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Published: November 10th 2013
From Exmouth we travelled south and called into the small town of Coral Bay, famous for its beautiful sandy beach and, of course snorkelling amongst the coral. It was so picturesque with its turquoise sea with canoes, kayaks and glass bottom boats to hire to view all the protected marine life from above the water. It is easy to see why it is a popular tourist destination with the caravan parks and motels all on the main drag.
Next stop was Carnarvon and as this town prohibits free camping, like many in Australia, we opted for a caravan park that was offering 3 nights for the price of two, so a pretty good deal really. We again relaxed by a beautiful pool, reading our kindles and agreeing that our life style is not too bad! Carnarvon is famous for its one mile jetty which we chose to walk along rather than the tourist train. It took us 17 minutes as we had to be careful on the uneven planks as the jetty was built in the 1890’s and under constant repair as money allows. We were disappointed not to spot any dugongs in the water as that is where they
like to hang out amongst all the sea grass below the jetty which in turn brings the sharks around to feed on the dugongs. Pete and I had a wonderful time biking around the town and around the bays so our 3 days went pretty fast.
Back on the road and this time we are, for the first time camped on a 200,000 acre sheep and goat station that supplements their income by letting motorhomes etc park here on one tiny part of it. It has just gone dark, after a stunning sunset and we can hear a curlew calling somewhere close along with the occasional bleat of a goat. I asked the station owner how do they round all the stock up and amazingly it is quite simple. They put gated fences that automatically shut around all the watering holes when they need to get the stock and when they come to drink they are then there for rounding up, (most of which will end up in the middle east!) How ingenious! Driving along the roads there are sheep and goats all over the place resting under bushes trying to find shade where ever they can to get
out of the heat. They don’t seem to get hit by the traffic but cattle sometimes do, maybe because they are slower. The big road trains, which drive day and night, just carry on and don’t bother to stop and today we had to drive around 3 road kills including one that was a massive kangaroo which must, I am sure, have made a dent on some truckies roo bar.
We have just visited Monkey Mia a very very popular tourist resort where the visitors can watch dolphins being fed off the beach by the conservation wardens. It is strictly controlled with only 3 feeds a day given to a maximum of 5 dolphins each time. They were still fascinating to watch and well worth the long drive to see them. From another jetty at the nearby town of Denham Pete was pointing out some large fish swimming near a moored boat when out of the blue a shark came up and ate one which was quite scary seeing as we were only a couple of metres from the shore so I am glad I didn’t wade in the water there. Seriously though the bay is named Shark Bay
and the tourist information lady assured me that there has never been a shark attack yet even though there are heaps around so that must be because they are well fed!
The sea around this area is absolutely stunning with all shades of blue and turquoise that you could imagine and contrasted against some amazing white sandy beaches they are just amazing. One beach is called Shell beach and quite literally made up of millions of tiny white shells of all sizes and shapes and best seen to be believed. The red soil of Western Australia comes practically right across from the centre stopping just at the ocean where wind then covers the last few metres with white sand and sand dunes.
Western Australia is renowned for the wildflower displays and the Kalbarri region especially. Unfortunately this year was not a good year so although we saw some flowers out it was not as spectacular as we had hoped. Not to be disappointed though we carried on south to Port Gregory where we saw this absolutely amazing PINK lake!! It seems that a bacteria that is trapped in the salt causes this change in the sea water and
the colour changes as the sun sets to an even darker pink and then purple. It certainly did feel weird standing on the edge of a pink lake!
We explored Geraldton today, a lovely port city with lots to see and do. The cathedral was amazing with its grey, white, red and orange stiped decor, the memorial to HMAS Sydney that sunk in 1941 just off the coast was so sad with its 645 stainless steel seagulls in the shape of a dome to represent the sailors that lost their lives and the Geraldton museum with the history of all the shipwrecks off the coast. To end the day we visited an 1860 homestead along with resident ghosts (which we didn’t see). It was hilarious to see the young guide refuse to go into a certain room. She explained that some visitors had taken photos of the rooms and then seen images of people in them and also the tale of a local tradesman who, while doing maintenance in one of the rooms got spooked when the piano started to play when no-one was around! (Pete took photos but nothing appeared in his.)
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