fish and chips (and op shopping) at barwon heads

When I was little my friend Shelley spent her summers at Barwon Heads. So I every year when we went back to school I heard about it.  She always made nice friends there and would write to them and sometimes she’d catch up with them during the year.  And then sometimes I’d meet them.

But my family never went there.  Because we always headed to the Mornington Peninsula over summer. My mum firmly liked nice bay beaches.

Since then I have been through Barwon Heads quite a lot.  But I have never stopped there.   Until a few years ago.  I went there for a couple of nights with my friend Sarah.  On this occasion we had five little kids in tow and so spent most of our time at the playground on the banks of the river.  And occasionally dipped our toes in the river (it was pretty cold).   We did one walk around the shops in town and dropped in to an op shop at the Church on the main street.  But I recall it as a fleeting visit,  I am sure there was a nappy to change, or a child crying, or someone hungry … and I really didn’t give it my full attention.

These last holidays the kids an I spent a few hours in Barwon Heads.  We just called in for lunch on our road/ferry trip from Airey’s Inlet to Rosebud via Queenscliff/Sorrento.


First (and I will admit this was my primary motivation) we went (back) to the op shop.

And what a super dooper one it is!  It has a room full of stuff (and so much of it, and nicely sorted) in the old church hall, then a big book room in the lean-to attached to the old hall.  And then it has two double garages out the back brimming with excellent holiday house cast-offs. Furniture, homewares, bathers, wetsuits.  The list goes on. And it was a nice day and so the things for sale were spread out around the lawn as well.

So what did I buy, I hear you ask.  Well not much actually as the car was OVERFLOWING.  I had to be judicious.


See, I didn’t buy this for example. Although I really love the colour …

But Scarlett got a pair of slippers (she’s holding them in the photo above).  They reminded me so much of my Nanna Coughlin (she had fancy slippers just like these) that I couldn’t say no.  And I bought two towels (because we were about to start camping at Rosebud and I’d forgotten to pack towels … they were only $1 each) and a few DVDs including Bend It Like Beckam and Bride and Prejudice … great holiday movies for the whole family don’t you think?

And after the op shop we took a wander down the main street.  We bought lunch at the fish and chip shop. It was good.  The batter was nice and crunchy.  And we sat on some lawn while we ate and people watched.  Barwon Heads was full of families, and teenagers looking cool in surf gear – busy but low key.

After our lunch we stopped to admire the homewares here.image


Look … a collection of painted wooden shoe lasts was in the window of Frith

Nice copper light

And some nice copper lights

And to ogle the window display here.


OMG …what?  Certainly eye-catching … But a little odd?


Moss Grotto really did have lovely things once you got past the fluoro beard on Jesus biz. And aren’t these shell dangles (in the other window) inspiring?

And then we hopped back in the car and continued on our way, giving a friendly wave to the park and the river where we hung out last time.  And I thanked my lucky stars we were past the park stage.  I know some people are better parents than I am  … but … I HATE the playground …

Barwon Heads is well worth a visit.  Good fish and chips.  Great op shop. Fun homewares shops … And surf shops.  And a park (it is good – just not my thing).  Nice town.


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