Australia is a great travel destination, the heat can be hot and smouldering but the surf can also be one of the best things in the world and between the heat and the surf there are a whole bunch of places to see. Port Stephens offers up a rich variety of activities for the whole family, ranging from dolphin watching to a trip through the surrounding sand-dunes. However not only does Port Stephens offer up a variety of activities, it is also steeped in history and it would be a shame not to visit the historical sites of the past.
The region of Port Stephens was first inhabited by the indigenous race referred to as Aborigines. The correct term for the native tribes in that region however would be Worimi. Port Stephens was first sighted by Captain Cook during the 18th century who also gave it its name but it wasn’t until the end of the century that the British began its early development in the region.
As many British convicts were sent to Sydney, Port Stephens developed a reputation for being a safe haven for escapee convicts and it was Captain W.R Broughton that came into contact with the first five escaped convicts from Sydney whom the Worimi adopted into their tribe. As the area developed, a garrison was built in 1820 to handle the situation of escaped convicts.
Trade in Port Stephens began in 1816 with the first shipments containing timber and wool and from there trade flourished with the purpose of producing quality wool and timber for Britain. The first school in Port Stephens opened in 1830 with a population of 500, 50 of whom were school children. Wine was first successfully produced in 1831 and to this current day, Port Stephen is known to produce quality wine.
Nowadays Port Stephen has developed into a strong tourist destination with a focus on aquatic activities. By the same token it should not be forgotten that Port Stephen is also steeped in history with some of the more modern history being it’s involvement in WWII. There are many historical sites to visit in Port Stephen so why not combine a bit of both?