Well, the Mornington Peninsula in Melbourne, Victoria sure was crowded with people holidaying when we stayed there on our roadtrip. Karen, my sister at Safety Beach put us up, and as that stay coincided with a hot spell, that meant both limited documentary photography in Melbourne and walking very early in the morning and late in the afternoon.
The foreshore along the eastern coast of Port Phillip Bay from Dromana to Sorrento was jam packed with caravans, tents, boats and people. The Nepean Highway from Rye to Portsea was crammed with cars, due to people travelling down from Melbourne to Sorrento or Portsea for a day’s outing. The Mornington Peninsula is Melbourne’s playground.
We found very few places where we could walk the poodles off lead along the coast. There was a small off-lead, dog friendly beach at Tassells Cove and a small walking track around Martha Point that went down to Pebble Beach.
The density of the people along the Mornington Peninsula made us realise just how fortunate we are to be living at Encounter Bay on the Fleurieu Peninsula. We are on the edge of the Southern Ocean, have easy access to a variety of off-lead walking areas for the standard poodles, and the Xmas holiday crowds are easy to deal with.
We realised that the Fleurieu Peninsula in South Australia is very sparsely populated compared to the Mornington Peninsula. We would have found living at Safety Beach, or any of the other beachside suburbs along the southern part of the Mornington Peninsula, very restrictive in terms of dog walking.
The leash-free beach at Tassells Cove, for instance, was very small, and though it was empty around 6am, it was densely packed in the late afternoon with people and dogs. A poodlewalk at that time consisted of slowly strolling up and down the beach whilst the dogs played with each other or chased balls into the sea.