From a gentle cruise at the beginning of the Noosa River and a charging sprint brought us to the Everglades. Along the way we’re were given a great insight to the river and the surrounding area. 

After about an hour of crusing we reached our morning tea spot. There was a lovely and welcoming aray of tea, coffee, cakes and biscuits. 

We were split into 2 groups, group 1 canoed up to the place we were having lunch and group 2 canoed back. Harriet and I we in group 1, we were in a canoe of 3 people and were joined by a lovely Irish lady. We had such a giggle in the canoe. 

So with tea and biscuits finished, we got canoeing 🛶 it was a lot of fun and a beautiful way to see the Everglades, however we could not stay in straight line. We were zig zagging all over the place and bumping into the river bank and over head branches. The river was very picturesque and I wanted to take so many pictures but because of the ore in my hand I only managed to take a couple photos. 

We canoed up to Harry’s Hut where we had a lovely barbecue of steak, fish, potato salad and mixed left salad 🥗 a welcoming sight after paddling for an hour. 

While eating we saw a very large lizard (I don’t know the name of) at first it was under a picnic bench but it then went to a nearby tree. 

After lunch we took a lazy cruise back down the river to meet the group that were canoeing. Picking up the other group we then headed back to Noosa, taking it easy and admiring the scenery. 

5km along the coast

Noosa; a very cute town on the east coast and the next stop on our adventure.  When we arrived I instantly fell in love with the place, everything was very seaside-ish, with cute tea shops, restaurants and cafes dotted all over the place. I wish we had more time to spend explore and window shopping. As we were only in Noosa for two nights we wanted to make the most of our time.  

We had heard of a coastal walk from the Main Beach in Noosa Head through the National Park to Sunshine Bay. It was a 5km walk, we didn’t think it would be too hard however, our walk turned into about 12km due to where our hostel was and where the walk began and ended.

We got a lift to the Main Beach at Noosa Head from a shuttle bus that the hostel ran.  From there it was a short board walk to the National Park and into our coastal walk.  The trail took us past about 7 different bays, each one was a glimp of beauty.  We set out late afternoon as the sun was setting making the walk a lot cooler; it was also beautiful to arrive at Sunshine Bay as the sun dropped below the horizon. 

Once we reached Sunshine Bay we began to walk back to the town, this was another 5km, we stopped at the supermarket to pick up a few things and rest a while, we were tired from our walk.  We continued the walk back to the hostel but we got another couple of kilometres before we became too tired and so we jumped in a taxi for the last part of our walk home.  

It was a beautiful walk and I am so glad that we did it, but I would have loved more time to explore the town and the area. Noosa is definitely a place I would love to come back to.

Going off Road 

Frasier Island was a place that I didn’t know much about but everyone raved about it. So we thought we would go and see what it was all about. We booked a 4 wheel drive tag a-long trip with Dingos, based in Rainbow Beach.

We had to attend a briefing the night before our trip. The briefing covered everything to what Frasier Island was known for, the places we were going to visit and the rules, tips and safety of driving on the island.

On our trip there were 4 cars, each car had 8 people in it. A couple of Canadian guys we had met on our Whitsundays trip were also part of the Frasier Island trip; so we asked that we were in the same car. We were also joined by 2 English couples and that was our team for the next few days.

That evening we packed a small bag and got an early night ready for the adventure.

The next day we were up early and those who were driving were given another mini briefing on tips when driving.

All packed, ready to go and a 10 minute ferry ride; we arrived on Frasier Island.

Straight off our ferry the lead car (the car we were in) got bogged down in the soft sand and was stuck. After a little bit of to-ing and-fro-ing, we were free and off on our Frasier Island Experience.

The ride was so much fun. Being in the lead car, a little disappointing as only our guide, Joel, could drive but you did get to see Frasier Island without the worries of who was driving, which was nice. Our first stop was Eurong for lunch. Dingos had prepared eskies (cool boxes for those who don’t speak Australian) for each meal. Inside was a bag with the team numbers on and as a group, you prepared your own meals as a team. It was a simple lunch of wraps but it filled you up and fueled you for an afternoon of driving. 

