Trip to Queensland

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It's getting a bit late now, so this whole entry was a little rushed. It's surprising the effort it takes to resize, save, upload and label several dozen photos.

In an extended entry I've put together a bit of my Queensland trip. There's about 2.3mb of photos. Hover your mouse over them for labels.

Enjoy!

Day 1 - Sydney to Armidale

The day got off to a bit of a slow start, the parents lost the movieworld tickets and spent nearly an hour searching for them. In the end they gave up and left anyway, figuring they'd turn up eventually, even if we had to use them between now and next year.

The trip out of Sydney was fairly uneventful. We wanted to stop at the Mooney Mooney Creek Bridge lookout and take a photo, but it was completely closed off. Mum said the trees had been growing up for a while and the bridge was obscured, so they probably thought it was a bit silly having a road to it open.

We stopped for lunch at Rutherford to visit my grandfather's cousin Leonie and her husband Brian.

Attempted photos at Bayswater and Liddell power stations, and at a lookout north of Tamworth, but a pretty uneventful photo day.

Arrived in Armidale and checked into a motel before heading off to my cousin's place for dinner. Actually two of them were there with their partners so it was a good night. They have a telescope which we used to spot Jupiter and four of its moons and saw a couple of the bands on it which was awesome. Then we looked at the moon which was rising. At the 100x lens it took up all of the screen and then some. Saw a stack of craters at the edgeline which was amazing. Finally looked at binary star. Then decided we should probably head off back to the motel.

Jupiter and its moons, as viewed through Dan's telescope The labelled version from Starry Night (the right way up)

Day 2 - Armidale to Brisbane

Urgh. A horrible night. Motel was freezing. I was freezing. Did not get much sleep. Felt like a zombie for most of the day. Couldn't keep my eyes open for the entire morning and much of the afternoon in the car. But could not sleep. Fortunately driving in Australia you don't miss much by having your eyes closed.

We did see a fox. And two camels. And three eagles.

We stopped in Guyra in the morning because Dad saw on the map there was a lake. It turned out to be a puddle. Photographed that, and the frost. Then drove past a church service that was about to start, so stayed for that. Could not keep eyes open. It was a special combined service, but as per usual with non St Matthias churches I found the teaching to be extremelly wishy-washy. We read the bible, but I don't think there was a single reference to the reading in the sermon.

Early morning reflections in a lake in Guyra

Early morning frost

Early morning frost

Had lunch in Tenterfield. Then pushed on to Brisbane. Stopping at the Big Apple in Thulimbah for a photo.

The Big Apple, Thulimbah QLD

Arrived a bit before 5pm, where I was dropped off at Aurelius' place. After establishing that Aurelius was not an axe murderer, the parents left, and we went into town and met up with Stu at the Jazzy Cat cafe. After dinner we went to Stu's office and sat around a coke or three looking at the view of Brisbane. It was very cool meeting them. We chatted about nothing much in particular. A bit about blogging. A bit about Aurelius' love life heh. Then they dropped me back at my parents' friend's place, where I am going to attempt to get an early night to recover from last night.

Kazza, Stu and Aurelius

Day 3 - Brisbane to Golden Beach

Ah what a difference a good night's sleep makes!! I slept from maybe 10:30 til 8am undisturbed, in a real bed, in my own room, it was wonderful. Felt alive in the morning instead of dead.

Had a shower then walked around the lake with the parents and Warwick and their dog. Very pleasant morning walk and took quite a few photos.

Rainbow lorikeets

Cormorant I think..

Had a late breakfast then wandered across town to the parent's investment property. Ended up staying there for two hours while they talked to various people about stuff. So that was a little boring.

The parents' investment property

Had a late lunch then headed up the coast to my aunty's place where we had dinner, I checked my email, and all the USA photos were went through for the second time in two nights. They also made things a bit hairy when they asked me *how* I met people on the internet. It's kinda a bit hard to answer them when your parents are standing right there and you don't want them to hear about your blog :/

Not going to get a sleep in tomorrow, so going to have to make an early night of it again.

Day 4 - Golden Beach to Gold Coast

So where were we? Which way is up?

