"When was the last time you did something for the first time?"
Cairns Travel Blog› entry 1 of 18 › view all entries
October 5th, 2008 – by: wingpost
How attempting this all might sound to you, it's really not that easy to get here. It took me over 40 hours to get from home to here in Australia. First by train to Frankfurt International Flughafen. Then a short flight to London, waiting two hours on Heathrow and off to Changi, Singapore. The flight was really good though. I had exit seats so I had at least 2 metres legroom space. On Changi airport I saw former Formula One World Champion racing driver Damon Hill. He gave a press conference where he emphasized that he wasn't the STIG (Top Gear). Couldn't get his autograph because his not so nice manager pushed everybody away.
My first impression of Cairns; the green hills/mountains remind me of Hong Kong, but there are no skyscrapers or flats here. I like the many palm trees though. There was a bus waiting for me at the airport that brought me to the hostel, Caravella 149. The staff is very friendly and helpful. Rooms are clean, bright white with a very small picture of a nice beach on the wall, which makes it a little depressing, but I don't care for that. I'm only there to sleep. The hostel gives away free-meal coupons for Cairns' favourite backpackers bar, the Woolshed.
The backpackers at the hostel are very nice. I think it's because everbody here is pretty much in the same situation. Far away from home and infected by the travelbug. Most of the people here I meet are from Europe. Seriously, I think 75% of the backpackers are from Europe (mainly UK, Germany and Sweden). The age is around 25 - 30 years old. The other 25% are Chinese, Japanese, Koreans, Americans and Canadians (hooray for Canada!). Unfortunately I don't get to meet many Australians though :(
About Cairns. What can I say about Cairns? It's a place for tourists, that's for sure.
I did this tour called Daintree & Cape Tribulation.
The highlight of my visit to Cairns is most definitely diving on the Great Barrier Reef. To dive properly, I took a five-day diving course. Two days in a swimming pool and three days living aboard a boat out on the reef. Our diving class consisted of seven students (all from Europe) and one instructor from South Africa. "I'll teach you some diving, but more importantly, I'll teach you how to look cool underwater". I'll admit, the thought of swimming in open waters and the possibility of having an encounter with sharks sends shivers down my spine. However, that all went away when I took my first dive on the Great Barrier Reef. It's gorgeous there.
But it doesn't matter, I'm a certified diver now! :)
Before I came here in Australia someone told me that I'm not meant for backpacking. She said "you have the bag, but not the pack". Well, reminiscing my first ten days here in Australia; meeting new people, getting to know the city of Cairns, hiking through the rainforest, diving at the Great Barrier Reef .
My apologies for taking such a long time to get this weblog posted, I know several of you were anxious to know what I'm doing here in Australia. Please feel free to drop your comments or just say hi! Money donations are wellcome too! I'll try to post my next weblog from my next stop, Melbourne!
Catch ya later!
Local headlines: Crocodile eats 62-year-old tourist, Manly wins NRL title (Manly-Storm: 40-0).
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