Sydney Journals

Australia - We Were Robbed!!!!

Best of IgoUgo

A November 2000 trip to Sydney by kiminhalifax

Kuranda Skyrail Photo, Cairns, Australia More Photos
Quote: Sydney, Cairns, and Ayers Rock - we dove, rode camels, and walked our way through the golden triangle of Australia!!

Australia - We Were Robbed!!!!

Overview

Sydney Photo, Sydney, Australia
Quote:
Read on ...... There is a lot of info in the "XXX and surroundings" entries -- these are basically a blow by blow version of our trip. But, kangaroos, koalas, and echidnas are great to see & touch & feed Nurse Sharks and Sea Turtles are great to dive with. The country/continent is beautiful and wonderful -- truly the Land of Oz is a magical kingdom. Ayers Rock is the hottest, stickiest place on the plant, but you HAVE to see it!! My favorite locale would be Cairns - a lot of diving, a lot of outdoorsy type things. I would move to Manly Beach without a 2nd thought!!Quick Tips: Make friends with the Australians!! They are won...Read More
Quote:
Rooms were in need of renovations - straight out of the 70s!! The security cameras in the lobby do not work. The elevators are slow. The bell-person is extremely slow to pick up bags OR call a cab.

The location is good -- at the bottom of Hyde Park -- within walking distance to basically everything that is in Sydney. We learn that there is a bit of crime in the area, but right around the corner are 5 star hotels!

Overall - good place, not great, I probably wouldn''t stay there again.

Member Rating 2 out of 5 on October 27, 2001

Oxford Koala Hotel
Cnr Oxford & Pelican Streets
Sydney, Australia

Quote:
Beautiful - these people are stars in the accommodations world!!

Clean rooms, stylish furnishings, laundry on site, lovely restaurant in the hotel, quiet surroundings, 20 minute walk to "downtown" area, color tv, kettle, mini-fridge, dishes in rooms - we bought cereal and ate in the room for breakfast.

Outdoors was a lovely pool with a waterfall in it.

I recommend this place highly and only wish that I can go back -- it''s a star!!!

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on October 27, 2001

Fig Tree Lodge
253 Sheridan St.
Cairns, Queensland, Australia 4078
61 7-4041-0000

Ayers Rock Resort Campground & Cabins

Hotel | "Ayers Rock Resort Campground & Cabins"

Quote:
The cheapest place to stay with a roof in this sun-baked place.

Small cabins with small kitchenette, bunk beds in one room and double bed in the other. Washrooms are clean, but shared, and you must go outside to get to them. They are relatively close to all the cabins.

No complaints about the cabin - it was air-conditioned which was what mattered while we were there. Holy God it was hot!!!!

Not much room to move about, but it did the job.

I think next time I would pay the extra $ and stay at one of the hotels.

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on October 27, 2001

Ayers Rock Resort Campground & Cabins
Ayers Rock
Sydney, Australia
+61 8 8956 2055

Quote:
Take the skyrail from Cairns to Kuranda for awesome views over the rainforest.





Kuranda is a tourist souvenir mecca, but you can also pick up authentic masks and historical items at Doongal Aboriginal Art & Artifact Gallery. Know your prices before you buy!!





Other things to do: An aviary, nature park, butterfly sanctuary, Kuranda Wildlife noctarium, bird world, and Australian Beetle & Insect World!! Wow!!





Someone will also teach you to use your pricey new digeridoo.







Member Rating 2 out of 5 on October 27, 2001

Skyrail Rainforest Cableway

Attraction | "Kuranda Skyrail"

Kuranda Skyrail Photo, Cairns, Australia
Quote:
The Kuranda Skyrail is another gondola ride – this time over the rainforest – broken into 3 land segments:
1) guided rainforest ranger walk discussing rainforest trees & plants
2) lookoff for a waterfall & the old power generating station, and an interpretive centre
3) Kuranda village

This is a very nice ride -- beautiful scenery and peaceful. I enjoyed the rainforest walk with the very attractive rainforest ranger.

