The last day in Australia, what a way to finish the exhilarating and inspirational travels! Tired – actually - shattered and just to add to that, it decided to pour with rain. Cairns was our last stop on our 6 week travel of Thailand and Australia, having booked the reef tour in Sydney 4 weeks ago we hadn’t established how tired we would be by the time we reached our final destination before flying back to Sydney.
A must on the bucket list. We had to go and see the Great Barrier Reef, a bumpy boat ride 80 minutes later, we arrived. Many of our travelling companions were sitting on the deck as the bumps and sea currents hadn’t agreed with them. Claire and myself made ourselves comfortable on the bottom deck sleeping off the affects of our heavy previous night of festivities.
We arrived at the main tourist location of the reef. Still somewhat stormy and gloomy, I decided to make the most of this adventure and jumped straight in! The water was bright blue and clear and slightly warmer then I thought it would have been. After a 10 minute dip, , I decided to get out and wait for the following destination which was on the other side of the reef, where it wasn’t as deep and the tour we were with had private access to this part of it. Of course I chose to bring my only swimsuit from Tesco, which I love, but it wasn’t exactly the most reef caring swimwear which I have now learnt… the hard way.
After a massive lunch of all you can eat! The boat made its way towards the other side of the reef. Arriving at the next reef location, I grabbed my blow up ring tube and paddled around the reef. I, of course was the only one with a tube in the water, but I had brought it from Bangkok and had hardly used it! The different colours of the reef really take your breath away. Colourful fish and unusual looking creatures all swimming happily together without a care in the world. It was somewhat soothing. The sun came out and the water calmed down, the divers were 10 meters under the sea and snorkelers paddled the tops of the reef. Of course there I was enjoying the waves and messing around on my blow up tube - s you do when lounging around the reef. After taking such amazing photos and meeting a lovely crew, I am so glad how the day turned out, memories that will be with me for a lifetime. I could have swam in the sea for hours on end. The warmth and freedom you felt so secluded from the rest of the world! Some people say I was a fish in my past life…not sure whether to take as a compliment or not!
During our journey home we engaged in a lovely conversation with a woman at our table and were treated to free cheese and wine and entertainment (Which was the best entertainment I have ever experienced). The Aussie way of living and attitude people have is so free and giving. I know for a fact next time I am over there, I will be doing the diving course as that seemed so much fun and the sightings at the bottom of the reef must be something else.
Next stop was Sydney, Dubai and London Heathrow. Now back In Edinburgh I can’t help but smile at my adventures of the land, sea and colours - not everything in this world is photo-shopped! It made me realise how much I need heat and warmth back in my life. I need the freedom to swim and surf whenever! If you get the chance to do it - I advise you 100%. It was such an eye opener for me and it goes to show that materialistic things mean nothing when you get to experience the great outdoors and be with nature itself. Now that costs nothing. (Well the boat obviously to get there!).