I am not much of an adventure traveler usually, but after the quad biking and sandboarding experience the day before, I find myself game for more! In fact, towards the end of the trip, I actually regretted not signing up for sky diving like Willy did!
Amazing what a few days down under can do to a geek like me.
Nelson Bay is a suburb of the Port Stephens Local Government Area in the Hunter Region of New South Wales, Australia. It is a major tourism centre, particularly for dolphin and whale watching, surfing, diving, fishing and other recreational aquatic activities.
I love the sea and water sports. All the listed activities were up my alley. As for horse riding, I have not try it before other than those lame “sit-and-pose-for-picture” kind. Our guide, Duglass assured us our horse riding experience won’t be of this variety. Duglass herself has rode horses from a young age and was happy to share tips with us on our car ride.
When we arrived at Nelson Bay, the sun was shining brightly, with a gentle breeze blowing. Perfect weather for all our activities.
First up was horse riding with Allen, the owner of Sahara Trails Horse Riding and Farmstays.
The horses we rode on are all trained by Allen himself. He strikes us as a country person through and through. Someone who really enjoys working with animals.
Allen allowed us to trotter the horses a little. This was much tougher than I thought; I cannot imagine how difficult it must be to GALLOP the horses! Now I know why equestrian qualifies as an Olympics sports. There’s so much skills involved, communicating and bonding with the horses as well as timing your body movement with that of the horse’ strides to avoid injuries.
The horse I rode on was called Brave. He is a greedy horse, straying from the formation occasionally to feed on patches of grass. I found it quite amusing, riding on something that is alive and has a mind of its own as a mode of transport.
A horse riding video I captured, riding behind Allen. I am sorry about the shakiness, but it well reflect how bumpy it was to ride on a horse:
After horse riding, we head off for parasailing with Port Stephens Parasailing. We got on the speed boat quickly and were ferried into the sea in no time, ready for parasailing.
Eunice and I went up first in a pair, with Eunice above and me below to add weight. Willy went up alone as he was tasked to do a video recording on the HTC EVO 3D.
The view up in the air was fantastic. I felt like a bird in the sky. With the wind blowing into our faces and gently rocking us side to side as we rest on our harnesses, I felt on top of the world.
When it was Willy’s turn, the coxswain cheekily asked if we would like him to dip Willy into the sea when he lands to get him a little wet. Eunice and I knew Willy came all prepared, decked in water proof clothing from head to toe, of course we answered a resounding yes. Check out Willy’s video to witness the prank:
To round out our adventure at Nelson Bay, our last stop was dolphin watching with Moonshadow Cruises.
Lunch was served on board the cruise ship itself. There were both Western and Asian fares, much to my delight. The meal is included as part of the dolphin watching cruise package, quite worthwhile for the price.
This was the first time I came into close proximity with wild dolphins. It was an absolute delight watching them speed through the water with grace and some playfulness.
I captured a 3D video of the dolphins in action with the HTC EVO 3D:
After all the excitement in the first half of the day, we embarked on a 3 hour car ride back to Sydney city for a Crave Sydney International Food Festival event at Hyde Park in the evening.
Stay tuned for my updates.
FYI: There’s a voting contest going on via the official HTC Escapade website. Vote for your favourite Sydney photos taken by me and stand a chance to win a HTC EVO 3D smart phone for yourself! Triple your chance by voting for a photo each from Willy, Eunice and I!