The Illawarra Local Aboriginal Land Council received $388,393 through Round 1 of the Port Kembla Community Investment Fund program to implement Stage 1 of the Ngaraba-aan Cultural Trail Project between 2017 and 2019.
The Ngaraba-aan Trail has been a dream for members of the Illawarra’s Aboriginal community since the 1990s. The Trail passes through land which is highly significant for its cultural value and includes many middens and artifact sites, permanent campsites, fishing and hunting grounds and ceremonial areas. The Trail offers a chance for locals and visitors alike to take in stunning views of the area’s most significant natural features and places of great significance to the Aboriginal community, including the Five Islands, Lake Illawarra and the escarpment linking Mt Keira and Mt Kembla.
The Ngaraba-aan Cultural Trail runs from Heritage Park at Port Kembla along MM Beach before heading up an existing walking trail on the north side of Hill 60. It also includes a side track out to the end of the beautiful Boilers Point. The Trail then runs from the top of Hill 60 to Port Kembla Surf Club, over the dunes and through coastal vegetation, then links to an existing walking track around the edge of the Coomaditchie Lagoon.
Work in Stage 1 of the project included:
- Track clearing and bushland restoration along the route
- Three community field days and five community art days with local Aboriginal artists to produce material to be used along the trail
- Restoration of existing Aboriginal artworks
- Development and installation of interpretive signage along the trail
The project was completed in June 2019.