IT'S been a corker of a holiday for British tourist Phil Ashley.
Mr Ashley, 26, an accountant from Jersey, who is visiting Australia for the first time with his Australian-born girlfriend Emma Topham, found a message in a bottle washed on up Shelley beach in the Royal National Park carrying greetings from two young brothers living in outback NSW.
The couple were walking on an Aboriginal tour with Sydney Coast Walks when they found the bottle.
"It was the end of the tour when we spotted a bottle on the sand," Mr Ashley said.
"I thought it was rubbish and went to pick it up and saw that there was a message inside.
"It had done well to stay in one piece.
"The beach is mostly rocks and it had washed over them in heavy surf without getting broken.
"We were excited. The tour guide said he had been waiting all his life to find a message in a bottle.
"It's one of those things you see in a film."
After wrestling with the cork, Mr Ashley was able to free the message inside — a sheet of laminated paper with greetings from two young brothers from outback NSW, Lukelan Goad, 8, and his brother Jyedon, 6.
The brothers, who live on a farm outside Cowra, said they had dropped the bottle into the ocean late last year and included an email address.
The couple sent the brothers an email and are waiting to hear back.
Ms Topham believes it is a sign of good luck and tops off what is proving to be an exciting trip for her partner.
"He's also seen two kangaroos boxing in the wild and thought he wouldn't be able to top that," she said.
"Every single day it has been something new," Mr Ashley said.
The couple are visiting Ms Topham's mother, Sarah Vibert, of Bundeena, who was also born in Jersey.
Ms Topham, an events manager, met Mr Ashley three years ago when she was visiting relatives in Jersey.
They have decided to take the bottle back to Jersey when they return in two weeks.
"We will put our own note in the bottle and throw it in the water and see how far it can go," Mr Ashley said.
"We will see if it can make it home."
Have you ever found a message in a bottle?