Last week I wrote about my visit to Horseshoe Bay at Pt Elliot here in South Australia. This day trip from home here in Murray Bridge was to celebrate our anniversary in a relaxed and enjoyable way.
When we arrived at the picturesque seaside town of Pt Elliot on the south coast, parking at Horseshoe Bay was all taken up. This is not surprising because it was the middle of the school holidays as well as being at the height of the summer holidays here in Australia. The beach was being well used and it was crowded like I had never seen it before. The weather was perfect for swimming and lounging around on the sand, so it was not surprising that it was crowded. The nearby caravan park was also quite full, adding to the crowd on the beach.
When I couldn’t get a park near the beach I decided to try another spot nearby. We are spoilt here in South Australia because we like to park close to the beach and usually that is not a problem. We have many wonderful beaches and ample parking is available at most of them. And, unlike some I have been to in Sydney, for example, there are no parking meters to contend with. Despite this, there was not a single park – except high up on the overlooking cliff well away from the beach where we wanted to have our afternoon tea.
So, I drove the short distance to the local obelisk overlooking the bay. The car park there was almost empty, so I parked where we had a great view of the water, the bay and the nearby rocky islands in the bay. We sat in the car enjoying the vista in front of us, and the cool breeze made life very enjoyable. We enjoyed our cup of tea and home-made biscuits while soaking in the view – see today’s photos to understand what we enjoyed.
I didn’t get a chance to take many bird photos, except for the lovely shots of a Silver Gull I featured on another post here.
Earlier this week my wife and I celebrated another anniversary. My – how the years have flown by. We always try to do something special for our anniversary and agreed that the weather was suitable for a long drive and a picnic, finished by dinner at a favourite restaurant. After an early morning chat on the phone with our grandchildren, we set off towards Milang, which is about 50 kilometres from our home. We stopped at the local bakery to buy our lunch, a Cornish pasty each, and a large lamington to share.
We took our lunch down to the shore of Lake Alexandrina and had a picnic lunch on the lawns there. The largest river system in Australia, The Murray-Darling Basin, flows into this large lake, which in turn empties into the Southern Ocean near Goolwa. While we ate our lunch we watched some children playing with their dogs and on the playground. I took note of the birds I could see or hear, but things were rather quiet on that front – until someone disturbed a large flock of very noisy Little Corellas nearby. I have often thought that I would like to stay in the local caravan park right next to the lake, but I concluded that you would not need an alarm clock; the parrots would see that you woke at dawn, or even at first light.
From Milang we drove on towards Goolwa and explored Hindmarsh Island – but I will write about that part another day. Later in the afternoon, we stopped at Horseshoe Bay, Pt Elliot. This small town on the south coast of the Fleurieu Peninsula is a popular holiday destination, being just over an hour’s drive from Adelaide. We stopped for a cuppa and some homemade biscuits in the car park at the lookout. I parked so that we had a great view over the bay. In South Australian history, this spot is quite important. Encounter Bay, which stretches for some distance to the south-east, was where English explorer Captain Matthew Flinders and the French explorer Nicolas Baudin met in April 1802.
While we were having our cuppa, a solitary Silver Gull settled on an interpretive sign just in front of our car. It obligingly posed for a series of photos which I am sharing here today. Silver Gulls are the most common gull found all around the coastline of Australia. It can also be seen far inland where suitable bodies of water exist, such as river systems, lakes, reservoirs and swamps. It can be very common in large numbers at rubbish tips, ovals, picnic grounds and beaches.