I love slow travel, slow food and discovering new adventures and delicious regional food in new locations. I'm on an indulgent quest and I'd love you to follow at www.walkeatshare.wordpress.com
Published June 25th 2016
There's an app for that
I love the concept of a 'Foodwalk'. First you walk, then you eat. Complementary activities in my world. I especially love it when accompanied by a friend because you both learn new things, about places and food, while catching up on each others' news. Sometimes there's so much to say that we both talk at the same time!
So my friend Gaynor and I met up in beautiful Willunga recently to walk, talk, learn and eat.
We started at the Old Courthouse building at 61 High Street. You can read more about this building and it's history in Jenny Esots's article here.
There's also a fantastic app, 'Willunga Walks', which you can download to your iPhone or iPad. It has both written and audio information as well as maps, all put together by the National Trust of South Australia.
The app has two walks to choose from. We chose the 'Courthouse Loop' walk. I'm looking forward to doing the second, 'Courthouse to Showhall' sometime soon.
Willunga Walks app
Clearly Gaynor and I had a dilemma since the app is excellent and has so much information, but if we listened to all the information it offered we'd have less time to talk ourselves. So we compromised and took turns.
Across the street, at number 62, is a private home that was once the Post Office and Telegraph Station. From the app we learned that the post office opened in 1858 when mail was brought from Adelaide to Willing by horse, a journey of six hours one way.
The location of the post office changed, in 1916, to it's present location at 4 High Street.
Further down the hill, at number 51, is the Bush Inn. It was built around 1900 and was actually the third hotel in Willunga to be called the Bush Inn. From 1915 until 1973 it's name changed to Canberra Hotel. Clearly that wasn't a good move because now it's called the Bush Inn again and seems to do a very good trade, thank you very much.
The Blue Door Studio stands at number 38 and this building has an appealing life story. Starting life a church with a thriving congregation, numbers dwindled until the early 1900's when one lone worshipper remained. George Eden would open the church doors each Sunday morning, earning himself the local nickname of 'Old Fidelity'. After George's death in 1934, the building housed the Prisoner of War Control Centre, the Willunga Country Women's Association Rest Room and the Willunga Masonic Lodge. Apparently the building has a sloping floor, installed originally to prevent dancing. Funny since it was recently a dance studio and now used for yoga.
The Willunga Hotel at number 3 and 5 High Street, has been a hotel since 1868. Obviously a very successful pub then, and the temptation to duck in for a beer was strong, but we decided to press on with our Food Walk.
Turning right onto St James Street, we passed McCaffrey Cottage at number 21 where a series of notable people have lived. Rumour has it the man who designed the Daleks from Dr Who lived there in the mid 1970's.
We estimated the walk to be just under 2kms, and it took us less than an hour, including stops to take photos and enjoy the stories on the Willunga Walks app. The app is a great idea, more walks should have them.
Having completed the loop and worked up an appetite it was time to contemplate lunch. We had passed a few lunch opportunities on our walk but I had heard about somewhere that sounded extra-special, only 7kms away on the main road into Willunga. So Gaynor and I returned to our cars at the Old Courthouse building and proceeded to Au Pear.
The National Trust have done a fine job of getting the app trail happening. Thanks for the road test. I can remember some of the historical events, so I must be getting long in the tooth! I also don't have an app phone yet, but it will happen, all in good time. Willunga is spoilt for choice with many great cafes. I highly recommend The Green Room & 3 Monkeys. Cheers.