Sparky Travels

January 29, 2010


Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: — admin @ 3:01 pm

We reached Airlie Beach - the departure point for trips to the Whitsunday Islands - in time to book a one day sailing trip and swap some books at a bookshop. We’d planned to do a few days on a sailing boat but the weather wasn’t great so we didn’t risk it. We got to our campsite and opened the boot to see an unwelcome face staring at us. The huntsman spider had managed to squeeze in at the top hinge and was inside the boot!

After much spraying with bugspray and attacking with a stick I managed to coax the aggressive and pissed off arachnid out of the car and watched it scuttle up a tree. We shut up the car and went off for a quick game of tennis before dinner. After dinner we headed to the main backpacker bar to watch Andy Murray defeat Marin Cillic in the Australian Open semifinal.

We got up early for our days sailing trip and as soon as we boarded the boat (in fact a replacement boat since ours was out of action) the rain began. Our first stop was famous Hill Inlet,  one of the most photographed sights in Australia. Unfortunately for us, due to the nearby cyclone, it was the highest tide of the year and the stunning sand banks were hidden under water.

Whitehaven beach was a better sight although the picturesque-ness was slightly spoiled by natural detritus that had washed up. The sand is 99% pure silica and was used by NASA for the Hubble telescope’s lens. It is so pure that it is also perfect for cleaning silver and gold jewellery. I own none but Helen successfully tested it with her silver ring. shiny shiny. We threw our stinger suits on and had a splash and sand scrub in the water.

Back on the boat we had a lunch buffet and then a snorkel. Back on dry land we parked up at the Magnums hostel and found out that our neighbours were 4 English guys who’d been at the same campsite as us the day before. We drank with them and watched Federer destroy Wilfred Tsonga in the second Australian Open semifinal. Airlie Beach was a pleasant place with all the facilities geared towards tourists and backpackers which was a nice change from real Australia. It would have been even better if the weather had been any cop.

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