At the end of my internship my mother came to spend a little time with me in Australia. We decided to travel around Australia a bit ourselves before we went back home to the States. One place I think everyone should have on their bucket list is the Great Barrier Reef. I mean it’s incredible in every photo I’ve seen, and now since I am in Australia I know I have to make the trip up to Cairns to go see it. So my mom picked me up from my lodging and off we went!
The flight was about 3 hours from Sydney to Cairns, which isn’t bad at all. Since I was there in the winter months the 80 degree weather in Cairns was a BIG difference from the 50-60 degree weather we had in Newcastle. We spent our first day relaxing in the sun, getting to know the area we were staying in. We were about a 20 minute walk from the Esplanade, which was so cool! So many restaurants and little places to stop and shop, and so many dogs!
I’m a lover of gardens and flowers so when I saw that there was a botanical gardens close by we had to go! Everything in the gardens were blooming and colorful, it just made you happy to be there. There was also a greenhouse with butterflies everywhere, some that I had never even seen before! Even though it was a little bit too hot for me it was definitely worth the walk around. They even had their own rainforest and bamboo walk. Totally scenic for lots of photos. We made it an early night because our boat for the Great Barrier Reef left pretty early in the morning.
I get sea sick very easily, so I had to wear a sea sickness patch that did work for me the most part of the trip. The trip out to the reef was little over an hour on the boat, we snorkeled in two different locations and it had to have been one of the greatest things I’ve seen in my life! I mean so many colorful fish and coral, I even saw a reef shark! I even saw a little nemo in his home too. It was a great experience and if you ever are in Australia this has to be one of the top things that you do!
One other little trip my mom and I went on while in Cairns is taking a ride to Paronella Park. The Park houses a so called ‘castle’ built by a man who had been poor his whole life, but had a dream to build himself a castle. He worked hard, and was able to make his dream a reality. The park is beautiful, even though some of it is in ruins from a hurricane. We were able to see the park in both day and night, which gave us a lot of different views. By the end of the night we were stargazing and even able to see the milky way! Absolutely incredible!
We also spent a lot of time admiring the trees and drinking beer, I mean we are on vacation right!? The food was excellent everywhere we went, and the outdoor seating couldn’t have gotten better. Cairns was a great experience, relaxing and tropical area. There’s also so much more to do in the surrounding areas we didn’t even get the chance to see half of what is available. I will definitely be going back whenever I get the chance!