Thursday, April 09, 2009

Somewhere to Go on a Day Off

It's true, almost all malls here close at 5pm except on late night trading days and aren't even open on Sundays. If you don't like the scene at your local pub, you have to drive a good bit to get to where the real night life is (a bummer because it puts a crimp on your drinking). The central business district is literally a ghost town by 6 pm. I've been here almost a year, and some of my friends still can't fathom how I can survive in a place totally devoid of the buzz and bustle that is Manila without going out of my mind with boredom.

But what do I need all of the above for, when I can get to my own patch of paradise in less than an hour whenever I feel like it?

Due to the vastness of the WA coastline relative to the number of people living in it, you can pretty much drive anywhere along the coast, pick your patch of sand, and stake your claim on it for the day. It's almost as good as having your own private beach. And because Perth often gets picture-perfect, clear-blue-sky weather for most of the year, blowing a day off on the beach is just too hard to resist.

No wonder living here has totally fed my addiction.

This particular piece of paradise is on Safety Bay in the city of Rockingham, about a 60 minute drive from the Perth CBD but just a little under 40 minutes via freeway from where I live - and obviously one of my most frequent stops.

Creamy sand, clean blue-green waters, and a gently sloping shoreline with no dangerous undertow and no surf - yes, reminiscent of Boracay. It's perfect for forsworn water babies who aren't very strong swimmers like me. And because it's a fair distance from the Rockingham cafe strip, even on perfect summer day, I hardly have to share the beach with anyone.

Less than a ten minute drive up the road takes you to Shoalwater Marine Park, where scuba divers and snorklers can have a field day among shipwrecks and cavernous reefs surrounding the islands. I've never done it myself - but give me time, I'll get around to brushing up on my swimming skills and getting down there eventually.

In the meantime, I get my eye candy even on land as the scenic drive itself packs a wallop. The following shots (including the one above) were taken off the lookout on Cape Peron, which is also part of the Shoalwater Marine Park and a popular snorkeling spot. Even then, there aren't too many people - and it's so easy to get lost in the feeling that there's no one here but you and nature.

Back home, to get to somewhere similar to this, you'd have to travel at least as far out as Batangas - which means two to three hours of aggravation on the South Expressway.

And to think that this is just one of the stretches of coastline I frequent when I find myself staring a beautiful day in the face with no definite plans. I know, I know, I'm biased, being such a self-proclaimed beach freak living in a place where I can choose a beach to suit my mood. And once I've found my spot, it's mine, all mine!

Yes, I'm spoiled. Is it any wonder why I am absolutely in love?


ness said...

beautiful photos of beautiful beaches.

Marjie said...

wow....what a beautiful scene. totally worth driving to if you're looking for a relaxing adventure. manila is quite a night-life city, but sometimes you just want a great downtime with the nature. this one looks perfect for those moods.

Andrew said...

That picture reminds me of a beach where I once saw a wandering drug addict just looking lost. Beautiful scenary though.