The body of evidence is everywhere around you …. but it’s more than just the incidence of whale memorabilia and grey nomads that provides the clues to your whereabouts!
I assure you, I am no scientist but as I engaged my inner Sherlock Holmes I deduced that there were obvious telltale signs that I couldn’t be anywhere else on the Australian mainland other than Hervey Bay. If you take the time to look beyond the boats, jettys and marinas you’d be surprised to see so much Hervey Bay inspired quirkiness! It’s priceless! So here are my top 10 telltale signs that you’re in Hervey Bay and quite frankly… At this moment in time -I wouldn’t want to be anywhere else!
- There’s a Whale Tail sticking out of the ground!As you drive, ride, scooter or walk along the 14km of foreshore esplanade you can’t help but be reminded that Hervey Bay is the Whale Watching tourist Mecca of Australia. 20 years of research has recently confirmed that the Fraser Coast is the only genuine stopover along the migration route where up to 10,000 whales deviate from their annual journey back to Antartica. Unlike Whale Watching in the open ocean, where the whales simply pass by en route north or south, from July to November, the whales stay for up to 10 days in Hervey Bay, using time to rest, play and socialise.
- Caravans have the owners names on them – just in case they get lost. Jim and Lucy are from Lilydale in Victoria (just in case you needed to know)! I guess this is the perfect way to strike up a conversation with travelling neighbours and make sure that the caravan is returned to its rightful owners should they misplace it or decide that another caravan is better than theirs. Some vans even have their own channel frequency displayed – (in case you’re out and about and there’s no mobile coverage). I guess that’s actually quite handy in the event that you’ve broken down and require some help or just feel like a chat whilst on the road to your next destination.
3)Lawn bowls are secretly disguising themselves inside carry-on luggage- and there’s no airport in sight!
I first saw these little carry-on bags being towed along by husband and wife “Geoff and Judy” as they made their way to their local bowls club (dressed in matching Hervey Bay tracksuits) for their weekly Saturday tounament. I’m not sure if lawn bowls comps are actually called “tournaments” but you get my drift. These little beauties make the perfect accessory for any lawn bowl weilding enthusiast and are quite the accessory in Hervey Bay, with or without an airport. And bonus…. They can double as luggage should they feel the need to leave Hervey Bay for some extra adventures.
4) When the 200km of bike paths service more mobility scooters than bikes;
Just look at these little beauties!! Apparently you can hire them as well if you’re travelling to Hervey Bay for a holiday!
I saw a treasure trove of home made attempts to transport fishing gear along the length of the Urangan Pier! Turns out the trusty golf buggy was the most popular behind the modified baby stroller. Gotta love the DIY money saving attempts of carting fishing gear to the hungry fish waiting eagerly under the pier for their early morning and late afternoon feed.
6) When the dogs take the oldies for a walk.
A walk along one of the 15 off leash dog beaches along the Hervey Bay foreshore sees plenty of elderly folk walking their dogs. As they bound out of the car (the dogs that is) elderly owners are left struggling with harnesses and dog leads in an attempt to secure large (and small) bundles of furry excitedness! There’s no doubt that dogs rule in Hervey Bay and that most of “mans best friend” are owned by the multitude of retired folk in the area.
7) When the shed out the back is bigger than your house.
Yeah sure – maybe this photo doesn’t quite depict the massive sheds owners seem to have in their back yards! They seem to love downsizing their houses but that doesn’t mean they have to downsize their “man” sheds! Holy moly! Those sheds store everything from caravans, boats, ride on lawn mowers (cause the blocks are huge) and every toy/tool that has been accumulated over ones lifetime! If you’re looking for a super sized shed with a teeny weeny house then Hervey Bay is the place to come!
8) When there’s easy listening FM radio playing in the amenity block at 2am.
Procrastinate no more! Those early morning trips to the amenity block at 2am to relieve a bursting bladder is made all the more pleasurable thanks to the sounds of Fraser Coast Fm! And there’s nothing like the sounds of a pleasant sounding yoga instructor as she takes us through the yoga breathing techniques as I sit perched atop a freezing cold toilet seat! It made me conclude that there may well be hundreds of elderly folk who suffer insomnia and are in need of some gentle relaxing tunes to keep them from going stir crazy as they lie awake for hours while the the rest of the caravan park snores! Why not snore to the sounds of Fraser Coast FM! Love your work!
9) There’s 24 hour Surveillance every micro second of the day!
So we decided to park our trusty spinifex caravan at a cheaper “non waterfront ” caravan park – mostly because it was the first to pop up in GOOGLE when I requested a dog friendly place to camp! Turns out it was one of those places that had plenty of oldies living in “permanent” caravans! Yes, lots of oldies and not-so -oldies live in caravan parks and that’s completely ok! I do love the fact that the more permanent folk enjoy meeting new and interesting people (such as us) but does that also mean that we cannot pick our noses in peace without having it critiqued by Jim who happens to be peering through his Venetian blinds at any given hour of the day! I guess privacy is overrated and the term “mind your business” becomes completely obselete when choosing to camp at Hervey Bay! I guess you gotta take the good with the bad – there’s no petty theft and definitely no graffiti weilding teenagers waiting to steal clothes off the communal clothesline! The council must be saving a truck load of money by not having to install surveillance cameras throughout Hervey Bay!
10) Dogs Rule – yes dogs are welcome too.
I’ve saved the best till last – because i am (and always will) be a dog lover. It’s just so nice visiting a place that clearly appreciates and includes our pooches in everything (well most) things that we do. There are dog bowls at every water fountain, dog bowls at cafes and dog bowls at local weekend markets! Hervey Bay plays host to ten dog friendly caravan parks as well although most of these aren’t the main ones along the waterfront. There are even chariot – style bikes which we found handy when going on long bike rides. We have one teeny weeny pooch and one very old one so they aren’t the best at keeping up with our pace. The chariot served as the perfect solution and meant that we didn’t need to leave them at home. The owners even supplied us with towels to line the basket for extra doggy comfort! Hervey Bay really is the perfect dog friendly holiday destination!
So there’s a snapshot of the ten obvious indicators that you’re in Hervey Bay. It really is a place like no other and any wonder that it has the highest rate of growth in Australia!