Relaxing day in Huskisson

It was a lovely relaxing morning spent reading, washing and cleaning the motorhome. We both loved hearing the excited chatter of the three year old little girl that was camped next to us with her mum and dad and 4 month old sister. She certainly is a chatterbox.

We’d arranged to meet up with our cousins at a cafe in the Main Street of Huskisson for lunch and we used our ebikes to ride the short distance. What a lovely lunch we had with Andrew and Tracey at the 5 Little Pigs (great name for a cafe!). The food was really delicious.

Richard and I then spent the afternoon visiting the Jervis Bay Maritime Museum. What a fabulous little museum. I thought it was very well curated. It has a small entry fee of $10 per Senior.

The museum houses a variety of spaces and galleries such as:
Jervis Bay History Gallery
Surveyor’s Gallery
Science and the Sea Gallery
Kingfisher and Vera Hatton Galleries
and the pride of the museum, The Lady Denman Ferry Gallery.

The Jervis Bay History Gallery tells the story of the Jervis Bay Area from pre-European Aboriginal settlement, to colonial European settlement and through periods of social and economic development up to modern times. There are great stories of shipwrecks, lighthouses, early tourism, and exciting development plans that were never completed. I thoroughly enjoyed this well presented gallery.

The Surveyor’s Gallery contains displays of surveying instruments from various time periods.

Science and the Sea Gallery houses the large collection of Walter Halloran and contains artefacts relating to mapping and navigation as well as naval memorabilia and a collection of paintings.

The Kingfisher and Vera Hatton Galleries housed a temporary exhibition of paintings and sculptures.

However the star of the show is the Lady Denman Ferry. What is a Sydney ferry doing in a museum in Jervis Bay?

Well the Lady Denman is a wooden boat and she was built in Huskisson in 1911. She plied the waterways of Sydney Harbour for 67 years before being retired in 1979. It took a great deal of effort by many local enthusiasts to have her returned to Huskisson where she has been lovingly restored and put on display.

The Lady Denman is 33.5m long with a 7.6m beam (that’s how wide she is) and could carry 500 passengers.

The ferry was named after Lady Gertrude Mary Denman who was the wife of the Governor-General of Australia, Lord Thomas Denman. Lady Denman was an intelligent woman who devoted her life to public service however she sometimes scandalised conservative society by wearing trousers and smoking in public.

You can walk under the ferry and view the single propellor and you can also walk on board. Various info boards tell the story of the amazing life of the last surviving wooden harbour ferry.

The museum is also home to the Tourist Information Centre where you can pick up brochures and find out more about the area and maybe purchase a souvenir or two.

Outside the museum are four hectares of native gardens along the Currambene Creek. From the rear of the buildings is a pathway that leads to an elevated wooden boardwalk that takes visitors out into the mangroves along the creek foreshore. It is tidal and the mangrove’s thrive in the salty water. The mangroves provide vital habitat for many creatures.

The museum closed at 4pm so we cycled back to camp along the excellent shared pathways.

After rugging up with warm clothes we followed the pathway to Andrew and Tracey’s for a last dinner together before we headed off the next morning. What a lovely visit we’d had with them.

We rode our bikes back in the dark along the pathway and I was surprised how good the headlights on the bikes are. We’ve never really ridden our ebikes at night and haven’t had the chance to use the lights but they were very effective and we arrived back at camp with no problems. I did have visions of the front page of the local newspaper with headlines “Senior crashes bike over the edge” however nothing happened and it was an uneventful ride home.


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