Back in the cars we drove down a 12km track, which was made longer due to the speed we traveled at to avoid the tree stumps and manage the soft sand, to Lake Mackenzie.

Oh my gosh! Lake Mackenzie was unbelievably beautiful! Leaving the cars you walked a short way through the trees and were met with the sight that takes your breath away! White sand and a two toned fresh water lake. The first few metres were a beautiful turquoise colour and was quite shallow, where the water changed colour, to a rich dark blue, the ground disappeared in a steep slope.
The water was unbelievably refreshing and it was nice not to have a mouthful of salt water everytime you duck under the water. We spent a few hours in the beautiful water and when it was time to go we didn’t want to leave but we picked up our things and headed back to the cars.

This time we had our own car and it was great to roll down the windows, plug in a playlist and drive. We had a very bumpy ride back to the beach and were being constantly thrown about but once on the beach Joel gave the shout to change drivers and it was my turn in the drivers seat.

It took me a couple of 100 meters to get back into the swing of driving and it was strange driving in the sand but I was loving it! After about 30 minutes of driving we swapped over again and it was Harriet’s turn in the drivers seat. We continued along the beach and finally pulled into our campsite.

The campsite was simple, we were staying in 4 man tents in 2 rows of 4, with an additional canvas over the top to create a covered walkway. Although each tent could sleep 4 people there were enough tents for 2 people per tent, so Harriet and I shared a tent and had plenty of room.

The communal area had several gas hobs, sinks and a large seating area; as well as a BBQ and a fire pit.  As soon as we had picked out our tents, our team hit the kitchen and together we made a delicious chicken stir fry.  Our team were one of the first teams to begin cooking which was a good thing because as the other teams began cooking the kitchen area became very busy, lucky we had finished cooking and were eating by then. We spent the evening relaxing, chatting and getting to know the rest of the group; we toasted marshmallows, played drinking games and then went onto the beach to star gaze.  The stars were amazing, there were hundreds upon, thousands of stars, I didn’t know any of the constellations but they were magnificent!

The next morning, the tent became very hot and so we were up and dressed early. After a leisurely breakfast, we jumped in the cars and began the drive to our first stop of the day, Indian Head, a hill top that gave you a spectacular view of the beaches either side of it, we also saw a couple of sting rays and a small Reef shark.

After the hill top, we went to the Champagne Pools; a great pool surrounded by rocks, as the waves crashed into the rocks they splashed over the rocks and into the pool.  It was lovely to sit and relax in the pool, watching the waves crashing over the rocks.  After a few hours at the pools we headed back to the cars and onto our next stop for lunch; a cute campsite a little way inland surrounded by woodland.

Our afternoon consisted of floating down a beautiful natural fresh water creek.  Eli Creek was a beautiful spot where you could float lazily down the creek, we didn’t stay very long, maybe only an hour, but I found it a really relaxing and calm place.

On our way back to camp we stopped off at the Maheno Wreck, it was very special watching the sunset behind the wreck. We took some great pictures including a group photo which was a great momento.

Back at camp, we prepared a dinner of honey mustard potatos, veg and steak, I am not normally a fan of steak but combined with the veg and potatoes it was lovely.  We had another social evening of games and laughter it was so much fun!

Our final day we were up early again and after another chilled morning and packing up. Before we left Frasier Island we made one last stop on our tour, Lake Wabby. To get there we had to walk through a wooded area, it was such a hard hike; the final stretch was up a sand dune, by the time we reached the top my legs were burning really badly.  The lake was enclosed by the dune and a forest edge, in the lake were little fish that would nibble at you skin. At first it felt strange but after a while I got used to it, not everyone liked it though they felt it hurt a little.

After, chilling out in the water we then took the long hike back to the cars.  On the way back the sand was so hot you struggled to walk without burning your feet! Once we had made it back to the cars we headed back to Eurong for our final picnic spot.  As we headed back towards the mainland, we pulled up to wait for the ferry and took our last chance to jump in the water and take a few snaps.

