively organic business, for the price they charge I would kind of expect it. A single slice of pizza is around $10, or $19 with salads. Most of the mains (nachos, club sandwich, pasta, etc) are about $20 each. My smoothie was around the $9-10 mark, and the cake about $8.

It’s pricey, but there’s no denying that the food is absolutely scrumptious. Gimme some more of that caaaaaaaake.

The Juicy Beetroot
132 High St, Fremantle W.A.
Mon – Fri – 11am-4pm
Sat – Sun – CLOSED

Fremantle Arts Centre
1 Finnerty St, Fremantle W.A.
Open 7 days – 10am-5pm

The Raw Kitchen
Shop 14, Piazza Arcade
36 South Terrace, Fremantle W.A (not for much longer though..!)
Mon – Tues – CLOSED
Wed – Fri – 11am-3pm
Sat – Sun – 11am-4pm

Heading West

We left Darwin on a rainy afternoon – the first real hint of the wet season approaching. I say rainy, but this was not your regular rain…it was drenchworthy with massive bolts of fork lightning and possibly the loudest thunder I’ve ever heard. It was something else.

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After revisiting Katherine and stocking up on supplies, we started travelling west towards the border. Unfortunately, ZZ decided it was the perfect time to BANG and break down in the middle of nowhere (between Victoria River and Timber Creek to be precise). I shouldn’t be mean…it was not his fault. We had had him serviced a few days earlier in Darwin to prevent any potential situations like this one from occurring, and the guys didn’t put the points in correctly. Isn’t that always the way? Breaking down after having it tuned up? So frustrating!

Thank goodness for the kindness of strangers. A lovely couple and their kids who were on their way home from a holiday in Bali took pity on us and pulled over. No party had any reception, so they agreed to call RAC on our behalf when they got to the next town. About an hour later, the guy appears again in his car. He had called RAC only to be told that it would be about 3 hours until someone could get us (and it was already 4pm and we were stuck in not the safest of places just over a bridge AND there was a storm on the way), so he bought a tow strap, drove back and towed us into town (and got saturated in the rain and would not accept any money for petrol or the tow strap). The goodness of people! We were able to track them down when we went through their home town a few days later and gifted them with some beer and chocolate.

We were stuck in Timber Creek for two nights, which, while far from the end of the world, it wasn’t the most exciting time of our lives. We had also brought no fresh fruit/veg, as there is a quarantine at the W.A. border and we were planning on being over there pretty quickly. The only store in Timber Creek was attached to the Roadhouse/caravan park, and they were charging $9 for a piece of watermelon. Crazy.

Finally the local mechanic was able to sort us out and we were on our way, driving straight to Kununurra, just over the border of Western Australia.

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We were pretty stoked to be over the border and on the move again, as after a couple of overcast days providing some relief from the heat, it was really starting to get hot and sticky again. We pulled into Kununurra and went and immersed ourselves in the fruit and veg section of the supermarket, getting excited by all the options. After running all the necessary errands, we enjoyed some delicious tofu and salad wraps on the grass, then popped by Wild Mango (a café we had parked in front of) to enjoy an icy cold fruit granita.

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This one was citrus flavour, full of freshly squeezed juice. It was so delicious and super refreshing. I wished that it would never end. Mmm icy treats.

Then it was time to plan the next leg of our trip, destination: Broome. Stay tuned for more..

 

Wild Mango
20 Messmate Way, Kununurra W.A.
Open 7 days, breakfast and lunch

Eat at Martins

Yikes, I am so far behind that it’s not even funny.

I have one more post from our time in Darwin – just a quick mention of another place we stopped in at for lunch which was around the corner from where we were getting the van serviced.

Eat at Martins is a small vegetarian café, tucked away in the back streets of Coconut Grove. They have a few vegan items on the menu. We got there only half an hour before close, and they had one vegan pie left, which we decided to order and share.

This was the potato pie, which had a mix of lentils, potatoes and mashed pumpkins to create a creamy filling, in a muffin sized pastry. Both the filling and the pastry tasted quite nice – not outstanding, but not unenjoyable. However, I felt that it (along with the other dishes at Eat at Martins) were overpriced, particularly given the size. The small pie on it’s own was around $10 (which gets you a pie, salad and potato salad at Funky Pies in Bondi!), and to add salad brought it to $15. The salad was nothing more than a few chopped up bits of iceberg lettuce, three slices of cucumber, two slices of red capsicum and a couple of bits of tomato. Really not worth it at all. The sauce was a kind of homemade mayonnaise, with a strong mustard flavour.

