Surfing Kangaroos of Pebbly Beach
The young grey kangaroo bounded effortlessly over the sandy
beach, and to the delight and quiet awe of the holidaymakers nearby,
jumped pouch deep into the ocean. Quickly grabbing my camera I
joined a steadily increasing crowd of suntan lotion coated kids
as they happily converged on 'Skippy', dragging lethargic parents
The roo remained in the water as we approached, and seemed
undaunted by the presence of a dozen or so dancing and cheering
children splashing around near it. It stood its ground and stared
out at the distant horizon, as if entranced by the gentle swell
as it rolled hypnotically onto the shore. I aimed my camera carefully,
flashed the kids a fierce 'get the hell out of my shot' look,
and managed to snap the following picture, miraculously child
free. I now had a great momento of my visit to Pebbly Beach.
- The turn-off to Pebbly Beach is well marked, but easy to miss
if you are not looking for it. It lies around 10 kilometres
North of Bateman's Bay, on the South Coast of New South Wales.
If you are making the two and a half-hour trip from Sydney you
will need to turn left before you enter the city limits. The
dirt road down to the beach is well maintained, but drive carefully,
as it can get busy at times, and there are a few blind corners.
At the end of the road, there is a large car park and a camping
- Pebbly Beach is part of the National Parks system,
so you need to purchase a day pass from the ticketing machines
A local ranger patrols the area, and can provide assistance
if needed. If you wish to stay overnight, you must arrange a special
permit beforehand. Contact the National Parks services for more
A track winds down from the car park to the beach. The information
stand near the start is well worth a read. It outlines the history
of the local area, the extent of the park and walking trails,
and lays out some interesting facts about the local wildlife.
Moving down the track you may notice a flock of rosellas that
are native to the area.
Kangaroo's grazing near beach
These brightly coloured birds are semi-tame and a joy to watch
as they scamper around looking for food. Before the sandy beach
there is a large open plain, and it is here that you will usually
find a kangaroo or two, grazing on the green grass or lounging
around in the shade of the picnic and barbecue area.
The kangaroo's are completely free to come and go as they please,
and may make themselves scare at times, but I have yet to miss
sighting at least a couple of them.
The kangaroos are quite approachable, but they are wild animals,
not pets, and are therefore unpredictable. Your best bet is to
observe, not interact. I find it is much more enjoyable, and environment
sound, to simply sit and watch the kangaroos interact with each
other, rather than to risk distress by trying to pat one. Although
they will readily accept food from you, you should not feed the
kangaroos, as this may make them unwell. Pebbly beach itself is
a typical cove, with two points separated by about a kilometre
of water. Despite its name, there is more sand than rock. Surrounded
by lush bushland and complimented by a couple of rugged offshore
islands, the overall impression of the area is that of an unspoilt
wilderness that well deserves National Park protection. Activities
in the area include fishing, surfing, bushwalking, wildlife watching
and sunbaking. Don't forget to bring the aerogard, though. Pebbly
beach is a special place, and uniquely Australian. It is well
worth a visit if you are in the area.