Monthly Archives: August 2009


The guidebook told us to pronounce it “Younger-lah”. The locals (at least the very few that we met – there are only a handful, after all) pronounce it “Young-lah”. This village at the head of a valley was built at the turn of the century (the last one) as a place to escape the tropical [...]

Duck-billed Platypus

You’re lucky if you see a duck-billed platypus. Apart from flipping over an Australian 20 cent coin to see one, which is kind of cheating, you’ll have to find yourself a reasonably remote riverbank, and get pretty close to the water’s edge. Then you’ll have to wait, quietly, patiently, at either dawn or dusk, and [...]

Off-roading. Part one.

We’re planning a bit of off-roading in the next few days. Today, some pretty tame stuff so style is more important than substance in our choice of car. Here we let Max and Jem have a go at driving the Jeep. When we get to Fraser Island it’ll be proper off-roading. Check back soon… \\

Half Marathon Training

With just three weeks now until the Sydney Half Marathon, Frazer is feeling like he has really let his training schedule slip. Time for some drastic remedial action. So, he has enlisted the help of not one, but two personal trainers. Let’s hope it makes a marked difference to his performance !

The last day of winter

It’s the last day of winter here in Queensland. Yesterday we had 35 degrees at lunchtime, and about 25 overnight. This evening it’s about 16 degrees. So it’s possible that the heatwave is over. We drove another 400KM south today, from Rockhampton (‘Rocky’), beef capital of Queensland, to Bundaburg (‘Bundy’), the sugar capital. Not before [...]

Max’s pirate lesson 2

Having perfected the “arrghhhh” of a pirate, Max has now graduated to the next stage of his pirate training. Here he is having his first parrot-wearing lesson. It suits him, don’t you think ? Max met this Alexandrine Parakeet last week in Kuranda Birdworld.

Tarzan for the day

We set off further south today – leaving Airlie Beach and the Whitsundays, and entering Eungella National Park. This is sugar cane territory. Mile after mile (or rather ‘kilometre after kilometre’) of sugar cane fields, punctuated only by the ‘cane train’ that transports the crop, and the refineries that process it. A 24/7 operation. The [...]

Long Island

Cruise Whitsundays took us to the beautiful Long Island resort for a couple of days. Another chance to enjoy the calm waters around the Whitsunday islands, and in particular around the bay of Long Island. Our apartment was just a few metres from the beach, where we spent most of the time. We met wallabies, [...]

Toad in the hole ?

The beautiful Long Island has many attractions – turtles, tropical fish, sandy beaches, canoeing, water sport, swimming pools and wildlife. But we didn’t quite expect the wildlife to be quite so …. close! Ayesha called the resort reception to get some advice on quite what to do with this unexpected visitor in our beach-side apartment. [...]

The majestic humpback whale

We were sorry to leave Whitehaven beach. But in the late afternoon we took the launch boat back to the Mantaray for the journey home to Airlie Beach. Our skipper, Splash, said he couldn’t make any promises but there was a chance we could spot a whale or two on the way home. We were [...]