Day 21 - travel day to katherine - today we spent most of the day on the coach again but had a few stops along the way. One of which was the Daly waters pub. This is the northern territories oldest pub! When you enter it's very interesting because people from all over the world have visited and left items all over the walls and ceiling! Lunch at the pub was delicious and we made use of their swimming pool before jumping back on the coach. Our final stop before katherine was another quirky spot called the pink panther hotel. We had a break and took some photos with their very pink memorabilia. Tonight everyone called it a pretty early night as we start off early again tomorrow
3 March 2017
Day 20 - travelling to Tennant Creek- today we left Alice Springs headed across the tropic of Capricorn into the top end of Australia. We make our way to the old mining town of Tennant Creek! Along our route today we stop at wycliffe well which is known to be an alien Hotspot for UFO sightings. We stop at this very quirky roadhouse to use the facilities and check out some interesting alien memorabilia! Our next stop is at the rock formations known as the Devils marbles! These boulders have formed piled precariously on top of each other and is quite a site to see. Then it's back on the road again to Tennant Creek. Tonight we have an included dinner of outback Chinese! How strange is that! Then we played cards till bed time. It seems as if grasshoppers outnumber the residents of this town a million to 1. They are everywhere along with frogs and lizards!
2 March 2017
Day 19- travel day - kata-tjuta national park to Alice springs. Today was basically just a travel day. Just lots of desert to see. One thing I forgot to mention that we did earlier this week was we got to ride on a camel! What an experience that is! Lots of laughs had as the camel began to run! They were very cheeky though! They did not want to kneel down to let us off and ours almost bit Lauren as she got to close! Fun little extra for sure!
1 March 2017
Later this afternoon we went to the Uluru cultural centre to learn more about the local culture and also to purchase some boomerangs! This evening we got all dolled up and headed back to another Uluru lookout point in the national park to watch the sunset with some nibbles and champagne. Everyone had lots of fun and enjoyed each other's company. What a perfect way to end a busy day! We turned the coach into a bit of a party bus on the way back to our accommodation and played some pool this evening!
After our 11km hike today we headed back to the resort to freshen up. Then some of us were picked up by shuttle to head to the airport for a scenic helicopter flight over Uluru and kata-tjuta. This was my first time in a helicopter and I absolutely loved it!!! Amazing!!! So happy I got to share this experience with these girls and the views were spectacular! Today I get to see all aspects of this national park in all its beauty!
Day 18 - Uluru - today is a day of all things Uluru! This morning was another very early morning to head out and watch the sunrise shine it's light on Uluru. Right after sunrise we enjoyed a lovely breakfast prepared by our contiki team! Then it was off to hike to 11km path around the base of Uluru. There is a climb you can do up the pitch of this rock but due to respect of local culture we decided against it! This location has great spiritual meaning to the local aboriginal people and therefore some areas aren't allowed to be photographed out of respect to these people. Uluru is a meeting point for the aboriginal people to meet and share knowledge and stories. It has been very interesting to learn so much about this place!
28 February 2017
After our sunrise hike and breakfast we jumped on the coach headed for Uluru. Enroute we stopped at a lookout point to see mount Connor and lake Amadeus which is a dried up salt lake. Very cool! Our next stop before our accommodation was at Uluru and kata-tjuta national park to do a 2km hike between the rocks of kata-tjuta. With it being 40°c out the walk became a hike through a 45 degree rock sauna!!! So hot! This has been a busy day and we are all ready for bed!
Day 17- kings canyon hike - this morning we woke up at 430and boarded the bus at 515 to go for a sunrise hike at kings canyon. This hike begins with 500 rock stairs straight up to the canyon rim to watch the sunrise! What a workout!!! You know it's steep when the have a defibrillator at the top! We watched the sun come up over the canyon rim before hiking around the 6km back to the bus. We then headed back to camp for eggs and bacon breakfast!
27 February 2017
Day 16- kings Creek station- today we awoke to a provided full breakfast!! Yummy!! Then we headed out on our bushtucker tour where we learned the local way of life and got to throw a hunting boomerang! And also got to try kangaroo tail! We then headed out to kingston Creek station where we were given swag to spend the night sleeping under the stars!!! We sang beside the campfire, had marshmallows and learned about the Australian stars! We then slept all night under the stars with no bug net! Yikes!!! What a view though! My favourite included activity so far!
26 February 2017
Our next stop was anzac Hill which in Alice Springs is a strategic site during natural disasters and also a war memorial. Very interesting to learn the historical significance of these sites! Then we headed over to the reptile centre where we learned snake safety and got to hold some lizards and a huge python! What a cool experience! 6
Day 15 - cairns to Alice springs- this morning we said goodbye to half our group before jumping on a plane to Alice Springs in the northern territory. When we arrived we were greeted by our new tour guide and taken to the hotel to check in. We hung out by the pool and met the 7 new members joining our tour. We then headed out to check out Simpsons gap. It was a nice little walk to a swimming hole.
