Our last day in Cairns we decided we had not snorkelled the reef enough so we went out with Quicksilver to the Agincourt Reef on the Quicksilver VIII which is a large wavepiercer catamaran. We had to drive to Port Douglas to board the cruise so an early rise was required. The day was perfect and we had a king low tide which happens only once or twice a year. A king tide is an exceptionally high/low tide and it left about 30cm of coral exposed above the sea. There was no wind and the sea was like a mirror so the snorkelling was outstanding and we met more 'Nemos'.
The next day we left to move on south and ended up in a lovely caravan park in South Mission Beach. There are signposts to be careful of cassowarys everywhere but we never saw one :-( We spent two nights right on the beach and spent the day relaxing. In the evening we had drinks with John and Margaret, our neighbours and had a wonderful chat - what a lovely couple!
It was with heavy hearts that we left and headed for Townsville. We checked into a caravan park on the beach - not in the same class as Mission Beach but quite adequate although noisy with traffic and all the Rainbow Lorikeets. We did a little drive around town then drove up Castle Hill along with dozens of exercise freaks running and walking up this high hill from which there were spectacular views of the city.
Next day we visited the aquarium which had great tanks of coral and reef fishes, many of which we have seen in the wild. We also took a tour of the turtle hospital where they rescue sick and injured turtles.
We left the next day heading south towards Mackay but ended up in Airlie Beach.
|Agincourt Reef platform|
|Agincourt Reef from the platform|
|A King Low tide exposed the reef by about 30cm|
|Parrot fish and Cleaner Wrasse|
|Platform from which you embark on your reef activities|
|Sunset on Mission Beach|
|Townsville from Castle Rock|
|Aquarium with a few Leopard Sharks|
|Green Python in the aquarium!|