One of the things I like to do is the odd review or give an impression of something I like. And after recently spending a weekend at Point Lookout on Stradbroke Island I am inspired to describing some aspects of this beautiful spot.
Stradbroke Island, also called Straddie in Aussie slang, is a large sandy island in the Moreton Bay just offshore of mainland Brisbane. Aboriginals who have been on the island for over 21.000 years, call the island Minjerribah and archeological evidence suggests that Noonucal and Gorenpul tribes are the traditional owners of the Island and adjoining areas.
I have been at Stradbroke Island several times, mostly camping at Cylinder Beach. This time however we stayed in an apartment at Point Lookout that is owned by friends. It is right on ‘Deadman’s beach, one of the beaches on the North of the island and it is not exaggerated to claim that you could not wish for a better location. It has an uninterrupted view of the beach and surrounding nature reserves and wherever you look you’ll feel the need to keep your camera clicking!
Yes, it is available for rent, just check out their website.
Captain James Cook passed the island in 1770, gave the headland its name ‘Point Lookout‘ but did not bother to actually go ashore. I feel he missed out big time!
The North Gorge Walk at Point Lookout
Deadman’s beach is beautiful and surprisingly empty, and depending on the tide you can walk all the way around the headland of Point Lookout towards the main road with views over the beach on the ocean side. A bit of climbing is involved but it is not too hard. This is called the North Gorge Walk and I was told that this walk had been upgraded only recently.
Great Australian facilities
Doing this walk I noticed how well prepared this Gorge Walk is. Even more so I realised how much money Australia must spend on making nature available to the public. Comfortably laid out spacious paths and steps, hand rails, benches and picnic tables every where, BBQ with provided wood or gas bottles, look out points, clean public toilets and even shower blocks and life-saving equipment.
I may have my criticisms of this big and bold country but the outdoor facilities are outstanding and it makes it attractive for young and old to make use of them.
Spotting a whale or dolphin
When you go to Straddie from July and October you have to take binoculars as you may be able to spot some whales passing by. Actually take the binoculars any time as there is always heaps of dolphin activity and many sightings of turtles and dugongs. Apparently in the olden days Aboriginals and dolphins had a unique relationship to catch fish. Aboriginal men would call the dolphins by digging in the sand with their spears or slapping the water. The dolphins would then herd schools of fish that were caught by the men in towrow nets. After the people had enough fish, the remainder would be fed back to the dolphins.
We are early risers and like to start the day with a brisk walk or hike. Usually followed by a good coffee. On our first day we were disappointed as the only local cafe did not open until 7.30 and then served us a coffee that was not worth the wait. Why, oh, why we could only think….!
However the next day we wondered towards Cylinder and Home beach and discovered a flip board announcing Merlo coffee. And there it was, right on Cylinder beach, tapping into the market of campers and surfers!
Delicious, in one word and worthy of some promotion!
All in all a wonderful couple of days and Brisbane can count itself lucky to have a number of those islands in its back yard. It reminds me a bit of a past home – far, far away, but that is a different story….!