25 February 2017
Day 14- today we woke up and had provided breakfast. This was a sleep in day!! Finally!! Then we went to go white water rafting! This was lots of fun! The Rapids were class 3. We got to swim and have lots of good laughs! This evening we decided to stay in and have a big pizza party in our room . Tomorrow we wake up very early to fly to the northern territory!
24 February 2017
Day 13 - great barrier reef - today we jumped on a boat and headed to the great barrier reef! We were met by some rain on the way out but once we got there the weather was lovely and we spent the afternoon snorkeling. Today I got to touch a jellyfish and sea cucumber! We saw lots of fish and even a turtle. The tour group fed us well and we had a wonderful day! Tonight we headed to the local hostel Gilligan's for dinner and then to do a pub crawl! What a blast that was. Lots of fun games and dancing enjoyed by all!
23 February 2017
Day 12- travel day Whitsundays to cairns- today was a long drive to cairns. We had a few stops before pulling into cairns late afternoon! Tonight for dinner we got to try the local dish of kangaroo for dinner! We then walked through the the night markets. Tomorrow we are off to snorkel the great barrier reef!
22 February 2017
Day 11- sailing the Whitsundays- today we woke up at 630 am and had breakfast as we began to motor towards whitehaven beach which was our first stop. We then helped hoist the sails again and sailed the rest of the way to our destination. Whitehaven beach exceeded my expectations! The sand is 99% silica and does not get hot in the sun. Gorgeous white sand beach! Due to jellyfish in the water we were given stinger suits. After the beach visit we headed up to the lookout to see the breathtaking views and green blue waters! Amazing!!! After the lookout we headed back to our boat and made our way to the second destination where we got to put back on our stinger suits to snorkel a coral reef! So much fun! But we then went a little further and snorkelled a second location! Lunch was sandwiches, after our second snorkel we enjoyed nachos followed by a steak dinner! The crew sure knew how to cook amazing meals! We then had a few drinks before heading to bed. Back to the harbour in the morning!
When walking up to the lookout at whitehaven beach we found these 2 little critters...mind you they weren't what I would term little! They were as big as my face!!! Scary! Don't want to find one of them in any accommodation we stay in!
21 February 2017
Day 10- travel day to sailing Whitsundays- this morning we woke up nice and early at the farm to have a wonderful breakfast before jumping back on the bus to the Whitsundays. Upon arrival the sailing group got off the bus and was brought down to the condor. Our racing sail boat accommodation for the next 2 night's! Once on board we were given a safety briefing before motoring out of the harbour. Once far enough out we were asked to help the crew of 3 to hoist the sails! What a workout! We were then fed a lovely roast beef dinner before mooring near cook island for the night. The evening all hanging out on deck as the sun set and stars came out was breathtaking! Below deck we all shared a common area with bunks to sleep. Man was it hot!!! Very cool experience!
Day 9- farm stay at the old station- this morning we got an early start on the coach headed for our evening stay at the old station farm! This cattle farm is family run 6 generation farm with 26,000 acres! The rolling hills and quaint feel made this such an enjoyable experience! Upon our arrival we checked into our lovely rooms with 2 sets of bunk beds. We were each given a cowboy hat before jumping on a wagon pulled by a tractor to be toured around the farm. They stopped to let us feed some of their cattle. Especially this big guy named sausage who came right up for some bread! We then walked up a hill before dinner to take in the spectacular views and sunset!!! After a delicious dinner of beef and veggies we all got into the country spirit with line dancing and karaoke! So much fun!!!. Bed time for this bunch. Can't wait to see what tomorrow brings!
19 February 2017
Fraser Island, off Australia’s eastern Queensland coast, is the world's largest sand island, stretching over 120km. And unique to this island is the fact it has a rainforest growing from its sands! This world Heritage site was a fantastic place to visit. Our tour guide was extremely knowledgeable about the island and gave lots of interesting information! We got to see the age of the forest change as we went through the rainforest. We visited the freshwater lake Mckenzie. We then walked through part of the rainforest before driving the sand roads back to the ferry. A little excitement when the tide closed off the beach and caused an off road detour! Such an amazing day! We then headed back to our hotel after a quick stop to refill the tires.
Day 8- Fraser island tour- today we woke up very early to have our provided lunch and hit the road to Fraser island. We were picked up in large 4x4 vehicles that almost resemble military tanks, very cool! After about an hour drive we stopped to let some air out of the tires before getting on the ferry bound for Fraser island. The ferry banks right on the sand at Fraser to let everyone off. We were then warned about dingos on the island and how we can't swim in the sea here due to hungry sharks and box jellyfish!! Yikes!!!
18 February 2017
Next stop was Noosa. This seaside town is very cute and relaxed with a lot of trendy little restaurants and shops. We checked into our resort before busing down to the seaside part of town. Here we walked in Noosa national park where we saw gorgeous coastal views and a baby koala sitting high in a tree! Super cute. I then grabbed some sushi and headed back to the hotel.
