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Published: March 28th 2017
Brisbane is about 1 1/2 hour's drive from Noosa Heads and is Australia's 3rd largest area with a population of 2.3 million people. It's been well over 20 years since our last visit and I think about 1 million people lived there at the time. The changes have been dramatic and there is on going construction that's obviously fueled by continued growth. The Brisbane river runs through the city and drains into Moreton Bay to the north. The city has done a great job in developing the river front and the waterway is an efficient transportation artery. There has certainly been great thought given to infrastructure planning as the Airport, with train connections throughout Queensland, is close to the Cruise port that is connected to downtown through a well run ferry service.
We were able to meet up with Diane and Ken Cranston, friends from Winnipeg, who were on an Oceania Cruise that docked in Brisbane for a day. After a ferry ride downtown for lunch and a casual walk about, we were back to the Cruise port to see them off to their next port of call which was Cairns. Coincidentally, two days later, our friends and neighbours from
Niagara on the Lake, Luba and Warren Fraser were also on an Oceania Cruise that stopped in Brisbane and so we meet up with them as well. It was great to see our friends and enjoy time together particularly so far away from Canada.
After an overnight stay we picked our friends from Toronto Lesha and Pat at the Brisbane Airport. They are touring Australia for a month and staying with us off and on while they travel around various parts of the country. They brought their golf clubs, so we've been able to have a few rounds of golf in addition to touring the Sunshine coast.
While Pat and Lesha were off to Darwin to take the Ghan train down to Adelaide, we took a day trip up to Rainbow Beach which is about 1 hr 45 minute drive north of Noosa Heads. It's only about 45 minutes taking a beach drive along the coast. We have a 4 wheel drive vehicle, which is a requirement, but not much experience driving in sand (a lot of experience driving in snow which is quite a bit different). Rainbow Beach is the main departure point for Fraser Island which
is close and can be seen from the Town. The attractiveness of Rainbow Beach is the colour of the sand that changes as the Sun' reflections mooves through the day. Apparently it is particularly beautiful at Sunset. It's a short hike to Carlos Sandblown which is a very large sand dune reputed to be that highest in the world. (We would dispute that after being on some very high dunes last year in Namibia). At the top of the Dune, we happened upon 2 hand gliders who were using the height to launch out over the sea? It was quite interesting to see their lift off.
The weather in the last few days has been unseasonably humid with numerous intermittent rain and thunderstorms. We have managed to get in a few games of golf along with a couple of lessons which we're hoping will provide some level of return on investment?
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