Port Douglas

First of all you need to know that Port Douglas is lovely. It’s sunny, and beautiful with long beaches with sand so fine it’s like talc. The beaches are lined with coconut trees and the sea is turquoise and inviting. We stayed at the Central Plaza, which was lovely. A three bedroom apartment with a shared pool and everything you need to cook a jacket potato and salad (much to mum’s relief)

We managed to squeeze so much into the 7 days we were there that I think the Clarke’s have decided that they may need to take a further rest to recuperate from their holiday. Well, what’s the point in flying all that way to just sit on a beach the whole time? Having said that, the messages the lifeguards left on the chalk board which every Aussie is taught to read before entering the sea – having the need to know whether there are any marine stingers about, whether there were any dangerous rips and where the nearest life guard were – were highly amusing. I was informed on one bright sunny day that today’s lifeguard was Pamela Anderson – i think several of the men were disappointed when they couldn’t locate the busty blonde bouncing towards them in slow motion, phallic, orange object in hand.

Once we managed to get Mini C out of her cave each morning, the holiday entailed several interesting activities.
– Taking the SKY RAIL over the rain forest
– Visiting a butterfly park at the other end (in Karanda)
– Going to the Great Barrier Reef
– Taking long walks down 4 Mile beach
– Visiting a Crocodile Park (Which turned out to be a farm, they even took mum to visit the Crocs destined to be hand bags – she was of course appalled)
– Going to the local markets
– Having BBqs and
– visiting the city of Cairns

There is much to say on each of these delightful activities so sit back relax and try to stay awake! πŸ˜‰

The Sky rail takes you up over the mountains and the rainforest and along the way you stop off at various locations. Mother amused herself by spotting Cockateils in trees and by repeatedly stating that she was sure that there had to be an undiscovered dinosaur or other such beasty in that rainforest! ” Well you just couldn’t know could you! Look at it! I bet there is!”.

It was a lovely day and we got to see lots of things, the most fun but I guess was the butterfly park. One actually decided to sit on my hand (Disney princess style) and everything.

The highlight of the whole of our trip to the North was the Barrier Reef. I’ve always wanted to dive there. I’ve dived in Europe 3 times before and really enjoyed it but there have never been as many interesting fish as you would like! lol I signed up for the dive and then was prompty told I could not go because I had had ashma in the past 10 years!! Apparently they don’t care about this in Greece! lol Instead Matt and I went on an underwater Ocean Walk with helmets on. We thought that the Ocean walk would entail more than simply walking down some stairs but Hey ho! it was nice to be down there amongst the fishie, even if the scubba diving instructors were a but mean with their sense of humour.
Whilst standing down there, surrounded by fishies (not little ones either!) we were passed various objects that the scuba instructors thought were of interest. He handed us a Sea Cucumber and start putting his finger inside it’s mouth to show us how it worked, sucking up the debris from the bottom of the sea. He then passed it to LOF and showed him the same thing. LOF, I am certain, put his little finger in it’s MOUTH, so, when it came to my turn I did the same thing. It was then that the scuba diver laughed pointed at his posterior, made a gesture to indicated sniffing his finger, waved his hand to suggest his finger stank and then pointed at me and the sea cucumber! Mortified, I quickly passed the creature to the next in line whilst trying not to laugh myself stupid and shouting NO! NO! even though i know the scuba man can not hear me.

I then went snorkeling with my underwater camera whilst LOF went on a semi submersible in search of a sea turtle. We never did see one πŸ™ Although the others did not opt to dive I think they had fun too. Mum swears blind she saw 3 sea turtles on her trip on the semi-submersible boat. Lunch was lovely anyway! and they suggested that anyone who was going in the water wear lycra skin tight suits to protect against the sun’s rays and the stingers which were completely non existent due to the cold. it was worth hiring one though so that you didn’t feel out of place with the other blue, Pentium 4 men on board. The suits, were not very forgiving though! lol

Four Mile beach was the nearest beach to where we were staying and, as the name suggests, is a very long stretch of sand. One morning, after breakfast at the delightful beaches cafe, we decided to go for a short walk along said beach. It was a cloudy day so conditions seemed ideal for a nice walk. LOF, Mini and I were amused as we paddled by what appeared to be worms made of sand. We mused for several miles over what might have been creating them. The major clue came when Mini had to jump around screaming after having discovered the many tiny – large crabs that were pushing up the sand from their little burrows on the beach.

The walk was long, however, and in my opinion there is only soo much beach that you can look at before you go stir crazy – even if Mother was convinced that the beach was paradise and the ideal location for a film. We chose to leave the beach about 3/4 along and instead began to trek the road back into Port Douglas. We grabbed a bottle of water from a local video shop – marathon run style. Then decided that it was a very long road and so we might be better served walking along the beach in any case. Lof then decided that it would be an even greater idea to jog the rest of the way – proof if ever you needed it that he is completely insane. He jogged off into the distance, leaving me with his stinky flip flops and forgetting completely to separate house keys and expensive sunglasses into different pockets. By the time we had got back to the apartments he’d been in the pool and was lying on the sun deck relaxing!
Once we had all joined him and cooled down a little we realised just how foolish it had been to assume that cloud cover meant sun screen. We had all gone a lovely shade of red! ooops.

Now.. what else was there?
Oh yeah… Crocs…

We went to Hartley’s Crocodile Adventures. We enjoyed looking at the many Crocologs, and laughed at “Paul” who was an enormous, sleepy ol’ croc who lived in his own private pool with his tiny tiny girlfriend croc. This of course gave mum the excuse to call Dad an old croc for the remainder of the day.

The day included a tour on a little boat around a lake full of crocodiles. During this tour the crocs were fed from large poles and we were reminded of the film “Rogue” which is about to be released out here soon.

All was going swimmingly until we decided to visit “the farm” at this point faces were being pulled and only the Koalas in the trees made the mood happy again lol. Then we had to go an watch “crocodiles ATTACK!” in which we were shown a rather sleepy croc and told how to not get eaten by him or his mates…. A little late i think… we’d already done the boat thing!

All in all the North Queensland is lovely and is well worth a visit. There’s plenty to see and there’s a beach on which you can lie and ignore it all if you wish! lol
They will even do you a bowl of vegetables and mash if you ask won’t they mum? She was so impressed that she announced that every restaurant should serve such meals! LOL.

1,500 words! oh dear! I think it’s time for a rest πŸ˜‰ Plus, Neighbours is on! woo hoo! I’ll be back with more soon including the tale of LOF, a whip and a Cane Toad. In the meantime… don’t forget that all the piccies are on FLICKR. πŸ™‚


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