Victor & Joanne's Australia Adventure travel blog

Turquoise waters, blue skies ... will be hard to leave this warm...

The beginning of the boardwalk

Lifeguards playing with the kids

The Reef Festival Market; reminded us of Moss Street Market

I almost went for a camel ride; plodding along, it actually looked...

The market along the beach. Quite breezy, but warm

An old Holden; this is the vehicle made in Australia. Remind you...

It's spring so there are flowers everywhere

No idea what some of these are, but the colour are everywhere

Looking back along the rocky shore, Airlie Beach is picturesque

Oct 24 – Airlie Beach

This small coastal town, about 600 km south of Cairns is too small for the Rhapsody to dock, so we’re on 300 passenger catamarans to get into town and back to the ship. Our luck, it’s Airlie’s annual Reef Festival and there are lots of activities. Instead of taking the shuttle into town, we decide to walk and it’s another very pleasant boardwalk along the shoreline to get us into town within 15 minutes. It’s warm, but with a lovely breeze so not as hot as yesterday.

The saltwater lagoon here is quite large and built within the last 20 years. Because there are often jellyfish or “stingers” as they’re called here, many people don’t venture into the water for at least half of the year. Airlie Beach’s lagoon is complete with dozens of change rooms, kiddie’s pools and lifeguards in the pool dressed up as clowns and superheroes.

In town, there are camel rides ($30 for 10 minutes), helicopter rides ($75 for 10 minutes) and a colourful market along the shoreline. The market reminded us of the Moss Street Market: lots of flowers, vegetables and plants, as well as craft items. It was thoroughly enjoyable to meander around the market and look at all of the talent on display. Joanne bought an original painting, on silk, of a kangaroo which was painted by an Aboriginal artist. It will remind us of our time here and the lazy kangaroos.

Back to the ship for another amazing meal: main courses were turkey (with all the fixings including brussel sprouts), steak, lamb shank, salmon and a pasta dish with prawns. As usual, we thoroughly enjoy the company of two Australian couples whom we’ve not met before. One couple is too young to look like great-grandparents and they hail from Western Australia. They are full of wonderful ideas of where to go near Perth. The other couple is from Newcastle and are intrigued when they learn we spent a month in Cuba. Sharing stories, enjoying a meal, drinking good Australian wine ... memories to take home with us. Better than any souvenir!

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