Easter Road Trip

Trip Start Oct 30, 2003
Trip End Oct 29, 2004

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Flag of Australia  ,
Sunday, April 11, 2004

Our 4 day road trip started on Wednesday. Drove straight from Cairns to Mossman Gorge. Had a walk around that. Not very exciting but maybe we're becoming a bit hardened to forest walks. It did have a nice lake but the sun wasn't really shining so we decided not to bother getting wet.

Next port of call was Cape Tribulation. So called, apparently, because Cook had problems with his ship in this area... We took a weird little ferry across the river and headed to a hostel. The hostel was pretty basic but we all signed up for a Night Walk. We were collected at about 7.30 pm and driven to a hut in the rainforest. The driver was hysterical and we all got a bit excited at the prospect that he would be our guide. But it wasn't to be. Saying that, our guide was alright. Matt and Chris were a bit disappointed with the whole night walk thing. I think they were expecting wild boars to fly out of the darkness or something. We didn't see that much but it was really cool being in the rainforest at night, especially when the guide told everyone to turn off their torches. The insect noises were so loud. And you start to look at things a bit differently. We did see a few cool things: a kingfisher that had gone to sleep at the far end of the tiniest branch so that if a snake crawled along the branch, it would break or they would feel its weight on the branch; some fire ants; some crazy, huge spiders; some glowing fungi; fire flies; a white tailed rat - still no koalas though...

Next morning, we were up and out early and drove to Port Douglas. Very nice little place. We managed to check into a motel - same price as a dorm - with cooking facilities and a tele. We chilled by the pool and then had a lovely meal of bangers, beans and jacket potatoes. Heaven. We decided to stick around for another day and I am ashamed to say that on Good Friday, when it was a gloriously sunny day outside, we sat in for most of the day and watched... Dr Zhivago (again!). We did eventually get out and went for a walk to the marina and through Anzac Park which was quite nice.

On Saturday morning, we got up early to get to the mountains as early as possible. This was all wasted as when we were about 30km down the road, Ms "Anally Retentive-Double Check Everything Before We Leave" realised she'd left her polka dot flip flops in the motel and had to beg to be driven back to get them. Consequently we lost an hour but contrary to popular opinion, it was definitely worth it...

We got to the Atherton Tablelands around lunchtime and drove to a place called Yungaburra. We managed to check into this wicked Pub/ Hotel place that was huge and full of character. The kind of place that's great for hide and seek if you're a kid. They gave us this huge room with a double bed, 4 single beds and a cot! We ditched our stuff and went to check out the nearby Strangling Fig tree. These trees are amazing. They start as a little growth on another tree and then grow around it, eventually strangling the life out of it. This one was huge.

From there we went to Lake Eacham. We walked around the lake (3km) and then chickened out of going for a swim. Same old excuses - sun wasn't really out (Liz), fear of chafing (Chris), etc.

Went back to the pub and within an hour we were in the bar, playing cards and pool. We ate at the pub as well - roast pork with all the trimmings - which was quite weird as I'd only said the previous day that I really missed my mum's Sunday lunches.

We then headed back to the bar where a pretty dodgy singing duo bashed out Robbie Williams and Dido tracks. The pub had a bit of a social club feel to it. Very nice and laid back.

Sunday morning we got up and headed back to Cairns to drop the car off. We were on our way to the cinema to kill some time before our flight to Darwin when we were waylaid by a strange Aussie who gave us some leaflet and we ended up saving $5 each on our cinema tickets, which was a bit of a result. Saw Starsky & Hutch which we all loved, although there were a quite a few gags that only Chris, myself and one other guy in the audience got. There are obvious compensations for being 35...
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