Last week, for a friend’s birthday, we went to Paradise Country.
Have you heard of it before? It’s kind of behind Outback Spectacular and Movie World. You have to drive for what seems like forever before you come to the carpark and entrance.
It’s marketed to the overseas tourist, specifically Asian tourists, so you’d be correct in assuming that our little Aussie group was in the minority.
All of the ‘typical’ Australia experiences were included.
Kangaroo patting…if you could fight your way through the tourists wielding cameras.
We found a few roos hiding from the crowds beside a far fence.
We skipped the $18 photo opportunity with the koalas – What a rort! – and found some cute koalas resting in an enclosure to admire. They are so cute.
At morning tea time ‘Shazza’ made us a cup of billy tea to wash down our sultana damper. Yum! Ever since, I’ve been craving strong Bushells tea. Nothing like a good cup of tea.
While we drank our tea and ate our damper we watched a quad bike compete against the good old fashioned stock horse. Shazza on the quad was hilarious. She was the typical ocker sheila.
Moving to another arena we watched a whip cracking demonstration. I’m guessing this tourist wasn’t expecting to have a fern whipped from her lips. A good reminder to never volunteer for anything!!
We watched a kelpie sheepdog round up the sheep
and Shazza attempt to milk the cow.
Her boomerang throwing was just as ‘skilled’. Yes, she was the ‘character’ of the show. The kids loved her.
The sheep shearing was excellent. We learned about different sheep varieties and watched a sheep being shorn. At the end of the show the children got to feel the fleece and take home some wool.
Our ‘Aussie’ kids also had their photo taken by a few tourists.
Lunch was a traditional barbeque banquet in the dining shed. It was delicious. As part of the birthday party we also shared a cake with our birthday girl. Twelve already! How did our children get so old so fast!
The highlight of the day for my boys was the mining experience. We paid extra to enter the Opal Mine to try our hand at mining.
It was very well organised. The children had to select their ‘claim’ and register it on their ‘license’. Then they chipped away on their claim looking for one to three ‘finds’.
Using their hammer they opened their finds to discover their chips of real opal.
Here’s the piece of opal Brayden found. Okay, so we won’t be retiring on our little chip but it’s pretty anyway.
Next up was Gold Mining…which wasn’t appropriately named at all.
Each child was given a bag of sand and directed to the ‘mine’ to pan (read – ‘sieve’) for gold.
Only it wasn’t gold we found but semi-precious stones. The children were delighted but the adults felt a little jipped. My boys want to return to Paradise Country merely to do this activity again!
At the end of the day we visited the baby animals.
We fed the animals
and our children got to feed the lambs their bottles.
No, Paradise Country is nothing like the other theme parks that surround it, but it was a delightful venue for a party with friends. Definitely a good place to take overseas visitors and a fun place to spend the day if you haven’t been before.