I Love a Sunburnt County.

# I is for Island.

Australia is a continent and and island; the smallest continent and the largest island on the globe. Adding to that we have, according to National Geographic, 8,222 islands which lie in Australian waters. So I think it is fitting that for the letter I we take a look at some of those islands.

Apart from Tasmania, which is our island state and a state of Australia in its own right, we have wonderful islands dotted all around our coastline. The largest of these is Kangaroo Island off South Australia. It can be accessed from Adelaide by plane or ferry and made global news on the summer of 2019/ 2020 when much of the island was ravaged by disastrous bush fires. Thankfully, mother nature has a way of regeneration and Kangaroo Island is testament to that. Google Kangaroo Island and see for yourself the images of the times of the fires and the images of one year on.

Fraser Island, off the Queensland coast, is the largest sand island in the world and since 1992 has been an UNESCO World heritage site listing. The best way to get to Fraser Island is by ferry or barge from Hervey Bay, which is the whale watching capital of Australia, or from Rainbow Beach.

Time and space allow me to mention only a handful of our islands. Moreton Bay off of Brisbane is a chock with islands both big and small. Peel Island was a leper colony in the early 20th Century. Peel has a population of 0 but it is a wonderful day and short stay stop for boaties in Moreton bay. St Helena was Brisbane’s convict island and by all accounts an exceptionally harsh penal colony at that. And then there is the beautiful North Stradbroke Island to the south of Moreton Bay and Moreton Island to the north of the bay.

There are the wonderful Whitsunday Islands in North Queensland and Great Keppel Island in Keppel Bay on the Capricorn Coast.The list goes on for over another 8000 times!

Writing this reminds me of the poem, No man is an Island by John Donne. Just like those 8222 islands are all a part of Australia, so we are all parts of one another. And just like all the islands around our shore lines that are beautiful, interesting, unique, showcases of amazing nature, creation and history, all with a story to tell, so are we all. And every part of nature, creation and humanity needs to be protected. To what and whom are you giving your protection today? For what we give to others we give also to ourselves and conversely what we take from others we take also from ourselves. Choose to be a giver and protector then everyone can be richer.

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