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Geelong’s surprising waterfront (2 of 2)

Photos copyright Doug Spencer, all taken late afternoon on June 10. Best viewed after first seeing an earlier post’s “not a shark“.

Geelong – Victoria’s “second city” – is a striking combination of urban renewal and decay.

Its bleak and dispiriting side is very evident, but so is its rejuvenated aspect; both are oft-apparent, within metres of each other.

My beloved and I have many times been to Melbourne, but nearly 40 years had passed since our previous trip to Geelong, just an hour away.

Finding a thoroughly good winter weekend lunch venue was likely-impossible in central Geelong four decades ago; it is now easily-done. (If you like Italian-accented food, a civilised, calm venue and an excellent, not-extortionate wine list you’d probably also be very happy at Centra)

After lunch we strolled through the winter bleakness to the National Wool Museum – a much more interesting destination than many visitors had ever imagined.  It is especially interesting now, thanks to its annual Scarf Festival.

The Festival was then only a few days old, but we were still amazed that some of the finest entries had not already been sold. All of them remain on display through August 27. Many are surprisingly adventurous.

Having made an unplanned purchase, we walked out into a suddenly-sunny world, no longer bleak.


Pavilion. Venerable carousel is within. All photos copyright Doug Spencer.


Geelong’s waterfront – the city’s front yard – is a hugely more inviting destination than it used to be.

Cunningham Pier was born in the middle of the 19th century, nearly died in the middle of the 20th, is now vibrant again, and so is the shoreline of Corio Bay.


Geelong’s Cunningham Pier, Corio Bay, winter afternoon.



Shoreline, Geelong waterfront, just west of Cunningham Pier.


Understandably popular are the more than 100 bollards which local artist Jan Mitchell has transformed; each is now a colourful representation of someone notable in Geelong’s history.

Click here to see them.

The singular artwork, however, is Mark Stoner’s North.


Mark Stoner’s “North”, June 10, 2017.  All photos copyright Doug Spencer.


“North” (detail, looking south) “North” was installed in 2000.


Looking north/inland through Mark Stoner’s “North”


North is one of Mark Stoner’s many remarkable, site-specific works;  images of them are on his website.

Zoom in on the image immediately below, and you will see the most gleeful individual we saw during the afternoon of June 10 – a young passenger on the day’s final chopper-ride over Corio Bay.


Joyriders taking off.


Geelong, dusk,winter. All photos copyright Doug Spencer.


Coming soon to Pelican Yoga: posts about Japan, reviews of splendid music, and astonishing/beautiful inhabitants of Alaska’s Glacier Bay.

Published in Australia (not WA) nature and travel photographs


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