Mermaid Tree - 1820
The King asked early explorers to make the British presence clear in new lands and make the claim for Britain. After making repairs to His Magesty's Cutter (HMC) Mermaid, Philip Parker King had his men carve the name of their ship and year of arrival at Careening Bay into this Boab Tree. This Boab tree is believed to be over 800 years old. A metal walkway has been installed by the Australian National Park service to protect its roots from visitors walking near the tree and compacting soil over its roots. I'm not sure how many hundreds, or few thousand people visit the Kimberley each year but this site is on every itinerary. It was described to me as not particularly interesting for foreingers, but of significant importance to Australian history and a mark of Philip Parker King's exploration of the Kimberley in the early 19th century. There seems to be some rivalry among historians between King's exploration of Western Australia and Cook's exploration of the Queensland and New South Wales costs thirty years earlier. The tree is part of Prince Regent Natioanl Park which is being combined with several parks in the area to form Kimberley National Park.
1820Mermaid Treeaustraliaboab treecareening bayhmc mermaidkimberleykimberley national parknational parkphilip parker kingprince regent riverprince regent river national parkwestern australia