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In the absence of current travel options, this is a rework of our 2014 trip Down Under, previously posted on a private blog site.
I did this day originally as 2 very short posts, but have combined and embellished them here.
PART 1 – I don’t Cairns about Australia and their +36 heat – Tell me again why we have to leave NZ?
2:40 AM, after laying awake for hours so we could fall asleep for minutes. Departure by car is in 35 minutes. – UGHHHHHH!
More on this later….zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz
PART 2 – We are not in CANZAUS any more, Toto
+14 and cool at 2:45 AM in Wellington and +34 (feels like +42) and sunny in Cairns.
Struggling to scrape the sand out of our eyes, we set off for the Wellington Airport at 3:15 AM. Driving the Rimutaka Pass in the pitch black was a new experience for us, but we soon arrived in Wellington and headed for the parking area at the airport. We grabbed coffee in the airport and then it was time to board our 6:45 AM flight to Brisbane. The in flight meal service was scrambled eggs, wedges and pork meatballs for breakfast. Yummy.
We made an easy transfer in Brisbane to our 10:45 AM flight to Cairns. It too was a pretty uneventful and right on time on Virgin Australia Airlines. The last part was over water and we were able to get some views of the Great Barrier Reef and we also got an excellent view of Cairns on final approach.
Arriving in Cairns, the humidity and heat hit us like a blast from a hot sauna. A quick air conditioned bus transfer to the hotel, where we checked in and dropped our bags.
Our condo was not yet ready for us, so we set off for a steamy walk through the Flecker Botanical Garden where we saw many birds and rain forest plants that we have never seen before (huge palms and gum trees and bamboo of all heights and thicknesses).
On the other side of the gardens, we found Ozmosis Cafe, a little café (pronounce kaff in Oz) for a bite of lunch (Jaffles and salad). A jaffle is a sandwich pocket cooked in something akin to a waffle iron.
Another sweaty walk back through the gardens, we arrived back at in time to access our 5 star accommodation (about 1,000 square feet) with a huge outdoor lanai that is too hot to sit on during the day.
After a bit of unpacking, we walked downtown to pick up a rental car, for use during our stay. After picking up the rental car, we shopped for some goodies and bevvies for our room, before strolling along the waterfront, which was all decorated for Christmas and New Years Eve. After grabbing a bite to eat in a local restaurant, we watched in awe as thousands of fruit bats took wing, Ibises waded out in the bay and the pelicans prepared to bed down for the night. That’s when we decided to head back and get some sleep of our own.
Definitely not in CANZAUS any more.