You'd think a place known as "The Birthplace of Queensland" would have tourists flocking to it but because the towns of 1770 and Agnes Water are a little diversion from the main highway, they don't see the high volume of traffic and tourists that other coastal towns see.
I only stayed two nights, I wish it had been longer. There's such unspoilt beauty there. It has everything a traveller needs yet not many venture there. I'd hate to see tourists flock there in droves yet I can't understand why they don't. If I'd known how beautiful it was it would have been on my Bucket List. Instead, I've driven past the turn off I don't know how many times, but typical of those who have big distances to travel, have never taken the time to make the detour.
The two little towns almost merge into one, they are just 8km apart. I stayed in Agnes Water where most of the cafes and shops are, not that there are a lot. The town of 1770 is a protected area so all future building has ceased. It looks like it is still in the pristine condition it was in 1770 when Captain Cook landed there. Like all children educated in Australia, I know the story of Cook's discovery of Australia but Captain would have difficulty recognising Botany Bay these days, with its hills covered with high rises and busy roads.
Here, when you poke around the beaches and creeks and headlands, you can imagine it unchanged for thousands of years. The story goes that Cook went ashore for the second time in Australia near Round Hill Head. He noted in his book many pelicans were there as well as a species of bustards which they shot and ate. They considered it the best bird they had eaten since leaving England and named the inlet Bustard Bay in its honour. I saw pelicans in the distance but no bustards.
The place enjoys the tropical climate of the north of Australia but without the heavy rainfall of the far north. The weather was ideal when I was there at the end of May. It has stunning beaches - with surf (although the sea was flat when I was there). It's the most northern beach along the Queensland coast to have it. Further north the Great Barrier Reef protects the coast. And it's far enough south to be free of those cursed stingers.
Winter sunbathing at 1770
I just loved the boarded walkway along the estuary, just before the road enters Joseph Banks Regional Park.
It's obviously a popular picnic area and a credit to the council that maintains it. A council worker was there cleaning the barbeques when I strolled there one morning. He was also replenishing the wood supply. He was a man happy in his labour, whistling as he worked and only too happy to have a chat. A great ambassador for the area.
I returned that evening to sit under this tree and enjoy fish and chips. I spent as much time looking up at the tree's gnarly branches as I did looking out at the view.
I've had too many distractions these past few days. Hopefully will get the photos from the national park posted in the next few days. None of them do justice to the area.