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Old January 8th, 2009, 07:01 PM   #1
hkskyline
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hkskyline's 2008 CAIRNS Photo Collection

Around and About Cairns
I almost opted out of this trip. I had originally wanted to stay in Sydney for the weekend. I was too lazy to venture further afield, let alone fly 3 hours to Cairns. The flight was free anyway, so who cares. Well, in the end, I made it to the airport and was soon on my way north.

Looking back, thank goodness I went. It was a trip of a lifetime.

1. Cairns is not a skyscraper city. It's a laid-back vacation town.





3. I lived right next to the waterfront and nature was only a stone's throw away. The water's edge resembled something in the country, not in the city - unspoiled and very natural.







6. A neat line of shops and restaurants line the waterfront road.









10. It was just too serene.



11. I was a bit worried the morning clouds would make a trip to the reef not so enjoyable.





13. An unexpected swimmer.











18. The Shangri-La was even closer to the waterfront than my hotel, but was a bit too upscale for my budget.





20. Ah .. blue skies are coming! An encouraging sign.













26. A good friend told me to be very specific and picky in choosing the reef tour. There was plenty of choice available. Do not go to the inner reefs. Those have been badly damaged by human activity already.



27. Soon we're on the way! The boarding process seemed like getting onto an airplane. There was a building by the pier to 'check-in'. I present my ticket at the pier, then proceed to board.



28. For a weekend, I was surprised the tour was nowhere near full. I guess this was a good thing, since I could roam around the boat and probably wouldn't be waiting in line for everything. Soon we were on the way ... 90 minutes to the outer reef!









32. Cairns isn't a very large city, and as I've already remarked, not a big skyscraper city, so there isn't much of a skyline.





34. The ride was fairly rocky as we sailed across the open ocean. Luckily, I don't get sea sick that easily, but fellow staff were on hand with barf bags and a number of fellow tourists needed them badly.



35. Most of the pictures of the reef that I've seen had colourful scenes and an occasional school of fish. Judging from this view, it didn't look like I was at the Great Barrier Reef.



36. Well ... I was wrong. Soon we docked onto the reef tour's private platform in the middle of the ocean. The platform itself has viewing areas like this for those who didn't want to get wet but see what the reef is like.









40. Someone above must be feeding the fish.















47. But I wanted to get wet, and snorkled for the rest of the day. No pictures though. probably could've rented some device to keep my camera dry and did some snapping. The scenes were too beautiful to have time to take pictures though. You just have to go see it for yourself.

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Old January 9th, 2009, 03:56 AM   #2
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Nice Shots

Ever since reading Aurthur C. Clarke's Dolphin Island, I have always wanted to visit Cairns and the Great Barrier Reef. Thank you for virtually taking me there.
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Old January 9th, 2009, 07:37 PM   #3
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Nice photo-collection
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Old January 10th, 2009, 01:17 AM   #4
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Thanks so much for posting these pics, i used to live in cairns and i love the place so much, ive never seen any other photo threads that show the places i remember

I lived there back in 2004 and im glad to see the place hasnt changed too much
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Old January 10th, 2009, 07:40 AM   #5
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48. The other key place to visit around Cairns was Kuranda. The train ride was quite interesting, with a vintage train going along the hillsides, with plenty of photo opportunities by leaning out the window.







51. Very few trains plough this route, so we had to get up early to make sure we won't miss it!



52. We're on the way!









56. Perhaps humidity has something to do with the mist. It was fairly sticky and muggy there.







59. Soon we got a very nice view of the city below.



60. We made a brief stop here to photograph the falls. Rain started to fall though so we had to be on our feet to get the work done quickly.







63. I wanted to see the rainforests and took a 4WD trip into the wilderness. Quite interesting to cross rivers and climb slopes with these machines.



64. The nature walk in the rainforest is quite interesting. The plants didn't seem like what I expected in the rainforest. The trees are huge though!















71. The 4WD trip was well worth it, as it took me to places I would otherwise not have been able to reach on my own.









For the full Cairns set, please visit my website :
http://www.globalphotos.org/cairns.htm
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Old January 10th, 2009, 01:24 PM   #6
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amazing pictures, thanks
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Old January 10th, 2009, 10:23 PM   #7
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great pictures!! nice town.
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Old January 14th, 2009, 08:48 AM   #8
hkskyline
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Old January 14th, 2009, 09:36 AM   #9
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love em. Keep em coming
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Old January 14th, 2009, 04:27 PM   #10
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I love Australia! I would love to be there right now.
It's ******* snowing (again) here at the moment!
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Old January 24th, 2009, 08:19 AM   #11
hkskyline
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I'll save the best for last ... just before my rainforest tour ended, we stopped at a beautiful lookout point, with a full view of Cairns. Quite amazing how small this place was yet it is such a huge tourist magnet.





I hope I can come back again to snorkle another part of the reef! (or I'll go to Townsville to see the reef from there)













My whole photo collection is on my website's Cairns gallery :
http://www.globalphotos.org/cairns.htm
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Old January 24th, 2009, 09:37 AM   #12
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nice photos hkskyline!

If you want to check out another point on the Great Barrier Reef I recommend going south of Cairns to Mission Beach. It's an hour or so car trip from Cairns. There's a nice island just offshore called Dunk Island too. I went on a trip to the reef and it was great! The boat wasn't massive and not as many tourists or backpackers down that way.

I also recommend doing some whitewater rafting on the Tully River if you are ever going down that way! Great fun, especially after some rain.

Couple of pics to give you an idea

View from Mission Beach towards Dunk Island - courtesy 'Michael Dawes' on flickr



Dunk Island - 'd.anny' on flickr



Water Taxi back to Mission Beach, also some jetski's and kayaks for fun - 'd.anny' on flickr



Pool on Dunk Island - courtesy 'Impressions by Lindy' on flickr



Whitewater rafting on the Tully River - 'pass_away13' on flickr



Break from the rapids on the Tully River - 'asorsz' on flickr

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