The end of the road brought us to the Cockle Creek camping ground at the Southwest National Park. Camping is free, the wildlife is tame, and the bush is pristine. The weather has been changeable, so for the last couple of days we’ve alternated playing in the bus with games outside and on the beach.

Cockle Creek, Recherche Bay, Tasmania, January 2013
Recherche Bay's remote location means it remains largely undeveloped.

Fishers sign, Cockle Creek, Recherche Bay, Tasmania, January 2013
At the very, very end of the road, there's a walking track that calls us by name.

Bronze whale sculpture, Cockle Creek, Recherche Bay, Tasmania, January 2013
A bronze sculpture of a three-month-old Southern Right whale commemorates these magnificent ocean creatures who pass this point in their annual migration as well as those who were mercilessly killed by our ancestors.

Brioni on the whale sculpture at Cockle Creek, Recherche Bay, Tasmania, January 2013
When Brioni knocks on the sculpture, she's surprised to discover from its tone that it's made of metal.

Parking at camp at Cockle Creek, Recherche Bay, Tasmania, January 2013
We park our bus just off the road and on grass so short it looks like artificial turf. The local wildlife keep it trimmed to carpet height.

Pademelon at Cockle Creek, Recherche Bay, Tasmania, January 2013
This almost-tame pademelon gladly cleans up the scraps that have fallen from our sandwiches.

Our girls eating outside while camping at Cockle Creek, Recherche Bay, Tasmania, January 2013
When the weather is fine, we eat outside and go to the beach to play on the sand and explore the landscape.

Calista wrapped in a blanket and lying outside, Cockle Creek, Recherche Bay, Tasmania, January 2013
I realise the rest of Australia is sweltering in midsummer heat, but we're feeling chilly this far south.

Playing at Cockle Creek, Recherche Bay, Tasmania, January 2013
When the sun comes out from behind the clouds, you'll find us at the beach.

Brioni and Aisha walking along the beach at Cockle Creek, Recherche Bay, Tasmania, January 2013
We go for walks along the smooth sand, never knowing what we'll find.

Cockle Creek, Recherche Bay, Tasmania, January 2013
We love exploring beaches with rocky sections. The rocks always contain many creatures to discover.

Orange, yellow and white algae on a rock at Cockle Creek, Recherche Bay, Tasmania, January 2013
It's easy to walk over the rocks without really looking at them, but a closer examination shows a range of algae in interesting colours.

Amemones at Cockle Creek, Recherche Bay, Tasmania, January 2013
Ruby jewels hang on tightly to the rocks, releasing their tentacles when the water covers them.

Shack at Cockle Creek, Recherche Bay, Tasmania, January 2013
A shack is nestled into the bush. There are a few private residences this far south, but we don't investigate to see if this one is occupied.

Rustic bridge at Cockle Creek, Recherche Bay, Tasmania, January 2013
The bridge over Cockle Creek provides enough height for jumpers. On our first day here, teenaged boys were doing back-flips off the railing and into the water. If the water was a bit warmer, I may have considered a bridge jump.

Aisha with shell ears, January 2013
Two shells make funny ears!

Delaney wading through the water at Cockle Creek, Recherche Bay, Tasmania, January 2013
At certain times the tide is in and we can't avoid getting wet.

Aisha in her fort at Cockle Creek, Recherche Bay, Tasmania, January 2013
Aisha uses found materials to fashion a fort on the edge of the sand.

Calista playing with water and sand at Cockle Creek, Recherche Bay, Tasmania, January 2013
Calista collects water for her sandcastle further up the beach.

Brioni at the beach, January 2013
Brioni is always on the search for creatures and finds some mussels that she wants to turn into pets.

Delaney poking sticks into the sand at Cockle Creek, Recherche Bay, Tasmania, January 2013
Carefully, one-by-one, Dell breaks sticks off a nearby shrub and pokes them into the sand. "They're people," she replies, when I ask her if she's making a fence.

Delaney walking into the water, January 2013
In a spontaneous gesture of bravado, Delaney throws off her clothes and walks into the waves. It isn't long before she returns to me and requests me to make her warm again.

I love alternating our urban adventures with ones in the bush. Cockle Creek has been a restful place to camp. There are toilets and taps here, and we’ve been joined by other travellers every day. Some families are camping here long-term, and others spend just one night.

I like the break from all our driving, but now it’s time to hit the road again. We last shopped for fruit and vegies on Sunday, and although we aren’t completely out of fresh food, we’re running low. This means we need to head back through towns and past roadside stalls that sell produce. Otherwise we could contentedly camp here for another week or so!