Update 30 September 2005
In Cairns the first things on the agenda were catching up on the never ending admin (laundry etc) then finding an internet cafe. I managed to strike it lucky and was able to get a fair bit done. After lunch it was out to North Cairns for a bit of excitement. I've written a separate page on this. I was still on a high from this and then drove up through the hills to Kuranda. The car fairly flew up the hills for about 10km or so until we came up on traffic. Kuranda is a pretty little market/arts and crafts town and after an inspection of the town had a look at Barron Falls. This was easily the best falls I have seen so far on the trip.
I met someone in the car park and while talking about the car discovered she was the cousin of another Clemente owner from Adelaide. Its certainly a small old world. The next day was some more internet stuff, a bit of shopping and a drive up to Mareeba in the Atherton tablelands. I had a look at a Military Museum there.
When I got back I sorted out my next weeks itinerary as I have friends and relatives to stay with in Townsville and Airley Beach. The next day I wanted to go as far north along the coast on the bitumen as I could. That was Cape Tribulation. It wasn't a long drive so I took my time and called in at lots of places on the way.
The last time I saw Port Douglas was before Christopher Skase had been let loose there with his Mirage resort so I was in for a bit of a shock.
This photo is of four mile beach from a lookout to the east and you can't really see any of the development that has taken place.
I went through Mossman and then on to Daintree and then across the Daintree River by ferry.
I then had a pleasant drive through the rainforest to Cape Tribulation. (That's Cape Trib sticking out in the middle of the picture). Left.
I saw a pair of adult Casowarys with 2 chicks. Apparently this is very rare and all the rangers and wildlife people around were quite excited about it. I took a couple of photos but as they were in the scrub they are not very clear. (Having just checked the photo again I don't think I'll bother including it as it is just a few dark blobs). I also went for a boardwalk tour through rainforest, swamp and mangroves. All in all a good day.
I started the move south the next day and stayed overnight at Bramston Beach. A small (3 streets and 3 cross streets) little place right on the beachfront and nice and quiet and peaceful. I was wondering how my next stop (at Mission Beach ) would compare.
Well, I'll have to revise my thoughts. Mission Beach has certainly been heavily developed since I was last there in 1971. The development doesn't seem to be that intrusive. Each street seems to be isolated from the other by heavy foliage and so on. I stayed at the same caravan park at South Mission Beach that I did in 1971. It has been modernized considerably but still abuts the rainforest and is just 20m from the beach.
It is also directly across from Dunk Island.
This was my dream place to retire back in 1971 and I think it still fits the bill pretty well. I could see myself veging out here quite easily.
I headed off from this part of paradise for Townsville to stay with relatives for a couple of days. On the way I stopped off in Tully, reputedly the wettest town in Australia.
The average rainfall is 4490mm per year. There was none while I was there. I haven't had a drop since the day I left Perth! I stopped off at Tully Heads, Cardwell,Lucinda, and Ingham, before making Townsville in the evening.
It was ironic that I pulled into a service station just north of Townsville at the same time another car pulled in alongside. As the driver got out he said that he'd been looking at my website that morning and now was parked alongside. Just more confirmation of what a small world it is.