Rising as a monument to one mans devotion to empire building Boyd’s Tower is a massive sandstone tower rising from the coastal brush that has now taken over the site. While only the ground floor is open to the public there’s a further 4 levels making up this surprisingly intact piece of history.
From the most easterly lookout we spent some time watching for Humpback Whales and were (finally) rewarded with a fine breach or two of a mother and her calf.
It’s easy to understand why Boyd chose the location for his tower, it offered a commanding view of the oceans (for whale spotting) and could also serve an a navigational marker for shipping coming into Boydtown.
Entry into this part of the Ben Boyd National Park is AUD8.00 paid via a honor system (Place payment in a provided envelope, and display the receipt portion on your car) and I feel is good value considering the quality of access to the site.
Overall the scale of the tower is difficult to grasp until you’re standing in it, the “Boyd” name still clearly legible on the ramparts reminding all who saw it of the man who commissioned it.
As part of our Roadtrip through the Sapphire and South Coasts we stopped at a few sites along the “Killer Whale Trail“. The (in my opinion) most somber is Davidson Whaling Station located on the shores of Twofold Bay.
While the site retains natural beauty and has stunning views out onto Twofold Bay there is also a “feeling” of the darker history.
The Historic Site features the cottage used by the Davidson family and the remnants of the whale processing facilities. There’s good factual information added through signage around the well maintained site.
A highlight for me was the grounds which feature an array of plantings made by the Davidsons including considerable volumes of Garlic which was to mask the smell of the whale processing.
The above photo is the beach area where whales were processed, the cauldrons for rendering down the blubber were located on the rocky outcrop on the right side of this photo.
Today there’s a quiet tranquility to the location.
The station is a reasonable distance off the nearest “main” road, with a 4km dirt road for access. It’s readily passable in any car although if you have limited ground clearance you may want to be a little more careful. On the other-hand rental vehicles excel at this sort of off-tar escapades!
While there’s no escaping the sad history of whaling, and many of the displays on the site can be somewhat affronting it’s also a time-capsule of early settlement and well worth visiting when you’re in the region.