WISH YOU WERE HERE
Cape Dombey Obelisk, SA
CAPE DOMBEY OBELISK
THIS QUIRKY landmark is a local legend in Robe, on the Limestone Coast, but is in danger of falling into the ocean at any given moment. Photographer Michael Wee captured it on a bright day, its red and white striped livery contrasting vibrantly against a coastal palette. The Cape Dombey Obelisk was built as a warning beacon for seafarers in 1855, after a significant spike in the number of ships that ran into trouble on the cliffs: it was visible from 16 kilometres away and guided fishermen and their vessels into Robe’s port safely. Since then, it has become a lasting symbol of community
heritage in the small town, as well as a tourist drawcard. But over its 162-year life, the headland it was built on has been gradually washed away by surf and wind, and now the obelisk is at real risk of falling into the waves below at any moment: next week, next year or in 30 years’ time. Due to its method of construction – small stones that were lime mortared together – it’s not even feasible to relocate the obelisk for posterity. So, see it now before it is too late: the ill-fated star attraction on a bracing coastal walk, in an idyllic stretch of South Australia.