This is the last substantial town before we reach the lakes into which the Murray flows. It is only 32 km on from Mannum so another short drive and early into the camp site. We are also only 75 km from Adelaide via the M1 and around 25,000 people live in the area. First appearances indicate a town seeking to be a destination in the face of numerous nearby alternatives, particularly the wine regions of the Fleurieu Peninsular such as Mclaren Vale and Langhorne Creek, and a little further south the natural beauties of the Coorong waterways.
Murray Bridge draws its name from being the location of the first the bridge across the Murray River. Completed in 1879 the Bridge crosses the River and flood plain in a broad arc and is a great sight. The bridge originally carried a rail line but this was relocated to the dedicated rail bridge alongside. Today there is some extensive work being done on the Bridge to keep it in action into the future. There is a great view of the bridges from the Roundhouse, perched on a hill overlooking them. The engineer who built the first road/rail bridge lived in the Roundhouse while it was being constructed, keeping an eye on progress no doubt from the verandah.
There is a pleasant park along the riverfront and it is here that we find an iconic Murray Bridge attraction. A Bunyip cave is located beside the River, it has been here for over 50 years. The resident Bunyip is most active and makes appearances for onlookers at five miniute intervals, flashing lights and a lot of screeching emanate from the cave as the Bunyip rises from the depths of its billabong. Most impressive! One onlooker says to Allthego that the Bunyip looks more like an alien. Allthego agrees and says that it looks nothing like a real bunyip. The onlooker was a little puzzled, Allthego just grinned a bit and returned to the truck.
An entertaining option in Murray Bridge is to take a lunch cruise on the Captain Proud, a restored paddlewheeler no longer under steam. We went upstream and then downstream for three hours and enjoyed lunch on board and views from the upper deck. A young Belgian couple were our table companions during lunch. They were in Australia for three weeks, visiting a friend in Adelaide who was then taking them up to Darwin and Kakadu, via Uluru before flying home from Darwin. They were not aware of the Bunyip in the nearby cave and Allthego suggested it was a must see for them. Not being familar with Bunyips they were a little sceptical, but ultimately said they would go and have a look. Allthego is astounded that we do not promote these icons of the billabong more strongly as tourist must sees. A bit like the Murray Cod, Allthego thinks we should have more replicas of Bunyips on the banks of our big River.
For some variety scenery wise we decided to head out one day into the countryside for the small village of Mypolonga. We had a brochure about a small business there housed in an old stone church. They act as a sort of market place for small producer’s products, as well as their own range of dehydrated meals in a bag. The meals are the vegetable components and you need to add your own meats where appropriate. There is also a range of soups and things like potato bakes etc. They specialise in processing rejected produce such as miss shaped carrots, potaoes and the like, from the neighbouring farms. Sixteen tonnes of it in the last year. Other products available included various honies, olive oils, fruit juices and chocolate dipped sliced dried oranges and lemons. All very tempting stuff as you sit waithing for your lunch, couldn’t resist some chilli honey to drizzle on a pizza or baked potatoes. We had some of their lamb koffta wraps for lunch before heading back to the van.
Back in Murray Bridge we tidied up for the move down the River to Wellington. Wellington is our penultimate stop along the Murray as it is nearby this small town that it flows into Lake Alexandrina and makes its way ‘submerged in its channel’ beneath the Lake on past Goolwa to the Coorong and then out into the Southern Ocean.
Posted on June 12, 2022, in Murray River times 2022. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.
I can just see the faces of those fellow tourists when you told them that the bunyip didn’t look like real ones….😂🤣 one again some impressive photos – I especially loved the rainbow one! Also didn’t know there was a ‘Wellington’ in SA 🤔 The weather looks good too… unlike here this morning where it’s just reached 3°C and it’s 9.30am🤷♀️
Looking forward to seeing you soon now 😍😘
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