Into the blue…

10 Sep

Two weeks in and our first trip out of the city.

Today we headed West and into the Blue Mountains – so called for the blue haze, caused by the oil in the Eucalyptus trees.

I had been told how beautiful the Blue Mountains were but I was still struck at the lushness and vastness of this area. It was here that not for the first time I began to grasp how huge this country is.

Our first stop was Wentworth Falls, named after William Charles Wentworth, the explorer who led the expedition to cross the mountains in 1813.

The bright Australian sunshine and brilliant blue sky were the perfect backdrop to the whole journey – although this was the first time we’d actually felt cold here so far!

Stopping in Katoomba to see the famous Three Sisters we then went in search of a coffee shop. That is when we came across the Paragon Cafe –  a step back in time the moment you cross the threshold and a wonderful spot for a very English afternoon tea amid the amazing Art Deco interior.

The drive back took us along winding roads with stunning views across the valleys and some good photo opportunities with the sunset silhouetting the Eucalyptus along the road.

The day drew to a close with a family meal in honour of one of James’ cousin’s 21st birthday. We weren’t sure what was in store as we parked up outside ‘Kravings’, an isolated restaurant on the road side, but we were soon led into the room where a table set for a dozen or more people was waiting and we knew this was going to be a very (distant) family affair! We had a really fun time meeting James’ relatives; his dad’s cousin Ibby, her daughter Leona (who had just given birth that morning and remarkably made it out) and granddaughter, Sierra, whose birthday we were celebrating. The food and company were fantastic and despite family connections growing more distant with each passing generation, we were welcomed as family and made to feel right at home.

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