This is a beach I’ve had on a must visit list for a long time after seeing unbelievable photos of people caravanning on the sand! These caravans weren’t off roaders either, but your average road ready van, so this was something we had to see for ourselves.
Perlubie Beach is a little over 22 kilometres north of Streaky Bay on Eyre Peninsula in South Australia, and its name is an aboriginal word for ‘white sand hill’. The beach itself is a gentle curve of white sand that is around 2 kilometres long and is sheltered by Eba Island. The sand is quite hard with a few soft areas, so it is easily accessible for caravans and 4WDs.
It always pays to get out and walk where you are planning to drive if you’re a little unsure, especially with a caravan in tow, so this we did and apart from a little soft sand to get onto the beach, it looked doable. Once we had picked a suitable spot the caravan was backed in and although we did find some soft sand we got out of it quickly and settled on a spot a little more sturdy and worry free…or so we thought.
A quick set up and then it was time to put out the deckchairs and the dog’s bed and just relax. A check of the tide times showed us that high tide was around 1pm and we were well away from the water so felt quite comfortable.
As we relaxed on the beach a kite surfer made his way down to the sand and began inflating his kite, so we were excited to know we’d see some entertainment on the water. He put his kit bag under one of the shelters on the beach and off he went, into the blue. We followed his path for a while until he disappeared towards the far end of the bay. It wasn’t until at least an hour or more later that we realized he was still out there somewhere and then we noticed what looked like his kite on the beach but no sign of the person.
A stroll down the beach seemed like a good idea to check and sure enough almost a kilometre down the beach the kite was there, and the harness, but no board or rider. A look out into the ocean and still no sign so we decided it might pay to give the local police a call to let them know. If the person was to turn up we would ring back. We walked back to our caravan and waited.
Another 15 minutes or so and using binoculars, husband Harry, spots a guy walking at the far end of the beach, carrying a board. Yep it’s definitely the kite boarder. A quick call back to police (who were just about to come out) and thankfully our worst thoughts were allayed.
Speaking to the boarder later, he confirmed that he lost his board out in the water, so managed to beach his kite and walk to retrieve the board which he hoped would wash up around the bay. He was in luck, but he will never know that we were watching out for him, and also had moved his kit bag back as the tide was coming in, to save it from being swamped too.
Which brings me to the tide. While everything else was going on, we had one eye on the tide which was creeping in and getting closer and closer. A line was drawn in the sand, literally! If the tide gets to here we might think about moving. The water covered it. Another line was drawn, another wash over. OK we are definitely moving if it goes past, line number three. It got close but didn’t, but knowing that the tide was coming in again around 1am, although supposedly less than the current tide, how well would we sleep?
Plan B came into play and we moved off the beach and into an area before the drive onto the beach. We would sleep easy.
Late in the afternoon we were rewarded with a spectacular sunset, followed by a peaceful sleep without worrying if we’d get bogged. The next morning a gorgeous pink sunrise bathed the beach and left us with a terrific impression of Perlubie.
We will be back and do it again one day. To stay at Perlubie Beach costs $10 per night and for that you get absolute on sand caravanning, very clean flushing toilets and there is internet reception on the beach. There are shade structures on the beach and who knows what entertainment you may get if you visit!