A Travellerspoint blog

Townsville

sunny 26 °C

DSC02152.jpgDSC02178.jpgDSC02144.jpgAfter a lovely break in Mission Beach, we caught the 4 hour coach journey south and arrived in sunny Townsville on Saturday Morning. Townsville is a pretty town, a lot like Cairns, but more built up and industrial and built up into the hills. We stayed at the Reef Lodge backpackers, which was very nice, lots of hammocks and lounge areas, and a lot different from places we've stayed before as it was built into the houses, rather than being out in the open like the previous ones. Still, it was clean and friendly thats all that mattered. On our first day we decided to explore the place, they have an esplanade and a lagoon, like Cairns, and the sea front is beautiful. We spent our first evening chilling in the lounge area and chatting to a couple of guys, a 40 year old british guy who studies fig trees and a 45 year old Kiwi guy who enjoys talking about the weather, accompanied by our good friend goon! On our second day, we decided to climb the highest point of Townsville, Castle Hill which is meant to be a few metres off being classed as a mountain. It took about 2 hours in total and was tough, but when we made it, the view at the top was stunning, well worth the trek. The next day we had a lazy one as muscles we didnt even know we had were aching! (who's idea that was i dont know!) :) and in the evening we went out to a local Irish pub with the guys. On our last day, we browsed around the shops and had another quiet one in the evening, and met a cool Aussie chap in our hostel who donated us some of his free wine from the vineyard he worked at, and had a laugh, before our next trek down south. We decided we only needed a few days here as, although nice like Cairns, there isnt an awful lot here other than shops. So we have decided to catch the Greyhound to Airlie Beach on Tuesday morning. All in all we've been very lucky where we've stayed so far. We only had one bad experience in Townsville, where one guy sharing our dorm room came in paraletic one night and decided to have a wee in the corner of the room ...nice! We slept through the whole thing, but another couple sharing the dorm saw him, and in the morning we got woken up to the owner of the hostel swearing and cursing the bloke telling him to get out.... followed by police investigating the scene!! Other than that we've been lucky to have met so many cool people. Anyway enough rambling. We'll try and get some more piccies up soon, but we havent been having much luck with the internet and everything, so we'll keep you posted. Bye for now x

Posted by Lisieloo04 18:37 Archived in Australia Tagged backpacking Comments (0)

Mission beach

sunny 30 °C
View Ryan and Lisa Down Under on Ryan2040's travel map.

DSC02110.jpgSo, we decided there wasn't much else to see or do in Cairns so we made our next stop Mission Beach. it's the next stop down the east coast and about a two and a half hour bus ride so it wasn't too bad, plus they show movies on the Greyhound busses and the service is pretty good. Theres not much here at all other than a few hostels, a drive thru bottle shop, woolworths (yup, but its a supermarket) and an amazing beach. It's mainly a stop off point for people who want to throw themselves out of a plane with a 60sec freefall....nutters. The hostel here is really nice and it's all just been refurbished, new kitchen and bathrooms which will prob be the cleanest we'll ever see out here, especially since Lisa got a days cleaning work for a free nights stay, but unfotunatly that was all the work going but ever little helps! We've been sitting in the afternoon sun drinking Goon (cheap wine) most nights with the new people we've met here, and there all english! everyone we meet is really nice and it's great to unwind with a glass or two....or several. The best part is the beach, you can't see where it starts or finishes and it's a long shallow tide which makes the beach huge! The sand goes straight up to meet with the rainforest too and coconuts lay fallen on the white sand (lisa was amazed, bless her). were going to send a few nights here and then move on to townsville which is a bit like Cairns but a bit more built up. i'll keep it short and sweet and update you later!

Posted by Ryan2040 12:26 Archived in Australia Tagged backpacking Comments (0)

Settling in and sight seeing

sunny 28 °C
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We've been here all of 4 days and already its an great experience. So far we've been to the local lagoon near the sea (the sea itself is too dangerous to swim in due to the Box Jellyfish and the beach is just a marshland). We've also been to the Botanic Gardens, north of Cairns, and found a Rainforest Broadwalk route to walk through, which was basically a narrow wooden deck path through a nature reserve rainforest. An amazing surprise as we expected just a few flowers and some grass like you get in the UK ;o) We've also watched an AFL game at our Hostel, Queensland Vs NSW so the rivalry was high, but it was so much fun, and we met some really cool people. Also done the quiz night with some guys from our hostel last night so there's been loads to do in the evenings. We've just been wandering around town today, and we've decided to book up a scuba dive on the Great Barrier reef at the weekend! We looked into getting our full Padi courses out here, but the prices are rediculous, being the Great Barrier reef and all, so we're going to see how our money works out and maybe look into prices on the south or west coast. Either way we had to do a Great Barrier Reef dive!! :)

We're seriously deciding how long we want to stay in Cairns as there is a lot less here than we imagined. The original plan was to find work here for a couple of months, but there is nothing here job wise, not even fruit picking. A lot of people we've met so far are struggling to find work due to the recession here and high tourism, and as they've done the opposite journey to us, starting in Sydney and working north, they're all desperate for the cash to keep them going. We've decided to start thinking about heading down to Mission Beach maybe next week (next port of call south of Cairns) and heading towards Brisbane, where there should be more jobs. Cairns is a lovely place, we've done so much in the few days we've been here, but we feel ready to start moving on.

We're off out for a few beverages down the town centre tonight with a few German guys and a Welsh guy we met at our hostel, which will be a good laugh. Not looking forward to the hangover tomorrow though!

Posted by Ryan2040 13:04 Archived in Australia Tagged backpacking Comments (2)

Greetings from the land of Oz

(we're here...finally)

sunny
View Ryan and Lisa Down Under on Ryan2040's travel map.

Well, we finally made it! After a nervous build up at the airport and the farewells to all we both landed safely in Oz. The flights were pretty tedious with an 10 hour flight to Bangkok, followed by a few hours waiting, an 8 hour flight to Sydney and ANOTHER flight to Cairns, we both didn't get much sleep at all but now it just seems like it didn't happen at all because of the time difference and the days we lost (flew out Sun and arrived Tues). I swear Qantas airways gave us breakfast every couple of hours! Bangkok was a nice airport, highly religious and political with lots of statues of various gods and leaders, and a lot of people wearing masks but Ryan was most happy to see a Burger King. Sydney was also a great stop off and we got to see the beautiful skyline (through the rainclouds) from the plane. After that it was only a 'short' 3 hour flight to Cairns, and we arrived at about 12 midday Oz time (something silly like 5am UK time).

Cairns is a really nice place, although not seen much of it yet. It's not a built up city but more of a country sort of town (Ryan's words exactly, had to leave them in lol!) Weather is hot and humid, but bearable and its quite tropical (it looks a lot like Spain). The walk along the Esplande is awesome, palm trees, sun, sea and sex (Ryan again) and the lagoon looks amazing, we'll be trying that out tomorrow. Loads of shopping stuff and activities to do, and the place is well kitted out for your average backpacker. The people seem really nice and helpful, and we did meet a genuine bonified Aussie on the plane who was kind and even told us to pop in for a coffee. Might take her up on that offer if we can track her down somewhere in Brisbane. There's not really much else to say as we've only been here a short while, and in typical British fashion, we're off for a few bevvies at the Hostel bar to hopefully do some mingling (Ryan has his Arsenal shirt on all ready). We'll update soon, so enjoy the pics we've taken so far, and keep in touch! Lisa and Ryan x

P.s - There is a PINK LIZARD on the wall as we type! :-O

Posted by Ryan2040 18:28 Archived in Australia Tagged backpacking Comments (15)

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