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One Week in Cairns

Author: Pati O.
Date of Trip: April 2011

As soon as I got up there I noticed a Blue and Gold Macaw attempting to get into the trash bin. He was valiantly working to push down the foot pedal but wasn't having much luck. As I sat down to watch him he noticed me and waddled over to where I was seated. Showing not evidence of shyness or fear whatsoever, he came right up to me and started nibbling on my brightly painted toenails. After several attempts to shoo him away I was able to distract him by diverted his attention to my water bottle. Although this was definitely a successful tactic I soon realized that I would have to sacrifice this bottle, a small price to pay for the entertainment it provided for this cheeky bird and in turn me as well. He had a great time working to get the pop-top off and eventually the lid so he could finally dump the remaining water and drink it from the ensuing puddles.

Time passed quickly and I soon realized that it was time to make my way to the skyrail terminal so I could make my way back down the mountain. Even though I was feeling a bit ill (something I ate wasn't sitting well) I was looking forward to this 7km long gondola ride. As it turned out it was actually two separate lines, I had to get out at about the halfway point and change to another gondola. I was pleased to have a car for myself so I could stretch out and relax as I enjoyed more amazing views all the way down.

With another full day coming to a close I eventually found my way back to the hotel for quiet evening and preparation for the next day....




Cairns Part 3

Thursday morning arrived and I was finally going to do something I had craved since I had discovered it on the internet when I first started investigating things to do while in Cairns. My tour bus picked me up at 7:00 am for our trip out to Cape Tribulation where we would arrive at around lunchtime, an hour or so later we would head up into the Daintree for Jungle Surfing, but first we had to get there.

Our first stop along the way was in Port Douglas at The Rainforest Habitat Wildlife Sanctuary, where we were treated to three informative and interactive talks before we had time to wander about on our own. The first talk was about koalas then we moved on to crocodiles and snakes, during which I got to pet a baby croc and a python, neither of which I had ever done before.

Walking through the park I was treated to some very up close observations of a variety on indigenous animals. Along the way I spotted a couple of young kangaroos in a cage that were acting very distressed so another woman and I went in search of some staff to report the situation. It turned out they had accidently gotten caught up in a duck cage and they were promptly set free once again.

One of the coolest things in this park I actually discovered completely by accident. I was in the canopied eating area when I happened to glance up and noticed the shadows of some birds that were up there. It was such a unique perspective, an absolutely brilliant discovery.

Once aboard the bus again we made our way along the scenic coastal road with a couple of interesting stops along the way. We had lunch at a wonderful remote backpacker's resort across from where we needed to meet for our quick ride up to the jungle surfing center.

Soon after we arrived at the center we were fitted in harnesses and helmets which all had names on them. For the rest of the time there I was known as "Wonder Woman". We had a bit of a climb ahead of us before we reached the first tree of the course where would finally begin our trip through the tips of the rainforest on a series of flying foxes or zip lines. I couldn't wait to get going.

The first three lines they sent us in pairs so we were able get a few photos of each other. The final two lines we went solo and this was where I had the most fun. I wanted to go fast and let loose! I even accidently turned upside down when I wasn't really supposed to! So when I was allowed to I went the whole way completely relaxed with my arms hanging down and I didn't want to get off. At each change over point our guides were very entertaining and shared a great deal of information about the vegetation of the rainforest. The only thing that would have made this adventure better would have been it lasting longer.

Another three hours on the bus with our driver Fraser, whom I really clicked with and it was time for another drop off at my accommodation. I even got a hug good-bye, at Fraser's request?



Cairns Part 4 Friday morning and I had to get up insanely early as I needed to be out for my pick up at 4:45am, but I was so excited this wasn't a problem. My first activity of this day was to be a sunrise balloon ride. On the way up to the Atherton Tablelands I discovered I would be on the second flight so I would not be up in the air when the sun came, after a brief moment of disappointment I took it in stride and my anticipation level rose again.

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