issue 75

Monthly newspaper and online publication targeting 18 to 35 year olds. The ultimate guide to the hottest parties, going out and having fun. Music, fashion, film, travel, festivals, technology, comedy, and parties! London, Barcelona, Miami and Ibiza.

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7 Issue 75 / 2015 travel 21 On our first full day in Adelaide the weather was some of the best that we had experienced since being away; 38 degrees, clear skies and a breeze that basically flushed our hangovers away. Although the beaches in Adelaide were unbelievable, it seemed that they were being kept a secret, as there wasn't too much going on along them. We got speaking to the receptionist at our motel about where to find the best beaches in South Australia. He mentioned a location called Boomer Beach a few hours drive away, whilst stating very clearly "The beach is ideal for experienced surfers but DO NOT go there if you're not!" So with the copious amounts of surfing experience we had between us, we obviously packed our bags and headed straight for the beach. We decided to check what we were up against by having a quick look at the beach itself before heading to the surf shops. As the distance between the roar of the pounding waves and ourselves decreased, the beach abruptly revealed itself and for the second time of our trip we completely agreed with the given title of one of our destinations. All four of us stood in a line and watched in amazement as the 10ft waves thundered down onto the sand, only to realise that not a single person was in sight anywhere along the mile long beach. In preparation for our fight with the raging ocean, we decided to venture into the closest town. Expecting to buy professional surfing equipment for cheap, we ended up strapping two poor quality body boards and an inflatable to the roof of our car. When we had finally grown some balls, we charged at the waves, aiming our buoyant weapons of choice and ignoring imminent death. Within seconds the waves had swallowed us to the sea floor and dragged us so far across the beach that our possessions were no longer in sight. We repeated this process for the next eight hours, only briefly taking breaks to have beers, cigarettes and to regain consciousness. As the day slowly passed, we became drunker, louder and more sunburnt and could not have looked any more English if we tried. On our final night in Adelaide, we went in search of a pub for dinner only to find a single venue filled with locals in the small town that we were staying in. Within a few minutes it had gone from a nice quite little pub to a rowdy, eager mob flooding over most of the street. We heard a faint whistle in the distance as everyone cheered and began taking photos of what was about to present itself. We could see the excitement on each of our faces as the mob grew louder, gazing into the direction that everyone was pointing; only to find out it was a just train pulling into the station. It was at this moment we realised we were actually in the middle of nowhere Rising bright and early, we decided to make the most of the small town after seeing a poster advertising a wildlife park just around the corner to where we were staying. The park itself was home to Australia's most iconic animals - kangaroos that would come right up to you, koalas, crocodiles and huge emus. We spent hours petting some of the most famous animals from the country before setting off, which only added an extra bonus to an already unbelievable trip. Our next location was a small motel next to the Grampians called Little Desert Nature Lodge, which we intended on using to relax and gather ourselves before conquering the mountains the very next day. However, this fantasy was short lived. Arriving just after midnight outside some sketchy looking metal gates, which slowly opened as we approached, a freaky looking innkeeper scurried out of the woodwork brandishing some keys. He explained that if we wished to cook, the only facility available was a small kitchen that was unfortunately coated in insects as someone had left the door open the previous night. He explained that an outside BBQ area was also available but it would of course be swarming with flies, moths, spiders, possums, dingos and a 6 foot Emu called George, who would attack us if he realised we had food. As we made our way to the BBQ area, we realised how unprepared we actually were for life in the desert. Huntsman spiders the size of a human hand, along with other red and white crusty spiders of similar stature crept around us. More noticeable was the uncountable amount of moths and flies, which managed to block out our phone lights and the small bulb that swayed from the ceiling. It was basically a bush tucker trial but out of choice. It didn't take long for one of us to break down because of the creature-infested shack and decide to spend the night curled up in the driver seat of our car in the 40-degree heat. McKenzie Falls was to be our first stop in the Grampians. Rather than being a single giant drop, it was split into several gradual drops similar to river rapids that you would take a dinghy down in a theme park. As we followed the steps down we had noticed that there was one huge finale where the waterfall plummeted down a 50ft drop into a small swimming hole. The river then fed its way through several boulders and formed a creek that disappeared into the valley. Other than the one couple that we passed on the way to the swimming hole, there was no one else in sight. We spent the next few hours pissing around in the waterfall, enjoying one of the most iconic experiences of our year away so far. As much of a disappointment it was to be leaving McKenzie Falls, we headed back to the car and set off to the Balconies, the pinnacle of the mountain and our whole trip. Filled with excitement, we noticed the clearing in the trees begin to slowly expand, revealing a view that was utterly breathtaking. The mountaintops circled for hundreds of miles, looming over thick forests that covered the basin below before returning and creating a perfect natural coliseum. The ranges were so vast that we could see the clouds splitting in the distance, revealing rays of sunlight all within the perimeter of the basin, leaving us in absolute awe over the enormity of the view. We drove around the mountain in the dark for an hour until we found a perfect location to set up camp, the entrance to someone's ranch house. This would be the second night in a row that we were to have a BBQ, however the weather took a turn for the worst. After folding up our party pack, we clambered into the car one final time, and set off back towards Melbourne. It wasn't until we could see the skyline of the city that we felt comforted and safe knowing that we were returning home. The trip had finally ended, as we stepped out of the car one last time in the city where it had all begun.

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