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on October 27, 2001

Skyrail Rainforest Cableway

Cairns, Queensland

Frontier Camel Tours

Attraction | "Frontier Camel Tours - Sunset Tour"

Frontier Camel Tours Photo, Sydney, Australia
Quote:
The bus for the Frontier Camel Tour picks us up at 6pm – Andrew and I are given a camel each. We ride 45 minutes for a view of sunset and Ayers Rock. The sky turns amazing colors – we can see the Olgas (another rock formation) in the distance – they also turn colors that can not de described. Ayers Rock is not remarkable this evening due to the cloud cover (one cloud can ruin the whole thing!). We ride 15 minutes back to the camp and watch the guide desaddle the camels. We are given a drink (wine, beer, etc.) along with emu sausage and other assorted odd snacks.
We are taken back to the cabin at 9pm.

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on October 27, 2001

Frontier Camel Tours
Ayers Rock Resort
Sydney, Australia

AAT Kings Sydney Day Tours

Best Of IgoUgo

Attraction | "AAT Kings - Ayers Rock Sunrise & Climb Tour"

AAT Kings Sydney Day Tours Photo, Sydney, Australia
Quote:
OK – this is getting a little out of hand – a 4:20am pickup for sunrise at Ayers Rock. Now we get to see the Rock in action – it does actually glow! It changes color constantly for an hour before sunrise, then there’s 2 minutes or so that the rock has a life of its own. The bus then takes us to the Climb area – we are set free to climb it or to take a guided tour of the base. We have said we would climb it, but after 200 feet or so, I give up – it’s too steep for my liking. It seems as if I have given up at a point called Chicken Rock – a usual stopping point for those not so foolish. However, Andrew continues with my blessing and disappears from sight in a few minutes – it’s a long way up ...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on October 27, 2001

AAT Kings Sydney Day Tours
Shop W1, Corner Alfred Street and Wharf No. 6
Sydney, Australia 2000
+61 (0)2 9252 2788;

Cairns Dive Centre

Best Of IgoUgo

Attraction

Cairns Dive Centre Photo, Sydney, Australia
Quote:
We are greeted by the crew in a very military manner – put your stuff here, hurry, eat lunch, hurry, we need to check your certification, hurry, put on dive gear, hurry, in the water (finally we get to relax)!! We are lumped in with divers who have only their beginning certification and only 4 dives. Not too impressed. We are advanced divers and want to do advanced dives without worrying about idiots who may just kill themselves. The clientele seemed to be mostly backpackers who wanted to be able to say they dove the Great Barrier Reef – not that they were there specifically on the boat to dive the Great Barrier Reef. The room on the boat allowed you to turn around without hitting anything ...Read More

Member Rating 2 out of 5 on October 27, 2001

Cairns Dive Centre
121 Abbott Street
Sydney, Australia

Tusa Dive

Attraction

Quote:
Very professional - they gave us lunch and a snack on the way to the dive site. Good briefings.

Much better organized than CDC (liveaboard) and better clientele.

2 dives and snorkeling in between. Best snorkeling I have ever experienced!!!

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on October 27, 2001

Tusa Dive
Shields St and the Esplanade
Sydney, Australia

EcoMania

Best Of IgoUgo

Attraction | "Eco Mania"

EcoMania Photo, Sydney, Australia
Quote:
Jungle 4x4 Off-Road Day Tour We start by visiting Lake Morris and the water reserve that supplies Cairns. We off road through the rainforest and hike several times – several plants & trees are pointed out to us, along with an iguana egg. We see a giant fig tree (they can’t tell the age of the trees because the lack of distinct seasons does not produce growth rings) that dwarfs Andrew, termite mounds, and freshwater turtles. We lunch at a campsite where I get to hold a brown tree snake (a venomous snake) and we feed wallabies, kangaroos and see a joey in the pouch. At this point we are going to hike to a waterfall – sounds nice, doesn’t it? I was told it is a hard hike, but I s...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on October 27, 2001

EcoMania

Sydney, Australia

Tjapukai Aboriginal Cultural Park Photo, Cairns, Australia
Quote:
The Tjapukai (pronounced JA-POOH-Ki)is an aboriginal band such as the MicMac or Huron. They have set up an excellent historical display which sells out constantly. There is a history presentation, a creation (how the world came to exist & how they came to exist) presentation, an Aboriginal dance presentation, as well as the shorter presentations – how to play a digeridoo, how to throw a spear and a boomerang, an explanation of foods and medicines of the rainforest (where they live).

