Behind the scenes tours

Regular travel writers at The Sydney Morning Herald, Sun Herald and Melbourne Age Traveller choose their favourite “behind the scenes tour”.

I picked the wonderful Point of Human Origins experience at Mossel Bay. Those taking the tour stand on the point on Earth where the earliest evidence for the origins of modern human behaviour was discovered. Leading the tour is the archaeologist who originally made the discovery, Dr Peter Nilssen. Dr Nilssen, a brilliant communicator, also talks about archaeological events leading to the discovery and poses the question: Where to now as a species.

The caves are not open to the public – you can only visit them on the POHO tour, or if you walk the wonderful Oystercatcher Trail, a luxury four-night, three-day 55-kilometre Garden Route guided slackpacking hike that follows the coast from Mossel Bay to the Gouritz River mouth along a track marked at regular intervals with a stencil of the endangered African Black Oystercatcher.

Here’s the story, titled Up close and personal and I have provided an online link as well here:

Backstage tours 1Backstage tours 2




About alisonstewartwriter

Alison is a writer, journalist and travel writer, born in South Africa, now living in Australia. She has had nine books published - two books for adults and seven for young people. Four of them have been translated into Italian, Danish, Dutch and Thai. Her latest project, Cold Stone Soup, an unpublished memoir about growing up under apartheid and migrating to Australia has won the FAW 2013 National Literary Awards (Jim Hamilton Award for a non-fiction manuscript). Cold Stone Soup was also runner-up in the 2010 Penguin/Varuna Scholarship. Her first book for adults, Born Into the Country (Justified Press 1988, South Africa) was shortlisted for the 1987 AA Mutual Life Vita Young Writers’ Award. Heinemann Australia published her next adult novel, Bitterbloom in 1991. Her YA novel, The Wishing Moon was shortlisted for the 1995 Australian Multicultural Children’s Award and was a 1995 Children’s Book Council Notable book. Her YA dystopia, Days Like This, published by Penguin Australia was a finalist in the inaugural 2010 Amazon/Penguin Breakthrough Novel Award in the YA category. Alison worked for years as a news and feature journalist. She is now a regular travel writer for The Sydney Morning Herald and Melbourne Age and online Fairfax Media publications.
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