Had an ok night sleep. Got ready and walked down to the beach, then up and back on it for a while. Got some photos of the local budgies (aka birds - pelicans, herons etc).

Caloundra from Golden Beach

Pelican and a heron? at Golden Beach

Checked out and headed north for Coloundra, where more beachfront was to be had. We were standing around when a dude turned up and laid out a big orange X for some skydivers to aim for. So we waited around for that. Saw a couple of sea eagles who were nesting while we were waiting, which was very cool. Eventually the skydivers arrived (there were only two of them) and I got some photos and a movie, although dad ruining the movie by swearing cause his camera wouldn't focus. Oh well, what can you do?

Golden Beach from Caloundra

Parachutist coming into land at Caloundra

Then we headed inland to Maleny to find a good view of the Glasshouse Mountains. Walked through a little rainforest walk, then had lunch at a very nice cafe overlooking the mountains. Then we got in the car and drove down to them. We walked halfway up Mt Beerwar (there were rockclimbers on the mountain who were dangling rather precariously from a huge overhang).

The Glasshouse Mountains

Mount Coonowrin

Rock climbers on Mount Beerwar

I tried to get onto my uncle on the way back, but he wasn't home and his mobile was off, so we didn't stop in to visit him. We did stop by Brisbane airport and had a look at the Southern Cross plane flown by Charles Kingsford Smith. Then we headed down to the Gold Coast and checked into a caravan park, and had dinner (roast of the day for $9.50 heh).

The Southern Cross at Brisbane Airport

Oh yes, and we had to trawl through several shopping centres looking for film. Dad didn't bring enough, and they want a specific kind (fuji 200 which is really hard to get anywhere), so we had to spend half the trip looking for it. In the end they gave up and got Kodak high definition. But I'm sure if he'd had to go shopping for me because I hadn't come prepared, he would have been thoroughly pissed. But again, what can you do?

The caravan park has an internet kiosk, will go check it out later. Internet access is so much harder in Australia. Most motels I've stayed at recently don't even have phones in the rooms :(

Day 5 - Gold Coast to Gold Coast

Movie World. Not bad. Not as good as the US theme parks. Only a couple of rides worth repeat visits. We did the park easily in the time it was open, but during peak seasons I imagine it'd be harder to get it all done in one day.

We arrived at the opening time of 10am. Being near the entrance we decided to do the Batman "ride" first, but that was a mistake, as lots of other people thought the same thing. We had to wait probably nearly half an hour, the longest queue of the day. The ride itself was ok, but nothing spectacular.

Batman and the Batmobile

Next on the agenda was the Police Academy stunt show. We were told this was the highlight of the park. It was certainly pretty decent.

Then the Wild West Falls Adventure Ride. It's one of the best rides in the park. Had a couple of goes on that one.

Wild West Falls ride Wild West Falls ride Wild West Falls ride Wild West Falls ride Wild West Falls ride Wild West Falls ride

We wandered through the Matrix exhibit. It was pretty cool cause it had stacks of props that were actually used in the movie.

Me Me Me - Agent Smith in the Matrix exhibit

Next we did the Scooby-Doo Spooky Coaster which is the other really good ride in the park. Really liked that one, although it's a lot better in the front seat than the back.

Then the Lethal Weapon ride. Certainly the most spectacular ride in the park, a dangling roller coaster where you go upside down five times. However it's extremelly rough - your head gets bashed from side to side on the headrest, which has far too much of a gap in it. My ears kept getting bashed against the rubber. It was really rather painful. I couldn't enjoy the coaster itself because I was worried about getting hurt :( Didn't go on that one again.

We watched a new computerised 3D Marvin the Martian cartoon, which was pretty good, although loud.

Then we wandered over to the Looney Tunes village where we went on the Yosemite Sam Railroad (really designed for little people), the Looney Tunes River Ride (not bad, a little tame), and the Road Runner Roller Coaster (excellent but short, we went on this a few times in a row).

Road Runner Roller Coaster

We watched the Police Academy show again. It wasn't as funny the second time round, but it was easier to get little movies of the action because I knew when good bits were about to happen.

