Bali and Top End Oz
I expect if you are reading a travel blog that Australia is one of those countries on your list if you haven't been already. For a country on such a large scale for my first trip to Australia I did the "Top End". There is so much to see in Australia and now I understand why people stay there for months, however I only had three weeks holiday so had to decide on an area to cover in that time. It all started in plotting a birthday party in Bali and staying in a fabulous villa in Seminyak. When I realized we could get to Darwin from Bali and it would only take around two hours then an adventure was born!
We stayed at The Layar, Seminyak in a lovely two bedroomed villa with our own pool and butler. It really was worth every penny and just gorgeous, in a great location and not too far from the beach and the W Hotel, just a short taxi ride away. Enjoyed a lovely sunset and strawberry daiquiris at KuDeTa next to the beach. Great place to relax and watch people flying kites on the beach!
Bali was great but we did absolutely no sightseeing as we were too busy partying and hanging out in our villa. Might have to go back to actually see the place properly!
Flew to Darwin to start an Oz adventure after saying goodbye to most of our mates, only one person dared to come with me. We arrived on Darwin Cup week and the place was crazy fun. Stayed on Mitchell Street which is probably why it seemed crazy fun as that is where all the bars are!
Headed out on a trip to Kakadu and Litchfield. This meant staying overnight on a couple of camps in the middle of nowhere! Had a great guide who drove us everywhere and also walked with us at Jim Jim Falls and Ubirr. Climbed huge rocks at Jim Jim Falls to get to the waterfalls which was an experience in itself! Really enjoyed the sunrise at Nawurlandja Lookout, it really is a magnificent view and got some great sunrise photos there. Also swam at Buley Rockhole and Wangi Falls and did a boat safari at Mary River National Park. The trip was totally out of my comfort zone as normally I am a total flashpacker and the trip got me out in the middle of nowhere with limited facilities. I absolutely loved every minute it was just a fantastic trip and would totally recommend www.wayoutback.com.
Flew from Darwin to Cairns to continue our Oz adventure to Kuranda where we spent a day at the rain forest and a butterfly farm/bird sanctuary/koala and wallaby sanctuary which was fun. From Kuranda we then headed to the famous Cape Tribulation. Unfortunately the weather wasn't on our side to get beautiful blue sky pictures but it was interesting walking along the beach. The following day we went on a boat trip to Green Island. This is easy to do from Cairns and a great day out. We had a great time snorkeling and wandering round this beautiful island! To be honest Cairns was not our favourite place in Oz but is a good base to go on tours so we stayed four nights there.
From Cairns we flew to Hamilton Island to be able to get a ferry to Airlie Beach where we were staying for three nights. Airlie Beach is great place to stay in order to be able to explore the Whitsundays. Our first tour from here was a plane to the Great Barrier Reef. I think this might be up there on my favourite trip out ever! It was just so beautiful and blue. Seeing the Great Barrier Reef from the air is really quite wonderful as you can see the size and scale of it. Totally recommend and if I ever do it again will get on a trip where the plane lands on water at the reef before setting off again.
The next day we did a trip with Ocean Rafting to Whitehaven Beach. We were incredibly lucky in that we had access to a portion of beach where no-one else was, and stopped there for a couple of hours. The beautiful talcum powder beach really is possibly the most beautiful beach in the world! It was really spectacular because there were hardly any people there. And absolutely no traces of humans, no rubbish, no shops, its just wonderful! Also did a snorkeling stop which was just amazing, so many beautiful coloured fish and no need to dive to find them, they were all at the surface trying to eat the bread our guide threw for them. This portion of our adventure was incredibly memorable mainly because it is just so beautiful there, somewhere you could probably only imagine in your dreams but is real, just wow.
From Prosperine Airport we flew into Brisbane to get our hire car and drive to the Gold Coast. We stayed in the Q1 hotel at Surfers Paradise which is the tallest hotel on that strip and did the "Skypoint Climb" where you can walk along the roof of the hotel. Obviously you cannot suffer from vertigo to be able to do that! Quite an experience being that high up and the view from the roof is quite spectacular. Really enjoyed Surfers Paradise although this is by far the most touristy and commercial place on our trip. The nightlife was totally crazy, we went on a "club crawl" which was fun. Definitely worth having a hire car as it is fairly easy to drive from the airport to Surfers and you can then go to other places. We had a day out at Byron Bay which was great too.
Can't express how much I just loved Australia, the people, the places, the nature, the animals. Just wonderful.
Recommend to Stay:-