Well here goes for the first blog from Down Under. We recently stayed in Bateman’s Bay, about 3 hours south of Sydney, with lots of beaches, some of which you can drive right down to and see the kangaroos and wallabies at dusk as well as lorikeets and other colourful birds. Despite its name, Pebbly Beach is not pebbly but unless you have a beach wheelchair with big wheels that go across sand, you’d probably stay on the path from the carpark. Durrus Beach is easy access, you can drive down to the waterfront and the wallabies stay around for photos – they are wild but very used to humans. Depot Beach has wheelchair accessible toilets and showers, if you’re up for camping.
Declan asked me about whether the hotel where we stayed was wheelchair accessible. Oh yes, said I, with blithe ignorance, it’s all on one level, the dining rooms and the breakfast room, no bother. Of course, as soon as I was off Skype, I thought about the bathrooms – and to be fair, given the number of times Declan has commented on bathrooms, I should have thought of them first – and realised that there was no way the bathroom in our room was accessible. So I emailed the hotel and asked if any of their other rooms had an accessible bathroom and sadly, no. However they did point me toward some others in the area, but not having stayed in them, I am reliant on the hotels’ own claims … will have to check them out in person next time.
http://www.chaletswissespa.com.au/ Chalet Swisse Spa – views of the mountains and the ocean, indoor pool, spa treatments … time to relax!
http://www.beachdrivemotel.com.au/ is in Bateman’s Bay town, and many of the restaurants are an easy stroll away. We had a lovely meal at Blank Canvas, sitting outside, watching the sun setting on the Clyde River (famous for its oysters) . You can eat outside many of the restaurants on the waterfront so no worries about ramp access, just pull up your chair.
Many of the campsites around also offer wheelchair access … the campsites we saw had kangaroos grazing between the cabins, just so you know you’re in Oz!