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I also got a juice with apple, carrot, beetroot, ginger and turmeric for around $7. This was pretty standard – juice is juice! I usually like mine a bit zingier with more ginger, but can’t complain.

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It’s nice to have the option of a completely vegetarian café, but all in all we found better and more reasonably priced food elsewhere in our time in Darwin. The food is not bad, but quite basic and it was definitely not good value for money. I don’t think I’d eat there again unless the quality of the food or the price was altered.

Eat at Martins
6 Caryota Court, Coconut Grove, NT
Mon-Fri – 8 – 3.30pm
Sat – 8 – 12pm

The Groove

In the midst of our market weekend, we headed over to Nightcliff to go to the Sunday morning markets there. A lot of the stalls were the same as had been at other markets, and we didn’t find anything that won us over in terms of brunch. On the way out, we noticed a funky little café with a large outdoor deck and seating. We popped over to take a look and to my surprise, they actually had multiple vegan options on the menu.

Not only did they have make a make your own sandwich option (with a variety of breads including GF), with an extensive list of items you could add, from artichoke to pineapple, but they had a vegan breakfast listed which included toast, avocado, baked beans, spinach, mushrooms, roasted red capsicum and tomatoes. Yum!

Their lunch menu included a vegan roasted stack, and cous cous stuffed tomatoes. Pretty good for an omni café! What caught my eye though was the delicious looking lentil patties that you could get on their own or in a burger. Billy and I decided to split one over coffee for an early brunch.

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The burger was awesome! The pattie was coated in sesame seeds and was packed with flavour. It was noticeably spicy, which I always love and was accompanied by salad and what appeared to be a homemade tomato relish in soft Turkish bread. Beautiful!

I would go as far as to say that the lentil pattie was one of the best ‘veggie burgers’ that I’ve tasted (and there’s been a few!). I’m going to have to try and recreate this one.

Also worth mentioning – though it was very busy due to the markets, our food arrived with about five minutes which was pretty impressive. The staff obviously know what they’re doing! The Groove is definitely worth a visit if you find yourself in the area. Lots of veg options, friendly staff and a good atmosphere.

The Groove
Shop 4, 35 Progress Drive
Nightcliff, Northern Territory
Mon-Sat – 7.30 – 6pm
Sun – 7.30 – 2pm

Snorkeling the Great Barrier Reef and beyond

We got over the sadness of having to leave Cape Tribulation pretty quickly, as we had to dash back down to Cairns by the following day so we could have the next exciting adventure – snorkeling on the Great Barrier Reef! EXCITING. We decided that it was definitely something we wanted to do while in Queensland, so we booked a day tour where we were taken on a boat to two different spots on the outer reef to snorkel among the coral and fishes.

We had to be ready to board the boat pretty early, but we managed to sneak in a big coffee before we left at a place called Bang and Grind, which do their own roasted coffee in two blends – Bang and Grind. We got one of each to taste the difference…we definitely preferred one over the other but I forget which now. They were both pretty tasty though – nice and strong coffees.

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Then, to the boat! At first, I was a bit hesitant about being so far out in the ocean (the dude on the boat tour the day before wasted no time in telling us that crocodiles can swim hundreds of kilometres and can be found on the reef, but not to worry, as there are far scarier things on the reef that can get us…thanks dude…) but I have to say, this was one of the coolest experiences ever. At first, you jump in the water and look down and get kind of disappointed at only being able to see distant blurs, so you paddle along, and BAM! That moment where the coral just appears in front of you, and tropical fish are swimming right by your face…it was so cool! Now I’m keen to do it again, maybe on the Ningaloo Reef when we get around that way!

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The tour was good – they fed us and gave us wine on return, and Billy even had a play on the boom net on the way back. I was going to jump on, but then felt the need to stay on board to watch and ensure he didn’t drown. I think he came close a few times.

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Here he is floating off into the ocean.

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After our big day, we headed south and stayed overnight in Gordonvale, before driving west towards the Atherton tablelands. We had only given ourselves one day to visit this area as our time is becoming very limited, so we had to rush it somewhat which was kind of a shame, but we managed to pack in heaps of cool stuff regardless.

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First up, this 500+ year old cathedral fig tree, near Yungaburra, which was out of this world huge. The enormity of this thing is hard to describe. You can kind of get the idea seeing Bear amongst it.

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We met a really lovely young family there who had just been up to the Wallaby Creek festival, and their youngest boy was so taken with Billy, and kept yelling “NOOOOOO!” when his parents told him it was time to go.

