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Portland Harbour, Victoria, Australia   Print 
Sun Rise Portland Harbour Photo Bob McPherson Portland is an historic city with a population of 11,000 and is one of Australia?s largest export industries with the harbour being a major shipping port.

 

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From the indigenous history of the Kerrup -Tjmara tribes that date back to an unknown place in time, spreading from Mt. Napier, Mt. Eccles, Condah to Tyrendarra and far beyond, is in itself to vast to cover .

 

Whaling goes back to the early 1800?s when the early settlers were whalers and sealers that established a shore base whaling industry and one of these was William Dutton who first landed at Blacknose Point in 1828.  Portland boasted one of the best whaling areas in the world and still has these unbelievable huge creatures visiting here but not in the numbers of years gone by.

The settlement began with Edward Henty and his family in 1834 showing an interest in the cattle and sheep industry, some of which were the prize winning merinos. The settlement grew until 1840 when the first lots of land were auctioned in Melbourne where a building boom became obvious.  Buildings were constructed and a town was built with streets, shops, a school, government officials, police officers, a newspaper published and a jetty was built.

In the 1850?s Portland benefited from growing activity in the gold rush era with thousands of immigrants trying their luck on the goldfields and others settling on the land with many of the bluestone buildings emerging at this time.

 

Dairying, potatoes, apples, grapes for our locally made wines, timber and forestry with the recent blue gum projects are of great importance to the rural community.

The Alcoa smelter employs in excess of six hundred people with many indirect entities such as Keppel Prince Pty Ltd and their latest wind energy building plant constructing windmills.

Other industries in Portland are; the grain handling lot, log export, woodchips, Incitec Pivot fertilizer plant, WMC Hifert etc...

 

Portland's tourism over the summer months booms with visitors enjoying recreational fishing, seal tours, scuba diving, surfing, charter boats, cable tram rides, horse riding, the visiting carnivals, YMCA vocational programs and numerous other activities on offer.

 

The Richmond Henty Hotel is in the vicinity of the settlement area overlooking the glorious Portland Bay and offers a relaxing atmosphere to dine out.

 

Portland is a launching point to so many unbelievable areas that you would have to pinch yourself to miss out on one of the true gems of the volcanic area which is the Grampians, just over an hour away.

 

Mt. Napier can be seen off the Portland Bay and Lady Julia Percy Island is clearly viewed from the water 20 miles to the east.  The old time fishermen boast about the biggest white pointer sharks that haunted the seal colonies. Fossilized shark teeth collected at snapper point portray the size of the sharks that used to live in this area. So, you would definitely not want to swim in this area.