Tag Archives: Geraldton

Fun Photo Friday — Circumnavigating Australia; Geraldton Favorites


Stained Glass

Here are today’s Fun Photo Friday favorites of Geraldton, Australia:

HMAS Sydney Memorial

Marine Terrace

Mount Scott

St. Francis Xavier

Waiting Woman

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Circumnavigating Australia — Geraldton and HMAS Sydney Memorial


Geraldton map at HMAS Sydney Memorial

One of the first things Ursula and I did after taking the shuttle out of the secure area of the port was to take a free bus ride. Our immediate objective was to get to the HMAS Sydney Memorial. The memorial sits atop Mount Scott, which offers some nice views of the surrounding area.

HMAS Sydney Memorial

But this is a solemn place. It commemorates the loss during World War II of HMAS Sydney (D48), a modified Leander Class light cruiser that was sunk in a November 1941 battle against the German auxiliary cruiser Kormoran.

History of HMAS Sydney in black marble

As you approach this impressive monument from the entrance, this is your view:

HMAS Sydney Memorial

The wall surrounding the 12-meter/39-foot Dome of Souls is the backside of a black marble Wall of Remembrance that tells the story of HMAS Sydney, the battle with the Kormoran, and a listing of the 645 Australian Navy sailors who lost their lives.

HMAS Sydney Memorial

Also at the memorial is The Waiting Woman looking out to sea and grieving for her lost loved one:

“The Waiting Woman” HMAS Sydney Memorial

This tall structure invokes the prow of HMAS Sydney, and is referred to as The Stele:

“The Stele” HMAS Sydney Memorial

Beyond the area encompassed by the Dome of Remembrance and Wall of Remembrance is the Pool of Remembrance. Don’t bother looking up the wreck coordinates from the numbers at the bottom of the pool. The South Latitude is missing the first number, which should be a “2”, so make sure you enter 26 14 45 South or you’ll be way off.

“Pool of Remembrance” HMAS Sydney Memorial

Centered beneath the Dome of Souls is a replica ship’s screw marking the memorial’s “altar”:

HMAS Sydney Memorial

I’ll leave you here with one final image looking back toward the Dome of Souls:

“Dome of Souls” HMAS Sydney Memorial

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Circumnavigating Australia — Touring Geraldton


Floating in the Indian Ocean

Two days after leaving Port Hedland Radiance of the Seas made port in Geraldton. The city of Geraldton looks much larger than its population would suggest. The population here is under 38,000 (2018 numbers), but it has both the look and feel of a major metropolitan area.

“Lighthouse” at Marine Terrace and Cathedral Avenue

It certainly feels much larger than, say, Port Hedland (14,320 in 2018), but it doesn’t feel appreciably smaller than Darwin (pop. 148,564 in 2018) as you stroll the city streets. On Wednesday you’ll see why, as we travel to the HMAS Sydney Memorial which overlooks Geraldton.

Geraldton city street

The beaches here are certainly inviting. They abut the Indian Ocean.

Geraldton beach

Looking the other direction, here’s the port with beautiful blue water:

Radiance of the Seas in port

In the downtown area on Marine Terrace southwest of Durlacher Street is an odd stone wall onto which plaques have been mounted. I approached the awning-covered area and found the plaque pictured below. It commemorates the wreck of the Dutch East India Company ship Batavia, which ran aground on a reef  near Beacon Island some 54 miles/87 kilometers west northwest of Geraldton in 1629.

Plaque commemorating the loss of Batavia (1629)

Now let’s head southeast along Cathedral Avenue to visit the impressive St. Francis Xavier Cathedral:

Cathedral of St. Francis Xavier, Geraldton

The exterior of St. Francis Xavier may look somewhat traditional:

St. Francis Xavier Cathedral, Geraldton

But don’t let that fool you. Inside you’re greeted by this:

St. Francis Xavier Cathedral, Geraldton

This dramatic cathedral was designed by architect-priest Monsignor John Hawes, who obviously drew his inspiration from some of the more famous striped churches of Italy. The orange and gray stripping is quite striking.

St. Francis Xavier Cathedral, Geraldton

Make sure you take time to soak in the beautiful stained glass high above you:

St. Francis Xavier Cathedral, Geraldton

Inside you’ll also find this impressive organ:

Cathedral organ

The apse is also quite breathtaking:

St. Francis Xavier Cathedral, Geraldton

I’ll leave you with this last rather fun image before returning you to Geraldon on Wednesday for a tour of the HMAS Sydney Memorial:

Flags flying in Geraldton

 

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