Far out! What a way to recharge the batteries. It has been hectic around The Good Scout headquarters for awhile and although planning a holiday still takes a lot of effort, this one replenished the soul and reminded me about all the GOOD that can come from a well planned trip.
What actually concerned us most (after we had booked in our accommodation!) was entertaining the kids for the 700kms we had to drive to get to Port Lincoln which was were we started our holiday. However they must have needed some quiet time, because the lure of fast food to break up the drive at Port Augusta kept them contained for the first half of the drive and the second half you get to see a bit more coastline and coastal villages so again they were quietly content!
We arrived into Port Lincoln by 4pm. We briefly stopped in at Cowell, enough to see the works of some local artists in the amenities block and have a quick bounce on the giant jumping pillow on the foreshore.
We stayed in a Town View room at the Port Lincoln Hotel and it suited our needs perfectly. The facilities are great and the location even better, we took lots of walks along the foreshore and to the marina from here. We had dinner at the Beer Garden and tasted some local brew. We loved walking out the jetty and we were treated with seeing a starfish in the ocean pool! There is ramp access down to the deck of the ocean pool.
Another place to stay would be the Executive Cabin at at the Port Lincoln Tourist Park.
The next day we headed out to Coffin Bay, a gorgeous coastal town and popular holiday destination. The calm, crystal clear waters of the bay are perfect for all the water activities you can imagine. We also explored the Coffin Bay National Park and was further dazzled by the coastline and wildlife!
As fresh seafood was a top priority for this holiday, we literally dropped on board an oyster barge with Pure Oyster Tours in Coffin Bay. It was about a 15cm drop down from the boat ramp onto the barge. There was a portable ramp that linked into the boat ramp that we used to get off, which required a little assistance . We had contacted Pure Oyster Tours beforehand and they were more than happy to assist us to find away to participate. They have a new boat in the making with access a priority so keep this experience on your radar. Not sure I have ever had a better oyster, but I am happy to keep researching this topic!
Determined to up our seafood intake we stopped at The Fresh Fish Place, previously named as Australia’s best fish and chip shop, and devoured the Family meal. Seriously good food. There is a great outdoor deck where you could soak up some sun and keep the kids entertained or contained, whatever the day requires! Just a heads up, access from the car park is a bit tight because of how the bollards have been laid out to stop the cars going too far forward.
We also visited Glen Forest Tourist Park, the kids had a ball here, and then onto the Boston Bay Winery.
From Port Lincoln we went further up the coastline to visit some friends in Smoky Bay. I was immediately hit by the warm air and the crunch of compounded shells under my feet and it reminded me of seaside holidays from my childhood. I was instantly transcended further into holiday mode! The shells are pretty much everywhere you would normally expect grass to be, so a set of all terrain tires or similar would make a difference here.
We had stopped in at Elliston and did the coastal drive. There must have been a public amenities upgrade project recently on the Eyre Peninsula, including Elliston, because the majority of the ones we saw were new and accessible.
I can’t share much about the accommodation in Smoky because it was a holiday house has that did have ramp access but not an accessible bathroom, so it was just one of those times that you make do. A number of houses around here did have ramp access.
We were treated to some awesome regional sights and enjoyed some quality time with our friends. We managed to get on board their boat and saw a huge pod of playful dolphins, a sea lion and then tried a little bit of fishing!
The Eyre Peninsula did not disappoint. I’ve already added a couple of experiences to the list for next time we get over there, shark cage diving and the Baird Bay Ocean Eco Experience…. both made more accessible with assistance from the operators, so call to see how you might participate.
One of the best things to remember is that a GOOD tourism operator cares about the experience they can provide for you, so call and ask the questions you need and if their responses are in favour of your needs there is almost always a way to make a GOOD experience…
Photos from Baird Bay Ocean Eco Experiences.
The centre photo shows the access ramp, it is not steps like the photos seems to show, rather a small strip to reduce slipping.