Broome, on a peninsula only a few metres above sea level, is already warm on landing at 9.30am. The cyclone-proof corrugation clad buildings, the tall palms, bougainvillea, and boabs say you have arrived in the tropical north. These ‘upside-down’ boabs are smaller versions of the African baobabs but just as strange.
Broome is now a holiday mecca for the ‘grey nomads’ who travel with their caravans, often leaving them here over summer, when they go south again.
Paul, the manager of Beaches of Broome, an upmarket hostel, drove us to here from the airport; good to know someone – we met on pool maintenance training in Perth last year. We have a small sparsely furnished but adequate en-suite. A nice surprise; his wife told me to cancel our two future bookings made via the web, and rebook for a better rate. It includes a continental breakfast; snacks are available for a small price at night.
I set off in the hot midday sun to explore the expansive blue water fringed white sand of the famous Cable Beach 10 minutes away. Bathers and sun-worshipers were scattered sparsely between the flags monitored by Surf Rescue. A rocky area 200m to the north marks the boundary for vehicles that can drive way north to Cape Leveque. Up on the overlooking dunes sits the famous and expensive Cable Beach Resort, a good place for a meal overlooking the beach at sunset, but Zanders on the beach is cheaper. I stocked up on a few items in a small cafe/shop next to Divers Tavern 20 minutes south next to the caravan park,. A long walk as I took a ‘short cut’ back requiring an unusual afternoon nap! I planned to go to Zanders for dinner but Paul said it was not as good as Divers Tavern – wrong! Pretty ordinary.