Queensland Journals

Far Side of the World, Part II

A May 2006 trip to Queensland by c_rau

Avacado Farm Photo, More Photos
Quote: Welcome to Australian Farm Country.

Far Side of the World, Part II

Overview

Avacado Farm Photo,
Quote:
For the second part of my trip, I stayed with my best friend and life-long pen pal, Leeona, and her family. We have been writing (now emailing) since third grade, and after 30 years, we finally got to meet face to face.Quick Tips: Australians don't say breakfast, lunch, or dinner; every meal is "tea." Fillet (as in fish fillet) is pronouned fill-LET, and they will look at you funny if say fillet as the French do. Vegemite is not that bad...in small doses; just don't eat it by the spoonful. The preferred use is like putting jam on toast with a little butter. Quite good!Best Way To Get Around: We spent hours (and I mean hours) in the car. However, it's easy to get around and towns aren...Read More

Hilton Brisbane

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Hotel

Quote:
The Downtown Hilton in Brisbane was a fabulous location to stay because it’s right in the middle of all the action. The Queens Street pedestrian mall was at the hotel’s back door, and from there you could get anywhere in the city. Because Brisbane was such a business and financial center, this is a business hotel: very stuffy, very dry, but very clean. I was only there for 1 night and all I needed was a clean towel and hot shower, so this place was great. Also, I needed a central location. Sure, I could have stayed at an airport hotel and saved the cab fare, but how boring would that have been? At the Hilton, I was able to spend my afternoon walking around this beautiful city. I walked for 4 hours!...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on September 11, 2006

Hilton Brisbane
190 Elizabeth St
Brisbane, Australia
610732342000

Horney Critter

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Restaurant

Horney Critter Photo, Queensland, Australia
Quote:
The Horney Critter restaurant was a family-style place just a few minutes drive from Childers. You can’t miss the big crab painted on the front. Like most places in Australia, you ordered your meal from a front counter with the menu posted on the wall above the register. Then you went into the bar to purchase your drinks. We chose to eat on the porch, and although it was chilly, the heat lamps made us comfortable.I ordered an Australian staple, fish-and-chips, which came with a slaw salad. I was definitely the best fish-and-chips of the trip, mainly because it was a secret recipe batter that was freshly cooked. My friend’s husband ordered oysters and steak. The oysters came on a huge platter; there...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on September 11, 2006

Horney Critter
Bruce Highway
Southern Queensland
+61 (07) 4126-1216

Australia Zoo

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Attraction

Australia Zoo Photo, Queensland, Australia
Quote:
The Australia Zoo, home of Steve "Crikey" Irwin, is a beautiful zoo, very well kept and well staffed with knowledgeable people and natural-looking habitats. Staff members are posted at each exhibit, so if you have any questions about an animal, you can ask. We saw wallabies, platypuses, and even a Tasmanian devil. Something my friends pointed out to me is that Steve himself admits he’s rich from all his TV shows, but most of what he makes goes right back into this zoo, and it shows. The zoo has expanded many times. This zoo is his pride and joy, and he wants to do right by the animals. Commercial? Yes. Expensive? Yes. Exploitative? Possibly. But the Australia Zoo is one of the few places you will see...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on September 11, 2006

Australia Zoo
Glass House Mountains Tourist Drive
Queensland, Australia 4519
+61 (7) 5436 2000

Bundaberg Rum Distillery

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Attraction

Bundaberg Rum Distillery Photo, Bundaberg, Australia
Quote:
Bundaberg Rum is an Australian institution, one that had been around since 1888. The tour costs A$9, and there are some requirements. You cannot wear open-toed shoes, which we forgot and had to rent a pair for $20. This money was refunded when the shoes were returned. The guides gathered us on the back porch to tell us what to expect on the tour. Mostly they wanted to warn us the property was surrounded by electric fence and you cannot take ANY battery operated devices, including watches, cell phones, and CAMERAS! Hence, no pictures.The tour starts off in the mash building where everyone got to sample unfiltered molasses. It doesn’t look appetizing, but it tastes good. The mash looked and smelled l...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on September 11, 2006

Bundaberg Rum Distillery
Whitttred St.
Bundaberg, Australia 4670
+61 (7) 4131-2900

Antique Car Rally

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Story/Tip

Quote:
My friend’s in-laws arranged to have an Antique Car Rally in honor of my visit. They are members of the Bundaberg Antique Car Club, and my understanding is they use any excuse to have a car rally, even the visit of a goofy American. We met at a public parking lot near the Bundaberg River, where I met my driver, Geoff, and his 1926 Austin. Sweet ride! Geoff explained that because his car was made before 1930, it qualifies as an Antique, whereas cars made after that are Classics. The car was made in England and brought to Australia many years after it was made. My friend’s in-laws’ car was too small for all of us to fit in, so I did not ride in their car.I was told that only four or five cars were sc...Read More

Biggest Morning Tea

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Story/Tip

Biggest Morning Tea Photo, Bundaberg, Australia
Quote:
On the third morning of my visit, a friend of my friend's mother-in-law had organized a morning tea, which was part of a nationwide fund raiser for the Australian Cancer Society. It was called the "Biggest Morning Tea," and the idea was for at least 1 million people in the country to sit down to tea at the same time (11am) on the same day (May 25), and if all these people also donated $1, then the Cancer Society would raise 1 million dollars for cancer research. What a concept and what a great way to meet some local Bundaberg residents. Upon arrival at the lovely ranch house in the Bundaberg suburbs, we were shown to the backyard where a large tent had been put up to shield us all from the sun. On ...Read More