As we never entered into Margaret River the way most “tourists” do I thought that before we go hunting for a cave, I may as well grab a photo of the beginning – not the end (where our introduction started). I could understand how a new person to this area could be serenaded into thinking how wonderful the place was. Leading up the Margaret River are trees lining each edge of the road – giving you the impression of some archway. You then go over the Margaret River (which was nothing but a trickle of water at the time) and are slowly welcomed by some craft type architecture. I guess, coming in this way, someone would probably not be aware of the commercialism that has taken place because the town sort of gradually grows from different to mass produce! So in a way I was happy to enter into the town from another side – because this is really the true version of this town…the “man behind the mask” so to speak.
The destination had been rearranged quickly to a cave structure called the Lake Caves. Apparently it was only 15 minutes away. And we had to take the “cave” road to get there. Yes – it was actually named the Cave Road. While I was driving I was thinking to myself – “what the hell are you doing – you are going the opposite direction of where you suppose to go?” Almost instantly I thought – “well it is only 15 minutes and I know that I will not be doing this again for a long time…so opportunity knocks – forward march!”
I glanced over at the little digital clock display to note that 15 minutes had passed. My passenger of question said that it was because we were driving slowly. I checked the speed – speed limited obtained – speed NOT SLOW! I drove just a little further thinking – right ——if I don’t see a sign soon then I am turning around! And low and behold – there before me was the sign…turn right.
It was a sort of odd experience as I turned down this road/driveway leading into the parking area. Now I have been to a number of “cave attractions” around the world, and this one did not really meet the same level as those did. It sort of was a mixture of car park slapped down among a bunch of trees with a log cabin type house at one end. Once again I doubled checked to see if it was a driveway and I began to wonder if I took the correct road. We parked the car – at the furthest point of this little log cabin feature, and looked around. There must of been about two other cars. “Guests” I thought! We decided to venture closer, and as we did we noticed that the glass doors had some writing on it which indicated that this was the entrance to these caves.
We entered in – and like most places like this – was hit by a multitude of different things to buy. Now I was thinking – “a shop in the middle of now where – interesting!” The girls were interested immediately! Who wouldn’t at this age – it was like Santa’s Village just “south of the border”!
A little voiced called our attention from behind the counter. “If you hurry you can make the last tour of the caves!” “How long is the tour?” I asked.
“It is at least an hour” came the reply!
I could not help myself as my jaw dropped to the floor and said: “WHAT!”
By this time I was just a little unnerved and I gave my passenger the death stare while also stating that this will NOT be happening today! The lady behind the counter realized that my patience was spent and was clearly in over-draft when she suggested we walk around the shop to get a little feel of the cave itself. It was a simulation of what was to be expected.
We spent about 10 minutes looking around. They had a “kids corner” where they made a cave type structure for kids to climb through. While one of my girls was surveying the collection of fairies – the other decided to see what this “cave experience” was like. It was not long before both girls were giving it a go and I thought to myself “that is actually quite clever!” Note to self: Stop by here next time in area – maybe worth the experience!
Of course I was just a little concerned of – “what happens if they get stuck!” – and was relived to see them squeeze through the other side.
We hit the road again, with my passenger mentioning something about Augusta. My reply was: “I tell you what – you can take the car and drive there yourself – but for now at 5pm – we are going back – destination reached!”
We did have one more thing to check off the list. Well, actually a few more things because we did not really do ALL the stops. This one was on the road back in any case – the vineyards and wine tasting. I personally am not a big wine person! I admit – don’t mind the odd glass once every two years or so – but I just don’t enjoy alcoholic beverages.
We must have driven about another 20 minutes when were greeted by a road block. GREAT! It looked like it was road works and as luck would have it, there was no alternative route. So I was forced to wait…and waiting……we did!
to be continued…………………………………