Trip Start Aug 30, 2008
Trip End Aug 30, 2009

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Flag of Australia  , Queensland,
Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Ok thought i better do this or it would never get done only 3 months behind!!!  Well from what  i remember Cairns was really, really warm.  Sun here is pretty intense.  Funny cause just now in January Cairns is having really bad floods and is on disaster alert.  Anyway we spent the time in Cairns chilling out, sunbathing and going to the esplanade.  It's all quite different from Asia, the place we're staying at gives you free vouchers for a meal from a place called the Rhino bar.  Good food but got to line up to get your food like it's some sort of soup kitchen!  It's full of scruffy  backpackers looking for there free meal, we fit in just fine.

The few days go by pretty quickly and we're really looking forward to gettng our campervan (not the case by the end of the 4 weeks).  It's a toyota hi-top, it has a fridge and plenty of storage space for our packs.  For the first time in 7 weeks we don't have to pack and unpack our bags every 5 minutes.

First thing we do when we pick up the van is head up north to a place called Ellis beach that the taxi driver recommended to us on the way to get the van.  Its about a hour from Cairns.  We found a really nice park to stay in that was right in the beach.  We did three loads of washing when we got there well needed, people  must have wondered about us taking up 5 washing lines with all our clothes.  We decided to do some more sunbathing on the beach.  We were only out for 90 mins but got pretty burned.  Mhairi's stomach and my forehead which started to blister.  At night we wrapped our Christmas presents for eveybody at home in OCTOBER!!  We left Ellis beach on the monday and had a good 6 hour drive to a place called Cardwell.

The next few days we got through quite a bit of driving the next place we stopped  was Airlie Beach.  The campsite was pretty crap and the three pools were a rank weedy green colour.  Next day we drove to Mackay.  It had a lagoon similar to the one in Cairns but a bit smaller so we had a dip there first thing then headed off again.  On Friday we got to Rockhampton where we stayed in a quiet campsite (well apart from the karaoke over the fence and there was certainly not a lack of singers that night).  After a broken sleep we head about 4 hours to Maryborough where it is very quiet compared to the previous night.  Been pretty solid driving every day for at least 5 hours a day now, so on saturday we take a shorter drive to a place Noosa Heads and decide to have a night out.  End up in a wee bar having drinks with the locals.  The place closes at midnight and we head onto a nightclub.  Don't get in cause Mhairi is wearing sandals and i'm wearing shorts.  But there is a gaming (pokie to the ozzies) lounge next door so we head in there for some more beers, get talking to a group of 6 guys who are wearing shorts too.  Have a good laugh and head home about 4.30 am.

Wake up next morning not feeling to great as it's been a while since we've had a good drink.  On Monday morning we leave for Australia zoo!  Arrive about 10.30 and spend all day here.  We see Kangaroo's, Koala's, echidna's, Wombats (mhairi's favourite), Komodo dragons and lots of snakes, feed an elephant.  Steve Irwin would have been proud.  Heading for Brisbane tomorrow.

We just pass by Brisbane and drive to Helensvale where we stay for 4 nights.  In that time we go to White Water World, Movieworld and Dreamworld, we're just a couple of thrill seeking kids at heart.  While in Helensvale we also go to Harbour city, its a big outdoor group of outlet stores cause believe it or not it's starting to get quite cold at night.  On leaving we drive down to a place in Surfers Paradise called Kiri.  It's Saturday and we go to the cinema in the afternoon and watch the rugby with some old folk at the campsite.  Just stay one night again and on our travels again, feel a bit like the littlest hobo with all this moving from place to  place.  Next  stop is Byron Bay we stay there 2 nights and it rains all the time.  On the morning we leave we visit the Byron lighthouse and take some photos.  We are not far from Sydney now and clocked up about 1000km's.  The next place of residence for us is a Raymonds Terrace about 2 hours from Sydney, it's a dump, cheap at $15 dollars a night but a dump all the same.  Full of long term stays, wake up in the morning to be met by groups of poeple drinking at 9am,  just like an american trailor park.  Leave sharpish and decide prob better to have shower  at the facillities in Sydney. 
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suziep on

Your lovely sunny beach photos are keeping me going! Its only 4pm and already its dark in Dundee:( Did I menntion the rain was bouncing off the ground?!? Have been wearing my scarf all day its so cold, you could well have a few lodgers by the time you get to NZ!

Stay Safe x

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