Little ole Lancelin, what a cutie-pie! Lancelin is about 110km or 90 minutes drive – and sits a few kilometres from the start of the Indian Ocean Drive [this road leads – eventually – to Shark Bay, Exmouth + beyond]. For Perth people, it’s far enough away to feel like a break but still easy to get to… remember, everything in WA is so far away from, well – everything else. I never forget watching ‘Fast Forward’ [legendary 80s comedy show on Aussie TV] and one of the poignant priest’s Thought of the Day was “Wouldn’t life be easier if distances were shorter? Now I think there’s something in that for all of us… don’t you?”. Haha, it was cleverly ludicrous, even back then when I was 10 years old > and i often think of it when travelling throughout WA. It’s huge!

A Frenchman named Captain Hamelin explored the area and first discovered Lancelin Island in June 1801, naming it after a French scientist of the period. People used the coastal bay from the early 1920s for holidaying. There were no permanent homes prior to World War II [1939-45] > only crude holiday shacks. The army had a campsite and the air force used Lancelin Island [you can see this below near the very bottom] for bombing practice.

It was crayfishing that put Lancelin on the map in 1947 via Boucaut and Roderiquez exporting crayfish tails to the US. Lancelin was a food, bed, booze + fuel stop for rugged crayfisherman. The town was gazetted in 1950 as ‘Wangaree’ – the Aboriginal word for “fishing” > but this was changed in 1954 by public demand to “Lancelin” as most people referred to the mainland + the island by this name. Tin shacks sprung up as crayfishing grew… Craypots were made of cane, steamed and moulded by hand. Some crayfishing boats still prefer the ‘stickies’ today – the cane craypots even today. Up until 2008, the stickies were still being made locally in Lancelin.

> By the way, Perth people call it “Lanno” > and most come up here as they have a holiday home, or know someone that has one, or they have a big bogan car + they want to hit the huge bank of sand dunes + sand board or try not to roll their car, or they love windsurfing + want to take advantage of the wind that whips up around Lanno. I went up here one fine Sunday [just coming out of winter so it was double-y glorious!] for my boy’s “Hell of the North” road cycling race, run by the legendary Bicycling WA crew. While he raced, i took the pup to the beach and drove + walked around + – you guessed it – took photos of the suburb! Enjoy… and get up there! There’s plenty of places to stay, a lovely beach hang out > did you see that white beach sand?!

> The woman you see sitting on the bench seat at ‘La Maison’ waved me down as i drove slowly past her house, invited me in to her garage sale + chatted to me + showed me around like I’d always known her. Bummed that i cannot remember her name but she was lovely! She sold me a mint plant, had quirky things in her garden including a giant white tiger stuffed toy sitting at a table with an empty bottle of wine. She gave me plant cuttings for the bike race organiser [she thought he’d like them – i only just mentioned to her that i was here for a bike race – but funnily enough i do actually know the event organiser which is trippy], a local bus timetable with her number on it as she lets her house out to holidaymakers, give her a call, haha – 0477463088.

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