SHELLY BEACH SNIPPETS No. 64 April, 2016.
Patricia Newell-Dunkley Photographs by Reginald J. Dunkley.
G’Day from down-under where the weather is finally cooling with sunny autumn days and it is a good time to visit the country. Western Australia is a state occupying the entire western third of Australia with much to see. It is home to 540 species of birds and famous for its Flora and Fauna besides being the second-largest iron ore producer in the world.
With its immense dimensions it could be considered Australia’s final frontier. There are stunning gorges and waterfalls at Karijini National Park and flaming red sunsets on Cable Beach a 22 kilometre-long stretch of pure white sand, set against a backdrop of red ochre cliffs and fringed by turquoise waters of the Indian Ocean. Coral Bay gives you protected beaches and a reef full of marine life.
Broome is an exotic pearling town in the Kimberley’s and here you can ride a camel along the beach, shop for pearls in Chinatown, see dinosaur footprints, bird watch in Roebuck Bay and catch the “moon staircase” a natural phenomenon caused by the full moon rising over Roebuck Bay at low tides, creating a beautiful optical illusion of a staircase reaching the moon.
The Kimberley is Western Australia’s sparsely settled northern region, and known for large swaths of wilderness, rugged mountains and dramatic gorges and Windjana Gorge National Park, which has towering limestone cliff walls and pools where freshwater crocodiles gather.
It is one of the nine regions of Western Australia bordered on the west by the Indian Ocean, on the north by the Timor Sea, on the South by the Great Sandy and Tanami Deserts and on the East by the Northern Territory. Kimberley has a tropical monsoon climate and is one of the hottest parts of Australia.
Cygnet Bay in W.A. is one of those places that are difficult to describe, it simply must be experienced. Situated on the tip of the Dampier Peninsular, this area is a cultural hotspot of natural extremes and unparallel beauty. The sheltered waters of King Sound and the surrounding Islands of the Buccaneer Archipelago make it unique. Cygnet Bay Pearl Farm cultivates and harvests some of the finest quality South Sea Pearls in the world. Celebrating 70 years of pearling in 2016, this small family owned pearl farm north of Broome and the oldest are one of the few remaining pearl producers in Australia.
Dampier Peninsula and Cape Leveque offer the perfect getaway for the adventurous traveller. Stretching 220 kilometres north of Broome, the only access to the area is via the partially unsealed Cape Leveque Road. Known by the indigenous peoples as “Ardi” meaning heading north, the Dampier Peninsular is made up of many small communities. You can meet the locals and learn about remote community life. Go mud crabbing, visit The Sacred Heart Church with its beautiful Pearl Shell Altar, built by the Pallotine Monks and the Indigenous people of Beagle Bay in 1917. This is pristine country and respect for the land is sought. Cape Leveque – (known as Kooljaman) has pristine beaches, swimming, snorkelling, sunbathing, painting, and is a photographer’s paradise.
Visit the town of Albany as the curtain rises on “Amazing Albany” as the city hosts the first in a series of commemorative and community events to start Australia’s Anzac Centenary period marking 100years since Australia’s involvement in W.W. 1.
On 1st November 1914 the first convoy of Australian and New Zealand troops departed for the First World War from King George Sound, Albany. For many Albany was their last sight of Australian soil. Today Albany is known as the birthplace of the “Anzac Story” and the home of the National Anzac Centre and named as one of the best new travel experiences in the World.
The breathtaking beauty of Albany’s rugged coastline creates a fitting backdrop to this charming city where the first European settlers set foot in Western Australia and much of their legacy remains today with 50 colonial buildings standing proudly, as museums, galleries and restaurants.
You can spot the migrating whale pods and interact with dolphins at Margaret River, where surfers carve world-class waves, while vignerons craft world-class wines. Western Australia has it all.
The saga of Johnny Depp and his wife Amber Heard’s dogs “Pistol and Boo” came to an amicable end in court on the Gold Coast, with a good behaviour bond being given to the actress for smuggling the dogs into the country. The couple released an apology on video declaring that Australia has a trove of ‘unique plants, animals and people’ which have to be protected. The dogs “Pistol and Boo” were brought in on a private jet last May and only discovered when photographed at a grooming parlour which was posted on social media. Australia’s quarantine laws are extremely strict and with good reason. All’s well that ends well, so they say.
Here at Shelly Beach all is well, with Princess Pixie the Pomeranian intrigued as the slow- moving blue-tongued lizard is back, waddling around the garden with his tongue out looking for a sunny spot. The birds are watching from above making sure that nothing happens to their seed and porridge, while I keep my eye on them all. Do visit my website www.paatriciasartworld.com
My books “Letters of a Travelling Lady, The Complete Guide to Painting and Decorating Porcelain, Wallis the Woman I Love.”