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Learning through experience

THERE are three Aboriginal tours available in the Perth area, one at Yanchep, another a walking tour near Fremantle and a heritage tour run by Captain Cook Cruises from the Barrack Street jetty to Point Walter.

CALM has helped with the development of all tours, which are at the vanguard of modern Aboriginal tourism.

The Point Walter tour departs from Barrack Street each morning and, after a pleasant cruise along the river, a Nyoongar tour guide meets your party at Point Walter, where you’re taken on a leisurely 90-minute walk through the local bushland.

The native trees and shrubs become a ‘bush supermarket’, as the value and use of each plant is explained.

The tour is very interactive, and while there are some specifics about local Nyoongar culture, the knowledge passed on is mainly about the bush and how it can be used to meet all human needs.

Here are some comments from a recent tour attended by two Perth couples.

Lloyd and Bernadette

“It’s a hands-on experience. I did learn something and it changed the way I think about Aboriginal people and culture.

“Previously I would have just walked down there and seen trees, but it’s amazing how much is out there and if you were stuck in the bush you could survive.

“There’s so much to eat and so much to see.

“When I heard it was an hour-and-a-half tour I was skeptical, but when we got on the tour I didn’t want it to finish and that was a lot to do with the tour guide (James Kearing).

“He really wanted to share what he knew and he made me feel part of what he was talking about.”

Graeme and Eunice

“I like the way the tour guide pointed out the use of each bush and tree and they’re things that I’ll remember.

“I think more local people should go on Aboriginal tours like this.”

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