A few weeks back we did a whirlwind trip to Australia to see the step sons and we spent a wonderful weekend at Jenolan Caves - a spectacular set of caves just on the other (non-Sydney) side of the Blue Mountains. The caves really were wonderful, my dodgy photos in no way do them justice!
I'd been there before but this visit was amazing - we were a bit more organised and actually booked some tours (actually, our friends booked them on our behalf - thanks Kylie!). Plus we did the morning tours which meant a lot less people which meant it was a lot more enjoyable.
Also, last visit we stayed at the onsite accommodation which is a bit manky and if you stay there you are forced to eat the food at Caves House, which is not a pleasant thing. This time we stayed 7 kms out at the Jenolan Caves Cottages, which were still a bit manky but which were set in the midst of thick woodlands, surrounded by kangaroos and kookaburras and cockatoos. Plus they had the best gas heater to keep us toasty warm at night, spots for campfires and marshmallow toasting (a big hit with step son number one), and a kitchen which meant we could load the car with steak and fruit and cheese and wine and cook our own meals - what more could one ask for?
(they may look cute but don't be fooled, they turn mean once they get a whiff of your Cheesels...)
And then there is the stunning blue lake just near the caves, which houses a bunch of show off platypi (platypuses?). Now, if you know anything about the humble platypus you'd know that they are normally very shy and very retiring critters, so it's pretty unusual to be able to see one gamboling about in the broad day light, but these guys do just that. I'd show you a photo of them but clearly I need to invest in some kind of zoom lens, as all my photos look like a wiggly brown stick floating in the lake (at least I know it's a platypus, and that's all that really matters right?). But the lake itself is stunning - just look at the reflections!
Good food, great company, blue sky, a bit of wildlife and a warm heater - sometimes the simplest getaways are the absolute best, don't you think?