Okay so anyways, on to the more interesting part, we woke up pretty early and walked down to the harbor where we were catching our cruise out to the reef for the day. The boat was pretty big and was awesome for snorkelling etc. I was going to try scuba diving, but it kind of ended up being too much money and I wanted to see as much as I could on my own. So after getting all our gear set up we headed off to the reef! The ride out was really pretty, here are some pictures!
So, As you can see there were mountains all around as well as the crystal clear water... it was amazing. Once we got out to the reef they set us up with some jelly fish suits... they were probably one of the goofiest things I have ever worn. There are jellyfish out on the reef around Cairns called Erikanji (Sp?) and they are super super small. If they sting you, you basically have an hour to get to a hospital before you die. So wearing them was kind of necessary. Here is a picture of the group of us in them!
|Neon fish in the shallow reef|
|The Cuda... you can blame me for being scared|
So once we got back into the harbor we got dinner and chilled out, because we had to wake up at 6 the next morning to go white water rafting! Waking up was a little difficult and none of us were too thrilled to sit on a bus for 3 hours and drive into the depths of the rainforest, but I don't think I will ever have an experience like that one. Driving in (after sleeping a little) was actually really interesting. I don't know how many of you heard about cyclone Yasi, but it went right through where we drove and you could definitely see the effects of it. There were houses torn down, banana fields were torn to shreds and even the rainforest was pretty bare. Our guides to us that the rainforest is usually a lot more full, but considering we went only a week after the cyclone, it was still pretty damaged. We were put into groups on the bus and then were told to get equipment etc.. It was just us 4 in a group with our instructor. But we warned him...we are not a bunch of girlie girls. White water rafting was and I think will be one of the best experiences of my life. At first I was a little nervous, mostly bc I had no idea what animals lived in the river, but I got over it and had the time of my life. The river we went down was smack dab in the middle of the rainforest and again, because of the cyclone the rapids were huge! Our guide also loved us and taught us how to flip the raft and other things that the "extreme" group was doing. I seriously can't even explain how excited I was/ still am about the whole thing. The river was 10km long and we did it in two parts. It took about 5 hours, but I could have stayed on there forever. Here are some pictures of that... check out my facebook for actually pictures of us rafting that the photographer took- theyre pretty awesome.
|Jackie holding the raft on the rocks we jumped off of|
|my hot gear|
|Cairns from the air|
|Us girls at the beginning..|