Published: December 13th 2011December 7th 2011
At last a warm day - no need for sweaters today!
Returning to this wonderful stretch of coastline is always a thrill - we'll never tire of it.
December was another day that started with glorious sun-shine. There was a bit of a breeze and out of the sun it was a little chilly – Daphne found it very cold!! We were a bit undecided as to what to do. Yesterday’s trip, although not far, was very tiring and we’d agreed not to have two tiring days on the trot. So a casual meander along the coast towards, but not as far as, Warnambool was the order of the day – though not before we’d had a mid-morning cuppa and toast to set ourselves up. At about 11:00am we set off in the car for the nearest lookout – we could have walked it but we intended going on further. The Bay of Martyrs is fantastic with easy access down to a lovely looking beach. I couldn’t resist having my usual paddle as the sun shone and the light breeze was hardly noticeable. From the viewing area up near the car-park we could see a small group of sting rays – about five of them - patrolling up and down within about 10 meters of the beach where the water was lovely and clear but without the
long-lensed camera (left in Melbourne) I was unable to get any decent photos. The next spot we called at was The Bay of Islands – like a mini version of the Twelve Apostles only without the crowds. Yet another stunning place with magical views and all within a few minutes of Julie’s lovely holiday home in Peterborough. How lucky are we? Then we drifted on towards a place that Daphne said she used to visit years ago – Boggy Creek. It has a reputation for being a lovely old pub and, with time going on, we decided that, if they were serving meals, we would have lunch there. We arrived first at a beautiful looking riverside picnic area on the banks of The Curdies River where the water looked lovely and a few boaters and canoeists were having fun. Just beyond the river was the famous Boggy Creek Pub but it looked very quiet and we thought it was closed. However, a door was unlocked so we ventured in, wandered round to investigate and found someone sitting out the back. It was about 12:30 and we enquired about lunch. Yes we could have lunch there so we ordered our food
and found a table over-looking the actual creek. We spotted a few unusual birds including a bittern and we could see the boaters passing up and down in the near distance. A few other customers came in for lunch but Daphne’s recollection is that it’s an evening pub so we agreed we would go back on Friday evening for a farewell meal. The food we had was good value and it’s only about 20 kilometers from Peterborough.
We continued our meander around by driving towards Timboon where we know there is a famous cheese outlet. We had driven through Timboon on our journeys between Melbourne and Peterborough but we had never explored the town. It’s not big but was quite busy and with a nice variety of shops which Daphne and I investigated – we both almost bought ourselves shoes that were on special offer (the ones I fancied were sandals I could have worn to the wedding) but sadly they didn’t have the right sizes. Afterwards we went to the cheese outlet which was on the road back towards Peterborough but it was closed!! Coincidentally, another cheese outlet that Daphne knows well on the Mornington Peninsula, and which
we visited a couple of weeks ago, was also closed so we think it might be a “seasonal” thing. Surprising though, with the holiday season about to kick off, we thought that now would be a good time for them to make their fortune. Back at Peterborough we couldn’t resist calling into the shops for an ice-cream and then having a late afternoon cuppa at the house. The back verandah was again the place to sit with beautiful sunshine and a bit of shelter from the breeze which seemed to have picked up again. Dinner was a light affair following our big lunchtime meals at the Boggy Creek Pub and the rest of the evening was spent watching the “extras” that came with the Red Dog DVD especially the “interview” with Koko (Red Dog) which was absolutely brilliant.
We were all up and about early on Wednesday 7th
December as we decided it would be a bit of a travelling day. We had it in mind to go as far as Port Fairy and maybe to call in at Warrnambool on the way back. I prepared some rolls and a flask and we were on the road soon after
9:00am – not bad for us. The weather was good and even the light breeze was a warm one so everything augured well for a good day out. We drove through Warrnambool and carried on for another 20 kilometers or so until we reached Port Fairy. We remembered it well from our brief visit in January so we soon found ourselves on the tourist circuit overlooking the ocean. We stopped in a well placed car-park with access to the beach and decided it was a good time for a cuppa and some cake. Two ladies arrived, went down to the beach and looked as though they were going for a swim. Actually they just walked along the beach with the water at knee level but they inspired me to go and have my usual paddle, taking my cup of tea with me. Daphne was also persuaded to venture down to the beach although she seemed reluctant to paddle. But when I assured her that the water was quite warm she relented and joined me. I fibbed about the temperature but it wasn’t unpleasant and we both enjoyed the experience. Graham meanwhile, stayed up in the car-park with his binoculars bird-watching.
I’m sure it was the oyster-catchers he was watching and not the young Italian girl frolicking on the beach with her boyfriend! After we’d dried off we went to the riverside car-park in Port Fairy and we all walked the short distance out towards the ocean. It was a beautiful walk during which we passed by an old-fashioned ship built in the style of a Portuguese Caravel. We got talking to a couple of chaps who knew the owner and they explained that it had been built by one fellow in his back yard some 20 kilometers inland using entirely re-claimed timbers. It is a truly magnificent vessel and all the more fantastic given its origin. It has sailed only once when it was taken to Geelong and back to obtain an official license and has been moored in Port Fairy since to be fine-tuned and pending the owner’s decision as to what he wants to do with it.
After completing our walk we sat by the river in Port Fairy to have our picnic and, lovely though it was, the sun was just a bit too strong to be comfortable. Eventually we moved on and I did a
small amount of shopping in the town before we drove back towards Warrnambool. We stopped off at a National Park called Tower Hill - what a lovely surprise that was. We weren’t sure what to expect but it was a most delightful park with two large lakes and plenty of wildlife including emus. We climbed to the top of Tower Hill which gave us magnificent views across the National Park looking out towards the ocean in the distance. Afterwards we called in at the Visitor’s Centre which was one of the most impressive we have seen with an excellent array of Aboriginal art items for sale. Daphne and I both spent a long time browsing and then unsurprisingly spent quite a bit of money! We finally arrived at Warrnambool but much of the shopping we wanted had already been done in Port Fairy or at Tower Hill and the grocery shopping would be done at a shopping centre on the way back to Peterborough. Nevertheless, we parked up for an hour and found a few more shops worthy of our attention and also a café for some coffee and cake courtesy of Daphne. We then followed the route that Graham
and I had done a few weeks ago through the Pertobe Lake area and down to a beach near Middle Island. We even did the same walk, across a footbridge and along a boardwalk. It was truly delightful and appeared to be an ideal place for swimming. We made a mental note that, if we return to Warrnambool on Friday, which is likely, and the weather is decent, we will take our bathers and consider having a dip. Our journey back to Peterborough was straightforward although we called into a couple of roadside lookouts to admire the gorgeous views. Our evening meal was interrupted with a last minute decision to see the sun set over the ocean. It was timed for about 8:30 so, in between courses, we dashed off to the golf course where, from the 6th
tee, we got a fantastic view of a pretty good sunset. Later in the evening we chatted with David on Skype and got a few more details about the wedding including an insight into the probable style of Mele’s wedding dress - there’s no backing out now David!
There are more photos below