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Destinations

Camping with kangaroos, Australia

An unforgettable night in the land of kangaroos, Australia!

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Period

One night

Typology

Camping

Budget

10 euros

It was on the sixth of December 2019 the day when, two crazy Australians, decided to give me a taste of what it meant to grow up and live in such a mysterious and wild land, which is Australia.

 

Key word: no plans! Or rather, flexibility.

 

That's right, because it wasn't exactly in the middle of the kangaroos where we had to camp, but in the Hot Springs Peninsula! An oasis full of natural spas located on the Mornington Peninsula, about a hundred kilometres away from Melbourne CBD.

The names of the two madmen are: Matt (son of Vivian, the woman who was hosting me at the time) and Zac, his friend.

I start by saying that I didn't even know them, but keep in mind: australians are extremely friendly and what I am about to tell you is proof of that.

The departure

It was all quite improvised.

At about 5 p.m. I got a call from crazy number one:

``Hey mate, nice to meet you I'm Matt, you up for a camping trip tonight?``
``Hey dude, nice to meet you I'm Alex. What a question, of course!``
``Great, bring whatever you want, we'll be at your place at nine p.m``

I got some junk food and the right amount of beers (someone had to think about it) and I impatiently began waiting for the two strangers and, with them, my very first real australian adventure!

With punctual delay, here come Matt and Zac.

They can be recognised by the ever-present long hair and tail, which adds a wild touch, because that's how it goes in Australia!

 

Smiling and friendly, they greeted me with a warm embrace and, without delay, we loaded the equipment.

 

That's how our friendship was born and with it our adventure too!

The trip

Between a chat and another, in some time, we already seem to know each other for ages!

 

We speed on the Australian freeways at full throttle only stopping briefly to stock up on provisions at a service station (when in doubt, it's always better to have plenty of food).

We grinded on for kilometres in a southerly direction, getting closer and closer to our destination.

 

At some point, however, our sense of direction decided to betray us and, for some reason, led us to confuse a small gravel road lost in the void for the entrance to Hot Springs.

 

We thought:

``After all, they are natural spas, so even the entrance could be misunderstood, right?``

And so we ventured along this endless dark and narrow pathway that soon became enriched by thick bushes on either side.

 

Now everything was clear to us: we had arrived in the middle of nowhere.

We found ourselves in the so-called Australian country or, more simply, a rural area.

 

We had now travelled several miles along this charming little road, would it really be worth going back? Absolutely not.

 

It was the kangaroos that convinced us.

 

Yes, because just as we entered the path and the vegetation became thicker, here comes one, two... oh here comes another one! Ten, twenty.. WE ARE INVADED BY KANGAROOS!

At the rhythm of fifteen kilometres per hour kangaroos families are springing up everywhere!

No kidding: we were in their natural habitat.

 

I wasn't the only one amazed. It's true that Australians are used to spotting them but it's also true that they love them and it's always a pleasure for them to come across them.

 

Having calmed our excitement, we assess that losing us was a stroke of luck.

Preparations

So we went on to look for the shrubs we liked most and which, above all, would have held up our hammocks better.

Yes, hammocks and not tents, because the great thing about these two Australians is that they were not only crazy, but also brilliant!

 

That evening I discovered that they had designed bivouac hammocks, perfect for fully enjoying the magical atmosphere of the campsite.

After all the beauty of camping in my opinion is being in contact with nature and therefore why ever take refuge inside a canvas?

With rare attention we peered through the dense vegetation and spotted a small group of trees forming a semi-perfect square.

 

So we were convinced; we would have stopped in that point.

Matt then turned off the car's engine taking care to leave the headlights on and pointed at our location.

 

Eravamo in mezzo al nulla più totale e c’era un buio quasi spettrale, il ché rendeva il tutto ancora più affascinante.

 

Zac and his mate thus began the preparations and I, at the same time, shyly admitted that this would be my very first night camping.

The two turned simultaneously towards me and followed a moment of awkward silence broken by an incisor:

“What the fuck kind of life have you lived so far, brother?”

 

They were not wrong, I would have realized the next morning that they were right.

The night

I admired them securing those extraordinary canvas hammocks, incredibly strong, in an attempt to learn myself... And so, in a few minutes, everything was almost ready.

 

I took the opportunity to pull out the stash of Doritos and Mexican hot sauce plus a few beers while Zac, on the other hand, introduced me to his remarkable skills in cooking delicious poached eggs by preparing a portion each.

 

Matt, on the other hand, took care of the atmosphere: he lit a few candles between one tree and another, scented the air with just the right amount of incense, prepared three herbal teas and put on some good relaxing music (letting Matt choose the music was a wise choice, his playlists are disarming, he has one for every occasion).

 

Now everything was ready.

 

We let our bodies sink into the very comfortable and pleasant hammocks, our hot herbal tea in our hands, and the incredible Australian sky full of stars swept over us.

 

Time had stopped.

 

We were in the middle of nowhere, with no internet connection and in the pleasant company of a few shy kangaroos that we heard pawing here and there, on a cool and intense Australian summer night.

 

Matt and Zac used to do this kind of adventures but it was new to me.

 

I was overwhelmed by the beauty that that continent, Australia, was offering me.

 

The Sonic Dawn played in the background as we began to fantasize about the shapes of the stars.

All I kept saying was repeating how much I was loving Melbourne and that other-worldly atmosphere that you can only breathe in those parts.

 

A few thin drops of rain began to fall on us but nothing could spoil that magical night.

 

We slowly fell asleep, almost as if we didn't want that magical moment to pass, waking up only a few hours later, at dawn... In that pleasant and quiet vegetation lost in the void.

 

It ended up like that, one of the best nights I have ever spent in my whole life and I will always have an indelible memory of it.

Nicolas Bouvier

When travelling, the best thing is to get lost. When you get lost, plans give way to surprises, and it is then, but only then, that the journey begins.

What I liked

There is little to add: the incredible atmosphere, the company of kangaroos and the Australian sky full of stars made that night truly magical.

What I didn't like

Everything was perfect. The light rain tried to ruin our night but we were equipped and so everything went well.

my advices

– If you want to make the most of a beautiful campsite in the middle of nature, let yourself be guided by it and lose yourself wherever it takes you.

Don't forget to think about the atmosphere: good music, warm herbal tea and a few candles are enough to make the night even richer.

Always inform yourself about the place where you intend to camp and equip yourself with the right equipment in case of bad weather.

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Viaggio per trovare la migliore versione di me stesso. Scrivo per condividere l'importanza di utilizzare il viaggio come strumento per conoscersi e superare i propri limiti.

Comments

  • Vivian Vrahos
    29 January 2021

    Alex, this is such a accurate story of a fun and eventful time in relaxed Australia!! You have written your story telling is visual and full of realism! So beautifully described. I can visualise your experience! We’ll done!!! ❤️❤️

    reply

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Born in Ferrara, Italy, Be Adventurer is a blog of Alex Negrini
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