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Arrival in Queensland – Cairns and Green Island

Written by 24 June 2012 4 Comments

Being a photographer, a massive part of my fun while traveling is taking pictures of absolutely everything – people, interesting buildings, special moments – there really are not many moments during a trip I would not love to capture and put in a jar (or at least on a hard disk) so that they can stay with me forever. Those who’ve traveled with me or who follow me on instagram will also know about my particular preference for palm trees and blue skies which I just never get tired of photographing.

MG 1295 Arrival in Queensland   Cairns and Green Island

The more beautiful a destination looks on camera, the more I love being there. In fact, when it comes to traveling I would be happy to just quit talking all together and simply stick with taking photos, pixelated memories that I will enjoy looking at again and again.

When I recently had a chance to revisit Queensland, one of Australia’s 6 states, I could barely put the camera down. It is an absolute paradise of stunning nature – on land and sea (Queensland famously is home to the Great Barrier Reef) – with some of the most incredible skies I’ve ever seen, as they usually come in different colors.

When my plane landed in Brisbane at 6am, this was what I saw:

MG 0749 Arrival in Queensland   Cairns and Green Island

It could not have been a better welcome, I instantly felt right at home. Upon entering the airport it smelt of caramel lattes and doughnuts, the sun shone through the large windows and everyone seemed to wear big smiles. The strain of  the 36 hour journey to get here from Berlin was blown away in an instant and what was left was pure excitement over what the next few days would bring.

After a brief stopover at Brisbaine airport my next stop was Cairns.

MG 1853 Arrival in Queensland   Cairns and Green Island

Cairns is a lovely little city up North, a hub for anyone wanting to go diving in the Great Barrier Reef while having the buzz of a mid-sized city with lots of bars and restaurants at place. Here you can rent a bike, cruise along the esplanade, enjoy a fresh seafood lunch on the terrace of the Raw Prawn, flirt with the tattooed waiter, see some indigenous art, pet a kangaroo at the Cairns Zoo, join a free Zumba class at the park, watch the sunset over the ocean, have a cheap drink during the 4-hour happy hour at the Courthouse (38 Abbott Street), get a $15 massage on the nightmarket, eat a fancy dinner at The Salthouse and stick around for a Tango at their bar.

MG 0923 Arrival in Queensland   Cairns and Green Island MG 1216 Arrival in Queensland   Cairns and Green Island

But the possibilities don’t stop there. For a small adventure take the ferry from the Marina over to Green Island, a tropical paradise that is just a 45-minute boat ride away and awaiting visitors with all sorts of activities from snorkelling, to helmet-diving, introductory or certified diving, over to walks through the rainforest, exploring the ocean on a glass-bottom boat or simply enjoying Green Island’s great beaches, restaurants and swimming pool.

MG 0955 Arrival in Queensland   Cairns and Green Island

MG 09971 Arrival in Queensland   Cairns and Green Island

Something else you could do – something that was an instant addition to my top 10 coolest things i’ve ever done – you can book a helicopter ride to take you above the reef and over to a lonely sandbank where there is nothing but you and the people you came with – a pretty elating feeling. I knew that helicopter flights would give me that awesome tingly feeling in my stomach but it really even exceeded my already high expectations and became something I will forever remember fondly. I will definitely be posting about this incredible experience in more detail soon.

MG 10591 Arrival in Queensland   Cairns and Green Island

When in Queensland there is no excuse for anyone to stay in one place only. The best way of getting around is to rent a car and drive up or down the coast. In our case, we took on the short 1,5 hour trip to Port Douglas, a scenic drive with several viewpoints where you can get out and snap some memorable photos to post on facebook.

MG 9988 Arrival in Queensland   Cairns and Green Island

MG 9990 Arrival in Queensland   Cairns and Green Island

Upon arrival in Port Douglas we checked into a spacious bungalow with seaview at the beautiful Thala Beach Lodge and got ready for the coming days of more palm trees, blue skies and lots more adventure including a lesson in stand-up paddling, white-water rafting down the Barron River, snorkeling among sharks (ok, baby sharks), sailing into the sunset and dining in the middle of the rainforest.

It’s really too much to fit it all into one blog entry, so I will be back shortly with a full post on everything we did and that you can do in Port Douglas…

MG 1317 Arrival in Queensland   Cairns and Green Island

If you have been to Queensland, we’d love to hear what your favorite part about it was. Maybe you can recommend a particular town or an activity that no one coming to visit should miss out on. Just share it in the comments!

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pixel Arrival in Queensland   Cairns and Green Island




4 Comments »

  • Kara said:

    Ha! Love the one of me doing some sort of funky yoga on the rock… ;-)

    So lovely to have met you in Australia!

  • Jodi said:

    The helicopter ride was incredible. I loved being on that piece of sand surrounded by water and reef. I’d recommend everyone save up for this and do it if you have the chance. Definitely a major highlight of the trip.

    Jodi
    MCP Actions

  • Rosie said:

    I live in Brisbane, but only just returned from a trip up North. I’d definitely agree in saying that it’s an amazing place. Snorkelling on the Great Barrier Reef is a must-do. The coral and marine life was better than anything I saw in pictures. I saw every kind of creature: sharks, stingrays, turtles, the whole Finding Nemo cast was there!

    I would also recommend driving up to Cape Tribulation for some beautiful beaches and stunning seaside views. A definite highlight was swimming in a creek around Cape Tribulation with water so clear it was like looking through glass.

    I’m very blessed to be living in Queensland and look forward to some more adventures in this glorious state!

  • Top 5 Things To Do When Bitten By The Travel Bug | Klaus and Fritz said:

    [...] much to do – too many choices. You don’t have to go far or jump a plane to go overseas. Why not start in Queensland, where the weather is almost always [...]

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