This is your chance to throw a spear, a boomerang, or try out a digeridoo!!

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on October 27, 2001

Tjapukai Aboriginal Cultural Park
Western Arterial Road, Caravonica
Cairns, Australia 4878
07 4042 9900

Dive Centre Bondi

Best Of IgoUgo

Attraction

Dive Centre Bondi Photo, Sydney, Australia
Quote:
Another diving day – one that we have been looking forward to for the entire trip! We travel to Bondi Beach to dive with sharks!! Our first dive of the day has wobegones (a type of shark that will rip your arm off – something I didn’t know at the time), grouper, and nudibranches. The second dive is the one we’ve been waiting for – sharks – these guys live in a cave about 45 feet down and sleep during the day. We were their wake up call. There were 6 or 7 big nurse sharks that looked really scary – however this type of shark doesn’t want to eat humans – but were very timid & wished we would leave. We continued on with the dive, after Andrew got a few photos, to see ...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on October 27, 2001

Dive Centre Bondi
192 Bondi Road
Sydney, Australia

Ayers Rock - Uluru

Best Of IgoUgo

Story/Tip

Ayers Rock Photo, Sydney, Australia
Quote:
AYERS ROCK, NORTHERN TERRITORY, AUSTRALIA Tuesday, December 5, 2000 The alarm goes off at 5:30am – ouch! We have to catch the flight at 7am to Ayers Rock. We arrive at 9:30am and it is already too hot to breathe. We limp to the resort shopping centre where, of course, everything is outrageously priced (Hotel rooms in this resort – the only place to stay – range from $200 to $350 per night, we are cheap an have booked a cabin at the campground which has a kitchen, but no bathroom, for $130 per night). After 45 minutes in the outdoors, we are ready for the pool, which is shockingly cold. We head back to the cabin to prepare the meal we purchased at the grocery store – two sandwiches, t...Read More

And then back to Sydney....

Best Of IgoUgo

Story/Tip

Krazy for Koalas Photo, Sydney, Australia
Quote:
SYDNEY, NEW SOUTH WALES, AUSTRALIA Thursday, December 7, 2000 Another diving day – one that we have been looking forward to for the entire trip! We travel to Bondi Beach to dive with sharks!! Our first dive of the day has wobegones (a type of shark that will rip your arm off – something I didn’t know at the time), grouper, and nudibranches. The second dive is the one we’ve been waiting for – sharks – these guys live in a cave about 45 feet down and sleep during the day. We were their wake up call. There were 6 or 7 big nurse sharks that looked really scary – however this type of shark doesn’t want to eat humans – but were very timid & wished we would leave. We continued on...Read More

Sydney & surroundings

Best Of IgoUgo

Story/Tip

Sydney Photo, Sydney, Australia
Quote:
SYDNEY, NEW SOUTH WALES, AUSTRALIA Friday, November 24, 2000 The flight was very comfortable, with good meals and lots of room to stretch out. We arrive in Sydney at 6am, take a cab to the hotel, and check in. No room is ready so we wait for the porter to place our luggage in the hotel lock-up before we head out sightseeing. In the 10 minutes we are waiting for our luggage transfer in the hotel lobby there is a theft!! Andrew’s camera, my camera, the video camera, my airline tickets, passport, driver’s license, bank card, diving certification cards, etc. are stolen out from under us. The bag was there one second and gone the next. We are extremely upset and almost turn aro...Read More

Cairns & surrounding areas

Best Of IgoUgo

Story/Tip

Termite Mound Photo, Sydney, Australia
Quote:
CAIRNS, QUEENSLAND, AUSTRALIA Tuesday, November 28, 2000 We head off to the airport to go to Cairns, which is our "Great Barrier Reef" location. The first thing we do is walk around town to do window shopping. We book a couple of day trips and check federal election results on the internet. We are staying at the Fig Tree Lodge, which is a Jamaican style hotel (décor) with an Irish pub – very odd. Their steaks are great & Andrew decides on the indigenous animal platter – Kangaroo, emu, crocodile, and buffalo (yum!). Wednesday, November 29, 2000 to Friday, December 1, 2000 At 8am the bus picks us up for the dive boat. We will be staying on board for three d...Read More