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Published April 4th 2017
The best views from the Yorke Peninsula
When one thinks of the word Pod, whales and dolphins spring to mind. Or perhaps peas and beans. Or in more recent times it may have been George Clooney. But for the locals and lovers of the Yorke Peninsula it only means one thing - Hillocks Drive.
Hillocks Drive is a private bush camping ground located at the foot of the Yorke Peninsula just 10 minutes east of Marion Bay. With over 7km of coastline on the property, and acres of natural shrub, Hillocks Drive is a magnet for fishermen, swimmers, divers, hikers, photographers and birdwatchers alike.
Accommodation at Hillocks Drive is in three parts. There are some rooms at the old homestead available for hire, or there are numerous un-powered camping sites under sheltered trees and surrounds, or there are the pods - the luxury detachable caravan-esque style accommodation with all modern facilities nestled on top of clifftops with uninterrupted views of the Southern Ocean and beyond.
Sitting on the clifftop above the gorgeous sandy Butlers Beach and overlooking Hillocks Point is the second and newest Ocean Pod. Installed in early 2017 the Pod features beds for four (a double and two singles), hot shower and an eco-toilet. The Pod has a low environmental foot print, a high energy efficiency rating, employs solar power, rain water and recycling of waste.
A gas stove, grill, oven, BBQ and utensils ensures self sufficiency for cooking while the 12 volt power system provides lighting, fridge, freezer and power outlets. A small inverter also provides some power to 240 volt outlet appliances. The fan and insulation provides cooling in summer while a gas heater adds warmth inside during those cooler winter nights to add to the ambience created by the camp fire and camp cooking.
But it is your eyes and ears that are in for the greatest treat. Large windows provide stunning ocean views at all times, while the windows alongside the beds offer the ultimate in the sleeping comfortably under the stars, something that is not difficult to do as you listen to the sounds of the ocean bearing down on to Butlers Beach and the nearby cliffs.
The nearby cliffs have been weathered over millions of years, and it is some of that weathering that has produced some stunning rock pools of various depths for kids, families, divers and toe-dippers to enjoy. And each of them is located on the long distance Walk The Yorke trail, a trail that circumnavigates the entire coastline of the Yorke Peninsula.
Between those rock pools, and just below the Ocean Pod, is the large sandy expanse known as Butlers Beach where the surf fishermen gather at the change of the tides with a view to outwitting the salmon and bream while further offshore the odd dolphin passes by ahead of the whales who are en-route to their winter breeding grounds.
While on the beach and in the coastal shrubs, the fairy wrens chatter like there is no tomorrow, the Hooded Plovers look for a place to lay their eggs and the odd Sea Eagle soars high over Hillocks Point keeping an eye on all the action.
The Pod at Hillocks Drive offers a chance to enjoy the peace and beauty of a remote coastal location with the ambience of camping and the luxury of modern amenities. So whether you want to explore the bush and the marine environment, or perhaps fish, swim or laze around on the beach or just sit under the balcony and watch the world go by, Hillocks Drive is the ideal place to spend a weekend, or two.
Hillocks Drive is located 290km at the foot of the Yorke Peninsula. Bookings are available online or by contacting the office. A small store alongside the Homestead offers some food, bait and other essential food items, or else Marion Bay is just 10km down the road. Further details are available from the Hillocks Drive website, from their facebook page, their instagram account or by contacting Pam or Andrew on 08 8854 4002.