Monday, July 11, 2011

Goodbyes are Hard... Day 15 July 3rd

    Its traveling day, I wish I could stay a few more days. I will never forget my trip to New Zealand and Australia. It has been the highlight of my life. Fellow blogger you must go to NZ and AUS atleast once in your life. It is a life changing experience that you will treasure. I miss everything, the food, the environment, the music, and especially the people that I got to know on this wonderful adventure. Thank you Adam for all you have done for both our teams, we appreciate all the hard work you do. You made this trip special for not just me but for everyone. Thank you.
Saying goodbye to our awesome aussie Tour Director/Guide and friend Adam. Thanks for everything, you are
the best, we had a blast! Hope to see you in the near future.

         Its hard to say goodbye to people that you form bonds with. I will never forget the people and all the stories we shared with eachother. I know that we will all be together again sometime in the future.
        Dear fellow blogger thank you for taking your time out of your scedule to read what I had to say about my trip to New Zealand and Australia. I hope you learned a few things along the way. Live your life everyday to the fullest, get up off that couch,turn off that tv and see the world and experience new experiences. No worries and no regrets.

  I will be back to Sydney hopefully in the next two years, after I save up enough to stay a good month and explore all that has not been explored. Thank you all again, God Bless.

Last Free Day in Sydney... Day 14

City Sightseeing Sydney bus
 we took
  Went on a City Sightseeing double decker bus 9:50AM  We had our trusty map with us so we knew when and where to get off. Passed many museums, parks and plenty of markets here and there.

   Got off and went off to Paddy's Market. Its a huge market where you can find souviners, t-shirts, food that are less expensive. I had a bite to eat there a chicken kabab. Then we continued our way to Sydney Chinatown where we looked in shops found more souvies.

Jumping on Sydney Tower
  1PM SkyWalk: Our group went up the Sydney Tower, filled out forms, had breathalyzer test to make sure able to do this, then we got in our blue suits and started going up the steps where we put our safty belts on. The doors opened, we hooked ourselves up to wall pully-thing, and then off we went.

We were really high, 304 metres. It was really exciting to do this. We took jumping photos.

Heather Gloria and I on the steps
of the Opera House
Off to the Sydney Opera House! You cant go to Sydney and not go to the Opera House! Stayed there, took our time and took in the scenery.

Went on the bus to hotel. Got cleaned up and dressed up for our last night in Sydney, before we go home we had to go all out. A few guys from the North Carolina team, me and Heather went walking up and down the streets looking for someplace that has good dance music... It was a great last night and I miss Australia.

Friday July 1st Day 13

                6:30 Wakeup call then brekky from 7
                8AM leave on coach

Bondi Beach
The Rocks
Visited Bondi Beach, the sand was so soft. The beach can get up to 40,000-50,000 people. This is the place to go in the summer months Dec-Feb, its allright now but its their winter months now June-Aug. But still fun place to hangout at. Walked the Rocks as well. The Rocks is Sydney's oldest preserved colonial district so the main emphasis is on the historical importance of the area.
Colorful Opals

Crystalized fossil

11AM Visited the Opal Collection. We learned how opal came to be, the different types of opal, the different colors. They are beautiful unique gemstones with different colors. Bought a few necklaces for family back home. They are on the pricy range but they are worth every penny, so beautiful.

12 its lunchtime and we got a tip that The Ship Inn had pretty good food there. The margaritta pizza was amazing! The whole menu looks good.

On the Harbour cruise
Free time until 2PM when we have the Harbour cruise at 2:15
The Harbour or the Coat Hanger was very cool to see and to also see the Opera House

Wombat sleeping
3:45PM  more animals @ Wildlife World. We saw a great range of animals from big butterflies, to snakes and spiders, crocodile, the easter Bilby, kangaroos, wombat and more koalas, that was great! While waiting for everyone else to come out we all sat down and had chats

The Travelodge
Had dinner at 5:30 with whole group, sang to the music that was  playing ...

Some people after dinner went off to do some last minute shopping but went back to hotel got changed and met up at Macquaries with Heather. Couldn't believe how fast two weeks went by so quickly.

