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Around the World in 106 Days with Ray & Claire!! Part 21 – Cairns. The Pilot having completed his job departs and we dock in Cairns.
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Ray & Claire!!
Part 21 – Cairns
In the late 1700’s , Captain Cook’s discovered the Cairns area and named the bay Trinity Bay, but it was another 100 years before gold was discovered at the Palmer River, east of Cooktown in 1872, which resulted in thousands of miners arriving and, as a consequence, this rush resulted in the establishment of Cairns in 1876
The name Cairns was chosen to honour Queensland’s first Irish-born Governor, Sir William Wellington Cairns
Beginning as a tent city, the first major structures to go up were wharves and storage sheds but despite initial success, the slowing of the gold rush saw the town at risk of disappearing due to lack of income, until it was chosen as the starting point for a railway line that was to service the Atherton Tableland
The entire project was built by hand with workers using buckets, bare hands and dynamite, and the amount of dirt removed added up to just over 2.3 million cubic metres
Sugar cane became a major export crop for the Cairns region together with a growing dairy produce
Today the remnants of massive sugar plantations can be seen along the coast of the Cairns region but The Atherton Tableland continues to be dotted with dairy farms, tobacco growing, large coffee plantations and other dry weather crops
Cairns (with an estimated population of around 130,000) now mainly survives on tourism and is an ideal base to discover the Great Barrier Reef
Unfortunately the North Queensland coast is subject to tropical cyclones which, whilst similar to the effects of hurricanes and monsoons can be far more disastrous........
......these cyclones are a huge mass of low pressure air that forms over the warm tropical water swirling in a clockwise direction. As the air mass grows, strong winds and torrential rain result, and if large enough, the winds can be very destructive with wind gusts up to 285km per hour
You would never be stuck for things to do whilst staying in Cairns, as there is limitless accommodation and dining options as well as its culture, shopping
all combined with an enjoyable seaside atmosphere
Cairns Botanical Gardens
...which, unfortunately, from March to September it is too dangerous to swim in the sea (unless inside a special netted area) because of the jelly fish and the sharks
Port Douglas is a spectacular one hour drive north of Cairns along one of the most scenic coastal roads in Australia
The Project Manager of this particular Ozzy Project made a little bit of a mistake.
He asked for a 3ft statue of Capt Cook and got a 30ft one!!!
But then that sort of mistake isn't apparently uncommon in this part of the world – look at where the sea eagles build their nests!
Port Douglas is home to some of tropical North Queensland’s most exclusive resorts, award winning restaurants, beautiful galleries and boutique shopping. Holidaymakers relish Port Douglas’ natural beauty and excellent year round climate
Port Douglas has a relaxed seaside village atmosphere with some great cafes and restaurants, for you to enjoy a delicious tropical snack or lunch – but with the increased cost of living in Australia and the poor exchange rate of £Sterling – we didn’t bother!
On our way to Port Douglas we stopped off at the Rainforest Habitat which was divided into three different and unique environments that depict numerous species of the surrounding rain forest, wetlands and grasslands
Please Note that the Scribe did not manage to get the names of all the birds and animals and so we hope you just enjoy the pictures
Lookout – Claire is crossing!!
However with jelly fish in the sea from March to September and Crocs at the water edge – its not the perfect place to go swimming!!
..and now (after that melodious interlude) it is really time to “Buckle up and look forward to the next Port of Call – Hamilton Island”