We left Sydney early morning to catch a three hour flight to Cairns (pronounced Cans) in Queenlsand . Queensland is the northeastern quadrant of Australia. Brisbane, where there were the horrible floods last January and the Great Barrier Reef are the hotspots of this state. Its tropical and its where the remaining rainforest that made up most of Australia a billion years ago still exists. We went to Cairns because it worked with our limited flying options, the beach is always a crowd pleaser and because Henry, who dives, would have another world class scuba opportunity.
I think I speak for GM as well when I say it wasn’t my favorite place. It felt a little like Disneyland. It was the central boat terminal for the Reef which is actually a good 1 ½ to 2 hours boat ride away. It was the most touristy place we had been on this trip, I guess the crowds are not really our thing. The kids on the other hand loved the spot. We did keep everyone busy with day trips; dive boat out to the reef, day in the rain forest, day at a beautiful beach, deep sea fishing. And while its in a pretty spot, minus the mud flats, and the weather was spectacular (summers must be HOT) there wasn’t enough charm to mitigate the strip malls, tshirt stops, and the infinite number of tour operators hawking the same 3 or 4 tours on sandwich boards that were an obstacle course on the side walk.
Again not my favorite, but the kids had a good time and it is here that began the entire family’s love affair with the BBC program “Top Gear”.