AUGUSTA WHALESONG FESTIVAL 2019
The Augusta Whalesong Festival is a celebration of the connection between earth and sea.
From the depths of the meeting point between the Southern and Indian Oceans to the lofty heights of the historic Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse, wild and wonderful Augusta calls to the spirit of the sea this June at the 2019 Augusta Whalesong Festival.
The Augusta Marina comes to life with the annual Blessing of the Fleet, in depth demonstrations from the world’s first wild abalone farm, stirring cultural expeditions along the Blackwood River and an up close look at the stunning natural beauty of WA’s wildest outpost.
Every autumn, as the season of Djeran transitions into Makuru, the whales return to their Augusta ‘playpen’. Humpbacks, Southern Right whales, pygmy whales and the rare blue whales frolic with their calves in the gentle tides of Flinders Bay, drawing crowds of visitors along with thousands of salmon to entice anglers from across the country.
Meanwhile, the fishermen and women of the deepest point of South Western Australia prepare their vessels to take to the ocean in search of the ultimate catch, providing seafood, employment and a deeply revered marine culture to the community around them.
Over the June long weekend, anglers gather at the sparkling, purpose built Augusta Marina to mark the Blessing of the Fleet and the Official opening of the Whale Watching Season, which has become a celebration of community, culture and heritage for the windswept and starkly beautiful beachside community.
This year the Augusta Whalesong Festival will celebrate the lifeblood of the far South West.
From the sandy shores of the Blackwood River, where you will be guided by Wadandi Custodians on a cultural discovery tour, to the winding paths of the iconic Cape to Cape Track, where local fauna and flora experts will give you the insider’s guide to one of the world’s biodiversity hot spots.
While the whales make the most of the glassy waters of Flinders Bay, spectators can take in the view from one of the many lookouts and high points around the Cape, or venture out on one of the town’s whale watching or river tours for up close and personal experiences.
The Augusta Whalesong Festival will officially kick off on Saturday June 1 with a Cultural Workshop run by Wadandi Cultural Custodian Iszaacc Webb of the Undalup Association with an indepth talk on the traditional history of the South West. There will be a light lunch to be enjoyed before heading off on a walking tour to sites along the Blackwood River finishing around 1.30pm.
There will also be a sundowner at the Augusta Yacht Club on the Saturday afternoon for a few hours, where locals and visitors will mingle as the sun sets over the Cape with stunning views of the Blackwood River.
Down at the Marina on Sunday, the FREE celebrations get going from the early morning with a huge programme of live music, family friendly activities, kids entertainment and heaps of local stalls surrounding the stirring Blessing of the Fleet, as well as live abalone cooking demos and whale watching tours departing regularly.
Check out the site of the brand new, multi-million dollar abalone centre, where the world’s first wild caught abalone farm has bloomed into one of the region’s most successful new industries.
Learn about the history of the region from one of Augusta’s most respected experts, lighthouse keeper Paul Sofilas, on one of the special guided tours of the historic Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse grounds.
Take in the wild beauty of Quarry Bay along the Cape to Cape Track and find out why this part of the world is home to some of the rarest species of flora and fauna on earth, before enjoying tea and scones at the Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse Cafe.
Or simply wander the streets of Augusta, a town steeped in history and packed with locals eager to share the stories of their hometown, through art, food, wine and genuine South Western hospitality.
June 1 – June 3, 2019
Augusta, Western Australia
(with event hubs at Augusta Marina, Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse and the Augusta Community Resource Centre). The Augusta Community Resource Centre wish to acknowledge the support from the Australian Government’s Building Better Regions Funds.