Once back on the main land and back at Dingos hostel, we checked in and jumped straight into the shower to cool off and rid ourselves of all the sand, believe me it gets everywhere!

That evening some of our group met up in the Dingos bar for drinks, also our tour leader was playing some of his covers.  He was really good, and it was a great way to finish the trip! Dingos was a great company, their set up and running of the Frasier tour was efficient and fun. A great way to see Frasier Island.

Rainbow beach

The next stop on our East Coast adventure was Rainbow Beach. This involved a 14 hour coach trip; to save a day of travel and on accommodation costs we took an overnight bus. Leaving Airlie Beach at 7pm and arriving in Rainbow Beach at 10am. It meant that we could enjoy an extra day in Airlie Beach relaxing by the lagoon and arrive in Rainbow Beach early enough to settle ready for our next Australian experience. 

I found travelling on the overnight bus okay; it definitely wasn’t the comfiest night sleep I have had but I did sleep for a few hours, I found though that I was falling asleep only to wake up a few hours later. 

Arriving in Rainbow Beach, although we had slept on the bus, we were tired and ready to relax. We couldn’t check in until later in the day so we found a couple of hammocks and chilled out. Both Harriet and I feel asleep for a few hours, waking up and feeling more awake; we headed to the supermarket to get a few bits for dinner and had an early night even though we had slept in the afternoon, we hadn’t caught up on our sleep. 

The next day we met up with a couple of guys from our Whitsundays trip, they too were staying at Dingos hostel and doing the Dingos tag along 4 wheel drive experience. We took a walk to the Carlo Sandblow Dune.  A 20 minute walking track brought us to this natural sand dune that stretched an amazing 15 hectares and is an beautiful spot to see the sunset. We didn’t go at sunset but the view was still incredible. We ran down the side of the dune which was so much fun; we also saw the view from the cliff edge which was also breathtaking. The sand dune is like a giant wind tunnel with the wind rushing through it constantly this causes the sand to stir up and settle on you. The sand was very fine and soft; it was a challenge to walk in, my legs were burning by the time we walked back to the walking track. 

After visiting the dunes we headed to the beach, it was a stretch of sand that went on as far as the eye could see in both directions. We all ran into the sea to cool off from our walk but also to de-sand; it got everywhere!! 

After a few hours lying in the sun we headed back to our hostel to clean up and get ready for our Frasier Island briefing later that evening. 

Rainbow beach was a simple and friendly town. It offered a great chance to sit back, relax and watch the world go by before we embarked on our next adventure, Frasier Island!

Australia day

One of the things I have heard so much about when planning to come to Australia is Australia Day. The day is such a big celebration in the Australian calendar and I was excited to celebrate with them! 

Our Australia Day began with our final day of our Whitsundays tour. It was lovely to wake up, go for a snorkel and relax on the boat before heading back to shore to celebrate with everyone else. 

Once back on dry land, we headed back to the hostel to clean up and get ready for the Whitsundays afterparty and the Australia Day fun. 

We met up with a couple of friends from the boat and tattooed our faces with mini Australian flags Harriet had brought. We were all set and ready to celebrate!

One of the crew from our Whitsundays trip invited us round for drinks and food before meeting up with the rest of the boat. His flat mate some amazing sushi followed by a simple BBQ. The view from the crew members roof terrace was overlooking the marina and it was beautiful. After a box of goon and some good food, we went to find the rest of our boat and continue the celebrations!

We met up with the rest of the boat at a local bar where the Whitsundays tour company had reserved us a table. It was such a good night, so much laughter and many memories. 

After a few hours we headed for a club, had a few shots on Wings and then hit the dance floor! We danced until 3:30am and had a blast celebrating Australia Day! It was a great day to end our Whitsundays trip too, the people that we met and got to know over those few days made the trip even more memorable than it already was. 

Sailing Away

This is the trip that Harriet and I have been most excited for. There is just something so luxurious about setting sail for a secluded bay. Granted it was with 30 other people but they were amazing, friendly people who just wanted to enjoy the trip and have a laugh.  They totally made the trip, for me, so much more memorable. 

