Tackling the Tele – Weipa

It was a relatively short drive from Laura and we arrived in Weipa around lunchtime.  Everyone split up to do their own thing and met up again later in the day at the caravan park.

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View from in front of our campsite …. plenty of crocs out there!

Weipa is a relatively big town …. well very, very tiny compared to say Sydney!, but for the townships on the cape, it’s a relatively large town with most facilities available.  Weipa sits on the west coast of the Cape York Peninsula, on the Gulf of Carpentaria.

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The region in and around Weipa is very rich in bauxite and this has led to Rio Tinto operating the Weipa bauxite mine for many years.  They are in the process of extending their operations to another site in the area aswell.  There is some big money being spent on infrastructure in the area and some big money coming out of the mines.  The first thing you notice as you get closer to Weipa is that the condition of the road significantly improves!  Then you see the traffic lights and the boom gates as you cross the mine access road to enter the town.

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We had all booked on a sunset cruise with Western Cape Eco Tours.  We had done this exact cruise when we were in Weipa 5 years ago and it was such a great night we couldn’t recommend it highly enough.  Everyone took our recommendation and we booked on for a couple of hours of relaxing, history and crocodile sightings.

 

You’d think being a ‘sunset cruise’ I would have mentioned that we watched an amazing Weipa sunset aswell, well think again!  We didn’t even come close to getting a sunset that night, very disappointing, but what can you do!  At least we saw plenty of crocs.

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Here’s what the sunset should have looked like! (taken on our cruise in 2013).

The cruise itself runs for about 2 hours and takes you around the Embley River to see the wildlife and of course the sunset.  The price of the cruise includes beer, champagne, soft drink and yummy antipasto platters.

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Western Cape Eco Tours are a small family owned company who love their town and love showcasing its natural beauty.  They had only just started out when we took our first cruise with them and we are so glad business is going so well for them.  If you are ever in the area, you really must look these guys up.

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Contact Details

Western Cape Eco Tours

Website:  www.westerncapeecotours.com.au 

Email:  westerncapeecotours@bigpond.com

Telephone:  0447 009 044

Tours depart from Evans Landing Boat Ramp, Weipa QLD 4874


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Windjana Gorge 

In the wet season this area would look totally different to how we saw it, as the Leonard river runs straight through Windjana Gorge.  As the water starts to dry up it forms pools which are home to many freshwater crocodiles.

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We were very excited about visiting this place as you are guaranteed to see crocodiles during your gorge walk, and we certainly weren’t disappointed!  We camped here overnight, arrived around lunchtime and went for a walk in the late afternoon.  A fairly easy walk starts from the camping area and takes you through the gorge for about 3.5 km.

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The guy above was sitting there with another crocodile when we walked up, the other one swam off and this one stayed there for us to take photos! He then climbed up onto the sand for a sun bake and pose for more photos!

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Apart from the crocodiles, there is also fossilised marine life preserved in the limestone walls of the gorge. 

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Windjana Gorge is another of the spiritual places for the local Aboriginals of the area, the Bunuba people. ‘Wandjina’ are the spirits that reside here.  Wandjina is to the Aboriginals like God is to us.

The spelling of this was misrecorded back in the day and hence the gorge was named Windjana, rather than Wandjina.

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Visiting Windjana Gorge and seeing the crocodiles was just another highlight of our trip ….. just another to add to the growing list!

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