Postcards from La Perouse

La Perouse Museum & Monument
La Perouse Museum & Monument

Enjoy the gargantuan cliffs and vast golf courses of this little suburb in the south east of Sydney

Sydney is known as one of the top ten places to visit and live, and I am learning why as I unfold the layers of the city and explore it myself.

I truly believe that the memories of a place are totally dependent on the experience you have in that place, whether you are visiting or choosing to make it a home.

I recently visited a suburb in Sydney called La Perouse—one of the few Sydney suburbs with a French name—located in the south-east of the city, and was amazed to see the beauty and rawness of this place. La Perouse is a fascinating and beautiful historic area named after French navigator La Perouse, who arrived on Bare Island in 1788 as part of his explorations of the Pacific. The Kameygal people are the original custodians of the land. Members of the La Perouse community retain strong connections with the area’s indigenous heritage today. People come here for picnics, scuba diving, playing golf in the surrounds, or just to relax at the Frechman’s Beach.

La Perouse Customs Tower
La Perouse Customs Tower

The La Perouse peninsula is in the northern headland of Botany Bay, and is notable for its old military outpost at Bare Island and the Botany Bay National Park. The best way to explore the area and soak in the spectacular views of the place is start at Botany Bay National Park, and work your way through the cliffs of the peninsula and historic Bare Island, which was built in 1885 to protect Sydney from a perceived Russian threat (guided tours of the island are available as well).

There is the La Perouse Museum and Visitors Centre, where you can get more information and history about the place. The Museum now stands on the spot where the first fleet of French navigators landed in 1788, featuring exhibitions of Australian history. From here, follow the Henry Head Walking Track, a coastal walk to the Endeavor Lighthouse.

For golfers, La Perouse is also home to three courses at St Michael’s Golf Club, the Coast Golf Club and Randwick Golf. All three enjoy stunning panoramic ocean views… and have great restaurants.

Bare Island Fort, Botany Bay
Bare Island Fort, Botany Bay

The area around the La Perouse peninsula is considered to be one of the best scuba diving sites in NSW. Bare Island has numerous dive sites, and the reef around the area is extensive. There are also a number of dives around the mainland at La Perouse, where divers can spot the common (weedy) sea dragon, red Indianfish, pygmy pipefish and big belly sea horses and many more.

La Perouse has a few cafés and restaurants around the historic precinct, close to Frenchmans Bay. If you are a sea food lover, you can eat of one of the many mouthwatering sea food restaurants there. I took with me my picnic basket, camera, a book to read and of course my selfie stick.

Overall a day well spent, exploring and relaxing. I was lucky to have been there on a bright sunny day (so, don’t forget your sunscreen and a pair of sunglasses) and capture the excellent water views.

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