Quarantine Station at North Head was swarming with families young and old at yesterday’s Family Fun Day. The weather was superb, bringing crowds to soak up the history, sun , sand and ocean together in one magnificent location.
Manly was originally a quarantine station for migrant ships arriving in Sydney from the 1830s to 1984. Those ships with suspected contagious disease aboard had to off-load their passengers and crew at the quarantine station where they stayed for about 40 days before they were released (if they were deemed disease-free) to settle as Australian residents.
The North Head site was selected for the establishment of the quarantine station because it was the first safe anchorage point inside the Heads; it was sufficiently isolated and the presence of natural springs ensured a constant water supply to the inhabitants. Today, the historical site comprises of 65 buildings, several archaeological sites, and some spectacular vantage points to view the beautiful Sydney Harbour and native bushland.
Yesterday’s fun day offered activities such as exhibitions, talks, open buildings, native wildlife presentations, stalls, kids’ activities, tours and more.
Some of the event highlights included:
. Live Music
. Sausage Sizzle plus other food
. Quarantine Photographic Exhibitions
. University Of NSW Fine Arts Exhibition
. Sydney University “Stories from the Sandstone” Inscription Talks
. In Focus Movable Heritage Exhibition
. Author Felicity Pulman talks about her book “Ghost Boy”
. Author Gunilla Haglundh talks about her book “Manly Murders”
. Author Perry McIntyre talks about “Lady McNaughton: the first official Quarantine”
. All authors gave advice to hopeful writers on things like how to become a better editor
. Latitude 33 – bootcamp, zumba & boxing session
. Q Station Accommodation & Function Room Tour
. Open Buildings – visit the historic Quarantine Shower Block, Autoclaves & Hospital.
. Wildlife Encounters – native animal presentation
. Mural Painting
Plenty of yachts and catamarans stopped by to see what all the fuss was about. A perfect place to drop anchor and take a swim or row into the beach at Qstation. It is an idyllic place to explore or relax and soak in both the historic buildings and the magnificent backdrop of Sydney harbour and surrounding National Park.
A Family Fun day enjoyed by many!
Charter Cruises are getting fantastic surprise encounters with whales in Sydney Harbour. Recent sightings include a Southern Right whale and her calf, likely to be even born here. Indeed several days later, the mother and calf cruised up to the Opera House..!
Then astonishingly, photographer Mark Seabury captured a hump back whale breaching near Vaucluse (see photo).
Whales at this time of year are migrating north up as far as Hervey Bay, before heading south from August through November..
NSW Maritme and the National Parks and Wildlife have been busy on occasions protecting whales from unsuspecting ferries and boats. National Parks advise to keep boats from approaching too closely, and recommend to stay at least 300m away.