For generations, East Coast peoples - Kuring-gai, Eora, Tharawal, Yuin and more - come togther and celebrate the migration of the whales.
The annual migration of Gawura, the Dharug word for 'whale', signifies revitalisation and the birth of a new generation as the whales return to 'Guru', the deep waters of the southern seas.
Last Sunday, a particularly significant migration ceremony took place at Vaucluse Estate in Sydney. This is the area which a range of ceremonial engravings are carved, depicting the southen migration of the whales, and have remaind for thousands of years. These engravings not only tell a unique story about Aboriginal connections to Country, but in recent times, a story of cultural change as colonial occupation isolated these ceremonial places from the Gadigal clan.
Sydney Living Museums, carers of many of Sydney's heritage buildings and gardens including Vaucluse House, has partnered with traditional owners of the Eora Nation to host this momentous event for the community. The days events started with a Welcome to Country, a smoking ceremony and performances from the Ngaran Ngaran and Djaadjawan Dancers on the beach paddock, following on to local stories and history talks, as well as traditional shell-work demonstrations and cooking tucker with local seafood.
This years' event was a part of Sydney Living Museums' 'Aboriginal Cultural Calendar', an incentive to preserve and share this traditional Australian heritage.
Images by Stuart Miller
More coverage on the Whale Festival will be on The Point with Stan Grant, tonight at 9.00pm