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The final leg of our fourth road trip in this magnificent country is here! In this part, we journeyed all the way up to find the pristine beauty of the ancient and mysterious Daintree and Cape Tribulation region in the Wet Tropics, completing our 2000km/ 3 week adventure in Queensland – we’re pretty proud of this! Thanks Fuscia for loaning us Winnie (the car!), she did us proud!

Our highlights of this last leg (in no particular order!):

1. Setting up home in a cute igloo opposite Trinity Beach, one of Cairns’ Northern Beaches, where we had a base to explore the tropics of North Queensland. We loved this spot, where we swam in the ocean stinger net enclosure right opposite our ‘home’, walked up to viewpoints, ran along the esplanade and met some lovely neighbours (hello Adam, Georgia and India!!).

Stinger net enclosure on Trinity Beach.

2. Driving through the spectacular scenery and rugged topography of the World Heritage listed Daintree wilderness, and crossing the Daintree River by a rickety car ferry, closely watching out for crocs! The Daintree’s antiquity sets it apart; it’s thought to be about 110-200 million years old (compared to the Amazon, which is 7 million years old). Some of the ancient plants are known as ‘Green Dinosaurs’ and 12 of the 19 most primitive flowering plants on Earth are found here.

Daintree River crossing

Views down to where the Daintree river meets the ocean.

 

3. Feeling in awe of how fringing coral reef and immense rainforest meet like nowhere else in the world, with hidden white sandy beaches edging a tumbling tangle of lush mountains. This magic cast a spell of tranquillity over us.

4. Reaching the end of the only road coiling beneath the rainforest’s canopy, at Cape Tribulation, and being rewarded with perfect views that whipped our breath away (these photos don’t do it justice!).

5. Breaking down (the car!!) on our return to the ferry, in the depths of the jungle, between croc-infested creeks!! Lola and Albie thought it was brilliant that Dad had run out of petrol?^*! With luck, a passing couple with hearts of gold (thank you again whoever you were, we were too worried to even ask your names, sorry!) stopped to help and buy petrol from a station miles away. We owe you big time!

6. Boat trip to the breathtaking outer Great Barrier Reef (we decided to go the furthest out we could to find unspoilt reef, big fish, turtles and hopefully spot reef sharks!). This has to be one of our entire trip’s highlights. For this we are indebted to the kindness and generosity of the parents and carers from Tash’s year 4 class at Hove Junior School, who clubbed together to buy a voucher for us, redeemable for an experience in Australia. We choose to spend it on this once in a lifetime trip. HUGE thank yous to team 4Blue 2016-2017 because we all had the time of our lives! After setting off under a rainbow, followed by an incredibly bumpy one and a half hour boat ride (where loads of people were sick…not us yippee!), we snorkelled 2 reef sites in awe. Having watched divers, Lola really wanted to try diving…and the instructors agreed to give her a go at site 3. This girl surprises us all the time, her appetite for new adventures and confidence to ‘have a go’ has grown exponentially. She did it and wants to do more! Did you know…the Reef covers an area larger than Great Britain (348,700 square km) and it’s made up of a collection of numerous coral reefs and islands; the largest such system in the world – and we went there, wow!

7. Finding the thunderous Barron Falls, near the charming if a little touristy town of Kuranda, on our way to dropping Winnie in Mareeba.

Once Winnie was handed over, a flight awaited to take us on our journey down to Sydney, where we’ll fly to New Zealand.