Tuesday, 28 October 2008

Arrival in Australia

Our arrival in Australia was to the Bundaberg Port Marina, Queensland. We were a little anxious about meeting the officials. The rumour around the cruising community was that they were strict and Australian rules about the condition of the hull and the goods you have on board were similarly stringent.
In the event, our fears were unjustified. The rules are strict, but well publicised and we had read them in advance. The officials were pleasant, business-like and friendly. "Welcome to Oz mate!"
The Bundaberg Port Marina is smart and efficiently managed. We felt that we had made a good choice.
After a good rest, Jackie and Dave were anxious to be off. They had only a short time to explore Australia before they were due to meet up with their next boat in the far North of Queensland.
Bundaberg the city is 20 kilometres up-river and has an interesting history. It was founded by timber merchants John and Gavin Steuart and Lachlan Tripp in 1867. The first farmers in the area arrived soon after. Timber was the first established industry in Bundaberg. In 1868 a sawmill was erected on the Burnett River downstream from the Steuart and Watson holdings. The city was surveyed, laid out and named Bundaberg in 1870.
Experimental sugar cane growing in the district followed and a successful industry grew. The early sugar industry in Bundaberg was the result of the semi-slave labour carried out by Kanaka. (People from the mainly Miconesian Pacific Islands) Bundaberg was gazetted a town in 1902 and a city in 1913. The main street is called Bourbong Street and contains the imposing Post Office.
The street name is the result of a typographical error by the local daily paper, the News-Mail. The street had originally been named Bourbon Street.