Finally in a New City

Trip Start Sep 05, 2005
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Where I stayed

Flag of Australia  ,
Tuesday, May 23, 2006

The evening in the airport had been rather dull. Darwin airport isn't the biggest I have ever been too and there was very little of interest to do. I had been certain that I would be flying out on the 23rd but the question was on which flight? Tiger Airways to Singapore or a domestic flight? I decided on the later and a flight to Brisbane although it had been a close run thing. Australia had been bugging me recently, mainly money issues, and we just though, "let's fly to Asia, spend a month in Laos and go home!".

Decided that would be pointless, but good fun, and I want to get out of Aus and see more of the world not backtrack! If I was staying in Aus I needed to go where the work was. I can't be bothered to find a proper job in the city so it needs to be fruit picking. Dave is flying to Perth, where there is no work, and I knew I needed to go the other way to Queensland. It was a toss up between Cairns and Brisvegas and the later won out, only money wise.

So I got the bus to the airport at 11:30pm ahead of my 1:10am flight. Well it should have been 1:10 but the plane hadn't even landed by then. Finally boarded at 2:30 and tried to get some sleep. Had a whole row of 3 chairs in which to spread out yet still only got about 10 minutes sleep.

Coming in to land wasn't exactly the smoothest journey I've ever had. Think the first episode of "Lost" without the tail falling off and you're close! OK that's a slight exaggeration but people were falling over in the aisles and someone was screaming, "Are we down! Are we on the ground!", down the back of the plane! Er...no. We were still thousands of feet in the air coming through the thick cloud layer. Once through the clouds it was smooth sailing and a good landing.

I was knackered and in serious need of sleep. It was 6:30am by the time I had got to my chosen hostel, although I hadn't bothered to book and they were still full. Went next door to the huge City Backpackers and managed to check in fine. The hostel seemed OK (free Internet, onsite pub, good views) but I can't say I really liked Brisbane on first impressions. It reminded me of London, and not the reasonably nice central section but the dirty, grittier out skirts. I was also staying in a 32 bed dorm and everyone was looking at me like an outsider when I arrived. A bit unnerving but I put it to the back of my mind and went to sleep.

When I woke up I had decided that I didn't wish to stay in Brisbane much longer than I needed so hit out to see the sights. Who knew, it could be my only day in Brisbane, so I followed the walking tour in the bible. Don't normally do it very often but I wanted to see all the big sights.

So I set off along Roma street until I came to the City Hall. A lovely old building, in fact most of the buildings in the city were pretty nice, which is now a museum and you can take the lift to the top of the clock tower (free) so of course I did. Reasonable views of the city so worth it, can't turn down a freebie!

Carried on walking around checking out the 19th century architecture and multitude of park lands before crossing the bridge to South Bank. The South Bank area was pretty nice. Loads of parkland to walk through, including an impressive archway covered in plants, meandering around the river which dissects the city. All of a sudden you come to the artificial Streets (Walls in UK, as in ice cream) Beach. Quite weird really, especially as there was a swimsuit photo shoot for a magazine (Ralph or Zoo probably) going on.

After chilling for a while I carried on past a Nepalese Pagoda before walking back to the hostel. The city really isn't as bad as I first thought but it's still not a place I wish to spend too long. Spent the rest of the day relaxing in the TV room catching up on loads of programmes I hadn't seen in ages.
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