My Wishes Came True Today Days 11-12

     June 29th 2011

This is me and Harry
Left the hotel around 7:30ish? to go to the Wildlife Currumbin Sanctuary where I Jennifer Wodrich was finally able to hold a Koala. His name is Harry, hes so cute and cudley that I wanted to take him home with me, I guess Im not allowed or something totally bizzare, just kidding. at the Currumbin Sanctuary we were able to see Dingos, we fed kangaroos, and saw a few crocs along the way. It was so cool being able to feed the kangaroos, this one roo was a little aggressive when I was turning to leave he scratched my hand a little. Didnt hurt much, it was just surprising.
Cape Byron Lighthouse

After the Sanctuary visit we left to go to Byron Bay. As we were all sitting in the coach, Adam put on some vids and we watched Skippy the Kangaroo. Skippy was basically like lassie except it was a roo. It was kind of cheesy but I enjoyed watching it.

Made it to Cape Byron Bay Lighthouse. It was a neat lighthouse and it had a beautiful view of ocean. Some of us spotted out in the distance a whale, it was out there but you could tell by the waves and motions by the water.

Byron Bay
Then me and the girls went and walked around doing what girls do best, shopping. We all ate chilli burrito. It was huge, I only ate about half. Continued to walk around and we found a place where we could get some margarittas. Watched some surfies surfing.

Adam back on the coach telling us about some of the things to look out for some things not to say. He taught us the term "taking the piss" or "to take the piss" is an expression meaning to mock, tease, ridicule, or scoff. The are you serious or are you taking the piss?

You could be:
pissed off-angry
on the piss-drinking
full of piss-drinking   so out of respect of someone you take the piss out of them

The Big Prawn
On our way to Novotel Coffs Harbour we spot the big prawn. You do not want to be called a prawn, all it means is all good from the neck down but dosnt have exactly the face of an angel LOL
I love Tim Tams!

At the hotel get ready for dinner, wait around the lobby with my team and have a rum&coke just to tide me over till dinner. We had hot chocolate with Tim Tams (addictive chocolate). Had good meal and then went to room and organized all my things...

June 30th 2011

The Ultimate Dog Tease, huge hit on
long travel days
Had big brekky around 7:30, left round 8 I believe? We had a big day of traveling to Sydney. Seven to nine hour coach drive. We had breaks every once in a while. But we watched videos (the big dog tease for one) on the big screen, listened to iPod and chatted with people around me who were awake. We stopped at a store/mall place and ate some lunch, most people got kababs, but I ate some good chinese food. Continued on with our trivia questions and asking the people around if they knew what the first animal to live in AUS? it was a toughy but the answer was the dingo.

After that we continued are long journey we had two-three hours left to Sydney. I was able to talk to my mom on the phone, which I sort of broke down. I dont know why but just hearing her voice and knowing Im so far from home just made my heart ache. Missed my family but I didnt want to go home just yet.
The thing that looks like big KFC
bucket is the Sydney Tower

We made it we are in Sydney, Australia! Got to our hotel and dropped stuff off, put on good walking shoes and started walking. Our hotel was near pretty much everything, just a couple minute walking your in Hyde Park, or the Sydney Tower... Thats where we were off to, the Sydney Tower. One of the tallest towers. When we were up there we signed up for the SkyWalk, tell you more about that later. Took a few pictures got a few souviners and then went back downstairs on to dinner.

We ate a real cool restaurant where we had margaritta pizzas, kangaroo pizzas, and some good old fashioned hot wings. It was a fun night, the weather wasnt too bad, perfect for walking late at night.

Macquaries Hotel
Went back to hotel and changed and met up with Heather accross the street at Macquaries Hotel. There was a nice little brewery there and live music, so you could say we had a good time. Had one or two rum&cokes, with Heather. We had a blast!

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Surfers Paradise Part2 Day 9

          Woke from our deep slumber, ready for another day, we ate brekky as usual. Then outside the hotel we went. Getting situated for our Surfers Paradise Rainforest all-day Tour.

The 4WD Car we took up to Mt. Tamborine
     Took 4WD vehicle and drove to Mt. Tamborine,
 Lamington, and Springbrook National Park.

First Koala

First Roos of the day
Spotted our first kangaroos and koalas.  Walked around for a bit.

Me in front of waterfall at
the T.N. Park
Went somewhere to have scones with butter and jam and good cuppa coffee

Our guide took us to Tamborine National Park and so we walked around in the rainforest, was beautiful. And we walked to a nice little waterfall.

