Thursday, 26 June 2008

Red Moons & White Sands

Monday, 23 June

After a final night in Cairns (sniff) we headed down to Magnetic Island. I was a rough 6 hour bus trip down to Townsville followed by a ferry across to the island. We stayed at a hostel called Base which was right on the beach and our rooms were little shared beach huts. The island was beautiful. Our first night was pretty relaxed (expect for trying to make dinner - there was one kitchen for the 300 guests that it holds - was a bit crammed and irritating!). We spent the next day just sunbathing and sleeping - this was suposed to be my first lye in of the trip but I was rudely awoken by a couple in the opposite bed - not cool people!!! We had a bit of drink that night and watched the red moon rise over the water and behind the mountains, then danced our little feet off the to proclaimers!

We then set of for Airlie Beach on the 25thm, another 5 hr coach ride. We had a TV in our room!! We were so excited! We had a day trip on teh Whitsundays today - we went on a ocean jet which was a lot of fun. Got thrown about and got very wet. We stopped of a various islands and saw some aborigonal art and did a bit of snorkelling. Then we headed to Whitehaven beach - the most beautiful beach i think I've ever seen! The sand was so soft and white and the water was a magnificent blue colour! On the way back to shore we had a race with 2 of the other boats and a swear I thought I was going to fall overboard a couple of times!

We are just about to get the over night bus to Hearvey bay tonight (11 hrs!! ergghh!). So will update again soon!

Lots of love!

Tuesday, 24 June 2008

Green Ants Bottoms Taste Like Lime!


Just a typical view of the Queensland coast

Friday, 20 June

We set of for Cape Tribulation first thing in the morning - had a very funny coach driver who, while trying to inform us about the places we where travelling through, got distracted by absolutely everything - a biker, birds flying close to the window, everything! We stopped at various lookouts on the way up which where just spectacular! We also had a trip up the Daintree River crocodile spotting! We saw a huge male (called Scarface - awesome name for a croc!) , a female and a ikle baby croc floating on a log - was very cool! We had a short guided walk through the rainforest, where we learnt that green ants are good "bush tucker" (hee hee, love it) and were encouraged to taste them! I (of course) stepped up to the challenge and licked its bum as told - it tasted like lime - quite tasty!

We stayed in PK Jungle village that night, which unfortunately wasn't as "happening" as we had been told it was - there was a fair bit of work being done to it - but it was still nice. We had signed up for a jungle night walk which turned out to be a proper 3 hr hike through the jungle in the middle of the night - bugs touched me, it was not good! There was an amazing moment when we sat in the gorge turned out flash lights off and just sat and listened to the jungle - pretty awesome!

The next morning we had booked ourselves onto a horse ride through the rainforest and along the beach. It was soooo much fun, cantering through the rainforest on the biggest horse i could of possibly been given - but he was very well behaved! Saw some baby turtles at the rest stop too.

The beach there was beautiful - it's the only place where the rainforest meets the reef - felt like heaven! We then traveled down to Port Douglas via Mossman Gorge which was beautiful too - Amy had a swim in the freezing cold water - crazy lady!

The next day we had a wonder through the market in Port Douglas which was cool - still felt quite hippy-ish. Followed by some sunbathing and then back to Cairns. Good all round trip!




Baby Croc


Me on the Daintree River


Amy & Cape Trib beach


Me and Amy Horse riding on the beach @ Cape Trib


Me & Chief @ Cape Trib


The Rainforest


A "Strangler" Tree - the strangler tree wrops itself around a fully grown tree and starts living off it until eventually the tree inside dies and this is what is left - a "hollow" tree.

A big gross scary spider from the night walk
An even bigger, grosser and scarer spider from the night walk
Port Douglas
Mossman Gorge
Mossman Gorge

Monday, 23 June 2008

The Sky Rail & Kuranda

Thursday, 19 June

We took the sky rail up to the ranges stopping off at points to walk through the rainforest and see Barron falls which was amazing but probably a bit more spectacular in the wet season. The we went to Kuranda - a little hippy village at the top of the rainforest. This place was so cool! Could of spent ages shopping there! we had lunch at the cafe with the most amazing view of the rainforest. There was this really cool butterfly sanctuary there too - if anyone is ever there you should go to it - we didn't have time unfortunately. We then got the scenic railway back to down the range - lots of nice views and very relaxing!

