Mimosa, Mimosa, Mimosa. No I am not talking about the cocktail, I am talking about the beautiful stretch of coastline between Bermagui and Tathra that comprises the 5,804 hectare Mimosa Rocks National Park. Mimosa Rocks NP is named after the Paddle Steamer Mimosa which ran into the rocks in the northern part of the park in 1863. If you are after big golden sandy beaches, rocky pebbly beaches and secluded little coves you will find it all here in this national park. This is the reason we have stayed in Tathra, so we can spend today exploring the beauty that is Mimosa. After breakfast and taking in the view at the Chamberlain lookout in Tathra we hit the road.
First stop today is the long golden sandy stretch of Gillards Beach. The wind has whipped up and the sand is blowing about as we walk down towards the rocky outcrops at the northern end of the beach. The tide is high and we can’t get around the rocks to look at them properly without risking being washed out to sea. I like rocks, but not enough to risk certain death. So we let Harry have a run on the beach before driving further north to the Aragunnu car park.
Mimosa Rocks Walk, Aragunnu
The Aragunnu campground is set in a lovely bushland setting, it makes we wish I had my tent! The Mimosa Rocks walk begins at the Aragunna carpark following a track that leads to the boardwalk. The boardwalk crosses over the largest Aboriginal midden in the park and has interpretive signs detailing the history and significance of this place. Prior to the Europeans arriving the land in this region was inhabited by the Yuin people with evidence from the middens now pointing to Aboriginal occupation of this area dating back more than 10,000 years.
The geology of this park is very interesting with folds, faults and intrusions creating amazing looking formations. The NSW south coast really is a rock lovers delight. We descend some stairs and explore the rocky beach before retracing our steps back up onto the boardwalk.
From here we continue out to the end, where we are greeted with the sight of over one hundred rock stacks framed by a gorgeous little bay. Harry looks at the scene before him in disbelief. “How did all these rock towers get here?” he asks, his forehead creased with trying to make sense of the sight. Well they certainly weren’t created by nature, but they are pretty all the same I tell him. I explain that people have come out here and made them. The look of concern leaves his face and is replaced by excitement as he begins to construct his own.
We have exhausted our supply of snacks and Chris is craving some fish and chips. We finish our rock towers and drive up to Bermagui for lunch. Lunch ends up being a bit of a stressful affair. The food and view is great but Harry has decided he’s not going to listen and throw some big wobblies in for good measure. So instead of walking around Bermagui for a bit, we check out the Micahael Lerner lookout and get back in the car. I am hoping the windy road heading back towards Tathra and the southern part of Mimosa Rocks National Park will put what I suspect is a very tired Harry (I’m not tired, I’m not tired! I AM NOT TIRED!!!” ) to sleep. Suspicion confirmed, Harry is asleep within 2 minutes, lips still slightly parted in protest. Sorry Harry, but I think I know you better than you know yourself.
Typically Harry has fallen asleep as we are approaching a winery I was interested in checking out. But at this point in time I am just happy to have some peace and quiet so I am prepared to forego the winery today. Chris sees a sign alterting us that Mimosa Wines is not far away. I tell him we will skip it as Harry is asleep. Chris replies “Harry can sleep in the car and I will stay with him while you go in and do a tasting. He’s been a handful today and you were looking forward to trying this place. Just do it.” Well ok then, how can I refuse a generous offer like that? We find a shady park and I leave the two boys to have a nap in the car.
Mimosa Wines and Drystone Restaurant is a big, light filled venue that makes the most of its hillside location. Big glass windows and a wrap around deck take in the views of the bushland, dam and vines. I have arrived after the weekend lunch time rush and the gentlemen cleaning up behind the bar looks weary. He gets me started on the tasting and I comment what a lovely venue it is. He replies that yes it is but its also a lot of hard work. We chat about how people do seem to romanticise the wine industry, I tell him I have heard a few people over the years make comments such as “when I retire I’ll open a winery”. He chuckles and then his face turns serious. “People don’t see how much hard work it is. The planting, pruning, picking, Making the wine.Having a bad season and losing most of your grapes. The washing and polishing of endless glasses..” He starts drying and polishing some wine glasses and stacking them on the shelves.
This is one of the reasons why I like to support the smaller vineyards. Basically these people are farmers. Relying on a good season to produce good grapes to turn into great wine. I appreciate their hard work, particulary when it ends up as lovely wine in my glass. The wines here at Mimosa Wines are very good and I am quite taken by three of them in particular. The 2012 Verdelho has lovely flavours of peach and apricot and strikes a lovely balance between being slightly sweet with a crisp finish. The rose’ is made on chamboucin and is delightful while the Premium red blend, a blend of chamboucin, tempranillo and cabernet franc is unlike anything i have tried before, full of blackberry, musk and plum.
Wajurda Point Walk and Moon Bay
Amazingly when I get back to the car Harry is still fast asleep. He wakes just before we pull up at the Moon Bay car park. It is a gorgeous afternoon as we walk along the track out to Wajurda Point. The lookout provides wonderful views out to Baronda Head and Nelsons Beach. I want to get down to one of the beaches here, either Nelsons or Moon Bay. I choose Moon Bay as I like the sound of it.
The short but steep walk down to Moon Bay is worth the detour from the car park. This small sheltered bay is so serene. We walk to the far end of the beach and Harry gets to work building a sandcastle and collecting various shells, seeds and twigs to adorn it. There is only one other person down here so we basically have the whole place to ourselves as the sun begins to set. I was planning on heading over to Nelsons Lagoon to have a look, but this place is just too relaxing so we just stay here and let the energy of this peaceful little place wash over us. We may not have seen all there is to see here at Mimosa Rocks National Park, but what we did see was beautiful and it just leaves a few places left for us to explore next time we are down this way.
At a Glance
located 12 kms north of Tathra
Mimosa Rocks Walking Track
1km (one way) from Aragannu car park. 27 kms north of Tathra http://www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au/mimosa-rocks-national-park/mimosa-rocks/walking
Wajurda Point Walking Track
1km return from the Moon Bay car park. approx 10 mins north of Tathra
approx 300m walk from the Moon Bay carpark
2845 Tathra/Bermagui Road 15 km south of Bermagui