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Published: November 9th 2012
After leaving Sydney we headed south down the coast towards Eden where we could hopefully see some more whales. We opted to take the scenic coastal road through the national park and it was a good choice, the road impressively weaved its way back and forth through the bush to reveal stunning sea views. Along the route there were loads of good places to stop and do a bit of whale spotting and at one point the road even protruded out over the pacific in what was an impressive piece of engineering. We drove through some lovely seaside towns and villages along the way; funnily enough Scarborough being a stand out favourite with its lovely beach and a grand looking hotel until we eventually made our way to the seaside town of Kiama. To finish the day I headed off to get fish n chips whilst Jane cooked up some mushy peas in the campervan. We ate them overlooking the peaceful bay and harbour as the sun was setting, delicious. After sleeping in a free rest stop nearby, the next morning we returned to Kiama bay to have breakfast overlooking the sea and then enjoyed a stroll around the Sunday Market
which was so much better than the one in Sydney.
We continued down the coast through the impressive Jervis Bay national park which had numerous lovely little beaches and we stopped for a picnic at the white squeaky sands of Hyams Beach (apparently the whitest sand in the world). Jervis Bay is a huge national park and we made our way down the coast exploring all the hidden little beautiful bays which are sheltered from the pacific by the bays natural wine glass design, perfect for kids or a spot of windsurfing if that’s your bag.
After again sleeping for free at the side of the road, the next day we made it all the way to Eden and booked ourselves into a campsite for a much needed hot shower. The first notable change about Eden was the temperature, we had travelled quite a long way south now and it was cold, bloody cold. At one point I was even wearing four t-shirts under my fleece and my woolly hat came out by backpack for the first time. Besides the temperature, Eden was a peaceful little town which definitely lives up to its name, with the impressive Twofold
Bay right on its doorstep. It seems the whales like it too as every year between October and December hundreds of whales use the bay for a well-deserved rest on their way back home to the Antarctic after having their offspring in the warmer waters further north. Eden has a long history with the beautiful deep sea dwellers and when there are whales in the bay a siren in the museum is activated to let people know to head to the viewing point on the headland where you could literally spend hours watching one of nature’s largest mammals in their natural habitat.
We decided we wanted a closer look so the next morning we boarded the CatBalou Whale Watching Catamaran. It was a lovely crisp sunny morning and it didn’t take long for us to spot our first whales, we were only about a hundred metres from the harbour when we came across a mother and her young calf having a nap in Twofold Bay. After observing them snooze for a while we left the young family to rest and spent the next few hours drifting Twofold Bay enjoying the scenery whilst viewing at least twenty whales play, jump
around and show off with a bit of tail slapping. One whale was very inquisitive and stayed around the boat for about thirty minutes and she seemed to be enjoying our company as much as we were enjoyed hers. She clearly enjoying it a bit too much though, as when she popped up at the back of the boat in front of Jane and I she exploded the contents of her blow hole all over me! Yes I was covered in Whale snot! Mmmm… Fishy. Another highlight of the trip was seeing pods of dolphins and then our captain increasing the speed of the boat so they could enjoy running alongside the boat, jumping out of the water and showing off for our viewing pleasure. Amazing. As we were heading back to the harbour we saw two more whales trying to outdo each other by putting on a tail slapping show which was amazing to see. It was a great day out and along with the whales and dolphins we also saw a number of seals and numerous unusual beautiful birdlife that would make even expert twitchers like Bill Oddie or Mike Wright get excited.
After the whale watching
trip we wanted to learn more headed for Eden Whale Museum as we had been advised it was excellent. We were rather disappointed after paying about ten quid each to get in only find two rooms and not much to look at but very generic nautical artefacts that could be found anywhere; Hulls Maritime Museum is so much better!
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