When we got back to the hostel we had some new room mates who were lovely - especially this one guy called Toby who - expect for being a republican and thinking Maggie Thatcher was cool - was really cool. One thing I love about it here is just how friendly everyone is! We went out for dinner that night a met like 5 new people who we have also ran into in different places! Everyone just talks to everyone! LOVE IT!!!

"Going Down Is A Way Of Life"

Well I'm now a certified adventure diver! Woop! I spent the next 2 days after the zoo in the Pro dive training center - learning the basics for the next 3 days out on the reef. It was good fun but really tiring especially on the second day when our room mates were up till 5am partying in the dorm - I was an interesting site at 7am when I got picked up!

Monday (16th) we got picked up for the boat ride out to the reef, it was 3 hours and oh my work was I seasick! Actually turned a green colour & sent a lot of the time hanging over the side of the boat! - it was worth it though! My first dive there was a white tip reef shark lying right underneath where we descended! The dives that day were just spent practising skills - had a pretty rubbish dive that day as well though, first I had problems with my ears, then I could get to grasps with clearing my mask - which panicked me as I kept swallowing water - by the time i had got back to surface I was knackered and we still had to remove and replace our gear in the water. I managed about half of the task but was just to tried to finish it so got sent back to the boat - shameful! Going to honest, felt so angry and a little sorry for myself so hid in my cabin for a while, but I got over it!

The next morning we where up at 5.45am and straight in the water - something to add to every ones "to do" list is see the sunrise over the Great Barrier Reef - gorgeous! We had 4 dives that day on my last training dive I managed sort my mask task ( and did a little dance under water to celebrate) and then I was certified. We also did a night dive that night, it was amazing saw a huge eagle ray and a MASSIVE dent in the sand where something had obviously just been sitting - we think it might have been the huge turtle called Brian who lives around that reef.

The final day on the reef I did a deep dive and a naturalist dive (looking at ecosystems etc) which certified me as an adventure diver to 30metres! Then we headed back to Cairns, got a little burnt sunbathing on the top deck, but wasn't sick so that was a bonus!

We finished the trip off with a big night out which was awesome - met some really cool people and I'm definitely going to try and keep diving down the east coast if I get time! Going to finish my advanced certification and get my dry suit orientation when I get back to Scotland. Next year who knows maybe I'll be back out training to be an instructor!

Saturday, 21 June 2008

This blog is p-ing me off

Ok so I've spent roughly 10 dollars just trying to post that blog and the photos (from my end anyway)don't even seem to have posted properly - this is the link to my photobucket opage - most of the photos I've taken so far are up there - help yourself!!!!!

Koalas smell

Hello! So sorry I'm a little behind in updating the blog - I'm just having sooooo much fun!!!! Well where to start.....

On my second day here we went to Cairns tropical zoo, it was small but pretty cool. Got to feed some kangaroos, hold a baby croc and a koala, as you can probably tell from the heading above - they actually stink - not as cute and cuddly as they look!

We where staying at Gilligans hostel then - which looking back probably wasn't the best idea as we were both jetlagged and just wanted to sleep. Gilligans is NOT the place to go if you want to sleep! It is awesome and a lot of fun, but we both felt a bit looserish as neither of us could stay awake long enough to join in the party! Lol! But hey ho it was awesome so van't really complain!PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

Thursday, 12 June 2008

I'm Here - Safe & Sound!

Well hello!

I arrived in Cairns safe and sound this morning at 8.30am (11.30pm on wed night UK time). Felt very tired, stiff and a bit overwhelmed, but things are looking a bit better now! Have got chatting to our 6 other room mates in the hostel and have already added 2 or 3 new things to do on to our intinerary!

Thinking of heading to the Cairns Tropical zoo tomorrow and who knows what else. Will probably just chill out though as my diving starts the following day and it's is going to be full on I reakon!

Anyhow, I'm off to bed now so that I can get up bright and breezy tomorrow morning!!

Lots of love, Robyn xx