Tag Archives: Mission Beach

Dunk Island, Queensland, August 2003

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Dunk Island

During our stay at Mission Beach, we took a water taxi across to Dunk Island, only 4 km away from our resort.  It was a very hot day, too hot to even stand on the sand for more than a few seconds, and we just found it incredible to believe that this was in fact WINTER.  We did our best to stay in the shade and plaster ourselves with sunblock, even though I have olive skin and less likely to burn than my two companions.  It just wasn’t worth taking any risks in a kind of heat I had never experienced before.

Boarding the water taxi from Mission Beach to Dunk Island

All in all it was another very relaxing day, enjoying the wonderful weather, a walk round the island and kayaking in the beautiful still blue waters, where we were even greeted by a sea-turtle as we were gently paddling around.  Unfortunately, the sea-turtle was gone before I could get my camera ready to photograph it, but the memory’s still there of this wonderful sea creature popping its head out of the water to have a look at us!  You just can’t put a price on these things.

The water taxi to Dunk Island from Mission Beach

I must also mention that, being part of the Great Barrier Reef, there is an abundant supply of dead coral already washed up on the beach and which is still protected and must not be taken away.  This, beautiful as it is, also brings the danger of stepping on it, as my two companions did and I remember spending some time trying to extract bits of coral from the sole of their feet.  So watch out where you step, either in the sand or the water, or you’ll be feeling the pain for hours to come.

Dunk Island

There is nothing much more to say, apart from how sorry I am that this beautiful island had to suffer such a tragic fate during last year’s storms, as I know it was heavily damaged and all but destroyed.

Dunk Island

Dunk Island

Mission Beach, August 2003

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Mission Beach

After that hectic and very educational week in Ellis Beach, trekking in the rainforest, snorkelling in the Great Barrier Reef and discovering the Aborigine culture in Kuranda, it was time to move on down south and visit other interesting spots in Queensland.

Mission Beach

We spent a week in Trinity Beach, where we enjoyed 7 days of peace and quiet, just enjoying the sun, the sea, the palm trees and the noisy singing of the laughing kookaburras, the noisiest birds I’ve ever heard.  They invariably woke us up at about 6 o’clock every morning and the funny thing is that we didn’t mind, as we woke up laughing too to join the happy chorus of these intriguing birds. 

The laughing Kookaburra

 

 

 

The mighty Cassowary

After Trinity Beach, we kept on heading south to Mission Beach, where we spent another week and took another hike into the rainforest in search of the elusive Cassowary, a flightless bird similar to an ostrich, but a bit more aggressive.  We didn’t hold much hope to see one, but our lucky stars must have been on our side and, after fighting our way through and getting dis-untangled from the ‘Take-a-While’  (there is a reason for this name: you work it out) rumbling bush, Lo and behold the most beautiful Cassowary stood there in front of us for a few minutes, almost deliverately posing for us take a picture.  It is unwise to get too close, as they are dangerous birds and we were adviced to hide behind a tree if we were lucky enough to see one, so the picture had to be taken from a distance and from the shelter of a tree, which we obediently did.

A Cassowary in the bush

Mission Beach turned out to be another glorious place to unwind and enjoy the visitors’ facilities, like a pedal buggy around town (great for kids of all ages), the superb and cheap restaurants, the heat of the winter’s sun (28 °C – far warmer than any British summer I’ve ever known) and a day out to Dunk Island, but that is the subject of another blog.

Having fun on the pedal buggies

Another wonderful surprise was the beautiful egg-like termite heap we happened to stumble across and much easier to photograph.

 

Termite heap in the rainforest

 

Gigantic fern in the rainforest

 

Road sign warning of cassowary crossing