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Patricia Newell-Dunkley – Photographs Reginald J. Dunkley

Greetings once again from down-under where improvements are on the way, and hopefully life will keep improving.  Planning holidays and looking forward to once again travelling is on everyone’s bucket list.  So, let’s lift our game, forget the doom and gloom, and go jewel hunting.  Australia produces Pink Diamonds, Black and White Opal, luscious Pearls, and rich Gold.

There are lots of Opal fields in Australia, but the four well-known are Coober Pedy, Andamooka both in South Australia, and White Cliffs and Lightning Ridge from New South Wales.  All of these places are considerably wild and rugged surrounded by a moonscape of Mullock Humps.  The best time to visit the Opal Fields is in the cooler months from April to September.

For those looking for Black Opal Lightning Ridge is the place, and this Opal is considered the most valuable and most sought-after in the world.

Coober Pedy produces the bulk of the world’s white Opal along with the White Cliffs which also produces crystal.

Pink Diamonds are found in Western Australia, the mine owned by Rio Tinto and this is the world’s largest source.

Certified natural Pink Diamonds are exquisite and rare, with shades from cherry pink, a soft rose, and alluring violet to a dramatic red. They are recognised around the world as extremely luxurious items.

The tropical ocean of Australia’s northwest brings another natural gift in the form of lustrous South Sea Pearls. The Pearls gathered in the warm waters near Broome grow to the largest size known to man with dazzling lustre and a beautiful range of colours including Gold and Black Pearls.

The first officially recognised gold find in Australia was in 1823, and Australia is the third largest producer of gold in the world.

There is still a whole lot of gold in the outback of Australia and individual prospectors and amateur nugget hunters, still go metal detecting for gold nuggets in Western Australia and the Northern Territory.

A giant nugget known as “the Ausrox Nugget” was recently found in Kalgoorlie by metal detecting and sold for more than a million dollars.

Professional Gold Hunting in the Outback is well catered for and is a fun experience which might make you rich.

Meanwhile the Humpback Whales have already started their travelling north, this is earlier than usual and may be because of the fine weather.  Whale watching is extremely popular at the moment but only for those fortunate enough to live on the coast.  However, as the beautiful whales travel the New South Wales Coastline, spotters are putting locations online so that everyone can follow them.

Here on the Central Coast they can be seen at Shelly Beach, Crackneck Lookout Bateau Bay, Terrigal, Norah Head, Copacabana Beach.,

Most of the beaches are closed at the moment, swimming is allowed for exercise but no sitting.

IMGHere at Shelly Beach I have been in lockdown for five weeks and like everyone life has considerably changed.  Nevertheless, the birds are still in the garden in a great variety looking for their food. Two beautiful Rozella’s appeared along with the many Lorikeets, Cockatoos and Honey eaters.

Sadly, my darling Princess Pixie the Pomeranian had a heart attack and passed away. This was devastating, but I was extremely fortunate to rescue another Pomeranian Bonnie Prince Charlie, who has now taken up residence.

Wishing everyone good luck and safe keeping.

Cheers.  Patricia