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The Whitsundays and Fraser Island

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The next couple of parts of my trip were on organised tours. I had been informed that I simply couldn't miss either the Whitsundays or Fraser Island.

For my Whitsundays trip I booked with Wings. A sociable boat with a knowledgable crew, without the clipper boat's intense party atmosphere. There's not a whole lot of space on these boats so it's fairly important to find one that is likely to attract your kind of people. I think I got mine right.

This trip consisted of a lot of sunbathing on deck, plenty of snorkel spots, and a visit to the paradise like Whitehaven beach. Throw in great company and some cheeky evening ciders, and you have the recipe for a good old time. I felt like I was living a glamorous lifestyle, without any of the actual glamour on our boat of course.

I knew I was on the right boat when we met another group's crew member who asked if we were having a good time and swiftly told us we couldn't be having that much fun if no one had had sex in the jacuzzi yet. Wrong crowd buddy.

Anyway, I'd say the Whitsundays are a must-see, providing you're not prone to sea sickness. It's beautiful, unspoilt and relaxed.

My next leg of the journey was to Rainbow Beach ahead of my Fraser Island tour. Rainbow Beach is a small and somewhat charmless town that really is a stop off for Fraser Island tours.

I stayed at Dingo's hostel where the rooms and reception area were nice, but I was seriously unimpressed with the kitchen. Not only was it small, but severely under-equipped for the number of guests, and a lack of washing up liquid (combined with lazy backpackers) meant what little they had was truly disgusting.

I was therefore quite excited to head off on my Fraser Island tag along tour. These consist of groups of jeeps, one of which has a tour guide, the others are driven by participants.

Fraser Island is a huge sand island with natural lakes, rock pools and such like, but not a lot else. The beaches are roads and subject to the same, if not stricter, road laws as everywhere else. This meant that some party animals missed out on driving opportunities, especially over the Easter Weekend, following some intense partying each night!

There are genuinely beautiful parts of Fraser Island, Lake Mackenzie for example, and it's an unspoiled spot, despite the number of visitors. The Dingo tours are big on their partying so this was my first and only real experience with goon (cheap, rubbish wine in a bag!). I had great people in my car, our Fraser Family as we liked to call ourselves, and I think that really added to the trip. As with so many things, it was as fun as the people I spent time with, so really very fun!

Posted by Rebecca Heller 02:21 Archived in Australia Tagged beaches islands snorkelling beach sailing tour Comments (0)

The much anticipated trip to the 'other beach', Puerto Morín

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On Sunday we finally made it to the 'other beach'. Although I only heard about it two days before, there was so much talk about going that my expectations were high.

A couple of volunteers had heard about Puerto Morín beach from a local friend here and were told it was worth visiting. The biggest problem was knowing how to get there since other locals either hadn't heard of it, or simply didn't know where it was, let alone how to get there. In the end, with some cobbled together advice we set off.

I'll be the first to admit the 'plan', or lack of made me slightly nervous. I wanted to guarantee returning to Huanchaco that evening as I had to work the next morning, whilst the main Puerto Morín cheerleader of the group really wanted to stay. But I was interested to see this relatively unknown place and agreed to come along.

The 'plan' nearly fell through after about 5 buses passed and wouldn't pick us up, but after a stroke of luck we found a taxi driver who clearly didn't know how far he agreed take us and we made it to Puerto Morín beach.




With soft sand underfoot we walked down the practically deserted beach - it's unsurprising given how involved the journey is without a car. We sat and just watched the flat clear sea, the bright blue sky littered with animated clouds, and took in the scene before us full of wildlife - birds, fish, crabs.

We watched the sun set on this little haven of calm; there were no distractions. When it started to get dark, the niggling question of how to get back returned. Although it was only 7pm, with very little light pollution there, it was completely dark and it felt like the middle of the night so three of us left to attempt the journey back, whilst two prepared to stay for the night (which they did!).

The trip back to Huanchaco was amazingly smooth, a taxi, two buses and over 2 hours later we made it back. I have memories of a place off the well beaten track; Puerto Morín beach is a beautiful spot, and I'm grateful those less invested in a concrete 'plan' as I am for convincing me to go.

Posted by Rebecca Heller 01:21 Archived in Peru Tagged beach haven morín Comments (0)

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