Travelling Oz…Up the M1 to New Italy

We chose this spot because it is a free Rest Area on the road to Byron Bay and Gold Coast. The weather for the next two days is wet and windy, very bad for being on the coast and so we are having a rest day by staying here two nights. There is a cafe, museum and glass blowing gallery/workshop. It was set up by Italian migrants and is fully run by volunteers. They leave the toilets open overnight and there is also a dishwashing area with some hand basins. No showers.

On arrival here yesterday afternoon we were hungry and went to the cafe for lunch. There is a nice outdoor seating area and as the temperature is somewhat warmer here, about 17 degrees maximum, it was comfortable to be outdoors.

I took some iphone photos of a bird that is probably a kingfisher, but we couldn’t find it in the bird book.

Some of the volunteers live onsite in the two story building. In addition, there would have been about 14 vans (caravans, campervans and motorhomes) last night. It’s the first time on our trip that caravans have been heavily outnumbered. There is still a lot of traffic noise from the M1, plus someone ran a generator just behind us, but we are fairly insulated from noise (and wet and wind) once we have our windows on the least open settings. We call it ‘breathing’, but it won’t mean much unless you have the same type of windows that partially lock with a slight opening). Even in heavy rain it doesn’t let the water in.

Some other vans are hanging on here, at least for a few hours, or maybe doing another overnight like us. There is no time limit on staying here. It’s basically just a large carpark and all of the sites have slopes. We’ve used our levellers to correct it and are very comfortable.

There is forrest surrounding us, but the land appears to be private and we may have to walk down a road if we get a chance to go out for a walk.