This week just gone I went on the Year 12 Snorkelling trip.  Where we basically take out 18 students (17-18 years old)  for a variety of snorkelling and beach related activities as well as being able to cook and set up camp without assistance.

Day 1 – We drove to Portsea and made our way to Pt Nepean which is one of the heads at the entrance way to Port Phillip Bay. Pt Nepean among other things was a defence location for many years. It is the site of vanishing guns (giant powerful guns that could sink into the ground hidden from enemy view). It has a significant history to the state of Victoria and has a maze of underground tunnels and defence fortifications at its peak.

The whole area is designated as National Park territory now which means it’s mostly protected, and with good reason too as large parts of land are fenced off from the public due to an unknown amount of unexploded mines and bombs that were used during military practice on the south side.

The bike ride into the point is slightly challenging but very rewarding as there was plenty to stop and look at. For the first time ever the Quarantine Station was open for inspection. In recent past it has undergone some renovations and preparations to have it restored for tourisim uses. It was so interesting to walk around and try to imagine what it would have been like to be placed in quarantine before entering the country.

It was later turnedover to the army which used it as a cadets training center.

Parade Grounds

We also went past the site where then current Prime Minister Harold Holt went missing after going skin diving, it prompted the biggest search party in Australia’s history yet was not successful in recovering the PM’s body.

After checking the area out and seeing the sights we headed back to set up camp.

Once the tents were set up we headed to Portsea Pier to snorkel for a few hours. It was so lovely and peaceful, everyone had the option of either snorkelling or just relaxing along the pier. I saw some amazing coloured fish and shells just a few metres from shore.

In the evening after dark we walked the shoreline from our campsite in Sorrento to the Sorrento Pier.

Sorrento coastline at night

Day 2 – We went to Diamond Bay in the morning and did a clean up of the carpark and the beach area, removing all rubbish. Most of what we could find was cigarette butts and recycable goods such as cans and bottles. The students had to walk along the coastline following the trails provided and we were to meet them at each checkpoint with the buses.

Diamond Bay

They walked from Diamond Bay to the Sorrento Back beach.

After lunch we went for our big snorkel at pope’s eye which is a man made structure in the middle of Port Phillip Bay. It was built in response to the influx of immigrants due to the goldrush in the 1880s, but was abandonded once a better gun was designed and built at Pt Nepean to cover the area that Popes eye was to cover.

It is now a marine park and has a variety of sea plant life and fish which was so beautiful to explore.

Some Photos I took:

We also went out to Chinaman’s hut and swam with the seals

In the night we ran an Easter Egg hunt in the dark where everyone had to use torchlights to find the eggs, which was great fun!

Day 3 – We rode the ferry across to Queenscliff and checked out the Marined Discovery center where we learnt that 90% of the living creatures in Swan Bay were unique to that area in the world only! Truly fascinating stuff was discussed.

Lunch was in Torquay and some small amount of shopping at discount stores for Rip Curl and Quicksilver, before we made the long drive home.


One Response to “Snorkelling”

  1. Can’t wait to go snorkeling again myself 🙂

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