Sunday, November 14, 2010

Flinders to Flanders

The weekend was to be a cycling, socialising, wine and foodie type of weekend.
We were to meet at 7.30 am and ride as a group to Flinders (a distance of 80 kms) situated on Westernport Bay opposite Port Phillip Bay. It was not to be as at 6.30 am I could hear rain hitting the skylight.
Plan B - drive to Flinders in the early afternoon and meet up with friends to start the socialising part of the weekend.

Matthew Flinders - From whom the township took its name.
The above picture comes from a free ebook on the life of Matthew Flinders
Its a little ironic that Matthew Flinders earlier ancestors in fact were Flemish.
 As we left Mentone for Flinders the showers developed into huge downpours.
Currently I'm reading a book written by an American cyclist who raced in Belgium and constantly talked of the rain and wind in that region, hence the title of this post - Flinders to Flanders. Despite the wet conditions, the region takes on a different beauty of its own.

 In summer, (tell Huey, it almost is now) Flinders is a lovely holiday destination but on this weekend hardly anyone was to be seen with the constant rain.
Vineyards now cover much of Mornington Peninsula and the vines produce some lovely crisp dry whites and soft Reds these days.

As far as the eye can see is a blanket of vines - it reminds me of Chablis or Napa Valley.
 A little history from Wikipedia.
The town was named by George Bass after his friend, the explorer and British naval officer Captain Matthew Flinders. Settlement commenced in 1854 and many pioneers and settlers are buried at the Flinders cemetery. Flinders Post Office opened on 7 March 1863 as the population grew.

The original Flinders Hotel was built in the 1890s as a large
double-storey wooden building that could house 100 guests.

Across the road was this beautifully manicured hedge of contrasting greens.
By this time the heavens really opened up and the whole area was covered in low lying mist.

Even the ducks had gone into hiding from this pond just down from the hedge.

On arrival in Flinders we stopped at this totally deserted Cafe in search of a Devonshire Tea.
And still the rain fell.
A lone couple walk back along the jetty to shore.

Flinders sits within a small cove within Westernport Bay.
This was the second time that we had stayed a weekend in Flinders and on both occasions the sun decided to hide but I'm sure in the middle of summer this sleepy little hamlet's population swells to twice its size or more. Dotted along the shoreline are both modern and historic holiday homes with fabulous views over Westernport Bay. Along with the good weather will come the crowds - maybe a wet weekend is a nice time to have been here - anyway it was relaxing before going back to work on Monday.


  1. Hi Leon, Sue,
    Flinders is a favourite place of ours too. We often make a detour when we visit Sheryl's parents at Rosebud.
    I'm coming home for Xmas, but a short stay. I get home late on 21st December and leave on 28th; back in Pakistan by 30th.
    We MUST catch up, if at all possible. After sleeping and rebonding with Sheryl, first thing I'm going to do is take the Colnago off the hooks, blow up the tyres and head for the Beach Road!
    See you soon, Peter

  2. Looks like a nice place, even in the rain! Summer gloomy is more enjoyable than winter gloomy. ;)

  3. Pommie Pete - how great to hear from you on the blog. Dinner with the Sims for you and Sheryl when you are back from Pakistan and a Beach Rd ride for you and I. Miss you deeply.

    Walt - Sue agrees with your comments on winter gloomy. But it is a good time to catch up on unread books.


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