22nd January 2017:
Today we travelled 42 miles south to the tropical city of Cairns which is considered as the gateway to Australia’s Great Barrier Reef. We are currently staying at the Blue Lagoon Resort at Trinity Beach which is on the outskirts of Cairns.
23rd January 2017:
Today we wanted to get a feel for Cairns so we drove to The Pier Marina in the CBD. We explored the local area and stopped for a delicious lunch with a lovely sea view.
24th January 2017:
Today we went to Blazing Saddles Horse riding!! I was so excited as I haven’t ridden in so long and I miss it a lot! When we arrived in the yard we were allocated a horse each, mine was named Socks because of his white colourings on each leg and Pete’s was slightly bigger named Samuri!
We set off for our trek into the rainforest past a small river which is known to have crocodiles in and through to a billabong which the horses sometimes swim in. We trekked through sugarcane fields with a beautiful backdrop of the Queensland mountains and before we knew it we were back at the stables. This is definitely one of the most beautiful places to horse ride in!
25th January 2017:
Today we visited our local beach Trinity beach which is a five minute walk from our apartment. The beach is beautiful quite long with golden sands. Unfortunately you are only allowed to swim in between the nets to protect you from jelly stings and even crocodiles! Yes crocodiles! The Monday we arrived a croc was spotted at the beach so the beach was closed for the day. We enjoyed a very laid back and relaxing day.
26th January 2017:
Today is not only Petes 24th Birthday but also Australia Day so double celebrations! We started the day with birthday celebrations then headed to Cairns for an Australia Day Party on the seafront. To be honest it wasnt quite as busy as we had imagined and the weather didn’t help with all the rain!
27th January 2017:
Today we headed back to Trinity Beach for a BBQ. Many of the beaches and cities have BBQs free to use, this one is probably my favourite with its view of the ocean. Pete cooked us Red Snapper with Asian noodles which I had never tried before but it was delicious. Similar texture to cod but not as strong.
28th January 2017:
Today we headed to Cairns Marina to ride on the Bad Fishy Jet boat. This was a surprise birthday present I had planned for Pete’s Birthday in England. We were told that the people who sit in the back would get the wettest, so obviously we headed straight to it! It was awesome jetting around the Marina with the beautiful Tropical setting. We entered the trinity inlet which is known to inhabit hammerhead shakes and crocodiles, so no falling in! We both loved it and I would recommend this to any thrill seekers!
29th January 2017:
Our weather has started to get very rainy and limits what we can do in the tropics! However, we decided to watch the final of the Australian open. Pete was team Nadal whereas I was backing Federer so Pete owes me for losing the bet!
30th January 2017:
Inspired by the Aussie open we headed out to play some Tennis. I had no idea how bad I was at tennis and spent most of my time running after the ball rather than hitting it back. Australia is way too hot to play tennis in, that’s my excuse anyway!
31st January 2017:
Today we woke up early and headed to Freshwater Train Station to ride the Kuranda Scenic Railway to the small village in the rainforest, Kuranda. The wet tropic location is a world heritage listed Rainforest and is amongst the oldest on earth. The views from the train were breathtaking, we past spectacular waterfalls and Baron Gorge aswell as beautiful landscapes out to the ocean. The train itself is wooden and with a very traditional style it rises from sea level to 328m and has been running since 1891!
Arriving in Kuranda was like stepping out to a different time. The station was beautiful and only a short walk to the centre of the village. If anyone knows me well then they will know I love Chilli and all things spicy. So while we were visiting the Kuranda Heritage Markets I had to stop for a taster & buy one of the Hottest Chilli Sauces 🌶🌶 Pete also bought a boomerang hand painted by an indigenous artist.
We then began our decent down the mountain by Skyrail Cable Way. We had beautiful 360 degree views over the heart of the rainforest, unfortunately true to its name it did rain a lot and our view was restricted on our final descent.
Unfortunately for the last two days Cairns has been hit with a Monsoon, with a cyclone expected over the next week which has majorly disrupted our plans as they are all outdoor activities! We took advantage of the time to relax, sort some of our things out and save some money to spend in Sydney next week!
3rd January 2017:
Today was our last trip to the Great Barrier Reef, this time we visited an outer Reef off of Green Island. The island was beautiful but not as quaint as the Low Isles. As soon as we entered the water there was a large presence of jellyfish which was a bit unsettling.
There didn’t seem to be as much coral as the inner Reef we had previously visited but many many turtles which is always a beautiful thing to see. Pete was lucky to swim close to sting rays. We started our return home via catamaran but not before a quick stop for icecream. Not to self: never, ever get a chocolate ice cream cone in the tropics- mess like you wouldn’t believe.
4th February 2017:
Today we nipped out while it stopped raining for a while and visited the Crystal cascades. The Crystal Cascades is a cascade waterfall on the Freshwater Creek. It has a secluded Freshwater swimming hole and is hidden in the troical Rainforest between granite boulders. A hidden gem and our last visit to the Rainforest for a very long time!
5th February 2017:
As we are leaving Cairns tomorrow to start our long journey home we spent the day organising suitcases and trying to fit everything in! Finishing off with a lovely dinner from the local Italian.
Overall we’ve had a very laid back two weeks in Cairns with our favourite day probably being the jet boats! However, being in the reef from Cairns and Port Douglas I would definitely recommend Port Douglas as a gateway over Cairns. It is less touristy and a lot more Scenic.