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School excursion

Special Offer

Past in the present at Davidson Whaling Station

Stage 1 (Years 1-2), History, Davidson Whaling Station Historic Site


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Discover what life was like in a whaling colony in the 1900s. This Stage 1 (Years 1-2) history excursion is designed to support the K-10 history syllabus topic, Past in the present.

Read more about Past in the present at Davidson Whaling Station

The Davidson family worked alongside a local pod of killer whales (orcas) to hunt and capture baleen whales in a relationship known as ‘the law of the tongue’. Once processed, the lips and tongue of the baleen were returned to the orcas as a reward for their service. This unspoken agreement would endure for generations, until John Logan, neighbour of the Davidsons, broke this trust. The consequences were devastating.

In this fascinating history excursion, students will explore the Davidsons’ home, Loch Garra homestead, and its grounds in Twofold Bay. They’ll learn about the local Koori Aboriginal people who lived in this area for over 5000 years before colonisation.

This is a unique and memorable excursion for young enquiring minds.

For program outline, safety and practical information about this excursion, see info for teachers

Stage Stage 1 (Years 1-2)
Learning area History
Student outcomes

HT1-2. Identifies and describes significant people, events, places and sites in the local community over time

HT1-3. Describes the effects of changing technology on people's lives over time

HT1-4. Demonstrates skills of historical inquiry and communication


Students will: 

  • Visit a former whaling colony and explore the buildings and grounds that housed one of the important families from this colonial period
  • Learn about the local Koori people, the traditional Aboriginal custodians of the land  
  • Learn how colonial settlement changed the local environment, and how relationships were formed and changed over time. 
  • Hear fascinating accounts of how man and beast worked together to hunt baleen whales, which were harvested for their oil, baleen and bone. 

Excursion details


Monday to Friday during school term

Guided. Available on request.

$18 per student, minimum of 20 students. If your group is more or less than 20 students, call the NPWS Merimbula office on 02 6495 5000.

Meeting point
Meet in the Davidson Whaling Station Historic Site carpark
If you would like to organise a NPWS school excursion please get in touch with local staff or use the 'Enquire' link for the online form.
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