Next we headed to Lake Eacham for a swim – a lovely lake with turtles swimming around it and easy access, with manmade steps built down into it. This refreshing swim rejuvenated us a little, and we kept on moving to our next destination – the ‘waterfall circuit’. As we were a little time limited, we only did part of it – a short road with three waterfalls spaced out along it. First up was Millaa Millaa, a gorgeous waterfall with icy cold water to paddle in.

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Next, Zillie falls, which brought you to a lookout at the top. We bushbashed down a steep worn path, climbing over and under fallen logs to reach the bottom of the falls, where we had a picnic lunch on the rocks.

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The last on our circuit was the Elinjaa falls, where we spotted another turtle jumping into the water. Billy took a swim here, but I was content just to dip my legs in this icy one.

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Then, we were on our way in. Our last stop was a cute little town called Ravenshoe, that had an awesome shop near the end of the street (I forget the name of it) which had a mix of organic veggies, health foods, jewellery, herbs and spices, new hemp and bamboo clothing, second hand clothing, crystals, and more, the majority of it locally sourced from the Ravenshoe area. It was a really cool little place, and the lady there was super friendly and willing to chat – definitely worth stopping in at if you ever happen to be in the area.

We ended up driving about 150km west of Ravenshoe and camping out on the edge of a state forest, just to get a start on the long journey ahead of us. I’ll fill you in on the trip across to the Northern Territory (where we are now!) very shortly. Until then! X

Bang and Grind
8/14 Spence St, Cairns
Mon-Sat 6am – 4pm

Cape Tribulation

Well! I’ve been kind of absent for the past little while, I even missed the end of MoFo, though I predicted that might happen. I loved participating in MoFo but it got a bit difficult while travelling. It was my first time though, and no doubt I’ll be back.

Since my last post we have come a loooong long way. After Kuranda, we travelled up the coast towards Port Douglas, where we stopped to pick up some groceries. It wasn’t really our kind of town – very ritzy and touristy. I had also heard that on the whole the town has a very ‘anti-backpackers’ attitude. My dislike for the town was sealed when we came back to the van to find half a meat pie smashed across our windscreen.  Another campervan parked nearby also looked like it had been sprayed with soft drink or something. Charming.

We stayed the night in Mt Molloy, before visiting Daintree and then crossing the river by ferry (and spotting a crocodile on the way) to reach beautiful Cape Tribulation.

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Cape Trib is really a magical place. I wouldn’t be at all surprised to spot fairies nestled under the fronds in the rainforest. The place is filled with lush green rainforests that make up the Daintree National Park, as well as tropical white sanded beaches, lined with coconut trees. It is really out of this world.

We only had two and a half days there, so we packed in as many things as we could. The first thing we did upon arrival was take a dip at Thornton Beach. The water was CRYSTAL clear and so warm, it was unbelievable. Although I was still on edge about being eaten by crocodiles, I felt a bit more at ease being able to see to the bottom. Also, I made sure we positioned ourselves between other groups of swimmers, so that we would at least get some warning should one swim in from the side. Ha.

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We took a minute to enjoy one of our black sapotes, which had finally ripened. Bear’s new favourite fruit…chocolate pudding fruit. You can eat it straight out of the skin with a spoon!

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While in Cape Trib, we stayed with a lovely friend from Melbourne and her partner, who have been living there for a year. They have been working and living at the campground there, and invited us to stay with them. The campground is amazing – definitely on the luxury side of camping. Not only are the grounds RIGHT on the beach, they also have a woodfire pizza place on site called Sand Bar, meaning you can enjoy a delicious fresh pizza and a glass of wine while looking out from your campsite. They even do an awesome vegan pizza with basil oil, artichoke, red onion, olives, mushroom, etc. SO GOOD. As it was school holidays, they also had fire twirling shows for the kids (and the bigger kids). It was just perfect!

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On our second day, we headed out to Cow Bay early and walked along the beach there, collecting rocks. We then visited the nearby Floravilla Ice Cream, which offered two or three different vegan water based ice creams. We shared the coconut lime one, which was sooo yummy. Sometimes I am a bit iffy with coconut flavoured things, but this was so zesty with the lime juice, and was creamy (despite being a ‘water ice’) due to the coconut. A-mazing.

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Next we missioned into a lovely spot called the Blue Hole. We didn’t swim here, rather, we just sat in awe of the beauty of this place. Apparently it is a sacred place for Aboriginal women, as the water holes were birthing and menstrual pools. The colour of the water was incredible, and there were fish swimming left right and centre. We even saw a little turtle jump off a log into the water.

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In the afternoon we went on a guided boat trip, in search of the elusive crocodiles. We saw one little guy sunning himself on the banks, but no big whoppers (though I am sort of glad about that).

