As I said back when I first came to Australia I love a good view and when I found Surfers Paradise had a 360 degree viewing deck it was automatically on my list of must dos for while I was visiting. I headed off early to make sure I got there pre-sunset so I could take in the city during the day, at sunset and at night again like I did with Eureka Skydeck in Melbourne.
Friday, 31 October 2014
Thursday, 30 October 2014
Sorry I am only just getting around to posting about Rainbow Beach now, finding time to post on the road became a bit hectic this last week from moving around and exhaustion because of noisy room mates and hostel guests causing lack of sleep.
We arrived in Rainbow Beach lunchtime last Sunday after an early bus in from Agnes Waters and after settling into our accomodation across from the bus stop headed out to explore the beach. Weather was warm but there was a strong wind on the beach which meant you couldn't really sit down as you became covered in layers of sand but we did take a walk down the beach toward the Rainbow cliffs that the Beach now gets it's name from. The sands in Rainbow change colour from white, yellow, red, black and orange, hence the name of the beach, and you can see this colour change in the tall sand cliffs and dunes along the beach.
For myself I didn't get to see much more of Rainbow Beach than this as I fell asleep for sunset and went to Fraser Island on our second day but my travel companions tell me the sand blows at sunset were a brilliant sight so I would like to go back and see it if I ever get the opportunity.
Tuesday, 28 October 2014
We left for the Gold Coast early on Sunday morning off to the coast again for a few days at Surfers Paradise. Arriving at the city for 8.30am and straight to leave belongings in the hostel, Budds in Surfers, though we couldn't check in until 2pm they took our bags and stored them for us so it was off to catch some z's on the beach.
Tom and I took to the sea for a little while jumping the strong waves and getting truly drenched in the wonderfully cold sea, a great contrast to the strength of the sun. Queensland's sun seems to fell stronger than anywhere I have travelled so far and I have felt the need to seek out shade a lot of the time to avoid burning my skin.
Surfers Paradise isn't huge, but it isn't small either with most of it being only a few blocks back from the beachfront and stretching for miles along the coastline. The atmosphere was fantastic and I think this was only aided by the V8 super cars being in town to race through the streets, you could hear the roar of the engines from the hostel and beach.
The town is easy to walk around but the traffic lights and crossings in Australia still get me a little as you have to wait for the green man or be fined for J-walking but they take so long to change sometimes I think I could have crossed the road 6 times while waiting and no cars have passed.
Saturday, 25 October 2014
After a rough night with horribly disrespectful room mates and getting about 3 hours sleep all night I was so grateful to be headed out into the suburbs of Brisbane to see my friend Kim and catch up with her. She had extended me the offer to stay with her and I am incredibly thankful for her kindness.
Thursday, 23 October 2014
Back in the city again, this time Brisbane. I can't tell you how excited I was to be back in a city again with its tall architecture, beautiful bridges and hundreds of people milling about. I have really missed the buzz of a metropolis, beaches start to look the same after a while and there is only so many times you can sit on the sands and watch the waves before you get bored but cities are forever changing.
Tuesday, 21 October 2014
So yesterday I had the time of my life on the photographers paradise of Fraser Island. Fraser Island is a world heritage listed site and the largest sand Island in the world located just off the Queensland Coast and somewhere I wanted to tick off while on the east coast and now I just want to go back and see more. I woke early to catch my bus at 7.30am for the ferry crossing from Rainbow Beach to the Island and was a little excited when a big bus with 4x4 power and wheels came rolling up to the bus stop.
Sunday, 19 October 2014
Saturday, 18 October 2014
We arrived into Agnes Water after a rather gruelling overnight Greyhound bus from Airlie with a particully grumpy driver, who more than once had been rude to most of the passengers on board, not an experience with them I had had before and not one I appreciated after being awake since 6am the morning of catching our midnight bus.
Friday, 17 October 2014
Jackaroos hostel in Mission Beach is a slice of paradise for a fraction of the price of what larger corporations charge you and I found it to be a wonderful experience. Jackaroos is based out of Mission Beach at Bingil Bay really an so when you are dropped at the bus depot a shuttle bus is waiting to take you to the Accomodation. As you pull up you feel a little removed from the normal again and walking. Down the pathway to reception you could mistake yourself to walking into a tropical hotel.
"Never regret a single moment of your journey. If it wasn't your destination it was preparation" - Unknown
Today I just wanted to share a few truths about travelling. I never created this blog so I could just gloss over the bad parts and 'create' a happy my-life-is-amazing outlook because let's face it in the back of our minds we all know that is never the case.
Honestly I can't even believe I'm really written this right now but yesterday I finally stepped foot on Whitehaven Beach and swam some of the reefs in the Whitsunday's, something I wanted to do even before I knew I was coming to Australia.
