After experiencing a couple of fairly ordinary motels on my trip so far, I decided that a little luxury was well deserved and chose accommodation in Strahan that overlooked the harbour of this lovely little port on Macquarie Harbour on the west coast. My room was on the top floor of the yellowish building with a great view from inside and the balcony, across the water and towards the town proper. In the morning that patch of grass was full of seagulls, ducks and geese making quite a din, all well used to being fed by the tourists. I had two days here, enjoying delicious seafood meals, exploring the area, watching the sunset on a beach facing directly west, with nothing between it and South America except miles of ocean, and you guessed it – taking many photographs.
Up at sunrise on the first morning for more photos before heading to the dock to join others for a cruise down the Gordon River to see the world heritage area for myself, and to visit Sarah Island, the site of a particularly harsh penal colony established in 1822, before Port Arthur, as a place for the worst sort of convict. It closed in 1833, and is well known due to Alexander Pearce, a convict to escaped with several others who tried to reach Hobart. Pearce alone was caught, and it is said that he had eaten his companions in order to survive. He escaped a second time, and did the same thing, eventually making it to Hobart where he was captured and executed for his crimes. Marcus Clark’s novel For the Term of his Natural Life is based on events which occurred on this island although his hero, Rufus Dawes is a fictional character.