I try to plan as much weekend trips as possible to make the most out of my time here. Some time ago I went to Warrnambool for the weekend. What a great weekend!

The boyfriend of my boyfriend's sister - wait, what? My boyfriend → his sister → her boyfriend Jack- lived there for two months and invited me to come over for the weekend. Jolien came along with me and we were both pretty excited. On Saturday morning we had our train tickets booked, bags were packed and our bikes ready to go. After I nearly missed the train (yep... I haven't learned), we were on our way! Three hours later we arrived in, apparently, the 40th biggest town in Australia: Warrnambool. It was great to have a bit of a country experience.

That day we were going to spot our first wild kangaroos, koalas, emus etc. I was super excited! Now Jack is a pretty active guy and he had told me it was going to be a bit of a bike ride to the park; 18 kilometres. Sure, no worries! I have been exercising a bit more since I'm in Melbourne, so I was more than ready!

Boy was I wrong... This was one insane bike ride; 18 k of proper mountains as we would say in the Netherlands. I was pretty worn-out by the time we got to the wildlife reserve. When we walked around the park for a few hours I was able to catch my breath.

Jack knew exactly where to find all of the animals and it was an amazing experience to see all those Australian animals. We spotted some sleepy koalas, had to chase off a few very curious baby emus, were lucky to find an echidna (see picture) and played a game with a wallaby (‘Annamaria koekoek’, where we moved in closer every time the wallaby put its head behind a tree to eat and froze when it looked back up. You could see the confusion in its eyes. We got to a meter distance, but then it left - probably because we were laughing too hard).

We left the park at sunset. Many people had already left and even more animals came out. We rode our bikes among a dozen hopping kangaroos and stopped a few times to enjoy the view. And then we started our dreaded way back. Although it was a bit more downhill, I was absolutely exhausted when we arrived back in Warrnambool. The exhaustion was unlike anything I had ever experienced; I was shaking from head to toe and extremely hungry. Luckily for me, dinner was served within minutes (maybe because I begged the waitress to give my food? – literally…) and it was the best and most deserved meal ever.

After a great night sleep, we went to see the town and the coastline on Sunday. It was a beautiful sunny day. The coastline was stunning; big rock formations, the bluest water I have ever seen and gorgeous beaches. It was the perfect day to rest our sore muscles. After this lovely weekend, Jolien and I went back to the big city on Sunday night and I have not touched my bike since.