DAY 16 – 7,758 KM. Town 23: Ettalong is one of those places that is just on my door step but I’ve only visited there three or four times previously. It is located on the New South Wales Central Coast (central as half way between Sydney and Newcastle) and seamlessly joins Booker Bay, Umina and Blackwall. Ettalong is an Aboriginal word meaning “drinking place”.
Despite it being a cloudy morning with rain threatening, I headed off from Terrigal and pulled up in the Ferry Wharf about twenty five minutes later. Whilst a ferry ride can be taken to Palm Beach I learn that a planned ‘Fast Ferry’ service to Sydney (which would be forty minutes away) will not be happening any time soon due to this particular ferry company going broke.
But I am not in Ettalong for a Ferry so I wander a short distance to the outskirts of the town centre, passing a few antique/bric-a-brac shops before I come to the Ettalong Markets. The indoor markets appear to be the place to be on a Sunday morning as locals and tourists alike study the variety of stalls with interest. Clothing, toys, jewellery, housewares, food and sweets can all be found and I sense some last minute Christmas shopping taking place around me. I decide to join in the fun and buy a few bargains.
The town is rather modest as is the beach which appeared to be popular with a few local fishermen rather than surfers. However one hotel, the Ettalong Beach Resort, dominates the skyline and appears popular with the thong of people dining outside.
There are a number of eateries hidden around the town centre and the Surf Sun Sand Cafe is the spot we choose for brunch. The prices seem competitive compared to some of the more popular central coast and Sydney restaurants.
After being suitably revived by the brunch, I decide to head home but as one local business recommends, “Get along to Ettalong” – you should, its good place to spend a lazy Sunday morning.