“One should be empty, open, choiceless as a beach waiting for a gift from the sea. The sea once it casts it’s spell, holds one in it’s net of wonder forever. I love the beach. I love the sea.”……Anonymous.
This was my first glimpse of North Haven beach. It could quite easily have been a picture on a wall but it wasn’t, it was the view through a picture window overlooking the dunes and the beach to the ocean and it only gets better. I believe the collective of owners, so as to preserve the native flora, use the one track to gain entrance to the beach.
The Position of the house we were staying in was nestled between the small boat harbour on one side and the entrance to Port Adelaide on the other which meant there was quite a lot of activity happening on the water.
North Haven beach is both long and wide with beautiful sand and crystal clear water lapping the shore.
The time to walk along this beach is sunset. Great for photography as well.
On either end of the beach are walls of rough hewn sandstone rocks revealing an array of colourful natural patterns. This is one example.
If you are disenchanted with your lot at present, you could consider moving to Adelaide in South Australia where you have some very nice beaches, bike and walking paths, vineyards, universities and reasonably priced housing. I would certainly consider North Haven Beach which is positioned some 20 minutes from Adelaide’s CBD. This may prove to be the best decision you ever made.
“Everywhere is within walking distance if you have the time.”
A walk on the north side of town, from the Spit Bridge to Manly, Sydney, Australia
Every walk starts with just one tiny footprint. It’s where that footprint takes you that matters.
When I started this walk I wondered who had walked this area before. I don’t mean the manufactured walking trail but the entire area between the Spit Bridge and Manly. Bush walkers perhaps, convicts, early explorers? Actually, I was thinking of the Indigenous people of this land who hunted and gathered food here for thousands of years and we know that they were here and there were many of them. I wonder what they thought as they saw the first sailing vessels coming through the heads. The surprise and wonderment at the garments and uniforms of the first officers and sailors on landing.
Some of the harbour side beaches throw the most spectacular patterns in the water and you can see just how clean and clear the water is which brings me back to thinking about the aboriginal people who lived on these shores and what a life style they must have enjoyed with plentiful fresh water, native animals, birds and an abundance of fish and crustaceons to feast on, a temperate climate with lots of sunshine, life must have been very good.
The above view was our introduction to our walk and we couldn’t have wished for better weather and couldn’t wait to see what we had in front of us.
Our next location was Clortarf where we were greeted by this natural sculpture in sandstone.
Is the above view for real? Is it some mystical bottom dwelling sea creature from the bottom of Sydney Harbour that I have accidentally photographed? or is it an illusion produced by the water passing over a rather large submerged rock? You be the judge!
This is a view across Sydney Harbour looking from Clontarf to South Head at the entrance to Sydney harbour. If you read my post on the walk from Watsons Bay to Bondi Beach, the land depicted in the above photograph is the subject of the article. I may be biased but I think it is quite spectacular. The ferry you can see in the photo, is heading to Manly from Circular Quay and it would be this ferry that you would catch to start the walk from Manly to The Spit.
As we passed through Balgowla Heights I was attracted to the beautiful native flora which goes to show you that there is more to this walk than awesome harbour views.
At the top of this photograph is North Head at the entrance to Sydney harbour. This headland used to be an army installation and out of bounds to the general public, but in recent times it has been turned into Sydney Harbour National Park and can be walked as an extension to the Spit to Manly walk.
When we reached this spot, I knew that we were nearing the end of our walk. Our destination, Manly, is a little to the right of centre in the above photo. It was an enjoyable walk, not too difficult with ample interesting coves and beaches at which to stop and admire the panoramic views of Sydney Harbour. We continued our walk to the ocean side through the pedestrian only Corso ( 5 mins,) where we had an ice cream before catching a ferry back to Circular Quay and a bus to Bondi Beach. All in all an awesome day out.
Distance: 10 km – one way
Walk time: 3-5 hrs. depending on fitness and how many stops you make on the way.
If you are planning on staying in Sydney and intend playing the tourist, I would suggest buying an Opal Card which will cover all public transp
The above photograph so represents what Singapore is, or should I say used to be. The fishing villages, the boats, the canals, the humidity, colonial buildings mixed in with shop houses and an eclectic mish mash of nationalities going about their daily business.
I spent a lot of time in Singapore in the late 60’s and early 70’s when it went from a post war colonial outpost to a vibrant city. It was fascinating, alive with the remnants of all of Asia cocooned together on this tiny island. I loved every moment I had there, the Chinese Puppet Opera, Change alley, the smell of durians in season and Bugis Street. Water skiing from Mosquito Island off Pongal Point followed by a feast of cracked crab with chilli sauce and eased down with an icy cold Tiger beer. There are so many memories here and all of them good.
