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Misery Beach: Australia’s best beach in 2022

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(CNN) — It was at the time flooded with blood, joined to convicts, synonymous with slaughter and haunted by pirates.

But now, Misery Seashore is the shock winner of the formal “Australia’s Best Seaside” award for 2022.

Flanked by a huge rock face and lapped by quiet waters, this amazing seashore has extended drop it sinister previous as a whaling station and hideaway for escaped convicts who looted ships along the south coastline of Western Australia (WA).

Minimal acknowledged even in WA, Misery Beach front claimed the title forward of its renowned tropical counterparts like Blue Pearl Bay in Queensland.

Awarded each and every 12 months by Tourism Australia, it is a massive deal in a country that statements to have much more shorelines than any other in the planet — somewhere in the array of 12,000. The most recent listing of Australia’s top rated 20 seashores, announced in early February, features spots in every single one of the country’s states and territories.
Misery Beach, Australia's 'best beach' for 2022.

Distress Seashore, Australia’s ‘best beach’ for 2022.

Frances Andrijich Pictures

Misery Beach is in a remote area 400 kilometers (approximately 250 miles) south of WA’s capital, Perth, around the pretty oceanside centre of Albany. This city of 38,000 people is so isolated it has not experienced a single situation of Covid-19 during the full pandemic, in accordance to Albany’s mayor, Dennis Wellington.

That absence of Covid-19 is partly because of to the fact WA has been shut to international tourists for virtually two many years now, and has also been strict in permitting tourism from other Australian states. Even now, as the national federal government prepares to reopen Australia to global holidaymakers, the significant point out stays closed to most non-point out residents.

But Wellington states Albany experienced been hugely well-known with domestic readers for the duration of the pandemic, and hopes the Distress Seashore award will make the region a greater attract for overseas visitors in the upcoming.

“Misery Beach is a beautiful secluded location, it feels so tucked away from the rest of the environment, and I imagine that’ll attraction to tons of overseas visitors who’ve been trapped in pandemic lockdowns and definitely just want some house and nature,” he tells CNN Journey. “I imagine the distinctive heritage of Misery Beach front and Albany will also fascinate a lot of website visitors.”

Waters stained by demise

Albany grew to become WA’s first European settlement in 1826 and, like numerous of the Australian colonies founded by the British from the late 1700s onwards, it was mostly designed by convicts. These criminals, mostly British and Irish, were being transported to Australia and compelled into labor at destinations like Albany.

But some escaped, according to Sue Lefroy, area history coordinator for the Town of Albany. These determined gentlemen fled to the forests and beaches bordering Albany and usually resorted to criminal offense to endure, even piracy.

“There have been some unsavory characters working in the waters in the vicinity of Albany,” Lefroy states of the 1800s.

It was in that Wild West environment that Australia’s initial pirate emerged in 1826. American John Anderson arrived on a whaling vessel that docked in King George Audio, the crystalline physique of water that hugs Distress Seaside, according to Esperance Bay Historic Culture president Beverly Drabik.

Anderson descended into piracy after he was blamed for killing a guy in a brawl in Albany and fled the settlement, claims Drabik. He led a pirate gang of escaped convicts that expended yrs raiding vessels along the south coast of WA, which was a crucial shipping route for the British.

These very same waters in close proximity to Albany also grew to become stained by death, Lefroy clarifies.

King George Sound was household to whaling functions from the 1840s, and in the early 1900s this brutal activity started up coming to Distress Seaside. Its tranquil waters would often be inundated with the blood of slaughtered whales, she suggests.

That horror may possibly have presented this beach front its special name.

The Albany Historic Whaling Station contains a blue whale skeleton.

The Albany Historic Whaling Station has a blue whale skeleton.

Ronan O’Connell

“There is not basically an formal report of how Distress Beach was named, but there are two universities of thought on that,” Lefroy states.

“When whalers approached the seashore by boat, the way the sunlight would hit the beach’s rock deal with in the afternoons manufactured it search like a frowning deal with. The other school of thought is that the misery name referred to the killing of whales that occurred all-around there, and the (blood pink) shade of the drinking water and the dreadful scent from that action.”

Misery Beach front deserved its grim moniker up until finally the 1970s, when whaling ceased there.

It was the very last whaling put up in all of Australia before it was shut in 1978.

Right now, readers can view archival footage within converted whale oil tanks, explore the Cheynes IV (the world’s only preserved Whalechaser ship), see a huge blue whale skeleton and admire a huge marine animal artwork selection.

Alongside that station, to its west, is the gorgeous Cheyne Seashore, one more of the numerous majestic strips of sand in this untamed nook of WA.

The pandemic has only designed Albany and its surrounds an even a lot more beautiful locale, according to Catrin Allsop, CEO of Australia’s South West, the tourism physique that manages this location.

“Misery Beach front fits the invoice for the sort of destination vacationers are searching for considering that the pandemic — a secluded and raw natural landscape wherever you can often come across the seashore all to your self,” Allsop states.

She provides they hope the worldwide exposure acquired by Distress Beach’s new award would also immediate extra travellers to close by attractions like Albany’s modern-day National Anzac Centre as very well as the former whaling station.

Opened in 2014, the award-successful facility is a present day war museum that employs multimedia, interactive technologies and historic artifacts to shell out tribute to the far more than 40,000 Australians and New Zealanders who still left Albany in 1914, certain for the Great War.​