Feeling HOT HOT HOT!

Trip Start Nov 09, 2012
1
5
31
Trip End Mar 04, 2013


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Where I stayed
Paravista Motel, Parap
What I did
Crocosaurus Cove
Fannie Bay Goal

Flag of Australia  , Northern Territory,
Monday, November 26, 2012

On
a Boeing 717-200 again – still my least favourite type of aircraft,
and other's seem to feel the same way as the flight is barely a
quarter full... We're en route to Cairns from Darwin, leaving a
ridiculously hot city – of circa 35 degrees plus 80% humidity to a
slightly cooler and less humid city (it'll be 26 degrees at 11pm when
we land).

So
we've had 5 days in Darwin and it's been hot. So hot that within a
few minutes of being outside, we were covered in sweat – and since
we booked our hotel in the suburbs of the city – we did a LOT of
walking into the city centre and surrounding area.

We
were assaulted by hot, humid air as soon as we alighted the aircraft
on Tuesday and it took a few moments for my lungs to adjust to the
lack of breathable air l– we got a taxi to the hotel with a very
grumpy taxi driver – and found our hotel was nowhere near the town
centre (but within budget). The rest of Tuesday was spent
contemplating how on earth we were gonna exist in the heat, getting
beers in from the local 'supermarket' (if you can call it that) –
and watching football on Fox Sports :-) After our bug experience in
Alice Springs, we weren't surprised when we saw the Gecko on the
ceiling – in fact I was grateful it wasn't a snake or a spider...

On
Wednesday we went into town to a place called Crocasaurus Cove and
saw some big adult and juvenile crocs – as well as some rather
large snakes (Debs stayed outside for the snake bit...) We fed some
juvenile cros with bits of meat on the end of a fishing line which
was cool, and watched the keepers feed the larger crocodiles. Only
later did we realise that it was actually quite cruel – keeping
them out of their natural habitat in quite small, concrete floored
tanks, and teasing the crocs with food so that tourists could take
pictures of them snapping and jumping...

After
croc cove we did some shopping on Mitchell and Smith Street – we
spent quite a long time in the air conditioned malls – for some
respite to the heat outside. We then walked down to the harbourside,
where there is a wave pool and small beach and seaside area which is
protected from the crocs – but we were warned that this was known
as the 'local toilet' so didn't venture in. We found a Nandos and I
got really excited for red pepper dip but was disappointed that they
don't do it over here – strike 2 for Emigration to Oz, - one,
Domino’s pizzas are disgusting, two, no red pepper dip!

We
walked for an hour or so to watch the sunset at Mindil beach – but
when we got there, decided that it wasn't safe as we were some ways
from home, it was getting dark and the area was busy with Aboriginals
– not that there's anything wrong with Aboriginals, but with two
extremely attractive ladies alone in a secluded area in a foreign
land – common sense has to win out (well – Debs did, I wanted to
stay to watch the sunset).

Whilst
in the local Coles supermarket I happened upon a Cadbury's Snack
Block and this little gem cancels out the Dominos and Nandos
negatives. This bar contains different flavoured chocs – caramel,
coconut, strawberry, pineapple, turkish delight and orange and is
sooooo lush! We ate one bar in a couple of days and I had to go and
buy more as a stash in case the East Coat doesn't have any.

On
the Thursday we were recommended a restaurant beside the sea so went
there for lunch and had what has to be the biggest portion of food
we've ever had – absolutely ridiculous! Well – we paid good
money for it so we had to eat it but it was a good hour before either
of us could move – but we didn't mind, the views of aqua seas,
waves lapping at the shore and blue skies made it worthwhile :-)
After lunch we walked in what must have been a million degree heat to
a 19th century jail called Fannie Bay Gaol – about a 4
mile walk – only to find that they shut early – so we had to walk
back again – but on the way back found a little gem of a sailing
club which had the most relaxing views over the ocean and spent most
of the afternoon in the pub watching Australia v South Africa test
cricket :-)

One
of the main reasons for visiting Darwin was to visit the Litchfield
National Park which we did on the Friday – with lovely Maree, the
tour guide. We visited 3 waterfalls, Florence Falls, Tolmer Falls
and Wangi Falls, saw 8 foot Cathedral termite mounds (grass eating
termites) and some magnetic termite mounds (they face North) and then
visited Buley Rock Hole. The weather was overcast which meant it was
cooler and less humid otherwise I think we may have died –
especially on our treks up and down dale to waterfall summits! It
was a beautiful place, with lots of lovely scenery, natural habitat
and wild animals (saw a few wallabies) and was well worth a visit and
a highlight of our time in Darwin.

Our
last full day in Darwin was stormy, with thunder, lightening and hot
rain. We made it to Fannie Bay (in opening hours this time) ahead of
the storm, and saw how prisoners in the 19th & 20th
centuries were kept in disturbing conditions – in small cells with
no ventilation – and even saw where some prisoners were hanged, and
their unmarked graves just outside the 'death row' building. Whilst
at the jail, the storm passed over and we saw some wicked lightening
– and decided to postpone our hour walk into the town centre to go
back to the sailing club – where we spent a couple of very lovely
hours beside the sea, watching the lightening pass over the city
centre in the distance. This also meant that we were no longer
walking in the hottest part of the day (again) and instead of melting
on the road, had a lovely walk down to the Esplanade which was
similar to Plymouth – but with much much much better weather...

Today
we had to check out and get to the airport – but managed to fit in
the new James Bond Skyfall movie – aaahhh, good old James Bond –
saving the day again. Although – the cinema only sold salted
popcorn... WTF? :0

Overall
Darwin was a nice city, the city centre was nicer than the
surrounding suburbs – with Litchfield – and Kakadu National Parks
two very good reasons to visit the area – I don't think it's
somewhere we'd return to or want to live – so we're happy to be en
route to Cairns.

Cairns
isn't as hot or humid although it's still tropical – it's not as
severe as the Northern Territory – and we have lots of adventures
to do there, we'll be going to Karunda, a small forest community up
on the top Tablelands – reaching it by cable car, snorkelling at
the outer reefs (sea sickness be damned), visiting Green and Fitzroy
Islands – and perhaps what we're most excited about, sunbathing on
the Esplanade, beside the sea water pool and bars with our Kindles!
:-) :-) :-)

We
were supposed to be staying a hostel for our time in Cairns – but
decided that we were far too precious and have booked ourselves in to
a deluxe apartment in the centre of town – It turns out we're not
backpackers at all but princesses... How long we can afford to live
in luxury I don't know – so we'll enjoy it while it lasts...

So...
next stop – Toddiiieeesss – fair'dincum – innit Debs!?!


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