Mission Accomplished! Cairns at Last!

Trip Start Jul 31, 2005
Trip End Sep 05, 2007

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Wednesday, October 25, 2006

So after a very tiering day driving up to Tennant Creek from Uluru, we slept like babies and awoke early again the next morning, setting off feeling like we had actually never left the driving seat!
Today we were leaving the Northern Territory behind and travelling over the state border to Queensland, same country, very different place, 30 mins ahead of NT time!

It just seemed to take forever, the landscape changed dramatically from rec dust to golden brown grass, shuttered houses and cows grazing.
We diddnt know how far we were going to get along the road, we hoped from Hughenden about 400kms east of Townsville, we made it to Richmond about 100kms short of what we hoped for. Richmond was a small town, it was unfortunatley dark again for the last leg of the journey, but we arrived at the campground safe and the friendly owners put us right on the edge overlooking the beautiful lake with a delightful breeze!

Another early morning followed, I awoke to Matt dancing outside of the campervan, telling me very excitidley (is that a word?!)that he had seen a kangaroo! He had missed the previous ones as we drove along in the car, apparantley it was eating at the side of the road of the campground before it hopped off again! Haha.....

The sun rose and we left, we drove through Hughenden and onto the coast, Townsville, we filled up with petrol and changed roads heading north into Tropical Queensland, the golden brown fields of cattle changed to mountains, sugarcane plantations and palms swaying in the wind. Soon enough, about 350kms north of Townsville we drove into a city, 4 lanes of traffic, petrol, shops people and cars abound....here we were, where we had been striving for for three days....we had arrived in Cairns.

Cairns is a nice city, there isnt a huge amount to see,we are here to see the Great Barrier Reef, today it was nice to be walking and not driving and so we walked from our suburb of Cairns along the waterfront and the Esplanade to the city centre, we ate lunch in a cafe and looked around the shops, we sauntered along the paved pedestrian streets and then visited the night market.

Tommorow we are taking a cruise out onto the Great Barrier Reef where we shall snorkel to our hearts content and possibly dive, its an all day affair and with so many operators to choose from we are just going on a recommendation...we shall see. There is a pontoon in the water to snorkel from and a semi submersible to view the coral from too, we are going to the Outer Reef, which was our choice...hopefully there will be a bigger variety of marine life out there, clearer waters and better coral (not damaged as much because less visitors).

So, thats all for now, tommorow shall be fun and a total highlight of our entire trip, on Saturday we are heading south to Airlie Beach and the Whitsunday Islands....if we are not eaten by sharks on the reef.....we shall write again soon!


Ali n Matt

We survived the sharks!
The Great Barrier Reef is without a doubt one of the most breathtaking places that we have visited in the entire world, it was totally amazing and no words can do it justice (or pics for that matter!)
Today we left Cairns early and travelled out onto the Outer Barrier Reef, we snorkelled to our hearts content, saw clams, clownfish, oh so many different multicoloured fish, we took a helicopter ride over the reef and so we saw it from a different perspective, when you see it from above you appreciate how big it is, and how wonderful it is.

Did you know that the Great Barrier Reef is longer than the Great Wall of China, its the only living thing visible from space and it spans 2000kms along the east coast of Australia.

We finished our day off with a beer and fish n chips in the nightmarket...tommorow Airlie and Whitsundays

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