Fleurieu Peninsula travel writer Steve Robertson explores Rapid Bay

We've already had a couple of high 30s heat blasts this summer and odds are we'll get a couple more in February. So here's a walk idea where the cool and refreshing ocean is just a metre or two away.

It's the stimulating stroll along the beach at Rapid Bay, just 40 minutes west of Victor Harbor. These days the town is a relaxed collection of houses and a caravan park, but decades ago, more than 130 people were employed by BHP here on limestone quarrying. Note the ruins of the 1941 jetty built to offload ore onto waiting ships. Today it has fallen to rack and ruin, replaced by a modern jetty hugely popular with fishers and strollers. Wander off to your right along the long and seductive beach, pausing to admire thousands of highly polished stones, many with veins of intense colour. This is a very popular swimming beach without the dumper waves so scary for us non-aquatic types. Jump in then resume your stroll. The clean, pure sand makes barefoot walking a real pleasure.

Near the end are towering cliffs and even some mysterious caves guaranteed to bring out the adventurous explorer kid in all of us. Take advantage of this end of the beach for some sweeping photographs encompassing the nearby rocks and more distant bay and headlands beyond.

Scuba divers and snorkelers will appreciate the colourful soft corals off both jetties, not to mention the myriad fish, bull rays and maybe even a leafy sea-dragon, surely one of nature's most magical creations. Dive magazines have rated Rapid Bay as one of our state's most rewarding undersea destinations, a singular honour.

Beach lovers are willing to fly for hours overseas to enjoy settings like this. We are lucky such a shoreline is so close to home.

Local travel writer and photographer Steve Robertson explores some fascinating locations in our region where you can walk, photograph and learn.