Day 7- today we left our hotel and got on the coach bus headed for Brisbane. Once there we were given some time to explore this beautiful city. I found it to be very modern and pretty in its architecture. We walked down the the canal and went for a swim in their open air free pool before jumping on a ferry headed back to our coach bus. Now we are headed for our hotel in Noosa.
Day 6- gold coast- yesterday morning we woke up in our wonderful resort hotel which was extremely clean and spacious! We dined on our included full breakfast before catching our transfer to go skydiving! The company we went with was gold Coast skydiving and I must admit they made this experience a truly memorable one! We each got a jumper who helped us get ready for the jump and helped video the memories of the experience! Once on the plane and at the right height they pushed us all out before we could change our minds!! The most exhilarating experience I've ever had! Beautiful and breathtaking! What a great start to the day! We then got a transfer back to the hotel.
17 February 2017
Once we arrived at the carrumbin wildlife sanctuary we got to go inside and hold a koala, hang around and pet kangaroos and see all sorts of other cool animals! The kangaroos were so calm and came right up to us to have a snack. Was very neat to see the Joey's in their pouches! So much fun!!! We ended the visit with an ice cream before jumping back on the coach headed to the gold Coast!!!
Day 6 afternoon- after our skydive this morning we had a relaxed afternoon of swimming and checking out the coastline beach on the gold coast! This beach is gorgeous and like all the others seems to go on and on! Some of our group saw jellyfish all over the beaches this morning! Afterwards we caught another transfer for our 4wd night tour! This included a nice Greek dinner, a 4wd through the rainforest and a hike through the dark looking at creatures and glow worms! Our guide was quite the comedian and worked hard to scare us all! What a hoot! I fell asleep quite quickly after that busy day!!!
16 February 2017
Day 5- Surfers paradise- we started today off with a long hike from our hostel to the lighthouse lookout. The weather was very hot and we were glad to finally make it! We arrived at the most easterly point of the Australian mainland and then walked back to the hostel. After that we got back on the bus for a short ride towards the gold Coast and carrumbin wildlife centre
15 February 2017
Our next stop was the coastal town of Byron Bay. We stopped at the lighthouse lookout on the eastern point to see the spectacular coastline views! Inside the lighthouse was a small museum telling about lighthouse history here. We then got back on the bus and drove to our hostel for the evening called nomads. This was a nice accommodation with clean rooms and comfortable beds! Our evening plans involved a trip to the local bar cheeky monkeys. This bar was absolutely amazing. Inside we found free drinks, games, facepainting and their well known attraction of dancing on tabletops instead of a dance floor!!! Amazing night to remember for sure!!!
Day 4- Byron bay-This morning first this we got a 2 hours long surf lesson! The guides were a delight and very funny to listen to! We all got out on the water and rode the waves!! The water was warm and waves plentiful! What a nice time. 🏄 then we all piled back on the tour bus to head towards Byron Bay. The view from the IMAX seats on our bus is absolutely breathtaking!! We also have a tour mascot which is a stuffed emulate named sharpened!
Excuse the spelling mistakes! Not very user friendly! This is our mascot for the tour. A stuffed EMU named sharlene!
14 February 2017
Our evening stay was at a surf camp called surf X. This was the accommodations for the night. A cute little room built in a storage container! This location has a wonderful surfer relaxed vibe and everyone is very friendly! As a valentine's activity they did speed dating this evening and drinks and bonding with our contiki group was wonderful
Halfway through our long bus ride to coffs harbour we stopped in the little sea town of Port Macquarie for some lunch. Our tour guide provided us with a local treat called a Lamington cake. Yummy!
Day 3- bus day to coffs harbour-Finished our day off yesterday with a workout and some pizza! Why not! Today we are on our tour bus for 10 hours on our way to coffs harbour for our surf camp adventure! This drive has sure been beautiful so far. Loving Australia so far!
13 February 2017
Amy and I took an adventure by bus to Bondi beach where we began our coastal walk! We visited each beach as we went along. Beaches included Bondi,Tamarama, bronte and cleverly. What a wonderful day in the sun!
After visiting manly and Shelley beaches we jumped on the fast ferry back to sydney. This ferry went very fast and was quite windy! Offered a nice close up view of the Sydney Opera house!
Welcome to manly beach! The weather is perfect for some exploring today! The first beach we visit is manly and it is gorgeous! Spent some time relaxing and had some slushies 😊
Day 2- manly beach and sydney-This morning on our way to manly beach we stopped at Mrs Macquaries point. This allowed wonderful views of the harbour bridge and Opera house. Also a great view of the city skyline! Excuse the random tree picture I thought it was such a cool huge tree!
12 February 2017
Feeling so exhausted tonight but had to go check out this bar! From the outside it looks like a hot dog stand with a bouncer! Then you walk inside and see this Pepsi fridge, or so you think! It is the door into the bar! Fun little local spot that is very chill. Didn't stay long as I needed sleep! Goodnight world
Day 1-sydney australia-First night in sydney! Caught up with my tour group and had a wonderful cook your own steak dinner! It's nice and sunny and warm here! What a wonderful adventure!