The map

Some wins and losses – Wednesday 25 May

We packed up our car for another early start. We left Coral Bay just after sunrise. The journey was one of our shortest, travelling just up the coast to Exmouth. The landscape was monotonous. The only relief was the termite mounds. I found them fascinating. Dotted across the countryside were a variety of shapes and sizes of these pointy-top edifices that looked like sentinels parading across the landscape guarding it against who knows what or whom. They range in size from under a metre up to about 3 and occasionally 4 metres tall. When you think about how they are built it is quite awe-inspiring. When I started a little research, it appears that a mound of about 2 metres high can take up to 5 years to build. There weren’t just a few of these but many thousands spread across the majority of the drive from Coral Bay to Exmouth.

Another interesting place we passed by was Learmonth. It’s a RAAF base, but also a commercial airport. I was interested to see it, as it is a stopover point on flights from Perth to Cocos Islands. It was interesting to see it briefly. I thought I might take some photos, but it seems they are not allowed!

Learmonth from a distance – landscape around the area

We arrived in Exmouth mid-morning and spent a brilliant time at the Exmouth Discovery Centre and Aquarium, which is also the Visitors’ Centre and has a lovely café, where we all had brunch.

The Discovery Centre was a brief but interesting history of Exmouth. The Aquarium was incredible. It wasn’t huge but very well-planned with individual exhibits of some local species that you could inspect ‘up close and personally’! There was a small reptile exhibit at the end which was equally well-presented.

In the afternoon, we drove out towards the top of the peninsula and visited Vlamingh Lighthouse.

The lighthouse and the Potshot/Krait memorial we visited the next morning are all connected to Exmouth’s World War 2 connection to a US Navy submarine base, daring raids on Singapore involving the Krait and Operation Jaywick. Some fascinating success stories but also involves the horrors of war.

When we went back into town, we discovered an interesting little Beer Distillery and enjoyed a stout and an alcoholic ginger beer.

We had dinner with Time and Moira at an Italian restaurant called BBQ Godfather. We all had tasty meals but, typically Italian, they were huge, so doggy bags were required for Moira’s and mine!

The biggest disaster in Exmouth was our accommodation. Through a misunderstanding we ended up in a four-bunk box with no facilities and not very easily accessible for me. You win some you lose some.

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