There was this story floating around the traps about the famous comedian Bob Hope who was passing through Singapore. As the flight steward opened the door of the aircraft, a waft of sickly sweet humid air entered the cabin. Bob Hope was heard to exclaim to his aide, “My God, what is that smell?”, the aide replied “I don’t know Bob, but it smells like shit!” to which Bob countered ” You’re right, but what have they done to it!” In those days they didn’t have the luxury of an air-conditioned air-bridge joining the fuselage of the aircraft to the terminal, passengers had to descend a set of steps wheeled up to the aircraft and then walk across the tarmac to the terminal and their first taste of Singapore was commonly called the smell of the Orient.
Back in 1967, when I was in my early 20’s, I used to stay at the old colonial Cathay Hotel. Whilst consuming a cold beer in the bar as a new chum to Singapore, it felt as though I was living out a scene from a Somerset Maugham or Ernest Hemingway novel. As I said before, it was the 1960’s and the room was full of business people, military and naval personnel, civilian aircrew, tourists, expats. and locals, people from all walks of life really and this was what made it so fascinating. Unfortunately, All that is left of this grand old dame now is the facade fronting another shopping mall.
Living in this modern metropolis of Singapore is probably great for the locals and I don’t begrudge them one little bit, but for me, I’d rather have the colourful, post war ‘Singas’ with all of it’s smells and sounds any day, and I am happy that I had the fortune of spending some time there and still have the memories of what it was like.
Well, that was then and this is now.
And, as we herald in the modern era, the new city of Singapore is brightly lit at night with a mix of colonial and modern architecture and chock full of honey, just for the taking. As busy as a hive of bees.
It is a modern city and therefore you would expect to see good modern architecture and you have it, lots of it, mixed in with the old British colonial and Asian shop-houses. It has an air of urgency about it and at the same time, the locals look perfectly relaxed.
Ten minutes drive outside the CBD and it is as if you are in a different world, one with vertical living next to an array of restaurants and bars, with a similarity to the old Singapore.
This is getting out of control as I could go on and on but I won’t, ending this post here.
This short story/history lesson relates to Bruny Island, located off the south eastern coast of Tasmania. This island is now a favourite tourist destination because of its unique natural beauty as well as being known for it’s diverse range of fresh food from both land and sea.
This story is significant, compelling and symbolic.
There is nothing significant about these two gum trees, except they witnessed the arrival of white men on this land. They did not protest but stored what they saw within their wood and it would still remain hidden today except for a painting of the trees made by a white man, one of the first white men to tread this land, the leading artist from H.M.S. Providence under the command of Captain Bligh which anchored off this point in 1792.
I have copied the script accompanying a photograph of the original painting so that it would be easier to read and give some authenticity to my story.
These trees were not standing tall, they were not significant in their beauty. What is significant is the history that these two trees have witnessed in the past, what they have endured through storm and tempest over the years, standing proud on a windswept coast, a witness to a significant period of Tasmania’s history. I thought at the time “if only we could tap this source of knowledge, how richer we would be”. I also found the experience of photographing the above scene profoundly emotional knowing that it had been painted over two hundred years ago and had changed little in that time, almost as if time had stood still.
The above scene is a photograph of the source of fresh water known as the “watering place” marked on the charts of Captain Tobias Furneaux,( Adventure 1773) and again on Captain James Cook’s charts (Resolution, 1777). It was also referred to as Resolution creek and Resolution River at different times.
At the beginning of this post I stated ” The story is significant, compelling and symbolic.” Readers will put their own interpretation on this statement, but to me it is significant, as it was the first time that white man had put foot on this island. The story may not be compelling to all readers but to those with an appetite for history it probably would be. It is a symbol of man’s need to discover new places, new species, in fact, anything new.
This is just another view of the same beach and shows just how clean and clear the water is, much the same as it was all those years ago.
If you ever get the opportunity to visit Bruny Island, take it, you won’t regret it.
“Take a discovery walk to-day to find what’s missing in your life. There is peace in the whisper of the wind, hope in the sun smiling from behind the clouds, strength in every step forward. You can do it! “…..Toni Sorenson, The Great Brain Cleanse.
As we were staying at Bondi beach and without a vehicle, we hopped onto a bus which took us on a nice leisurely ride to Watson’s Bay. Being a long weekend we expected to find hordes of people as it is a very popular destination for day trippers. The Watson’s Bay Hotel was overflowing and the parkland and foreshore also had a number of families picnicking and enjoying themselves beside the bay. We found however, that only a few were attempting the walk and decided, due to it being such a beautiful day to increase our walk by adding the 4.5 km Watsons Bay Walk to the Federation Cliff Walk making it a total of 11 km.
If you look at the above photograph, you can see the start of the walk at the top between the white building on the left and the jetty. You then have a choice of whether you walk along the promenade beside the boats or along the beach or perhaps remove your shoes and paddle through the water. The photograph doesn’t lie, the water is very inviting.
