Half Moon Bay
We spent a lovely day at Half Moon Bay last weekend. Now that we live in Brunswick, a northern suburb of Melbourne, we are a good 30-40 minute drive from all the bayside beaches so we don’t spend all that much time at the beach anymore. Sometimes I wish we lived closer to the beach… I mean, isn’t that the whole point of living in Australia? But we’ve always prioritised the commute to work, and since my school (which is also now Andy’s school) is located in north-east Melbourne, it has never been practical to live south, where all the beaches are. And considering that it’s too cold for the beach (for me anyway) from about April - November in Melbourne, the easier commute has definitely been a priority over proximity to the beach.
When we do go to the beach, it’s almost always a great day out. Especially now that Ella is a bit older. She just loves both playing in the sand and in the water. One good thing about Melbourne’s beaches is that the water tends to be pretty calm, as they are located along Port Philip Bay, instead of leading directly to the ocean. They are also pretty safe, although there are shark sightings once and a while, with the latest sighting just a week ago near St. Kilda!
We normally avoid St. Kilda beach as it is not very nice, and mainly full of backpackers. Further east along the bay the beaches are much more scenic and family-friendly. Half Moon Bay is located in Black Rock, which has some decent cafés and restaurants. The bay itself is home to a sunken ship, the HMVS Cerberus. There is no cool story about how the ship sunk, it was a naval ship that was sunk for breakwater in 1924. It used to be a popular diving spot, but because it is so frail now you are not allowed to swim or dive near it.
At one end of the beach there is a pier, yacht club and the Beach House which has a kiosk selling light lunches, snacks and fish and chips downstairs, and a nicer restaurant upstairs. At the other end of the beach are the Red Bluff cliffs where you can do a bit of exploring.
Ella had a great time splashing in the water, which stays shallow far enough out from the beach. My parents took her for a big play, giving Andy and me the rare opportunity to just lie on the beach and do nothing.
My friend Jamie joined us for a lunch of fish and chips, and sandcastle-building with Ella. The day was pretty overcast, as you can see from the photos, but honestly it’s a bit nicer like that when you are at the beach with a toddler. You still need loads of sunscreen, but it’s not as hot as when the sun is blaring down.