Port Maquarie

A few hours up the NSW coast from Sydney, we stopped in Port Macquarie. The former penal colony is now full of beaches and caf├ęs. We enjoyed both, basing ourselves in an apartment along Lighthouse beach.

Our last big push of schoolwork, before we take a Christmas break, had us focusing on Australian geography and history. Here are a few of our books:




We were able to get a temporary library membership, so that has been a great supplement to our e-reader books this month. Boy has enjoyed a stack of “fun” books, too. Dad and I are spending our library time with travel guides and wifi, planning our next travel leg.

Port Macquarie is also Australia’s koala capital, home to a large eucalyptus forest and a koala rescue hospital. We walked through the state forest trees and toured the hospital. Local vets and volunteers treat dozens of animals at a time, some ill and others injured in traffic accidents.

A small rainforest ecosystem is also found here, along the ocean. We hiked the elevated path through the trees at the Sea Acres Rainforest Centre. The interpretive center provided children with laminated wildlife spotting cards. We saw local bush turkeys, but did not find any other birds on our walk.

The path to Lighthouse Beach:


Our final tourist stop was a local farm. Honeycomb Valley Farm is an organic farm that gives tours to the public and sells local honey. Along with another family, we toured the farm, met the animals, checked out the beehives, and tasted some honey. The kids completed a scavenger hunt with a prize of a bee shaped cookie at the end. Boy enjoyed feeding the chickens and cleaning the fresh eggs before packing them in egg cartons.

Australian Summer

From Malaysia, we flew to Australia, arriving into Sydney at the beginning of December. We lived here for many years, so this was almost “home.” After a night in the city, and a bit of Christmas shopping, we rented a car and drove North, up the coast of New South Wales. Our destination was a rental apartment in the Mid-north coast town of Port Macquarie.

Right along the coast with a view of the ocean, we settled in for a rest and a round of heavy planning for our next leg of our travels, South America.

Our schoolbooks: