Phillip Island – Rounding up the tour

If we get a move on and hitch up our britches we could just about get all the way around the island before the sun goes down. So let’s cast our eyes at the map once again.

We will drive anticlockwise – (a direction difficult to explain to idiot children who have only ever seen a digital clock.  I have also seen the word changed into counter-clockwise but that doesn’t help) – which means we go first to the Rhyll wetlands, then through the main town of Cowes which I didn’t bother to photograph, along the northern coast to The Nobbies, along the south coast and Pyramid Rock to Cape Woolamai.

The Rhyll wetlands is an area of mangrove swamp and coastal bush land.

It is almost impossible to walk through mangroves but it can be done because of the footpaths that have been built.

The footpath has just come out of the scrub on the right of the photo and if you walk quietly the wildlife might just stop for you.

It is much more fun seeing a Swamp Wallaby on its home ground than in a wildlife park. But the problem is, you have to see animals on their own terms. I spotted an echidna that stopped when I stopped and was difficult to see.

You can just make out his long thin snout on the right.

It was almost more difficult to see the next fellow.

This snake wouldn’t let me see his face – which pleased me no end – so I just stood still and he slipped effortlessly away.

There is Koala sanctuary in the centre of the island and I apologise for not going and taking photographs but I have posted many photographs of them at other times.

I drove through Cowes but it was the day after New Year and there was nowhere to park, nowhere to stop and most of you have probably seen a crowded shopping centre before.

The scenery from Cowes to The Nobbies is mostly rough cliffs and small coves.


Inland there are small rolling hills of farmland that look across the island to the mainland 

The north coast meets the south coast at The Nobbies.

Here, the cliffs rise to about 30 metres (100 feet) and although this isn’t mountainous it is a long way for the little fellow below.

This Little Penguin Eudyptula minor was known by everyone up until a few years ago as a Fairy Penguin. He it waiting for his parents to come home from fishing. This will happen at sundown. 

The sides of the cliffs are dotted with nesting boxes and it is almost unbelievable what the parent have to do when they come ashore.

Can you see the walkway for the tourists?

Here is a better shot of the walkway.

The penguins have to climb up these cliffs to get to their nests along pathways they have trod for many a year.

You can see their paths in this photo although it may not be easy if you only use a phone.

And this is the coast that they have to negotiate.

Just a little way further and there is the nightly Penguin Parade. This time the penguins arrive on a flat beach under the glare of spotlights and the gaze of thousands of peoples. I avoided it. The photo I stole from their advertising.

I didn’t wish to spend Adult – $26.20 . Child (4-15) – $13.0.  Australian Pensioner – $18.30. Family (2A2C) – $65.40.

I saw it once years ago and all I can remember was the sight of the penguins rushing up the beach, noticing all the people turning around and rushing back into the water and then grouping together to summon up courage and then running the gauntlet.

Anyway I had more to see.

Go back to the map at the top. We are just about to Cape Woolamai. 

This is Cape Woolamai from Pyramid Rock and between these two is the surf beach.

At about this time of the day I contemplated going home. It was 4.30 and home was an hour and a half’s drive. But I did so want to see the sun go down. That was at 8.45 – over 4 hours away. What was I to do? Well I could waste a bit of time looking at boats.

So I wasted a bit of time.

Then I went and ordered some fried rice at a Chinese shop in San Remo. There was a big crowd so that took half an hour.

Went back to the beach.

Then I drove right around the island again.

Then back to the beach.

And I waited for the sun to go down.

And I watched the waves come in. Can you see pyramid rock in the distance? That’s ten kilometres away.

Then I just sat and waited.

Met a lovely Indian couple with a young child. They were taking it in turn to take ‘selfies’ so I volunteered to take some shots of them together with their phone and they were very happy about that.

Then I sat and waited.

Then she asked if I wanted her to take my photo so I couldn’t very well say no.

I took some more photos and then went home.

And that’s that.

22 thoughts on “Phillip Island – Rounding up the tour

  1. Is ‘penguins rushing up the beach, noticing all the people turning around and rushing back into the water’ a regular occurrence. I mean, are there people around each time penguins come ashore? Or it just so happened that time? If people are around each time, would it not be a normal thing for penguins to experience?


  2. You had one very satisfactory visit to this island. Now, perhaps you could plan a visit to Kangaroo Island one day. But, it would be a touch further to drive from Caulfield.


    1. Yes Yvonne I was very happy with that trip but I think I will more than likely look for places less well know. And in June I’m going to do Melbourne to Cairns again Different season and a bit further inland in places.


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