Sunday, December 05, 2010

Queensland- the photo post

The ~6am flight from Wellington to Brisbane was annoyingly smooth- I love flying and I (unlike everyone else probably) was excited for a turbulent flight. But sadly it was completely smooth, and I even got a little bored...! Luckily I got my dose of turbulence on the flight back to NZ... a kid was screaming at one point, and I was just sitting there grinning.

We spent a couple of hours at Brisbane airport due to a rental car mix up. Charlie and I were just excited to be there, so we didn't mind too much. We stepped out of the air conditioned airport a few times for cigarettes (seventeen freaking Aussie dollars a pack by the way), so I got to feel the humidity. It was pretty hot, but luckily overcast, so not as bad as I was dreading.

Once we got our rental car, we spent the rest of the morning shopping and doing a little exploring. By the early afternoon we were totally shattered, and I even slept in the car on the drive to Broadbeach on the Gold Coast. I woke up in time to see some themeparks (sadly underwhelming from afar) and was awake as we drove off the motorway towards the coast and saw the skyscrapers in the distance (surprisingly impressive).

We'd been told not to expect too much from our accommodation, but it turned out Charlie's Mum got a great bargain at the Mantra Phoenician. It was a bit cruddy in places, but fancier than anything I'd ever stayed in (well, bar the Museum Hotel), and the apartment was good and spacious.
We spent three days in Broadbeach, exploring, relaxing, and eating delicious food.

On the last night in the resort, we had some drinks, dressed up nice, and caught the Monorail to Jupiter's Casino. We ate an amazing (and huge) dinner at an Italian restaurant in the complex, and then went into the Casino itself. I was way too broke to gamble, but still played $5 on the Pokies, just to say I had. I don't understand how people can get addicted to those machines- they're so incredibly boring! But regardless, it was really fun and exciting being there. The downstairs Poker Room was especially cool, but with a AU$100 buy in, out of our league.

The next day we went up Mount Tamborine, for Charlie's cousin's wedding. Everything was really beautiful, and the view was amazing (but unfortunately a bit difficult to photograph with my point-and-shoot digicam).

The day after that we drove back up the coast to Brisbane, where we spent one night with Charlie's Mum's friend. We spent the afternoon at the amazing Gallery of Modern Art, and walking along the South Bank of the river. We went on the 60m high Wheel of Brisbane, which was amazing, though a little scary. A bit of rocking in the wind every time we went over the top, but it lasted a good ten minutes so was well worth it. Unfortunately by that point, my camera batteries were starting to die! Useless, I know.

After staying that night in Brisbane, we drove three hours north to Dundowran, west of Hervey Bay, for the rest of our trip. There's quite a lot of houses in the little settlement, but the beach was almost deserted every time we walked from the house to the water. The bay is really sheltered by the massive Fraser Island, so there are little to none dangerous animals, and the water is super shallow for hundreds of meters off the shore, and amazingly warm! I've never swam in salt water so warm. I went kayaking twice, and especially loved it when the tide was coming in and I could practice my surfing hehe.

We didn't really see too much Aussie wildlife during our trip, a bit to my relief. Charlie and his Mum saw a dead kangaroo while I was asleep on the drive. On the first night we were sitting on lawn chairs listening to all the croaking and chirping and rustling in the bushes. Next thing I know, theres a little possum right next to my chair. Freaked me out quite a bit, but it was very cute. Possums are a pest that we kill here in NZ, but over in Australia they're a protected species which is weird!

Our time in Dundowran was definitely my favourite part of the trip. So relaxing and beautiful, with lots of amazing food, swimming, and weather.

I've been back a matter of days and I'm already desperate to go back! Always thought I would be a New Zealand girl for life, but I think I was just ignorant. I do love my country, but I can see huge benefits of going to Australia, at least for a few years. It's pretty tempting, when almost every person we talked to on our trip was an ex-NZer, and had done really well for themselves in Australia.

I guess we'll keep it on the backburner for a couple of years, because I have quite a lot lined up here for the foreseeable future. The biggest part is that I'm starting a new job in the new year, which I'm really excited about and will write about in a future post! Busy times indeed.


Sonya Zombiee said... Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

I'm definitely a fan of the lizard and the possum. Haha.
A bit sad about the dead kangaroo, though.

It looks like such a great time, though! :)

Autumn Lynn said... Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

I can't imagine possums being protected- they are so hideous and all over the place back home in Kentucky!

Looks like you had a fun trip!

Rhiannon said... Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

your possums are so cute. in the usa they're ugly as fuck.

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