aquaprofunda: An eye reflected twice in a cut mirror. (Default)
[personal profile] aquaprofunda
March was a write-off month for me, but I loved the microadventure challenge (explore a waterway) for it enough that I decided to pursue it in April, and it was pretty awesome - I managed three!

1. Swimming with dolphins & seals

We got up early and headed to Sorrento Pier, where we met up with the tour group and kitted out in wetsuits (first time in a wetsuit, yay!). The weather was perfect - clear and still, absolutely no wind, though it was still a bit cold.

The boat headed out into the bay and almost immediately we were surrounded with pods of dolphins frolicking around. Pretty quickly they kicked us out of the boat and into the water, as fast as we could, and holy crap the water was cold. So much for wetsuits. First few minutes in the water was trying not to drown as I gasped at the shock of the cold and tried to get my mask to fit properly around my nose. Sadly I didn't see any dolphins play around under the water while we were in there, but wasn't too bothered as there was a great view of them up close above water.

Next we boated in to Portsea Pier, where they let us out to do some snorkeling around the reef there, including seeing a couple of weedy sea dragons, which were amazing.

After that we went out to the unfortunately-named Chinaman's Hat where it seems an enormous amount of Australian fur seals hang out. They were totally the highlight of the trip, adorable and friendly and full of character. We swam around with them in the water while they played and messed around, some of them even interacting directly with us - totally adorable and amazing.

(Cost: $115, via Moonraker Tours.)

2. Hot springs

We spent an entire afternoon at the hot springs, which were amazing. A series of hot bathing pools set amidst a scrubby outdoors, starting on a hilltop with 360 degree views and scattered down the hillside to the main bathhouse at the foot. The pools were all different temperatures, depths, shapes and settings. There was a cold plunge pool and pools with spa jets, a turkish steam bath and a dry sauna. It was super-amazing and I fully plan on doing it again.

(Cost: $40, Peninsula Hot Springs.)

3. Japanese Bath House

I have been planning on going to the Japanese Bath House since I first heard about it, about 10 years ago, and finally (a group of us who went to the hot springs motivated) got onto it. Unlike the hot springs, the bath house is nude and gender-separated, and definitely more traditional as far as bath houses go. We hung out there for an hour or so, alternating scrubbing and rinsing off and sauna-ing and lounging in the big, hot bath. While it was fun and I'm glad I tried it out, ultimately it didn't do much more for me than the spa & sauna at my local public pools do (at a much lower cost) so I don't have the same desire to go back like I do for the hot springs and their pretty unique offering.

(Cost: $30, Japanese Bath House.)

So overall, in spite of March's flop April's microadventuring was awesome, and I'm totally looking forward to May's: having a lunch time adventure!
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