Friday, November 27, 2009

SA - Yorke Peninsula

On the map, the Yorke Peninsula looks very much like Italy except there is no heel on the boot. With ocean on three sides, it is only 2 1/2 hours drive from top to bottom and 25 minutes from coast to coast. Mike and I being the slow travelers that we are, spent two weeks in this beautiful area. When here, you feel that you have stepped back in time and life seems to move much slower. It is wonderful.
We started our travels on the western side of the peninsula, down to the southern tip and then up the east coast. We stayed at many beautiful little sea side villages on the way, each having a jetty as so many people come here to fish. Garfish is a popular local fish, so after watching the fishermen for a while Mike decided to give it a try. He visited the local store, purchased all the right “stuff” and found his spot on the jetty. His second cast produced a garfish and that was his one and only for the morning. What use is one garfish, especially when there are two of us, so Mike donated it to the people fishing next to him who were delighted.
Many of the beaches here have blue swimmer crab and we watched people walking up and down with their “rakes” digging the crabs out of the sand. Those with boats take crab nets out to sea.

Years ago the Peninsula supported limestone, copper and gypsum mining and with over 200 salt lakes in the area, salt mining was also popular. Now a days, you can visit some of the old mines and there are many museums to catch up on the local history.
Wheat and barley are now grown on almost every square inch of the land. While here, it was harvest time so there were golden fields everywhere and the farmers were working around the clock trying to beat the forecasted rain. There is also a windfarm which has 55 giant turbines spread amongst the wheat fields.
As there have never been big trees on the peninsula for building, the early settlers homes were made from limestone which is found everywhere. There are hundreds of these homes throughout the area, many were built in the mid 1800’s, and you never tire of their beauty. The owners take pride in their up keep and they certainly add a uniqueness to this part of the country.
The Yorke has something for everybody- fishing, snorkelling, surfing, scuba diving, sailing, walking and bike riding.

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