Booderee National Park

Standing on the ruins of the Cape St George Lighthouse with the waves rolling in below, you  experience an eerie sense of the past – of the many ships wrecked here and the sad stories of lives  lost. Suddenly a spout of vapour shoots out of the sea and the mood changes. ‘Look! Whales!’ You  all peer at the water, shrieking with excitement every time you see another blow or glimpse that  famous view of a tail raised out of the water.

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Contact details

Jervis Bay Rd, Jervis Bay; (02) 4443 0977

Don't Miss

■ The chance to see humpback and southern right whales heading north (June–July) or south (September–November). Looking out from the lighthouse you might see some of the following whale antics: a blow (a 2–3 metre vapour cloud), a breach (the whale rearing out of the water), a pectoral fin slap (flippers slapping the water), a fluke-up dive (the tail lifting so you see the flukes underneath)  or a tail slap.

■ Booderee Botanic Gardens inside the park, where you can find out about local Aboriginal use of  plants for bush tucker or medicine. Check the closing times so you don’t get locked in!

Fabulous Facts

When the Cape St George Lighthouse began operating in 1860 it was actually the cause of numerous shipwrecks – it was in the wrong place and ships could not see its light! This was also an unlucky place for the lightkeepers’ families. Several of their children died from illnesses, one of them was killed  falling off a cliff and another was accidentally shot. After 38 years, the lighthouse was blown up and  replaced by another in a different location.

Insider Tips

■ Stop at the visitor centre at the entrance and find out about all the things you can see and do in  addition to whale-watching. 

■ Green Patch is great for birdwatching. Look for crimson rosellas, kookaburras, king parrots and wood ducks. You can also ride bikes here.
■ If you are quiet on the walking trails, you might see wallabies, grey kangaroos echidnas and lizards.
■ Murrays Beach rock platform is a good base for snorkelling.
■ Booderee has campsites so you can stay overnight.
■ Watch out for spiders, snakes and ticks.

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