A Whale of a Time

Trip Start Feb 02, 2010
Trip End Dec 23, 2010

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Flag of Australia  , Queensland,
Sunday, September 12, 2010

Pulling into the shopping centre at Hervey Bay, the first thing I thought was that the town is a lot bigger than I picutred. I had images of small, idylic little fishing town that had a few charter boats for whale watching, but what I found was a fairly large town complete with McDonalds, Starbucks and host of other chain stores. Not to say its too big, it seems to retain a small village like atmosphere to it. This was further exemplified in the hostel I was staying at which was more like a house really. It was split in such a way that each block was made into a sub-house with it's own kitchen, TV room and shower. This gave the place a very family-esque atmosphere, even if it was a bit of trek to the backpacker bars!

Having dumped my bags off, I decided to take one of the free bikes from the hostel and have a ride along the 20km esplande. This provided me with some good views of the still bay and beautiful beaches. It also provided me with wet underwear given that the brakes on the bike didn't work, forcing me to do what can only be described as a barrel roll off the bike every time I needed to stop! I also took a peek at the local botanic gardens, but there were pretty average as far as gardens go. After all the hard work of pedalling, I got myself a beer at the local and decided that Hervey Bay was dead on the social front. It seems to get bypassed by travellers who are instead after somewhere a bit livelier, woe fool them!

I awoke the next day in somewhat of a panic as I was due to be picked up for my whale watching trip at 7am. However, my phone being the shit heap that it is has decided to stop making noises out of the speaker, thus rendering it pretty useless, especially at being an alarm. To cut a long story short, it was 7.30am and I had a lot of missed calls. I sprang out of bed and went to the road when luckily, I caught the bus coming back having picked everyone else up. Huzzah!

The whale watching was a day long affair on a 24 man catamaran called Shelah, of which 23 people were German. Das ist nicht so gut ja. Anywho, after about 1 hours sailing into the bay, we were in the thick of it with Humpback Whale pods in every direction. We could see them splashing about, fins all over the shop having (excuse the pun), a whale of a time. But this was only the start, as over the course of the day several pods decided to come up to the boat and play with us! It was just majestic to see 10 meter long mammals swimming directly under us so close we could see their eyes and barnacles. They also had a play, splashing us with their fins and blow holes! It was just an amazing site to see, capped off with the odd dolphin and turtle.

When we got back to shore, the captain told us that even he thought the day was amazing. It's usual to see them but pretty rare for them to come and play around us so often. According to him, the trick seems to be playing Moby for them, as apparently he was related to the author of Moby Dick, which as we all know, isn't about giant a giant phallus but in fact a whale. So there you have it, whales like Moby. But yes, anyone wanting to skip out Hervey Bay during the whale migration period (now) to the Arctic needs their head checking, it was one of the best days of my travelling thus far!
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Graham on

Spielst du Fussball?
Ya! Ich Spiele Fussball, Ich spiele Fussball mit freunden.

charding on

Oh. Ich essen schokolade. Ich essen schokolade im schokolade-stadt. Es ist so gut.

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