My time on the eastcoast included 3 weeks of driving up from Melbourne, at the far South side of Australia, all the way back to Townsville. I have never packed and unpacked my luggage so often in my life, nor spent so much time in hostels. It was an amazing experience to meet so many different people and visit so many new places. Inga and I traveled with the Greyhound bus. This was a great way to get from one city to another in a very relaxed manner. We could get on and off the bus any time we felt like it.
The Bus stops at many different places, including all the popular cities like Byron Bay, Brisbane, and Sydney. Sitting in a bus for more than ten hours was sometimes very tough. Inga and i were always freezing. The air conditoner was way too cold. That was the reason we mostly had to wear warm jumbers and used a sleeping bag to keep us warm. J We couldn’t understand how people could sit there in shorts and a t-shirt. Due to the air conditioner, our voices were often gone by the end of a long bus trip.
Our first stop along the eastcoast was Port Macquarie. We arrived there without having booked a hostel in advance. This was very risky because it was busy holiday time. Nevertheless we found a place to sleep. We slept on camperbeds for the first night which they set up at 11 o’clock at night in the living room. J It was not very comfortable but a pretty funny experience.
During our 2 days in Port Macquarie we visited a Lighthouse and a Koala Hospital. This hospital is the world’s first hospital dedicated solely to the care and preservation of koalas.
Our next stop, was Coffs Harbour, where we spent two nights. At this place Inga and me took our first surfing lessons. It was a lot of fun. The boards were very big, so it wasn’t too difficult to stand up. It was an amazing feeling to stand on the surfboard as the wave pushed you back to the beach. I was sure that this would not be my last sufing adventure. J The next day, we hired surfboards with two other friends. It was a lovely beach day!
Next, we stopped in Byron Bay. This city was reallly busy, but the beach was lovely and I liked the small shops, where you could buy gifts and of course surf clothes. Our hostel room was horrible. Too many drunk and smelly guys, too expensive, and too dirty. We were glad we booked into there for only one night. We went out on this evening, fleeing our disgusting room. J
Surfers Paradise was our next. We imagined this to be a really great city, but were very disappointed when we got there. We imagined a nice and lovely small town with a great beach and of course good waves. The beach was pretty good, but the atmosphere in the city wasn’t our taste. Surfes Paradise had too many hotels and too much concrete. All the nice gardens, green fields and trees were missing.
After two nights in Sufers we left for Brisbane. For a change, we visitited a much bigger city and didn’t spend all our time on the beach. J
We took a Harbour Cruise, walked through the Botanic Gardens, went for a swim in the Lagoon and walked in the market. Our hostel wasn’t very central, but was in a very busy and popular club area, called “The Valley“.
After 4 days in Brisbane, Inga left for Rockhampton to see her parents, and I went on to Noosa. Noosa is a lovely small city. I like the National Park there and the quiet beaches. It was a real pity that I could only spend two days there.
I met Inga again in Hervey Bay and we started our drive tour on Fraser island with 7 other people. It was a great adventure. We drove in a truck on the biggest sand island of the world. The roads were in bad condition, so the car shook a lot. This was good fun, even when it hurt sometimes. Driving and camping on the beach was really fantastic, We saw dingos and swam in a very beautiful Lake Mc Kensie.
However amazing this was, it was still not the highlight of my eastcoast trip.Three days after our Fraser Tour we went sailing in the Whitsundays. Our ship, “Samurai“, wasn’t very big but it still fit 20 passengers and 3 staff members (a cook, a snorkel/- and diving teacher, and the skipper).
We visited a beach of the Whitsunday Islands with an wonderful lookout and a lovely white beach. It was a pity that we couldn’t go swimming in the sea without having to wear a stinger suit. However, it was a great trip. Snorkeling during the day, sailing and night snorkeling with torches have made this tour to an unforgettable adventure.
As time would have it, our eastcoast adventure was coming to an end. On the same day that we got back from our sailing trip, we left for Airlie Beach, making our way back to Townsville. After Townsville, I flew back to Rockhampton with Inga and Kathleen. I said goodbye to them and I took the Greyhound Bus in Rocky, arriving at 1:30 am in Hervey Bay, where mum and dad were awaiting my arrival. They picked me up from the bus stop, and I was able to spend more time with them. I was really happy and excited to see them again and to do a small part of the eastcoast together as a family.
On our first day we went on a guided Fraser Trip! It was a great day and a completely different experience than my self driving tour. Thanks to the guide, I learned a lot more about Fraser Island and its nature and wildlife.
The highlight of this trip was swimming with mum and dad in the Lake Mc Kensie. It was really awesome that I could spend time in this beautiful place, twice! J
After Hervey Bay, we drove up the coast to Rockhampton where we spent a night.
In the evening we went out for dinner to eat one of Rockys famous Steaks. Unfortunately all our Steaks were burned and the waiter wasn’t very friendly.
Our last stop before Townsville was Airlie Beach. The weather wasn’t as good as the last 4 weeks had been. It was very cloudy and sometimes it rained. The 26th of January was Australia day and the nation celebrated everything great about Australia and being Australian. On this special day we ate an Australian food box at the Lagoon. It was a fantastic atmosphere.
Finally we drove to Townsville. I was really excited about showing my parents my new home. J It was too bad that it was raining when we arrived. Even worse, it didn’t rain only one day, it was pouring one full week. Nevertheless, we still did all the stuff that I wanted to do and show my parents. Due to the bad weather conditions, my parents didn’t leave Townsville to drive up to Cairns as they had planned, so they spent an extra 2 days with me. On one hand, I was a bit dissappoined about the weather. I wanted to show everything when the sun was shining. Townsville has over 300 days of sunshine each year, and my parents visited exactly on the few days it was raining. On the other hand, we had never seen so much rain, thunderstorms and streets transformed into rivers. It was really impressive. Two days before my parents left for the cold, snowy, Germany again, the weather changed and we enjoyed two lovely, sunny days.
All in all I had great holidays and a wonderful time with my parents.