Esperance is a nice little town. An active, if not busy port dominates its eastern edge and we enjoyed watching a couple of ships sink deeper in the water each day until they fired up their engines and put to sea.
Near to the centre of the town is the Tanker Jetty, home of Sammy the sea lion. Sammy is a seemingly lazy critter who spent pretty much all of our visit to town sunning himself on the sandy shore.
The beaches to the east and west of town are just stunning. The colour of the water rivalled that which I enjoyed so much at Coral Bay. The beaches were whiter though and the rocky granite headlands and dark green coastal shrubbery ensured that was where the similarities with Coral Bay ended. The water was also much cooler than Coral Bay, but not so cool as to keep Amy, Oliver and I out of it altogether. It was enough however to ensure Emma’s toes didn’t get wet. We spent a fantastic day splashing in and around the waters of Twilight beach which was apparently voted (by whom I do not know) Australia’s best beach in 2007. It wasn’t too hard to see why.
While driving the Great Ocean Drive (not to be confused with Victoria’s Great Ocean Road) I learned that Esperance is named after one of two French ships which anchored in the lee of Observatory Island about 20 km east of town back in 18 something or other. The other ship, the Recherché, gave it’s name to the Archipelago of islands just off the coast.
A day spent in Cape Le Grand National Park was more of the same nice beaches, but with much larger granite outcrops as a backdrop. Not much more can be said, you’ll have to look at the photos.
We stayed at a caravan park right on the waterfront, and positioned ourselves next to a terrific old style playground where Amy and Oliver found likeminded friends. Just the way we like it, kids happy and in view while we sip our tea and coffee overlooking the ocean.