Just another day at the office...

Trip Start May 01, 2010
Trip End Sep 02, 2010

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Flag of Australia  , Queensland,
Thursday, June 3, 2010

Words can't really explain this next entry, but I’ll try. There will be a lot of pictures but those don’t even show it that well. The Whitsunday Islands are a MUST for anyone who comes to Australia, hands down the most gorgeous place I’ve ever seen.

Before we got to the Whitsundays, Candice and I took an overnight bus from Hervey Bay to Airlie Beach -13 hours. Sounds like a lot but somehow only seemed like a couple of hours. Thankfully, I can sleep anywhere so that probably helped. Airlie Beach is very pretty. Not much there except a lagoon and marina but it is the entry point to the Whitsundays.

On Saturday, we boarded the Avatar boat to go on a 2 day/2 night sail adventure. They try to sell it to you that it is for 3 days but it isn’t. We left at 11:30am on the first day and got back at 9:30am on the third day but really not even 48 hours. Aside from that, it was amazing. We had a tri-maran boat (I think that’s what it was called) with 13 of us on it (normally 26 so it is nice it is low season). A husband and wife worked on the boat, he was the skipper while she cooked. They were from New Zealand and extremely nice people. Steve, the skipper, had the most ridiculous laugh –even louder than mine!

The waters were so flat while we were out there that it looked like we were on a lake. Apparently they haven’t seen those conditions in a long time. We sailed out for a few hours to a spot where we put on our stinger suits to go snorkeling. The waters have small blue stinger jellyfish that are barely the size of a pinky finger that can kill you. So in order to go into the water, we had to put our blue man suits on. I don’t think a lot of people liked them but that was probably Candice and my favourite part of getting into the water. Snorkeling in the Great Barrier Reef was awesome. The second day was the best as it was really sunny out and the colours of the fish were super cool.

On the second day, we woke up at 5:45 to watch the sun rise. Turns out it takes FOREVER and actually wasn’t really up until about 7, just in time to put the blue man suits on for a snorkel before breakfast! We cruised over to Whitehaven beach and this is the most stunning sight I’ve ever seen. The sand there isn’t even called sand. They use it for telescopes and is called silica. Take a look at the pictures as that will describe it better than I will.

On our way back to where we spent the night on the water, one of the crewmen took a piece of fat from our meat and they whistled at a white-crested eagle. It swooped down two different times –the first to grab the meat out of the water and the second time right out of the guy’s hand! Watching the sunset on the water was beautiful –see pictures below.

The boat got in at 9:30am on Monday so Candice and I headed to the lagoon to kill some of the day. Well, we also had 6 cold beers that we decided to start drinking then as they would have gotten warm. By 11:30, we had found our 2 Norwegian friends, bought another case of beer and the rest of the day was history. By 7pm, feeling pretty good, we headed to a bar that had an after party for the boat. Here, we had drinks with the skipper and his wife and a riot! They were from New Zealand so I may meet up with them in August.

Candice and I have headed up the coast and are now in Townsville. We’re hanging out here, lounging by the pool and hiking. We also took a day trip over to Magnetic Island which is a 20 minute ferry ride from Townsville with a couple guys we met at the hostel. It wasn’t as exciting as the other places we’ve been but going with some locals made it more interesting.  
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carolyn on

OMG Shannon your trip just looks more and more amazing - your pics are awesome and I am so happy you are keeping a journal/blog - mine went missing over the years :-( but the pics will always bring back the memories ... not fair rofl i havent been to the whitsundys yet but my boys went on a camp on daydream a cpl of yrs ago .... you must have saved a bundle of money to do all the things you are doing - this will be only the beginning of your travel adventures .... and it will be a trip of a lifetime with no regrets :-) ps I will make sure the beer is cold when you get here ;-) once again all my best and travel safe

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