We took our Whitsunday trip with Whitsunday Sailing Adventures on a boat called Wings 3. There is so much to tell you about  I don’t know how to tell you of all the laughs, sights and memories that we had on this trip. But here goes …

Day 1

We began with a beautiful board walk to the Abell Point Marina where we met our home and our crew for the next few days. The boat was gorgeous but really small and I was worried about how we were going to fit 30 people plus the crew for 2 nights, all would be revealed. 

We met our crew; Christian, our skipper, Chad, our chief and Axel our deckhand and all round entertainer. All 3 were amazing at looking after us all and making the trip one to remember. 

After meeting the crew and a safety briefing we were soon leaving the marina and off out to sea. We all relaxed on deck while we were shown to our rooms in small groups. Harriet and I, along with a couple of other people, were sleeping in the kitchen/living space. At first we were a little put off as we didn’t have any privacy but after seeing the other rooms that were sleeping 6-7 people in a 6ft space we soon realised that actually our roomy double bed wasn’t too bad. 

After a couple of hours sailing we arrived at our first location for snorkelling, Blue Pearl Bay. Within minutes of the boat stopping and the anchor being dropped we were in the water and looking at the life below. 

The fish were amazing, they swam so close to you, you could easily reach out and touch them. You could swim through schools of fish and they wouldn’t turn tail and swim away. This was made even better as Christian, who was in a smaller motor boat, threw fish food into the water sending the fish into a frenzy around you!! 

After an hour of snorkelling we went back to the boat and were greeted with tea, coffee and cake. After topping up the sunscreen and with tea and cake in hand we headed up to the deck to dry off in the sun, get to know everyone and watch the first of the spectacular sunsets we would see. We began chatting with a couple of girls only to discover that we had a mutual friend!! It is so strange how small the world is 🌏

With our feet dangling over the edge of the boat we moved on to our second location where we would be dripping anchor for the night. On the way Chad brought out a pre-dinner snack, and we all sat together watching the sunset 🌅 

We then had a slap up meal of honey soy chicken with potatoes and salad; while we were eating we were treated to a couple of dolphins. They were drawn in by the small fish 🐟 that were attracted by the blue light; this blue light was under the water and switched on once it was dark it was amazing to see the fish swimming in and out of the light and also to see the dolphins 🐬 something I never thought I would see in the wild. Also swimming after the fish were 3 or 4 GTs, a massive fish that every now and then would create a splash as it caught its dinner. 

Day 2

I was prepared not to get much sleep on the boat but amazingly I slept well, we woke up to the crew making breakfast and getting ready for the day. Meaning that we got the first cup of tea in the morning and the chance to start the day before the breakfast area became busy. 

Christian set sail early morning to ensure that we could stop and snorkel at Menta Bay the next bay on our trip. Once again we were surrounded by sea life, I can not get over how beautiful it was down there!! The colours, the fish and the peace; as with the skydiving I had a real feeling of peace when I was under the water 💦 It was magical!!

After the snorkelling we set sail once again, this time our destination was the Whitsundays Island. The journey took us through a stretch of water commonly known as the ‘washing machine’ it is a really rough stretch that makes you feel like your in a washing machine. We all thought that this was an exaggeration when Christian told us but it wasn’t. The boat was moving up and down, I found that you were not able to walk in a straight line and the spray soaked everyone sitting up on deck. It was definitely a washing machine feeling afterwards!

After going through the washing machine, we arrived at Tongue Bay, the bay was on the same island of the famous Whitehaven Beach. Once we were all ferried over to the shore we took a 15 minute walk to a Lookout point overlooking Whitehaven beach. It was stunning! White sand, blue sea what more does paradise need? After the typical tourist photos and we had all admired the view, we took a group picture. Then it was onto Whitehaven beach!

The beach was beautiful! The sand was unbelievably soft, it felt like waking on a cloud. We spent the remainder of the afternoon on the beach taking photos, chatting and cooling off in a shallow pool the sea had created. Although the water was warm it was beautifully refreshing. 

