Luckily for us being at the bottom of Australia meant that we only had to experience one day of the intense heatwave that lingered for five days in other parts of the country. We tried to combat the heat by getting out early to do our sightseeing.
Along with our Portland host, we headed across to Cape Bridgewater, hoping to spot some seals but they were not as silly as us and had abandoned their posts, heading to sea for the day to escape the heat.
With the temperature rising rapidly to 37°C we tried to squeeze in one last bit of sightseeing by visiting the Petrified Forest. This particular 'forest' is not actually made up of fossilised trees, but eroded limestone columns which make for some interesting rock formations. From the forest it was only 400m back to the car, but the walk back was made difficult by strong, scalding wind gusts, so we decided to surrender and head back to the house to watch a movie.
The extreme heat only lasted until mid-afternoon, so once it had cooled down we decided to take Olly the dog to the beach for some exercise. Living over 4 hours from the nearest beach means that even this was a fun, new experience for us.
We finished the day by wandering along the beach and then doing a clifftop walk, visiting Whalers Bluff Lighthouse along the way.
Portland appears to be a beautiful town. Situated on the only deep-water port between Melbourne and Adelaide, it combines industry and the natural environment in a seamless way. It's far enough out of the way the that it isn't ruined by the hustle and bustle of tourist season, and due to its unusual geography offers plenty to see and do without having to travel more than 30 minutes from town. We can't wait to get out there tomorrow and start doing some serious exploring.