After our big day out yesterday, we decided this morning to stay in Bright and mooch around town. It is such a pretty town, with lots of shopping – if that is your go. We started by taking the Canyon Walk because it is an easy stroll along the river into town, and the path passed right outside our motel. We walked one side of the river into town, and the other on our return. The river was at different heights but mostly low, so you could get an idea of how the hopeful miners would have grubbed for gold in the rocks and banks. In fact, we saw a gold-panner on our return. He said he is regularly there and even now he usually gets a few specks of gold on each day.
We needed to buy some Christmas presents anyway, so it was a good excuse to go up and down the various streets looking at all the speciality stores. Neither of us are great shoppers, but on this day we did manage a few hours. Gifts, homewares, clothing, shoes, books, and all sorts line the streets. We went into shops with names like The Tartan Fox, Kimono Girls, Country Heart and Home, Bowerbird Bright, and several sweet and chocolate stores: The Sweet Retreat, Bright Chocolate Factory, and Bright’s Old Fashioned Lolly Shop. We came away from one stocked up with licorice, although sad to say, not much of it made it back to the motel.
It was in these wanderings that we came across the print Portofino Waterfront, which turned out to be by the same artist as Portofino Colours which is already in our hallway. I wrote about that shortly after our return from this trip.
We also saw this little beauty in our wanders. It is a Holden Station Wagon, pretty sure it is a 1958 FC model. (Holden’s Motor Body Builders of Australia merged in 1931 to become General Motors-Holden (GM-H).
We stopped for refreshment at the Bright Brewery, which is located in a park right on the river and has a pleasant outdoor area. They pride themselves on their “mountain crafted beers” and have a chalkboard with all the different beers you can try: lagers, pale ales, amber ales, porters, etc. I am not a beer drinker, but I tolerate a wheat beer now and then, so I tried theirs. It was fine.
Had we been more energetic, and wanted to get back in the car, one of the things we could have done was drive to nearby Mount Buffalo National Park and taken a hike to another waterfall, or at least taken in the view from one of its many lookouts. Maybe watched people rock-climbing or hang gliding. We didn’t. We’ll save that for another visit. But we would have seen more wildflowers up there too 🙂
This time we got back to the motel in time to have that shower and freshen up for dinner. We walked back into town for a pre-dinner drink at a groovy wine bar. We sat outside at a table made from a wine barrel, and I sipped a peach liqueur-based cocktail while I checked out the passing parade.
When we are on driving holidays like this one our evening meals are often fairly standard fare, or something we prepare in the motel if there are facilities, but Bill had been doing his homework, and a wine bar and bistro called Thirteen Steps had caught his eye. So called, because it is in a basement thirteen steps down from the street. One of the first things you notice is the huge number of wine bottles lining the walls. I can’t remember what we ate or drank, but I do remember it was unusual and delicious. We had two courses, but declined dessert. The service and presentation were top-class too.
A very different day from the previous. Much more laid back 🙂
Friday, 16th December 2016