The delightfully named Minnie Water is a small coastal village completely surrounded by the Yuraygir National Park. The village is a picture when the Christmas Bells or the Flannel Flowers bloom in the surrounding parklands. Over 120 species of wild flower have been identified around Minnie Water. Nearby are similarly enclosed villages with excellent walking tracks and camping, secluded beaches and abundant wildlife, encouraging visitors to fall in love with this natural environment.Just offshore from this stretch of coastline are the Solitary Islands Marine Park, which is one of the first marine national parks in New South Wales. It protects the islands, ocean, beaches, headlands and estuaries in a region where the warm ocean currents from the tropical north merge with the colder currents from the south. There is an amazing diversity of marine life, including hard and soft corals. The Yaraygir National Park is a coastal delight and has a number of river systems, kilometres of secluded beaches and many walking tracks to open up the striking scenery. On this longest stretch of protected coastline in NSW, there is a 65km walking route, extending from the coastal villages of Angourie down to Red Rock. We took in part of this route through dense bushland, through groves of smooth barked apple trees interspersed with bloodwood, coastal banksia and cypress pine trees. At one point the signposted coastal track crosses a sand ridge lying across the headland and then winds back along the foreshore. There are rock platforms extending seawards to Rocky Point, offering hours of entertainment for those who enjoy examining the microcosm of marine life in the tidal pools and rock crevices.
Along the beach we found seaweed strewn like cast off necklaces. There was not another living soul as far as the eye could see, except for on a sailboat bobbing on the horizon. In the air was the salty smell of the ocean as the clear pale-green waves crashed onto the shore. It was the perfect place to perch on a rock and write my journal.Mid afternoon we moved onto the village of Wooli, passing by Lake Hiawatha along the way. We carried on through the village and headed along a narrow spit of land with the ocean on one side and the Wooli Wooli River on the other. This river flows through forests and National Parks ensuring that it is one of the purest waterways in Australia, and this is why it is one of the best nurseries for the Sydney Rock Oyster. Where the river flows into the ocean, as we walked along the sand, we suddenly noticed and army of hundreds, if not thousands, of tiny Soldier crabs running along the sand. Their little legs scurrying along and as soon as they thought there was danger, they dug down and disappeared underneath the sand in an instant! They were so unexpected and delightful to watch. Finally we walked out along the breakwater to watch the waves pounding the rocks where the river and sea waters merge. It was an absolutely delightful day that we didn’t want to end.