Thursday, 16 October 2014
I thought since I have finally got down uploading all my G Adventure Tour posts a nice way to wrap it up would be to share with you my top 5 highlights from my trip. I know everyone's highlights will vary and there regally were too many highlights to put down but here are some of my top places to visit should you ever do this trip.
Wednesday, 15 October 2014
So I have been in Airlie Beach 2 days now and have had the opportunity to rest, relax and recover from my cold which feels like it may be going away.
Airlie is quite small really in the lines of towns, like Darwin it it all mainly in ine street but the activities you can do from here are really impressive with the Whitsunday's and the Great Barrier Reef so close by.
Today we go out to Whitehaven Beach and explore the Whitsunday's on a snorkling trip but yesterday Fanny and I chilled by the Lagoon and did a little shopping. I'm using the excuse of going out tonight to have a new outfit, really I need to join Shopaholics Annonymus.
Last night we met some friends we made in Mission Beach to go out and have some fun and a catch up, we ended up working out when we would catch up with them again down the coast so I am looking forward to it. For now, off on an Adventure!
Tuesday, 14 October 2014
After a rather hectic Saturday driving around I was ready for a quiet day yesterday with plenty of rest and relaxation. It's crazy how little sleep I am getting used to living on however my cold unfortunately does not appear to be getting any better for it.
Monday, 13 October 2014
G Adventures has been my first tour with a touring company but what a way to start. They have certainly set a high bar, mostly due to the great work of their CEO who was incredibly passionate, knowledgeable and made the experience fun.
I sat down to breakfast the other morning I came to the realisation that I have now been in Australia for an entire month and thought for the sake of reflection and to give myself something nice to look back on I would start writing a monthly post to mark each landmark with a special maybe on big anniversaries should I reach them. So here is month one.
Sunday, 12 October 2014
We arrived at Mission Beach at 3pm Friday afternoon and the shuttle bus to our hostel was waiting to pick us up. Which was nice after how exhausted we all were from leaving Cairns. We are staying at Jackaroos hostel in Bingil Bay for 3 nights. After check in the owner too us for a quick guided tour and informed us this was not a party hostel and they ask everyone to respect the other guests. Sounds perfect.
Friday, 10 October 2014
When you go solo on a tour there are many things that can make it or break it for you. My tour guides did this for me. With the knowledge that all good guides need to posess, a friendly outgoing nature you could peg them for any other bog-standard, run-of-the-mill tour guide right? Wrong, here are 10 reasons my tour guides are better than yours.
If you have any I add for these guys put it in the comments below!
Thursday, 9 October 2014
On the move again! I cannot tell you how good it feels to be on the move and out of Darwin. Don't get me wrong there is nothing wrong with Darwin but I just felt like I was stagnating there. Stuck. I got all the things I wanted/need to do in Darwin in 3 days and with having prebooked a 7 night works package became utterly bored by day 4.
Last night after only 6 nights in Darwin I boarded my Quantas flight to Cairns and here I am the morning after dashing reunited with my friends and ready to move down the coast later today. The second my plane took of last night I felt the exhilaration of travel rushing back. The promise of adventure and the unknown.
If you had asked me 6weeks ago when nerves were settling in what I would be doing my answer probably would have been "trying to find work" as back in Britain I had become a bit of a disillusioned work-a-holic who just wanted freedom from the norm but actually couldn't imagine anything but working. Now I am looking forward to another few weeks of travelling and buying experiences and memories before I have to settle in one place again.
It's strange, I feel more myself than I have in the last few years. I've half turned into my Grandma, if someone sits still long enough I am asking them their life story. I'm really enjoying talking to everyone about where they are from and their experiences it feels like I have opened a side of me I have kept under lock and key.
So today's 'chores'? Enjoy some sun, book a ticket and board a bus! Queensland I hope you are ready because I am looking forward to seeing you!
After a few days of sickness in Darwin that made me just want to curl up in a ball in my hostel I decided it was time to get some fresh air. I had heard about the deck chair cinema and when I googled to have a look what was on I saw they were playing Begin Again that night, so I pulled my sorry self up and went down.
Wednesday, 8 October 2014
The last day of my tour was a really great day and put itself up in my top experiences of this trip (on post of this to follow soon). We had an early leave as it was a two hour drive to Lichfield NP and we had to be back in Darwin for 5pm so people could catch flights.
I think by day 16 it was becoming apparent to the group we would all be leaving each other soon. It felt strange that we only had just over 30 hours left with each other and then we would all go our separate ways. After breakfast we headed into Kakadu. Nick had regained his voice somewhat over night and started to explain all about the park to us, as well as giving us a pop quiz to see how much we already knew.
After not even a week in Darwin I am feeling ready to move on. I am so excited to be catching a plane to the east coast tonight. It's not that I haven't enjoyed Darwin, on a lot of grounds I have with it's heat, flowers, swimming lagoon that is like bath water and chilled pace of life but I am just ready to see more.
