You don’t hear the phrase “off the beaten track” so often these days but it’s the perfect description for Lonely Beach in East Arnhem Land. We get there by four-wheel drive from an equally remote beach called Bawaka, in the Port Bradshaw area, having reached that spot after a couple of hours over soft sand, also by four-wheel drive, from Nhulunbuy on the Gove Peninsula. We got there by air from Darwin, and to Darwin by … Well, you get the picture. This is a long way from down south and, for our little group of Sydneysiders, it’s almost like another country.
WHILE some denounce Australia Day as Invasion Day, an Aboriginal clan from northeast Arnhem Land uses it to welcome doctors, nurses, teachers, police and the community to their land and to thank them for their contributions.
On Thursday, the Rirratjingu clan will hold a bungul, or welcoming ceremony, in the township of Nhulunbuy, to bring people together.