Then we just went on the Wild West Falls ride a few times and the Scooby-Doo ride a few times, before wandering out of the park via the Harry Potter store and the Batman store.

The original Batmobile

Wild West Falls ride

Wandered back to the motel where recouperated briefly before being picked up by Stu and heading down to the Gold Coast main drag. We found Infinity on the first pass through, then found parking and went and got some dinner. Dinner was good, but more for the conversation. Neither of us are terribly good at small talk, so it got "deep and meaningful" very quickly. Which was kinda nice. Decided we are fairly similar in a lot of ways.

After dinner we went to Infinity, which was phenomenal. For someone like me that enjoys bright shiny coloured things it was just heaven. The computer maze was just the best thing in the world. There was lots of lights and black lights and little rooms to explore, I had a blast. But in eagerness to explore so quickly it meant it was over all too soon :( I wanted to go through it again (there was hardly anyone in there, we practically had the thing to ourselves, but the girl wouldn't let us .. spoil sport :( ).

Finally we stopped at a Coldrock Icecreamery and I had butterscotch icecream with violet crumble mixed in - yummm! Then Stu dropped me back at the caravan park and promised to visit me in July :)

Condom Kingdom

Day 6 - Gold Coast to Grafton

Woke up at 5:30. Not fun. Sleepie.

The parents had been recommended that we go to the Ripley's Believe it or Not museum, so we did that first thing. It was fascinating. We spent two hours slowly wandering through the place.

Robert Wadlow at Ripley's Believe it or Not

The Last Supper painted on a grain of rice

Part of a huge carving of camel bone

The Iowa State Capitol building made entirely of playing cards (no glue or any other attachments)

Surfers Paradise beach

Got lunch and dropped in a my mother's friend's mother, then just headed south.

Pelican at Ballina

Pelican coming into land

Pelicans taking off

Macleay River valley near Maclean

Ended up in Grafton. This motel has a phone line yippee so should be able to get online tonight.

Day 7 - Grafton to Port Macquarie

Well instead of heading for home this morning, we headed west into the National Parks west of Grafton.

The first park was the Gibralter Range National Park, where we stopped and did a 2.5 hour walk up to the Needles - a granite rock formation. It was nice, but rather a long walk for it. We had lunch overlooking the rocks.

The Needles, Gibralter Range National Park

In the afternoon we went into Washpool National Park and stopped at a lookout, but not much all.

Then we just wandered down to Port Macquarie for a late dinner and checkin to a motel with *space* - the parents have their own room so maybe I'll get some uninterrupted sleep.

Day 8 - Port Macquarie to Sydney

It took us all morning to get out of Port Macquarie. Firstly we had to visit one of mum's friends. Then we had to visit another one mum's friends. Then we went out to the Tacking Point Lighthouse to see if we could see some whales (we couldn't). By then it was midday.

Tacking Point Lighthouse, Port Macquarie

Waves breaking over rocks at Port Macquarie

We stopped just a little way down the road at Cathie Lake for lunch, and a little further down the coast at North Brother where we went up the mountain to admire the view. There were some paragliders and a hang glider waiting for the wind to pick up so they could jump off the edge of the mountain, but it didn't, so they didn't.

Laurieton from North Brother

Then we just drove home, only stopping for a Maccas icecream near Hexham and to drop off some stuff for someone near where I live.

It is a very good thing to be home again :)

3 Comments

Dave2 said:

Beautiful photographs as always! Thanks for sharing!

June 7, 2005 12:12 AM

   

Fiona said:

heh I ent to the ripleys museum instead of drinking one night at schoolies :p worth it :)

June 7, 2005 10:44 AM

   

jenny said:

It sounds like you had fun on your great holiday! where did you have lunch in tenterfield? did you go to the fruit shop in there because my mother works there! the tenterfield saddler is my fav place to hang out!

May 23, 2007 5:18 PM

   

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Kazza's "Boring Life Of a Geek" aka BLOG

IT geek, originally from Sydney, moved to Canberra in 2007. Married to "the sweetie", aka Stu. Prolific photographer, Lego junkie and tropical fish keeper.

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