A little piece of paradise, Memories, The Coorong and south to Kingston SE, South Australia
11.02.2015 36 °C
A little piece of paradise
Memories, The Coorong (National Park) and south
to Kingston SE, South Australia
Back in the summer of 1966-67 I boarded a bus in Sydney which was bound for Perth in Western Australia. A friend encouraged me to join her on this epic 6-week, and 9,000km trip across the Nullarbor Desert – how could an adventurer like me say No. I loved it all and so did my friend, KC Jones who now lives in British Columbia, Canada. We travelled through NSW, Victoria, South Australia and Western Australia. The trip, so far, of my lifetime!
That was then (and the bus journey was astonishing) and it was during that trip that I fell totally in love with Australia. The sheer size of the country that was different very every day of the journey, the staggering distances we travelled and the remoteness and size of cattle stations, were such I could hardly comprehend them; then there was the scenery, the places we went and the little girl aged 5 who I met then who had never seen rain. Imagine that .. such special memories!
…. And this is now. As I said before, this recent trip to Adelaide has been very memorable and mostly a happy one.
Leaving our friends in Semaphore a few days ago, we decided to take the long way home and after spending a couple of days in McLaren Vale (home of the very fine reds!), we have travelled today south along the Coorong – as I did back in 1966. My memory of then is that the stunning colours of The Coorong, the pristine nature and cleanliness of the massive sand dunes – had to be seen to be believed. And the traditional owners back then were seen to be everywhere. I remember them clearly.
And that’s changed too ..
However, and it happens, but today, either my memory has failed me or I got it wrong – but the Coorong today, albeit a staggeringly beautiful National Park of great Aboriginal significance, has much much less sea water in its long lagoon, than it had 50 years ago. Can this be right .. I wonder? Someone would know the answer, but here isn’t the time to wonder about that bit … shallow water and much sand, and many many large salt pans.
We took lots of photos today and on leaving McLaren Vale we couldn’t help noticing just how many thousands and thousands of acres were planted out as vineyards. We have visited both the Hunter Valley vineyards north of Sydney, and the Barossa Valley and Clare Valley north of Adelaide; and the beautiful Margaret River region south of Perth – but nowhere seems to grow quite so many grapes as south of Adelaide. We were impressed and to see that they are irrigated by the waters of the Murray River which eventually flow into Lake Alexandrina, the water supply for Adelaide.
About an hour south, at tiny Wellington, hot fresh coffee was on hand as we waited for an impressive vehicular ferry to take us across the Murray – and soon we were heading south down the Coorong.
About 150 km from McLaren Vale took us to this unexpectedly neat and tidy and spectacular township of Kingston SE - SE has been added to it’s name as it is south east as there are quite a few Kingstons in South Australia. This one is at the end of The Coorong, a 146 km beach!
This caravan park is probably the best we’ve ever stayed in, anywhere on our many travels across Australia. It is just over the road from a great beach - looking due west into what probably will be a stunning sunset – another one!
This little town has a red and white lighthouse, a sculpture of what must be the world’s largest lobster – fishing, walking, (not surfing or ocean swimming as the Great White Shark lives in these waters of the Southern Ocean and so we won’t be doing any of that), but there’s also golfing and on Sunday there’s a fun run up, down and round the lighthouse, and a triathlon raising money for charity and spreading the word about Kingston SE. Apart from that, it’s a pretty town, well set out, well kept houses and gardens, a very very long clean white beach, and lots of green lawns. Lawns, paddocks and vineyards are very dry and we haven’t seen much grass anywhere.
We might just stay a couple of days here .. it’s far too nice to leave really and Skippy’s love of the ocean is easy to see as she races down the beach into the waves, then gets out to chase the seagulls – they are quite safe, she’d never even get near one.
For now though, Kingston SE caravan park on the beach suits us very well. We’re not sure just where or when we’ll go to next – we’ll have to wait and see! As I’ve said before, we never decide on anything until after breakfast each day.
It works for us!!