Cuddle a koala

Trip Start Dec 30, 2010
Trip End Dec 30, 2011

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Flag of Australia  , Queensland,
Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Wow, have landed in Australia after 5 months in Asia! As we made our way to our hotel, even though we were exhausted we couldn't contain our excitement!

We became familiar with the city centre quite quickly and were quite alarmed to see Brisbaneans celebrating 'The Winter Festival'. It seemed like a stark contrast to the gorgeous blue skies and temperature of 25 degrees (during the day)! The weather here was better than the summer in England (we're not gloating. Ok maybe just a little). With ice skating and churros it all felt a little surreal. It even felt good to wear a jumper in the evenings as it became a little chillier. The big malls and choice of dining options (even NANDOS) didn't feel that different to back home. Komilla quickly found the UGG store and couldn't quite believe how much cheaper they were here. It was worth the wait!

After hearing some good reviews about Lone pine Koala Sancturary we did a day trip there, not expecting to come back having hugged a koala bear! Straightaway we could tell this would not be like any of the other animal sanctuaries we had visited in the last few months. Apart from seeing koala bears and having some very close encounters with hungry kangaroos, we also saw tasmanian devils, wombats and dingos. The koala's were all segregated into age groups and the sanctuary had quite cleverly named these things like 'bachelor pad', 'kindergarten', 'newly weds' etc. We weren't sure quite what to expect as we queued up to have our picture taken cuddling a koala. They looked absolutely adorable but I had heard they could be quite vicious. As our koala was handed to us, it wrapped itself around us and settled into a comfortable position. These mammals are known to sleep most of the day and we remembered when Komilla had been compared to a koala bear! Raj could actually feel the heart beat of the young female koala bear as it held on tightly. As we took our family portrait with the gorgeous koala we could not help but feel that our cats were missing from this picture! After an eventful time with the koala bear we made our way to the kangaroo area clutching some food for them. We bent down to eye level and held our hand flat as the greedy kangaroos gobbled the food right off our hands! There were some scary moments when we were surrounded by huge kangaroos (and randomly some ducks) that were after one thing! On the whole it was amazing to be so close to these creatures and even managed to stroke their heads while they ate their room service meal! We had to make a quick trip to see the farm animals as well and even though they were not as exciting there was a sheep dog with the puppies from whom we couldn't drag ourselves away from.

Being so close to nature as made us both reconsider our careers - first tigers and then koalas, maybe we could both become zoo keepers!! 

We both found Brisbane to be a really amazing place and would definitely consider moving out here, especially with all the wildlife, amazing parks and great weather all year round.

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