Friday, October 19, 2012

Fri 19 Oct - Burra SA

Di wanted a lazy morning in our "luxury" motel room, so Hans went out for a photographic expedition at dawn, just before 6am. The town looked stunning very early in the morning so Hans wandered to the end of town with the aim to photograph the train set that meets all of Peterborough's visitors.

A couple of early morning shots...

Along the way was this spruiking for business, including for... see centre... They were providing services in the Peterborough area.
Nice sunrise just outside town...

After breakfast, we took off south for Clare, passing the lovely Jamestown, home of Reginald Murray Williams aka RM Williams of boot fame. The road was aptly called RM Williams Highway.

Further south, we noticed a lot of collapsed buildings / ruins among all the wheat fields.

Closer to Clare, the vineyards started to appear and the landscape looked very pleasant. The Lonely Planet book on Australia had warned about Clare and that it offered very expensive accommodation, "verging on outright greed" was their description.
As we drove through Clare, it certainly looked expensive and pretty charmless. So, we drove right through Clare town to their Visitor Center on its southern outskirts, presumably to meet visitors from Adelaide.
The lady at the Visitor Center was very helpful and suggested Spring Gully Conservation Park for picnic lunch (fantastic views, but a bit early for lunch)...

We found this road... He left a legacy everywhere...

And Sevenhill Cellars for not just its wines and vineyards, but also its Jesuit past and present, with lovely grounds and buildings. We walked the 1.5km history trail and then sat in the shade of the front garden and enjoyed a very nice picnic lunch.

We loved this message...
The Jesuits came from Austria in 1850 and were gifted a picture of the Madonna from king Ludwig of Bavaria, which now hangs in their church.

After lunch, we went to the town Mintaro 20 minutes or so to the east to check out Martindale Hall. A very English stately home, more appropriately for Cotswold than country South Australia.

And, of course, its original owner had:

- Inherited a huge amount of money

- Been sent to England as a youngster (Cambridge University)

- Returned with "landed gentry ideals" as a quite young man

- spent too much, lived a lavish lifestyle and was broke 11 years later.

So, another folly of sorts was created.
Nevertheless, the house was beautiful inside and outside and still contained a lot of what was there when the last owner, JT Mortlock passed away in 1950. Many items and interiors were a lot older than that. You can even stay in the "museum rooms".

The stables themselves, in a separate building some distance away, were very imposing (not Hans, imposing that is)

Time to head to Burra and our home for at least the next 3 nights. Along the way, we booked bicycles for Sunday, aiming to cycle up and down the Riesling Trail which is a bicycle path using an old disused railway track from Auburn to Clare.

First a cuppa at Burra's Gaslight Cafe, very cheap as an affogato was only $3.50 although pretty ordinary. Then onto the camping ground, setting up for the night. Lovely location by the creek and we settled in for the night.


No comments:

Post a Comment