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We topped off our day with a walk through the forest, before returning to the campgrounds to hang with Jess and Chris after their shifts finished.

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The next day we sadly had to leave, but not before popping up to Emmagen Creek for a morning swim. This place was sooo pretty! We went for a short trek through the forest to find it, and what a reward it was when we got there.

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I wish we could have stayed forever…we had the most wonderful time here. But the trip must go on! I’ll get to our next adventures soon, so stay tuned…

Sand Bar
Cape Trib Camping
Lot 11 Cape Tribulation Rd
Cape Tribulation
Mon-Sun 6-9pm

Floravilla Ice Cream Factory and Art Gallery
Corner of Cape Tribulation and Cow Bay Rd
Mon-Sun 8.30am-5.30pm

Sweet Leaf Living Foods at the Kuranda Night Markets

We have just gotten back from the Kuranda Night Markets, which happen once a month here in Kuranda. It was a bit quiet as apparently many of the locals (including some of the stall holders) had packed up to go to the Wallaby Creek music festival. Jealous…it sounded really beautiful but we want to go snorkeling on the Great Barrier Reef and we can’t do everything. Nevertheless, we had a great time wandering the little stalls and chatting with the friendly locals.

Nestled in one of the corners of the markets is a lovely little café called Sweet Leaf Living Foods, which is a vegetarian/vegan café. They had some really delicious sounding dishes on offer, but we had to choose something. We decided to get two dishes and share them, as we both liked the sound of the same things. You’ll have to excuse the quality of the pictures, as I was in dim light and I’m no photographer. You get the idea of what’s going on…

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These were the absolutely AMAZING Raw Almond Falafels with Tahini Garlic Sauce ($8). These were really really really yummy. I don’t really know what else to say about them…Billy and I both loved them, and they were gone in no time!

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We also ordered the Thai Pumpkin Soup ($10), which was served with sourdough toast and topped with extra grated ginger. This soup was just bursting with flavour – it was sweet, yet balanced out by the warming ginger and Thai spices. It was possibly the best pumpkin soup I’ve ever had, and I’ve sure had a few.

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After such a delectable dinner, we couldn’t skip out on the desserts and I had been eyeing off this Raw Caramel Tart ($5.50) which we split. It was the perfect way to end the meal. The subtle caramel flavour was not too sweet or overbearing, nor was it too rich like raw desserts can be. It was spot on.

As well as a range of vegan mains, desserts and snacks, Sweet Leaf Living Foods also had various flavours of bliss balls, smoothies, juices and more. If you are up this way, don’t miss checking them out! The food, the service and the atmosphere were just beautiful.

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Sweet Leaf Living Foods
Shop 39
Original Kuranda Rainforest Markets
Therwine St
Wed-Sun 10am-3pm
(plus open until late the last Friday of each month for the night markets)

veganmofo

Travel day: Mackay to Bowen

We packed up and left Mackay this morning, bidding farewell to the showgrounds and our little flower friend that we found hidden away near our camp.

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I love getting to places, but I also love leaving. When we are back on the road, it’s exciting to find out what the next place will be like…it’s all an adventure! On the way out of town, we made a last minute decision to stop at an auto store to pick up a few things.

It was obviously meant to be, as we stumbled across this giant chair that we got to sit on.

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It was like being a kid again, when you sit on a chair and your feet can’t reach the ground.

Next stop, Airlee Beach.

First thing we spotted on the way into town was a skate park, so Bear had to get out and have a roll.

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Next we found a nursery with this dude out the front, which of course meant more stopping for photo ops.

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Airlee Beach itself was a little overrated. The town bit was quite commercial, and the ‘beach’ or bay beach was not even that nice. Perhaps especially because the tide was out, which always kind of makes the front part of the bay look like a wasteland.

We made salad and sat on the grass by the water anyway and enjoyed our lunch.

Then, onto Bowen. Bowen is about 200km north of Mackay, so we didn’t do a HUGE amount of travel, but we like breaking it into smaller doses, especially when it’s hot.

Bowen is a fruit and veggie growing region, and is also home to the Big Mango. We had to stop there, obviously.

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While there, we sampled some of the local delicacy in the form of some mango ‘sorbet’ (pure frozen mango).

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Truth be told, I’m not the biggest mango fan, but this was pretty yum. Also, you can’t go wrong with frozen treats when the weather is warm.

I made a yummy risotto for dinner tonight using some of the farmer’s market produce from the other day…I’ll share it with you tomorrow. We are now about 45km north of Bowen, and we’ll be heading not far up the road to Ayr tomorrow (and possibly onto Townsville). These bears are on the move!

veganmofo