What we are looking at in the above photograph is the southern headland of the entrance to Sydney Harbour. This landmark is known as The Gap. These majestic sandstone cliffs rise many metres above the sea. Unfortunately, as well as offering a truely panoramic vista across the Tasman sea, it also hides a dark and sinister secret. Many people unable to cope with life have chosen this spot to end it all by jumping to their death from the top of the cliffs.
The opposing headland visible at the top of the photograph is North Head, a very similar cliff-scape to South Head, mainly sandstone escarpments.
There’s nothing quite as raw as the sound of your footsteps on sandstone.
This walk between The Gap and Dover Heights (Federation Cliff Walk) is not long at 5 km, nor is it hard but it is worth the effort if only for the coastal views. If I was to do it again, I think I would take a bus from Dover Heights to Bondi Beach rather than walk, as this last 2 km wasn’t all that stirring except for the portion between Bondi North and Bondi Beach.
The above view was taken from North Bondi looking south and to the start of another alluring walk along the cliff tops to Coogee. Once we arrived at North Bondi, we knew our destination was close at hand. One more stop was made before completing our walk at the Adina Apartments and that was the Hotel Bondi where we enjoyed a refreshing, frothy, cold beer to celebrate our cliff walk.
Mix all the ingredients except for the dark rum in a cocktail shaker, pour over ice in an ‘Old Fashion’ glass and then carefully float the dark rum on top. Garnish with a Maricino cherry skewered to a pineapple wedge together with a fresh lime wedge.
In a recent trip to Honolulu my wife and I made a 5 pm pilgrimage to the Royal Hawaiian Hotel (The Pink Palace), overlooking Waikiki beach each afternoon for no better reason than to savour the famous Royal Hawaiian Mai Tai.
There are a number of stories as to how the Mai Tai was created but I tend to favour the one which says that Victor Bergeron was hired by the hotel’s owners to create a number of exotic cocktails for the hotel’s bars and out of these cocktails, the Mai Tai is the only one remaining today. He supposedly served the cocktails to some of his Tahitian friends who exclaimed “Mai Tai – roa ae” which means “out of this world, the best”. For what it’s worth, I agree.
I apologise that I failed to take a photograph of the Royal Hawaiian at the time. I have however included the above image of Waikiki Beach, which was taken from in front of the hotel’s property and depicts what a lovely location it is to sip a cocktail at the end of a day in Honolulu. I hope this tempts you to take your vacation there.
Quote: ” In Hawaii, we have something called Mo’oponopono, where people come together to resolve crises and restore peace and balance”.….Duane Chapman (Brainy Quote)
Would I recommend a vacation in Honolulu?………………..absolutely!
My ride from Cleveland Point, Qld. to Redland Bay, on 4th June, was for Sarz.
Let me explain – Sara Zelenak lived in the adjoining suburb of Ormiston, Qld. Like a lot of young Australians she headed for London as part of her life’s journey taking her through Europe. Sara was to meet her parents Julie and Mark Wallace at the Eiffel Tower in Paris on the 30th June, 2017. Tragically this meeting did not take place as Sara’s journey was cut short on 3rd June, 2017. She was brutally stabbed to death along with others in the London Bridge & Borough Markets terrorist attack.
Julie and Mark Wallace have since founded the Sarz Sanctuary, a not for profit foundation, in honour of their daughter.
Sarz Sanctuary provides support for those suffering from traumatic grief as a result of a sudden or violent death.
In 2018 Julie and Mark, along with four other riders, cycled from Sara’s place of death, London Bridge and arrived at the Eiffel Tower one year to the day to honour their commitment and meet Sara’s spirit. They decided to make this ride an annual event. Not everyone who wants to be part of this organisation, is able to partake in the actual annual ride, so a virtual ride was formed so that interested riders could register with the organisation and complete 350 km over the month of June. Three riders from our small cycling group “U3A’s (University of the 3rd Age) “Easyriders” signed up to complete the ride.
I started my ride from Cleveland Point. The above photo is of Raby Bay which looking towards the point is on the left side. It was blowing a gusting head wind of 30 to 40 kmh and as it had been snowing on the Granite Belt to the south west earlier in the morning it was cold and hard going in places. I know, I am being a bit of a drama queen but living in the sub tropics I am much more used to hot weather than cold.
One of the best features of this ride is that you combine riding through forest areas with riding alongside of the bay
I rode along this path with the bay on my left and looking towards Victoria Point. This ride is one of two on Redland Coast which has an abundance of beautiful seascapes and I never get sick of riding it, because from a photographer’s point of view, it is forever changing depending on the day, the season, the mood. Just another stunning part of our Redland Coast.
Redland Bay – Destination reached. All I have to do now is have a coffee at Pelicans View Cafe and return home. Overall distance 56 km.