After saying bye to our friends we decided to head, not to far, to the coast and hopefully cooler breezes. We had checked WIkicamps and decided to go to Tea Gardens Country Club, on the beautiful Myall River.
Peter joined the club and this allowed us to stay in their carpark for two nights, with power. Our view was the Tea Gardens cemetery, which wasn't a problem for us, considering we had spent a great deal of time wandering around cemeteries yesterday.
Tea Gardens and Hawks Nest are located on the Myall River that runs from the Myall Lakes to Port Stephens. It is not really known how the town got it's name. Some say there was once a property unsuccessfully trying to grow tea, others say it was because of the many tea trees growing along the water. Port Stephens was sighted by Captain Cook in May 1770, and is named after the then Secretary of the Admiralty, Phillip Stephens. The first European's in the area were convicts who were shipwrecked in the bay. They were taken in by the local Worimi Aborigines. The area wasn't surveyed until 1801. Tree cutters moved in around 1816. Passing whalers would use the bay for shelter, water, and wood.
First stop was the Boathouse Resort, where we may be having a family get together later in the year and across the road was The Oyster Hut - well, one needs to get fresh oysters!! The Oyster Hut has been family owned for over 100 years and is located right on the water. It is a small cafe selling oysters and prawns and soft drinks. There are tables outside on the jetty for customers, but with the heat we packed them in the car fridge to eat later in the van.
They were the best oysters we've had for a while, and not a bad price either at $15 per dozen.
We had a drive and walk around Hawks Nest, and Saturday, Peter went for a two hour bike ride on the many bike tracks there.
On Friday, the Country Club has raffles, so we decided to have dinner, drinks and raffles at the club. We were not so hungry after eating the oysters, so had a pizza. It appeared home made and was delicious.
There is a ferry that runs daily across Port Stephens from Tea Gardens to Nelson Bay. There are dolphins in the bay, but we didn't see any.
A really lovely place to visit.