Ben and Kirsteen's World Trip 2005/6 travel blog

St Andrew's Cross spider so called as it sits on a white...

Us at the Timotei waterfalls aka Milaa Milaa

Watch out for everything round here

K relaxing with a book

Movie Clips - Playback Requirements - Problems?

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An extremely rare tree kangaroo

(MP4 - 1.72 MB)

A didgeridooing genius

K: While we were in Cairns we took a 3 day/ 2 night trip to the Tablelands nearby. Its basically the size of Holland but only 30,000 people live there and its a great place to explore the rain forest and look for wild life. On our first day we went for some forest walks and saw, but declined to swim in, volcanic lakes and the waterfall that they shot some Timotei adverts at. We watched other people go in but turning blue and goosebumps is not a good look. We also went platypus watching but unfortunately saw zilch and so we decided to get up at dawn the next day to see if we could see any.

We were very lucky and saw 3 platypi - they are such funny looking creatures but very very cute. We went for a 18km bike ride as well which was a shock to the system and after that I was more than happy to jump in the volcanic lake pool as we were digustingly sweaty. Ben also persuaded me to try a standing up dive with some modifications - never again, although I did provide great amusement for the onlookers but I refused to get out the water until the bright red splodges of skin from my unfortunately angled impact became less obvious.

That afternoon we went canoeing down a stretch of water where we hoped we would see the rare tree kangeroo. There's not that many in Oz about 900 total but we were lucky enough to see 7, including some big males (about 60kg) and a mother and her infant close up. They are such a incongerous animal - a kangeroo up a tree that does actually hop along branches and between trees. One large male fell out a tree pretty much in front of us and we got to see him bounce away and leap into a tree - very cool.

B: Seeing a platypus was a real bonus as they are very rare and reclusive. The hostel we stayed in was really good and had no TV so I had to entertain K with my didgeridoo playing - turns out it's not that hard but circular breathing may take a while to master.

We found out about lots of plants and animals in what is the oldest rainforest in the world. We saw different species kangaroo and wallabies from rat-sized to full size, several spiders, lizards and snakes. There is also a tree called the stinging tree as it leaves poisonous barbs in your skin if you touch it. These barbs are notiously difficult to remove (leg wax is recommended) and the pain they cause, described as like a really bad burn, can last up to 6 months. Unfortunately, a massive cyclone with 320km/h winds had hit the area recently and many trees had been blown over and they estimate it will take at least 200 years for the rainforest to recover fully.

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