I don’t know why, but Australia seems to have this fascination with BIG things… like really weird and slightly crap big icons. There are dozens of these big things around the country (although, a large concentration of them do seem to be in Queensland and New South Wales… go figure); the big banana, the big pineapple, the big merino… the list goes on. We make them tourist destinations and they’re so Craptastic that people actually stop at them, or in my case, make quite large detours to seek them out.
This year I’ve been fortunate enough to sight no less than eight said big things in all their seriously shitty glory – in fact, on my recent road trip in South Australia I found quite the bounty. I’ve never been one to keep such stunning discoveries to myself, so in the spirit of sharing the craptastic love, I bring you Craptastic finds: The BIG things.
The Big Orange, Berri, South Australia
I love this – it’s probably the crappiest thing I have ever seen. For starters, it barely resembles an orange… Nonetheless, I was a bitterly disappointed to find that public access to the Orange has now closed. I was really looking forward to climbing the whopping 15 meters to the ‘observation deck’ inside the orange where I could’ve look out over… well, this dusty field. Awesome. Apparently back in the day there was a café and a 360 degree mural depicting riverland scenery (including, oddly, a bunch of nudists chilling out by the river).
The Big Bundy Bottle, Bundaberg, Queensland
I couldn’t think of a better shrine to the Aussie Bogan than this giant bottle of Bundaberg Rum. Sadly when I visited the Bundaberg distillery earlier this year, there were no bogans in footy shirts pretending to hump this bottle for their Facebook profile photo (I don’t think this was an unrealistic expectation). With this lacking, I embraced my inner bogan and indulged in the free Bundy tastings at the end of the distillery tour… and thought my name was Shazza for the rest of the night.
The Big Galah, Kimba, South Australia
About an hour and a half into the dead boring 500km drive from Port Augusta to Ceduna in South Australia, the Big Galah at Kimba (a town that claims to be ‘half way across Australia’… it isn’t) is brilliant for both its isolation and its crappiness. The day we passed by it was sporting the Breast Cancer Awareness Pink Ribbon which was quite cool of it I thought.
I have no idea why it’s there… all I can think of is that it gives those driving the long, dull stretch of road that is the Eyre Highway an excuse to get out of the car and laugh heartily at the craptastic bird in front of them. Good enough reason for me!
The Big Wine Bottle, McLaren Vale, South Australia
This was an unexpected one, I must say. I’d done my research on what big things I’d come across in South Australia before I left for my trip (I was excited for big-ness… I made a list), but this one remained under the radar. You can imagine my sheer joy then, when I pulled up at the Wirra Wirra winery in McLaren Vale to find a Big Wine Bottle made out of corks! Woo hoo! Definitely more ‘tastic than crap here!
The Big Oyster, Ceduna, South Australia
I was seriously disappointed with the size of the Big Oyster. I mean, I guess in the whole scheme of things, it is big for an oyster… I just felt it could’ve been, I dunno, bigger. The Big Oyster was made by local oyster growers because apparently Oysters are all they can think about and weirdly enough, it stars as the centerpiece of the street parade in the annual Ceduna Oyster Fest. All hail the giant mollusk! Rockin’ times people, rockin’ times…
The Big Trout, Adaminaby, NSW
The Big Trout in Adaminaby, NSW was another of those surprising big finds and quite possibly the most Craptastic of them all (well, maybe equal first with the Big Orange). The Big Trout is truly horrible… it’s pink and grey scales glimmer in the sunlight and there is, what appears to be, pure fear in the eyes of that poor fake fish. The locals take their Big Trout seriously, though – severe penalties apply for anyone caught climbing on the fish. It is, after all, the centerpiece of the town. Yikes.
The Big Rocking Horse, Gumeracha, South Australia
Just an hour or so from Adelaide, tucked away in the Adelaide Hills, you can find this craptastic gem. The Big Rocking Horse. No, it doesn’t rock (except for on windy days I was told – I think that was a bad attempt at a joke though) but you can climb it (for 2 bucks) for a nice view of… well, I’m not sure. I spent my $2 on more important things, like beer. If the Big Rocking Horse doesn’t tickle your fancy, maybe the ye-olde-wooden-toy-shoppe it sits outside will… aaaand maybe not.
(Oh and excuse the slightly grim photo – I went to this thing TWICE during my stint in South Aust… both days were miserably cloudy.)
The Big Lobster, Kingston SE, South Australia
The Big Lobster sits, in all its creepy glory, out the front of a lobster restaurant in Kingston SE on the southeast coast of South Australia. Like many of the big things featured in this post, it is the main attraction of the town… which is sad, because it’s quite lame (which, coincidentally, is exactly why I love it). According to the Big Lobster website, this baby was designed (in the 70s surprise, surprise) by an artist who used a stuffed lobster as the model. It seems much time and effort go into constructing these Craptastic icons.
What is your favourite Big Thing? Do you have photos of other Big Things you’d like to share? If so, post a link to your photo in the comments section below or send them along to firstname.lastname@example.org
Until next time…