While at the beach we also saw lots of solider crabs 🦀 and when I say a lot there were hundreds!! They were all running towards the sea it was so funny and so remarkable to see them all moving at the same time in the same direction. 

After another group photo on the beach we headed back to the boat where we were treated to nachos! As we ate we sailed to the next bay where we would anchor for the night. 

After the sun had set, the blue light at the back of the boat was switched on; I loved watching the fish that were attracted to it. Chad then pointed out that the hundreds of fish swimming around the blue light were squid and with that Christian and Chad had fishing lines and were bringing in loads of squid.

 As a defence mechanism the squid eject a black ink to try to escape predators and as they were being lifted out of the water the were squirting ink everywhere. The ink somehow covered everyone except Chad and Christian (not sure how that happened) but the end result was about 40 squid in a bucket ready for eating. 

Our final night on board consisted of another gorgeous sunset, an amazing dinner and a night of stargazing, chilling and chatting.  Just perfect!

Day 3

Our final day on the boat was AUSTRALIA DAY and what a way to celebrate it. It was a chilled but an early start. To make sure that we had as much time to snorkel as possible we were in the water at 7am! Christian also set the challenge that for the previous 8 weeks a turtle had been spotted in this bay, so we could not break the lucky streak and not see one. 

I was one of the first in the water not wanting to miss a second of the life under the sea. Within 10 minutes of being in the water I spotted a turtle chilling under some coral, keeping Christian’s lucky streak. I can’t believe that I have snorkelled so much while on our East Coast adventure and every time I have been left in awe, the beauty and the magical feel I get is one that I will never forget! 

After our early morning snorkel it was time to head back to Airlie Beach. We were all sad to be leaving but the memories of the friends we made and the memories we have are incredible. After a few hours of sailing we were back at the marina and saying bye to the crew. However, the goodbye was only for a few hours as we had an after party where we all got together at a local bar for a good night out but that story is to come. 

Airlie Beach

We arrived in Airlie Beach, from Magnetic Island, late in the evening so it was a case of checking in, have some dinner and going to bed.

The next day we set out to explore. We found a lovely Saturday morning market with loads to see from fruit to clothes and jewellery to massages. It was lovely to wonder round and see what was on offer; my faveourite stalls were a local honey stall 🍯 the owner brought real bees along and showed us the queen, as well as letting us taste the honey which was so good! I also loved a hair feather stall, they had made braids of different lengths, colours and designs; once you had chosen the one you liked they clipped it into you hair where it would stay for up to 3 weeks. I would have loved one and should have got one, maybe next time. 

After wandering around the markets we stopped off at Peter Pans to book the rest of our trip down the coast and to enquire about a cheeky little extra trip both Harriet and I would love to do.

We then had a relaxing evening catching up on booking a few things, blogs and photos and made an amazing bean curry with wraps – 😋 

We chilled most of Sunday, after a lazy morning at the hostel and we spent the afternoon at the local lagoon, a open air swimming pool. It’s surrounded by palm trees, picnic benches and public BBQs; you also have a beautiful view overlooking the bay. It was lovely to sit and soak up the sun and when it got too hot cool off with a dip in the water. 

That evening we took a 30 minute walk to Mass.  It was a quaint little church that shares its place of worship with 4 other denominations of religion, when we were looked up the church their website said the church was built “in partnership with the local Lutherans! Our church is also available to the Anglican Church and the Uniting Church who hold services here every Sunday”.  I think that it is beautiful to see that although we are different denominations, believe different things, speak different languages or look different we all need to be united in making this world a lovely and amazing place to be! This united place of worship is a small part of that. 

Monday, we again had a very chilled day. We began by checking into our Whitsundays tour before going to buy goon to enjoy while on aboard. We then had to pack, minimalistic, and chilled out for the afternoon, saving our energy for the fun to come out on the sea; we would have spent the day at the lagoon again but unfortunately it was raining so we did our errands and then stayed at the hostel. 

By the time evening came we were ready and very excited for our Whitsundays trip and all it had to offer.