Thursday, January 7, 2016

Carlson Honeymoon! Volume I: Australia, Part VI: Cairns & The Daintree Rainforest

We had breakfast included in our "honeymoon package" at the resort, so we got up early the next morning (November 16th) (having missed it the day before) and went to breakfast. It was a full buffet with a great view!

[Local honey]

[Josh trying Vegemite]

[The look on his face says it all]

After breakfast we went to the Wildlife Habitat. First, we walked through the bird exhibit.

And then we went to the kola show where we met Cody. At the show we learned that Cody is a fully grown male, that kolas sleep 22 hours a day since they have to digest eucalyptus (which is poisonous), and that you should not try to cuddle with a kola.

After meeting Cody we went to a reptile show were we learned about snakes and crocodiles. 

Josh and I were scheduled to have "morning tea" with our tour group but we decided that taking a picture with Cody and a baby crocodile was more important!

Our next stop was the snack shack where we bought kangaroo food. The we headed into the next exhibit where we found...


They are so cute!!

When we entered the exhibit there were already multiple kangaroos and birds sitting there waiting for us. I didn't want to feed the birds because they were not as cute. As I was feeding the kangaroos I got bit by a bird. I think he was a little jealous! I threw some food at him and his friends and they left us alone for a while.

[This cute wallaby wanted in on the action too!]

We continued through the exhibit where we saw these huge crocodiles! They were kept separate from the kangaroos, so don't worry!

[This guy looks super buff! I thought he was awesome!]

As we made our way back to the exit we had this emu walk by. I tried to feed him but he ignored me. 

After experiencing the Wildlife Habitat (I finally got to feed kangaroos!!), we got back on the bus and headed towards the Daintree Rainforest. 

We drove north along the coastal Captain Cook Highway passing through the beautiful countryside. The whole area reminded me of Kauai! So green and lush!

When we got to the Daintree River we had to pay a toll and take the cable-driven ferry across. This is the only way to get deeper into the forest.

Once we crossed the river we drove for a few miles along the rainforest-fringed Cape Tribulation Road to the Turtle Rock Cafe. Here we had lunch before getting picked up to go Jungle Surfing (zip lining) with a group of 8 other people.

[Getting buckled up!]

[They gave us each funny helmets so they didn't have to learn our names. I was "Sheeba Queen of the Jungle" and Josh was "Chewbacca"]

After getting our harnesses on we walked through the jungle to a giant hamster wheel. This zip line company prides itself on its minimal impact to the environment. So they don't use any electricity!

We took turns walking in the hamster wheel and each couple was brought to the first platform.

The view was breathtaking, the people in our group were fun, AND no one got hurt! I count that as a success!

I really did have a lot of fun but the zip lining in Mexico was better. Not the view (you can't beat the view in the Daintree Rainforest), but the one I went on in Mexico had more zip lines and they were a lot faster!

After we were done with our Jungle Surfing, we met up with the rest of our tour. We went on a short walk to see a Strangler Fig.

Then we went and got locally made organic ice cream from Floravilla Biodynamic. They had a ton of flavors and it was delicious!

Next, we went to Alexandria lookout where we could see where Steve Irwin was killed. I ask our guide how most Aussies felt about him. He said that he was pretty adored and his death was tragic.

Our last activity of the day was a River Cruise on the Daintree River. At low tied you can spot large crocodiles because they are laying on the exposed sand dunes. We went at high tide so we were only able to see a few smaller crocodiles. That's okay though! The view was great and we had a fun time!

[Josh was up front looking for crocodiles]

[Here is a small crocodile - can you see him?!] 

At the end of the boat ride we all got back on the bus so we could be taken back to our hotels. The tour ended up being about 11 hours long and by the end of it I was tired! 

We went back to the hotel, ate dinner, and crashed for the night.

By this time of the trip I was exhausted! We have been flying all over the country, going on tons of tours, and now it was time to RELAX!

We slept in the next morning (November 17th) since it was our "Day of Leisure!"

At noon we headed up to the lobby where we were greeted by a guy who would be taking us to Oak Beach (the resorts private beach) for our seafood picnic! 

Oh yea... it was highly advised that we stay out of the ocean. It's jelly fish season and some box jelly fish were spotted off the coast. You don't have to tell me twice! No thanks!

[No swimming!]

We jumped on the golf cart and he zipped us down to the beach.

Once at the beach he set up our picnic and left us to it!

We had a delicious lunch which consisted of bread, a cucumber salad, fruit, shrimp, salmon, crab, lobster, and oysters! There were only two other people at the beach that day which was perfect for us!

We ate our lunch and then went for a hike on the rocks.

[Storm coming in]


[Crab on the rocks]

["Look I found a dinosaur bone! Take my picture!"]

After we were done with our picnic and our walk, we went to the pools.

[Pathways at the resort]

We spent the next few hours swimming (I tried to teach Josh how to float), relaxing by the pool, and drinking.

I talked Josh into leaving the pool for a minute so we could look around the resort some more. We walked around for a little while but quickly decided that it was too hot and humid and that staying at the pool was a better idea :-)

[Our bungalo!]


We jumped in the pool to cool off but Josh's cell phone decided to come with us. Oops! 


We spent the rest of the day relaxing and swimming. 

That night we ate dinner at the hotel restaurant. The food is great! Every night we got the hummus appetizer and then we rotated between the baramindi and tuna entrees. Delicious!!

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