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Saturday, January 23, 2010

Week 4/52 - Bunbury - City surrounded by water

Here we are in week 4 of our Tour Downunder Western Australia 2010. This week I am taking you to my home town, Bunbury, an easy two hour drive south of Perth.

Settled in 1830, Bunbury is a rapidly growing port city and the South West’s biggest population centre. Gateway to the tourist meccas further south like the Margaret River wine region, Bunbury is becoming a tourist destination in its own right with a Mediterranean climate and a variety of attractions, activities and accommodation to suit everyone.

Known as the City of Three Waters, Bunbury is almost surrounded by water, the Indian Ocean, Koombana Bay and the Leschenault Inlet, offering a unique lifestyle and a variety of recreational opportunities. Its white sandy beaches and surf are ideal for swimmers and surfers, bottlenose dolphins visit the beach at Koombana Bay, and the three waterways are perfect for all kinds of water sports including rowing, dragon boating, outrigger canoeing, sea kayaking, canoeing, sailing, water skiing, windsurfing, sailboarding, fishing and crabbing.

There is also plenty of history to absorb, art galleries to visit, enjoy a coffee in the bustling cappuccino strip or the new waterfront precinct.

When I came to choose the photos of my home town, I wondered how I could adequately show you Bunbury in just 4 photos. Since many of Bunbury's activities are centered around the water, I have selected four photos which I hope will illustrate the lifestyle which is Bunbury. I hope to add some more photos to show you the view.

To get your bearings, a good place to start is the Rotary Lookout Tower on Marlston Hill which provides a spectacular 360 degree panoramic view of Bunbury and is worth the climb. From here you can view the city, ocean, bay and estuary, the Inner and Outer Harbours of the Port, the old Timber Jetty, the breakwater designed by famous Goldfields Water Scheme engineer CY O’Connor, and the landmark grain silos which are being converted into Bunbury’s latest apartments and resort.

This view below is the Outer Harbour (there is also an Inner Harbour). In the foreground is the small boat harbour, and some of the waterfront precinct including restaurants and cafes. The beach here (you can see the coloured shade sails in the lower right of the phot) is known as the "Jetty Baths". It is a safe swimming beach used by families for years.


From Life Images by Jill

This photo was taken in the small boat harbour. I like the jumble of masts and the background of the Outer Harbour port facility, showing how leisure and the port can live in cohesion.

From Life Images by Jill

Tourists come from all over the world to see the Bottlenose dolphins which visit the beach in Koombana Bay. Approx 100 dolphins live in the bay. Contact with these wild creatures is controlled, but you can learn more about them at the Dolphin Discovery Centre or you can swim in their environment by joining a dive tour.

From Life Images by Jill

When I went to the "back beach" to photograph it for you there was a Surf Club competition in progress. What better way to show you the colour of a typically Australian event.

The back beach faces the Indian Ocean. In the foreground of the photo you can see the remains of the salt water baths build on the basalt rock around 1926. At the northern end of the beach are the black basalt rocks at Wyalup (Rocky Point) which are part of a lava flow approximately 150 millions years old which occurred during the breaking up of Gondwanaland are quite spectacular during rough weather with the waves crashing high up onto the rocks.

From Life Images by Jill

A couple more pics. This one is looking across Koombana Bay (where the dolphins come in and a very popular beach) towards the Inner Harbour.

From Life Images by Jill

This is the Leschenault Inlet - right in the middle of the City. On the far side of the water you can see the Bunbury Rowing Club - this is where my dragon boat crew store their boats and we paddle in this waterway and hold regattas here.

From Life Images by Jill

The two Bunbury Heritage Trails feature 58 sites of historical and natural interest. The old railway station which features a bent-rail supported platform roof (see the photo below) now houses the Bunbury Visitor Centre.

From Life Images by Jill

For those of you liking a bit of history -
The Regional Art Galleries in Wittenoom Street is housed in the former Sisters of Mercy Convent and Chapel built in 1897 in Federal Free Medieval style, a blend of Gothic and Southern European architectural characteristics.


From Life Images by Jill

An attractive part of the city’s streetscape is the Rose Hotel in Victoria Street built in 1865 and although extended several times, the two storey wrought iron verandah reflects Bunbury’s prosperity during the goldrush era.

From Life Images by Jill

Of course, Bunbury is not just about the water. You don't have to go far to get away and walk along shady bush walk trails, where you can find some of our stunning wildflowers during spring. This one is the Queen of Sheba orchid. It's location a guarded secret.....

From Life Images by Jill

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Thank you for stopping by. I hope you have enjoyed this tour around Western Australia. I look forward to hearing from you and thank you for taking the time to comment.