Published: December 6th 2011December 6th 2011
Checking in at Singapore airport gave us a little surprise that we weren’t prepared for ….TWO FLIGHTS! We did a changeover from Darwin to Cairns but it wasn’t too bad as we are ‘Frequent Flyers’ to Jetstar now so a blanket and some socks kept us cozy. We arrived in Cairns at 10am exhausted from the lack of sleep on the flights but we were soon on a comfy bed in a place called Dreamtime! A great place to stay if you are ever in Cairns, 10 minute walk to the lagoon and the supermarket is just across the road. The vibe in Dreamtime was really good, everyone was friendly and we met a lot of people in our time here. Due to a lack of sleep we were in bed by 9pm that night and we were awake nice and early at 8am. Our days in Cairns were spent mainly in the lagoon as there was no beach and the sun was scorching, we were also planning ideas of how we were going to get down the East Coast during the festive period. After much debating about where we were going to sleep and also the transport side of things
we agreed campervans were too expensive and accommodation was going to be hard to find around Christmas and so we decided that we wanted to sleep and travel 4000km in a ….Toyota Yaris!?! We have both been camping in the past so ‘thought’ it would be a piece of cake!
In Cairns, we obviously booked our trip to the Great Barrier Reef which was fantastic, we did three dives, on the first we saw the usual suspects of sweet lips and angel fish BUT on the second and third dives we saw a TURTLE, a MUARI WRASSE and Natalie saw a white tip reef SHARK! Impressive stuff! It was worth the wait from Koh Toa after doing our Open Water Course and it has just made us hungrier to dive some more.
On the Wednesday at Dreamtime it was the 20 year anniversary of the hostel and the owners celebrated in style. We were treated to a fire show from a local company and also a free T-shirt!! (we are always grateful for free clothes). The T-shirts however, came with a competition, the person who could upload the best picture whilst wearing the T-shirt to the Dreamtime Facebook
page would win three weeks FREE accommodation at the hostel in the luxury suite! So we have been thinking about how we could win initially thought we could see Ant and Dec whilst they were here and get them to wear them but that was a little unrealistic but we can wear them whilst Sky-Diving in New Zealand! If that won’t win it then I don’t know what will. On the anniversary we went out to a club called Woolshed which was a great night out and we got speaking to people from all over the world.
We spent about a week in Cairns before picking up our Yaris! We grabbed all the gear we needed to make our camping lifestyle a little easier i.e. a cooker and a $50 campsite book
! (this was after 20 minutes of ear ache for Chris as Natalie was adamant we needed it “it’s our Bible”. Turns out they are ALL
sign posted everywhere)
We drove for about 7 hours the first day just to get half way to Airlie Beach before doing the other 7 the day after! Airlie Beach was worth a trip out though we found a nice camp
site and they also had a lagoon to relax in. We got arranged a trip to the Whitsunday Islands which was gorgeous! The swirling sand’s has to be one thing you need to see before you die! Natalie almost wet herself when she saw a bottle nosed dolphin leap out of the clear blue water and Chris almost did the same thing thinking it was a shark! We did our trip with a company called Ocean Rafting which was great fun the staff were funny and slightly crazy when it came to driving the boat, turning last minute before we hit an island. Another highlight for Chris was licking an Ants bum after being told to do it by the guide! All he could say after was it tasted like lemon! Apparently they were a delicacy to the aboriginals, Chris wasn’t so keen.
On the campsite we came up close to two Joeys about 6 meters away from our tent and the day after the mama Kangaroo hopped on through the site after weighing up the two of us! We also saw a brightly coloured snake slither past us on a trip to the toilet and a giant toad
was blocking our way back!
During our travels down the east coast we have had to sleep in the Toyota Yaris which hasn’t been the comfiest bed and definitely made us appreciate South East Asia even more than we had already! We have been so tired as it’s like having a full time job in Australia, putting the tent up and feeding ourselves and keeping ourselves clean it’s all so straining! We have now degraded ourselves from Flash packers to …TRAMPS!
We have done two more days of driving to get to where we are now, Hervey Bay! This is the gateway to Fraser Island but the weather isn’t great here now so were just going to relax, wash our clothes and catch up on sleep. A trip to the island can be saved for a holiday during whale season! Our next stop will either be Brisbane where we will see the Steve Irwin Zoo or Noosa where we can relax some more!
We are enjoying our time in Australia but we both are starting to miss home now and the luxuries we have there and we are also missing the cheapness of Asia too.
There are more photos below