Loch Sport, Victoria
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Painted figures in the Lions Park on Lake Rd beside Lake Victoria
|Population||689 (2011 census)|
|LGA(s)||Shire of Wellington|
|State electorate(s)||Gippsland South|
Loch Sport is a coastal tourist town situated on the Ninety Mile Beach and Lake Victoria in Central Gippsland, eastern Victoria, Australia. At the 2011 census it had a permanent resident population of 689, though the number swells to 4,000 during the Easter and Christmas holidays.
Before European settlement, the area was used for hunting and fishing (men's work), and the collection of water yams and other vegetable food (women's work). Some of their descendants still live in regional townships. Aboriginal middens are still present.
In the 19th century British settlers cleared the land and began farming. Sandy soils dominate the flat coastal heath scrubland, which is surrounded by brackish lakes on the north and Bass Strait on the south. Later in the 19th century Melburnians discovered the recreational potential of the lakes—fishing, swimming and boating—and by the beginning of the 20th century Loch Sport was accessible via a dirt track, with plots of land surveyed for the nascent township. With increasing use of private cars, more people bought property in the town which, in 1980, was one of the last Victorian towns to receive electricity.
Loch Sport has a primary school, a bowls and tennis club, a caravan park, a marina, a pub, RSL club, boat club, service stations, bakery, police station & supermarket. Golfers play at the course of the Loch Sport Golf Club on Spermwhale Head Road.
Next to the township lies the 2390 ha Lakes National Park which supports populations of kangaroos, echidnas, koalas, emus and many other birds, and a wide variety of wildflowers. It is also known for its large salt marsh mosquitos.