Coffs, you're just magic in the morning
BLIMEY Coffs Harbour can be just magic in the mornings.
Coming from the Sunshine Coast, I'm no stranger to beautiful beaches and spectacular sunrises.
But you guys really know how to turn it on.
Watching the sun rise over the Jetty as joggers and cyclists zoom past is awe-inspiring.
Seeing our seniors and mums together having an early morning swim is a reminder to make the most of every day.
And where else can you walk out to an island so easily.
I took the opportunity to check out of a couple of the Solitary Islands, including the challenging climb of Muttonbird Island to get the blood pumping in the morning before heading into work at the Coffs Coast Advocate.
Coffs, as you all know, is full of history, including beautiful Aboriginal culture. It was great to see it reflected in the signage around the marine park.
I didn't realise the extent of the park until checking it out a bit further online.
It extends from Coffs to Sandon - about 75km of coastline - and covers more than 700 km2 from the high water mark to three nautical miles offshore.
Not only does it protect the island but large complex subtidal reefs, including Pimpernel Rock, a unique underwater pinnacle with high conservation value.
According to Department of Primary Industries, the Solitary Islands Marine Park is unique because it contains:diverse habitats - estuaries, sandy beaches, intertidal rocky shores, sub-tidal reefs and open oceans;
It also had more than 550 reef fish, 90 hard coral and 600 molluscs (shelled animals) species have been observed throughout the park.
While North Solitary Island has the park's highest reef fish diversity, Anemone Bay, at the Island's northern end, is particularly diverse and supports the densest coverage of anemone and anemone fish world wide.
Will definitely have to return to go for a dive.
South Solitary is renowned for its large pelagic fish, turtles and is also rich in shelled animals, with many marine snails and slugs, especially on the western side. It is the northern most breeding site recorded for the giant cuttlefish.
The DPI says the park's northern estuaries are some of the state's most pristine, largely because the majority of adjacent land is located in Yuraygir National Park.
The local Aboriginal communities within the Gumbaynggirr Nation and Yaegl Nation have strong cultural links with the marine park and are actively involved in conservation planning.
It really is a magic place - especially in the early morning - and late in the day.
Wish we had daylight saving in Queensland.