I got the hang of it after first few times
you should have seen the bruise on my arm
  Had lunch and then learned how to crack a whip and to throw a boomerang... All in the wrist...

The bridge at O'Rillys
 After that was all done and takin care of we went to O'Reilly's-Tree Top Walk


O'Rillys feeding some birds

Fed some birds at O'Rillys. Some people decided to put some seed on their head, and then a bird would swoop down right on top. It was fun being able to feed different types of animals on the trip.
Went souviner shopping with the girls for a while. I tried out the R.S.L Club for small dinner. Met back up with Heather and Dani and did some much needed laundry.

Fun in Fraser Island and then Surfers Paradise! Day 7-8

Watch for Dingos
 Free day today! We still had brekky around 8AM. But to us it felt good to sleep in.

   So Maria, Heather, Dani, Gloria and myself went exploring. The beach, the sand, the water felt wonderful. Signs saying to keep watch for Dingoes. But we were not able to see any that day, we did see a whole army of crabs. When you get too close they burrow themselves in sand.

Had lunch at the Sand Bar where some bought fish and chips. Surrounded by kookaburras while enjoying our meal.

Just chillin on a nice day in
 front of our pool
Bought some souviners, and we all sceduled to get massages that day, but it turned out our masseuse was ill... no worries. All layed down watched some tv and then decided to go to pool and layout and get some sun. It was good to relax by the pool.
My yummy lamb ravioli
Alrighty dinner! It was absolutely delicious. We ordered a platter for our table that consisted of emu, roo, and croc. The emu was my favourite out of the three. I ordered the lamb ravioli, it was really good.

Adam was round the corner so we asked what he did all day and just chatted before we all left for our seperate rooms.

                  The next morning I cant remember the time we got up or left for the Ferry. Had fun and enjoyed the view. I really want to come back here sometime soon, I had discovered too late the beach volleyball courts, oh well, no worries.
One of many houses we passed in
 Drove along Queensland looking at houses, some looked like bungalows.
Watching our seal show
        Went to Underwater World in Mooloolaba, Sunshine Coast. We saw a seal show, saw very interesting creatures of the deep. Saw some sharks, there was a little area above us that held baby hammerhead sharks. Shopped or atleast looked at what they had... Then we walked around and had some lunch.
The Hard Rock Cafe
Headed downtown to Surfers Paradise (tourist central) on our coach and drove around for a bit to get a feel for town, and got to the hotel. Put our stuff away and headed out on the town. We found the Hard Rock Cafe and looked at souviners. Continued our search for more souvies.
Our hotel The Vibe
in Surfers Paradise

         Left for hotel and had a buffet dinner.    Had a wonderful dessert with some fun people. 

Then Heather and I went and got our suits on and found the hot tub. The jets were broken and it wasnt really hot, more lukewarm.

We Are Going to Australia!! Day 6

8 AM wake up call had a really good sleep had some brekky with Gloria and Maria. After that we went back to our rooms and packed up bags, and made up smaller bag for our two day adventure in Fraser Island.

This is the Kingsfisher Ferry that took us to Fraser Island
Took the Kingsfisher ferry to our Resort, took about forty to fifty minutes. It was so beautiful even though it was a little windy, but that didnt bother anyone too much. Took some great shots of island and some fun ones with the group.
Gloria and I having girl talk on ferry.

Hopped on long bus-train that took our group to the main building. Sat down to recieve further instructions and safety procaussions while on Fraser Island. Recieved our keys and off we went.

Our wonderful rooms
We had free time until dinnertime. So dropped off my bag in my room and headed for Dani and Heathers room. They had a good view from their room of the lagoon. We decided to go to pool and hang out there then hopped in hot tub.We watched TV (happy days and the brady bunch) had a little something to drink and just had fun with eachother.

Now dinnertime was arriving, so we all got dressed up and headed to the buffet: pizza, veggies...and some goodies... had plenty of water.

Went on our nature walk and saw big bats flying about our heads. The Sand Bar was playing music, so we took the opportunity and danced as we continued to walk.

Our walkway to our rooms
Back to our rooms changed, made drinks and went right back to the hot tub and pool. Met up with some of the other guys from North Carolina. It was so much fun, we had a blast. Adam came and sat by the hot tub and talked to us all. It was good seeing him relaxed.

Bedtime only the girls next door were so noisy that I didnt bother to knock on their door, so went over to Dani and Heathers and they said I could crash there.