Trip Start Oct 04, 2004
96Trip End Oct 02, 2005
We hired a car and took off up to Cape Tribulation, about 150km north of Cairns. We gave Terry a lift up to Port Douglas, which worked out well as we got to see the place. Its a nice little town, apparently catering for your more upmarket type of person. We left terry to head north to catch the ferry over to Cape Trib where on the way we stopped off for some homemade ice-cream. We decided to have a look around for a place to stay and looked at a "rainforest hidewaway". Hideaway was just about right as we had to walk about 1/2 km to get to the hut. It had no doors, walls, windows, contained toilet, anything really meaning that you'd be at the mercy of all manner of bugs and things. We declined and found Cape Tribulation Camping where we rented a safari tent for the night. It worked out well as it was on the beach, and we took the opportunity to go sea kayaking. We were supposed to be out for about 2 hours but it ended up being 3 1/2! We set off from the beach and went around Cape Tribulation itself, stopping on the way for a dip in the sea and to try a bit of fresh coconut. We made it back alive, but I got collared by a bloke on the beach who let Sarah know that she had been doing most of the paddling for the majority of the trip. Ready for a beer at the end of the trip, we realised that there were no bottle shops around (off-licence for the non australians amongst you)and managed to buy some beer off the canoe tour guide. As we were from over 1000 miles away, he bent the rules and supplied us with a 4 pack. After the drink we went to bed as its going to be an early start in the morning.
21st June 2005
Up at 5.30 am. Blody early. We went to see the sunrise over Caper Tribulation, hoping to get onto the rock at the Cape itself, but the tide was still in so we ended up watching it rise halfway down the beach. Absolutely beautiful. After a spot of brekkie we drove down to Mossman Gorge. Sounds all special and advertised as such, but it's just like paddly gorge. Just outside though is an aboriginal settlement. The settlement's, or communities, were build as a form of housing for the aboriginals, and to keep them all together. The communities look like an open prison. Its such a shame.
After the dissapointment of the gorge, we still had a good 1/2 day left with the car so decided to drive to the Atherton Tablelands. We'd heard good and bad reports about the place, but thought we'd give it a go. To be honest it looks like the UK. lots of lush green land covered with trees. After a few pictures we drove to Innisfail (a place that has nothing but sugar cane and banana plantations) before we headed back to Cairns. We went out with Terry on his last night before going back to the hostel, travellers oasis, to try and teach Jo-Jo "stand by me" on the guitar. The thing is she taught me to play it, forgot how to play it herself, and now I'm teaching her!
23rd June 2005
After getting back from Cape Tribulation, the last few days have been somewhat lazy. I taught Becky how to do Poi, Sarah went with Becky into a bead shop and made up a pair of earrings that matched a bracelelt that Vic sent her out, and we watched Paul don his washer woman outfit to clean the toilets and showers in the hostel in exchange for free lodgings. He did a marvellous job and used that mop well. Just had to pack as tomorrow were off down the coast to Mission Beach for a night before moving on to Townsville and Magnetic Island.
Cairns is a lot better place than we thought it would be, a very nice place with nice friendly people. The Great Barrier Reef was a little of a let down as there is a lot of damaged corals from where the daytrippers have taken their boats, and where people have touched when they shouldn't. The stay was made all the better with Jo-Jo and Mark at the Travellers Oasis hostel, a place we highly recommend. Its been good to be in Cairns.