Australia

Posted from Sydney, New South Wales, Australia.

Sydney, 4.6 million people

A wonderful city with so many facets. Central Business District and Kings Cross where almost 24 hours something is going on, with endless shopping malls, food courts, clubs and bars. On the other hand, the charmingly quiet Paddington, Potts Point, with chic boutiques, cafes and interesting individual galleries. A cosmopolitan city with perfect beaches and toned surfers and residents coming from every corner of this world. Varied, lively, trendy and with at least one gluten-free offer on each menu card (VG was clear, but it have some days needed until we have understood what GF means :-) )

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After months, we have reached the point where we no longer could look at. Pinky and Greeny, day after day, week after week, month after month:

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We had to act before proper aggression could arise, and we would somehow mutually cause us pain, for example biting (I hereby would like to express my solidarity with Luis Suarez, from time to time you have to just bite)!

After we've seen in Sydney recognize Jackets replacement, the joy was boundless and we were like new love :-)

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Another moving event was the decision that Andy's world famous Lost Cap, due to very heavy wear, was not allowed to travel with for longer. The loss was great, but the gap could be closed quickly:

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But I wanted which was, as always too big for my head:

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Of course we also have made even more important as new clothes us, such as expired the whole city, visited museums and the Opera House admired during the light festival:

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Or ever looked past the Swiss Bakerz :-)

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In Sydney we bought a bus ticket towards the north to Cairns, of course, with lots of stops to explore the entire East Coast.

As in June, the whale season has begun, we really wanted to try the giants up close look at and have traveled to Port Stephens. Unfortunately wanted none of these impressive animals jump really out of the water so that we could have seen its full glory. For some water splashes, back and flippers's but has been enough :-) and dolphins have surfaced again and again!

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Every year in winter draw up to 17 meters long and the 45-ton humpback whales (Humpback Whales), along the eastern and western coasts of Australia, from the Antarctic to the subtropical waters. In warm waters they mate and give birth to their young. On our whole trip along the east coast we could see the animals repeatedly seen in the distance.

Port Stephens is not only known for whale watching tours, but also for the huge, not really unsociable pelicans:

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Next, we were in the cities of Port Macquarie and Coffs Harbour, where we observed hundreds of bats and have discovered beautiful and secluded beaches.

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And then finally it happened and the bus stopped in Byron Bay, one of my dream destinations, since it was my first time in Australia for nearly ten years ago. Although it rained every day, we enjoyed a week in this particular town to the fullest. The special thing about Byron Bay is the strong cohesion of its inhabitants. It is all done to ensure that local products sold and business ideas will be encouraged. The best thing though is that Byron Bay is probably one of the few cities nationwide (or even worldwide), where hardly can take a chain store foot. The people fight back with all means against MacDonald's and Co., which ensures that the town does not lose its hippie and surfer charm.

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But also the hinterland of Byron Bay is absolutely worth seeing:

Minyon Falls:

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On the way to this waterfall Andy has almost run over a snake! After a monster cry on my part (followed by several minutes of shock) and a screeching halt by Andy, we could drive around the huge thing. Although we are of course aware that there are more than enough snakes in Australia, I was then not as well as we should get out of the car to wander through the forest!

We had really hoped to see on this tour a couple of kangaroos in the wild, instead of that?:

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Brisbane, 2 million inhabitants

From Byron Bay we drove to two nights in Surfers Paradise to Brisbane where we were greeted by Marc, a former Swisscom colleagues of Andy and Melanie. The two have been living for four years in Australia and were so generous to include us in your home. But not only that, they surprised us even with 1 kilo of the best raclette cheese ... and we have all eaten :-)

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Almost every night was announced by 2 clock in the morning meeting Sofa: World Cup in Australia :-) ! The positive on the nightly television schedule was that we had during the day plenty of time to explore the city. We were on the Brisbane River are, strolled through markets and hundred Frässstände and were one of the major rugby games at the public viewing experience.

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Thank you both again for your time and generosity, we have enjoyed the week in Brisbane very much! And you Marc again congratulations on your sack strong performance in the marathon! Thumbs up!

In the vicinity of Brisbane is also the Lone Pine Sanctuary, a wonderful zoo, where you can get close to koalas, kangaroos and wombats:

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The first photo with our firstborn :-)

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Waiting for the bus ...

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We now also know how to shear sheep, and that this is one of the toughest jobs in the world!

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From Brisbane we traveled to Coolum, a small little town just before Noosa, where we found at Michael and Kristy shelter. The two we have learned to know at that time in Mexico in the jungle. Again, it was nice to once again feel at home, to cook in a real kitchen in the evening and cozy to sit on the sofa.

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Also I have given everything and done the only thing I've ever accomplished in a kitchen. My infamous lemon cake!

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even the Australians have eaten!

Although Noosa is worth more for well-heeled people, but definitely worth a visit. The beaches and national parks are incredibly beautiful, and of course there are a lot of good restaurants and countless shopping opportunities.

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After a short stop in Hervey Bay ...

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Nights ... in Airlie Beach and Townsville, we have arrived in Cairns, the northernmost major city on the east coast. From here we went to the largest reef in the world, the Great Barrier Reef:

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We have seen also crocodiles in the Daintree River and hiked through the rainforest in Cape Tribulation.

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Also from Cairns we took the 100-year-old "Kuranda Scenic Railway" through the rainforest in the lying 330 meters town of Kuranda.

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Australia is a beautiful country. We have never seen so many beautiful and deserted beaches as here. The varied landscape, from dry desert to humid rainforests, koalas, kangaroos and countless other animals and land, and an incredible diversity of species on the Great Barrier Reef. Australia is a unique country in which you definitely can spend months, and always discover something new. The sad side of the country, as we find described in the documentary "Utopia" by John Pilger very good: John Pilger website .

Indigenous Australians have been displaced and lives today in the margins of society, often in inhumane conditions. It is frightening to see that immigrants from all over the world for the most part peacefully coexist life and work, but somehow the Aborigines have no place in this society.

After nearly seven weeks Australia, we are now the last two days in Sydney before we fly to Bangkok. We are very delighted also to discover the last continent of our trip!

More photos from Australia can be found here: Australia Gallery

Summary Australia
Population: 23'130'000 inhabitants
Duration: 05/25/14 to 07/10/14
Used Beds: 14

Pressed silk ...

Andy and Carol