I've really enjoyed the alone time that a few days separation from the friends I will be travelling the east coast has given me, even though I have missed them and wished I were there, despite a few things in Darwin putting a small cloud over my situation.
I am now rested, rejuvenated and ready for the next leg of fun, even if my cold has stuck around. I realise right now I am only putting off starting a job in Australia a bit longer but I came to this country to travel and that's what I want to do. Next stop Cairns for 12 hours and then who know where!
Another early morning to get on the road to Kakadu national park, my cold was now in full swing and ip felt dreadful. To top it off most of our bags had to stay at the hostel as there would be no room fr them on the bus so we had to pack a rucksack for 3 days which is no easy feat.
Something I wanted to do even before I first arrived in Australia was visit the Mindil Beach Sunset Markets. I had heard they had a wide choice of food and that the sunsets were incredible. I wasn't disappointed.
Woke up this morning on the Ghan, the seats are actually really comfy to sleep in when you wiggle yourself into the right position, which for me was a ball. It was 6am when I woke up and the sun was starting to rise so I jumped out myself and into the food car to watch it and wait for them to start serving tea. I stayed here for most of the time until our stop over in Katherine at 9am.
Tuesday, 7 October 2014
Today we had a free day in Alice Springs which meant a slow start and a long breakfast in a cafe. I think everyone welcomed the change of pace after lots of early mornings and late nights. I woke up with a full blown cold unfortunately which the dry heat of Alice (36 degrees) was not really helping.
This morning it was really difficult to wake up and I think all the late nights and early starts had finally gotten to me. We woke at about 4.30am to leave camp after a pancake breakfast, which was probably the only reason I rolled out of my swag, and off to go to Kings Canyon for the Rim Walk as the temperature was predicted to get up to the high 30s again.
Lisa and I were up early this morning to get up to the campsite viewing ground to try some light painting with her camera and take done pre-dawn photos of Uluru and Kata-Tjuta. The sky was still pitch black when we went up but by sunrise at 6.30am it was starting to show signs of a very hot day forming. Up until this point of the trip we had had hot days but this one was going to kick the scale up a notch.
So I survived the night in a swag. It was probably one of the most comfortable camping experiences I have had and fairly comfy too. We were all up early to go back to the viewing area in Uluru Kata Tjuta National Park, it was incredible to be able to watch the sun rise behind Uluru while eating breakfast. I know I am going to be grateful for this experience for the rest of my life.
Left Coober Pedy this morning before the sun had even started to light up the sky for our long drive to Uluru. Everyone was feeling tired but we loaded into the bus and tried to get some more sleep. Unfortunately I can't normally sleep in cars so the weight of my lids became heavy on my eyes during the day. Music is a great uplifted for me so I stuck on some music and started writing a few posts and editing the video from my trip so far, I can at least try to be productive right?
I figured while I am sorting my blog for the next few days with all my travel posts from the last 2 weeks I should probably post about what I am currently up to as well. Maybe it will make a nice little break from all the G Adventure tour posts, maybe not but hey.
Me up early to leave William Creek though I didn't really need to as some of the group were taking scenic flights so we couldn't leave until they came back. The storm had passed us overnight and left a chilly wind to make my teeth chatter in the morning. Morning games of cheat were played accompanied by breakfast and copious amounts of tea.
We left Beltana Station in the morning after watching sunrise and fussing Xenia (one of their dogs) a bit more and making sure we had everything packed. I could have honestly moved into Beltana station and been happy there I think. The sunrises and sunsets and the food make for a very impressive first impression.
Monday, 6 October 2014
We left our accommodation around the usual time and headed out onto the road toward the Flinders Ranges. We are in some pretty long drive times at the moment but honestly I kind of enjoy them, especially since it gives me time to write out my posts so that I don't have to compromise time with the group in the evenings.
Saturday, 4 October 2014
We left Adelaide after a lay in and a late leave time (8am) and covered lots of ground again today. We went out to a park where we ate breakfast in the sunshine and played on the playground. Our CEO suggested yesterday it would be fun to make a music video for the trek which we had all agreed would be a good idea and a bit of fun, so we started filming that this morning. When it has finally been release I will share it on the blog for everyone to see.
Really early wake up from the Gaol this morning, I was up at 5am for a 6.30 leave time as my bag by now had exploded and I was struggling to fit in al l the things I had brought with me. I would love to say I am shattered but I seem to be turning into a morning person. On leaving the Gaol after breakfast we headed out on the road only stopping at a small town to have some mid morning food and tea. Though I did get to see Larry the Lobster a huge lobster statue by the side of the road. Apparently there are a lot scattered around Australia including a koala and banana, I am now regretting not taking a photo of it.