Enjoying a Cake
After Fraser Island
The further south we headed the nicer the weather was, which was good as we were fast approaching our final stop before leaving Australia, in Noosa.
Noosa is a lovely small town in the middle of the sunshine coast. We arrived off the bus as usual with nowhere to stay and tried to get beds in the YHA which the Lonely Planet guide described as amazing. They had three beds left but at a cost of $34.00 each. We ummed and ahhed and told her we'd call back. 5 minutes later we called back and the beds were gone. Oops! So none of us could really be bothered to make a decision so I pottered around on the Internet and the guys read their books and after about two hours of sitting in the bus shelter a courtesy bus turned up for another hostel so we took a chance and jumped in. We were driven about 15 minutes out of town to some purple coloured building with buddha statues everywhere, but at least we'd found beds!
Noosa itself was lovely, nice beaches and lots of cafes and restaurants, not that we could afford to eat in them by this
Last night in Brisbane
point in the trip! I did treat myself to a luxury ice cream though! Siobhan had flown back to the UK on the morning of the second day so me and Blair were left to explore Noosa. We headed up to the national park to walk the trails around the coast. We got a treat after about half an hour of walking - we saw a wild Koala sat in a low branch only a metre off the trail. Blair had his camera, so if I can get the photo off him, I'll post it on here.
Our last day was a Tuesday, which in Australia means it's 'Tight Arsed Tuesday' - cheap pizza at Domino's or Eagle Boys and cheap cinema. We watched the new Alice in Wonderland film and enjoyed a massive pizza for $5 which worked out cheaper than cooking so I wasn't complaining! I had a box of goon left from Fraser Island so when we were invited to a Garbage Bag party back at the hostel, we thought we'd go all out, finish off the booze and have a brilliant last night in Noosa. I fashioned sweat-bands, shorts and a vest for my 'Trashed'
bin bag sports range. Blair made a bright yellow bin bag suit and the girls from our room made varying brightly coloured dresses with contrasting hair and waistband accessories. Half-cut and proud with our effort we headed to the bar, only to find it almost empty with the rest of the occupants having literally wrapped a bag around themselves. Obviously when it came to the best dressed competition we won and enjoyed a free cocktail jug, so that made the effort worthwhile!
The next morning we headed to Australia Zoo, the zoo Steve Irwin owned. Had a great day watching the Crocodile shows, feeding Elephants and looking at all the other animals. It is a bit weird though, you'd think that Steve was still alive as there isn't really any mention of the accident that killed him, just pictures everywhere and 'Steve Irwin Foundation' and 'Steve's Croc's' and Steve's this and that. It was kindof weird, but I suppose he was the star so they probably don't want to change it.
So finally it came, our final stop off the Greyhound bus. We'd travelled the massive distance from Cairns down to Brisbane. We'd thought it was going to
be a difficult way to travel, but actually it'd been quite enjoyable, we'd had movies and frequent stops at dodgy transport cafes all the way and slept most of the way through the longest journey which took us 16 hours.
Back in Brisbane again and I couldn't really believe that this was the end of the Australian part of the trip. We wanted to really enjoy our last few days so the Thursday was spent at Movieworld, a Gold Coast theme park, where me and Blair rode the Superman ride over and over for the best part of the day (“Superman fast” announced over the PA before launching out of the rollercoaster tunnel and into the rest of the ride, brilliant!) Our last night we managed to get tickets to Lady Gaga. What a fantastic end to Australia! We were lucky to get some amazing seats with a perfect view of the whole stage and we weren't too away. She's a brilliant performer and this was the first arena world tour, so she was on top form.
The final morning I checked out early to get myself off to the airport. I'd booked on Emirates as I wanted to fly on the giant Airbus A380. I was chatting to the check-in agent and she was telling me how nice the plane was. I couldn't see it from the gate where I was sat waiting to board, but when I actually walked down the airbridge I couldn't hide my disappointment - it was an A340-500! More or less the same as what I fly on with Virgin! Suppose I couldn't complain though, I was heading to New Zealand for the final adventure!
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