Australian East Coast

Magnetic Island (off Townsville)

Enjoyed a week on the island, sunbaking and walking along the beach at Horseshoe Bay, hiking to "The Forts", from Picnic Bay to Horseshoe Bay over a couple of mountains which provided magnificent views, and via a number of small bays and coves. Also enjoyed a superb day diving on the Yongala Wreck. The ship sank in a storm about 100 years ago, is surrounded by nothing but sand, and is therefore the centre of all sea life in the area, which includes a multitude of fish and some massive grouper about the size of a VW car, as well as masses of soft and hard coral.

Cairns

Rented a room at the Bohemia Resort, which is probably one of the best Backpackers I've come across.
http://www.bohemiaresort.com.au/start.htm.
Visited the Tjapukai Aboriginal Culture Park, to experience demonstrations of dance, bush foods and medicine, didgeridoo music, spear and boomerang throwing which I tried with moderate success. Enjoyed the ride on the Chairlift over the rain forest up to Kuranda where I saw more aboriginal dancing by a group of boys in the street, and also a variety of food and souvenir stalls in the market. Walked through beautiful Flecker Botanic Gardens, across the boardwalk over the tropical wetlands, and over Mt Whitfield. Spent three days scuba diving on the Great Barrier Reef. For more details see http://www.chamberlain.net.au/~ken/scuba/index.html.

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Last updated 24 May 2006.