Urrrm, it's not very rainbowy in Rainbow Beach

Trip Start Sep 01, 2010
Trip End Jun 18, 2011

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Flag of Australia  , Queensland,
Sunday, November 21, 2010

After we had finished with our week off in Noosa we were moving on to a place just a few hours north called Rainbow Beach. We haven't had very many activities here in Australia so far but now that we are heading further north we have a couple of things lined up which we have been planning to do since we left the UK. Our first big activity is a visit to Fraser Island. The fourth biggest Australian island, Fraser Island is a huge sand island which is covered in rainforests, sand dunes, lakes and dingoes. There are plenty of tour companies which offer trips to the island, however the main attraction is to hire a 4X4 jeep and go camping on the island for a few days with some other people from the local hostels. Before we left home we had planned to go on a camping 4X4 trip, but once we got here we realised that the insurance premium on the vehicles was very expensive; you lose your insurance money if you drive through salt water as it rusts the vehicle, considering that you spend most of your time driving on the beach we figured it would be quite difficult to visit Fraser Island and leave our insurance premium intact. Plus we didn't fancy having the responsibility of 7 other people's safety on our shoulders during the whole trip. So we decided that we would give the camping trip a miss and go on a guided one day trip around the island with a tour company- there are also 19 different species on snake on the island, only 4 of them are not poisonous, so I was more than happy not to camp on there! You can visit Fraser Island from two different locations on the mainland, either Rainbow Beach or Hervey Bay. The weather has been pretty wet over the last few days so we headed up to Rainbow Beach and decided to wait until the weather improved before we made a final decision on where we wanted to do our tour from.

We got to Rainbow Beach and checked into a hostel called Dingoes. The hostel was tied into a tour company offering backpacker 4X4 camping trips and practically everyone in the hostel was going on one of their tours; to be honest, it was more of a tour centre with beds rather than a hostel and was pretty gross and dirty... we weren't planning on staying long. We were in a 7 bed dorm room, which was actually not too bad, and the other guys in our room all seemed really nice... they offered us some of their ice-cream as soon as we meet them, that's always a good way to make friends! One of the girls in the room knew how to solve a Rubix Cube in less than 2 minutes, so Tom joined her daily Rubix Cube lesson and spent most of his time in Rainbow Beach trying to solve the puzzle. We had been told that Rainbow Beach was a really tiny town and most people only go there as a way of getting to Fraser Island, but we were still really surprised at how small it actually was; we walked around it in about 5 minutes. On our first night at the hostel we treated ourselves to our first Australian beer- I won't tell you how much it cost but it is safe to say it made our eyes water and we savoured every last drop of it. On our second day the weather was still pretty changable so we decided to postpone our Fraser Island trip until later in the week when we had moved up to Hervey Bay. Instead we spent the day visiting one of the only attractions in Rainbow Beach, the Carlo Sandblow. We thought that a sandblow was just another name for a really big sand-dune, so we set off not feeling too excited at the prospect of trekking through the forest for hours on end just to see a sand-dune. However, it turns out we were wrong; the sandblow was like a huge valley of sand between two cliffs which looked out over the ocean. It was really beautiful and we were glad that we had clambered through the heat and humidity of the bush-forest to get there. Later that day we went for a walk along the beach. Rainbow Beach got it's name because the sand on the nearby cliffs is multi-coloured, however despite us searching high and low we couldn't find any multi-coloured sands or cliffs and we decided that Rainbow Beach is distinctly un-rainbowy!

Over the last few days we have yet again been debating whether or not we want to stay in Oz for the full amount of time we had planned for. It became really obvious that neither of us were happy with the decision that we had made last week to stay here; no matter how much we try and convince ourselves to stay, we keep coming back to the same point over and over again... we just haven't clicked properly with Oz. So on our second night in the hostel we decided to bite the bullet and start the ball rolling with our decision to leave early and head to Asia. We retired to our dorm-room early and got ourselves organised; we headed to the payphone and rang our flight company with a list of dates we wanted to move our flights to. After tying ourselves up in knots over this decision for so long, it felt like a huge weight had been lifted off our shoulders by agreeing that we were going ahead with it. Well to cut a long story short, it turns out that we would be flying during the Australian school holidays and all the flights are fully booked during that period. We were so disappointed to found out that after all our to-ing and fro-ing we couldn't even get a flight sorted. I guess that the decision has been taken out of our hands now and at least we can stop thinking about it all the time and just concentrate on our day to day lives here... plus we have some great activities lined up for the coming weeks which we can start looking forward to. Onwards and upwards!     
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