Cape Borda is a headland with a lighthouse on the west coast of Kangaroo Island, South Australia and is situated 70 km (43 mi) west of the town of Kingscote. It is named after the French mathematician, physicist, naturalist, sailor Jean-Charles de Borda (1733-1799).
The Cape Borda lighthouse was built in 1858, and is the third oldest remaining in South Australia. It is also the only square stone lighthouse in South Australia.
The various images on this blog post were taken by myself while we were staying at Flinders Light Lodge which is part of the Cape Borda Lighthouse Keepers Heritage Accommodation. An amazing place to stay which allows you to see the lighthouse at various times of the day and shows her many moods from dawn to nightfall.
The lighthouse was built to guide sailing ships arriving in to South Australia off the Roaring Forty trade-winds and into the Investigator Straits and on to Adelaide.
In the early days supplies had to landed by boat and hauled up long steel railway at nearby Harvey's Return.
The small cannon was put in place to be fired during fog to signal ships of danger before the introduction of radio. It was also believed that due to the Russian scare the placement of the cannon was symbolic of a small military presence, and therefore seen as a deterrence to invasion from possible enemy ships! Indeed one of the reasons for building the lightstation in that position was to be a lookout for Russian ships.
In late 1999, NPWSA restored the cannon and test-fired it at Midnight 2000 as part of a global exercise of time-signals at maritime locations around the world. The cannon was found to be Y2K compliant and has since fired every day at the traditional hour of 1:00pm.
Its focal plane is situated at a height of 155 metres (509 ft), the light characteristic is a group of four white flashes that occurs every 20 seconds. The lightstation was automated in 1989 and is still fully operational. In 1999 the original fog signal cannon was restored, today it is fired daily at 12:30 hours.
The lightstation and surrounding cottages are looked after by the Department of Environment, Water and Natural Resources while the top floor of the lightstation and the light itself is the property of the Australian Maritime Safety Authority.
Visitors are able to go on tours of the lighthouse and stay in the surrounding cottages. Which is what we did and the next blog post will be on staying at Cape Borda!
Most of the above information on the lighthouse is from the following websites and Wikipedia.
National Parks of South Australia - Cape Borda
Tour Kangaroo Island
Kangaroo Island (South Australian Tourism Website)
Boarding the Ferry
What is available on board
Help for those that suffer from Motion Sickness
my previous blog posts on this particular vacation are:
Driving to the west coast of Kangaroo Island
Crossing via SeaLink
staying at Cape Jervis Station
crossing the Mighty Murray by Punt
stopping over in Mt Gambier
planning the journey to Kangaroo Island
our thoughts on staying at Cape Borda!
stay tuned for further blog posts on staying at Cape Borda, visiting the many bays of Kangaroo Island and much more!