So now wide awake I grabbed a shower before 6 am. On my return Ian suggested we make for Airlie Port, get parked and have breakfast there. Check-in for the Whitsunday cruise ship was at 7.30am and by 7 am we had found a parking spot which unfortunately wasn't a free one. That's when our plan went awry. We found the meter, coins or cards but as we needed to be there for 11 hours had to pay for the long stay. Trouble was we couldn't fathom out the ticketing. Press the orange, then the green and then the yellow only when prompted mind, and don't forget to put the credit card into the slot. Well, I'm sure a 5-year-old Aussie child could have worked it out but not being able to see the colours because the sun was directly on the glass and pressing wrong buttons, nearly drove Ian insane. We figured it out eventually, more by luck than judgement, and at last got the ticket. Time now was 7.20am. Yep...took us 20 minutes to work it out and as for breakfast......forget it!
The boat left dead on 8 am and the first port of call after an hour was Hamilton Island. Here another 100 passengers boarded all in under 10 minutes.
|Showing the sting protecting nets swimming area.|
Then a pleasant 2-hour cruise followed with very welcome tea, coffee and biscuits. I had at last got my appetite back although the miracle of a disappearing cough didn't materialise, but I did find Panadol helped suppress it somewhat. Anyway, I'm off on a tangent again so to contiune. The beauty of the reef from the boat has to be seen. Glorious emeralds and turquise shapes in the middle of the blue sea. A Pontoon was stationed for the boat to dock and tie up to and first thing we did was grab our sting suits (jellyfish) and enter the warm water.
|Looking from the deck down.|
The time went very quickly and before we knew it the horn sounded for us all to come back on board. Money well spent today but the rate things are changing on the reef I do hope it will still be enjoyed by our next generation.
|Back in Hamilton as the sun was setting|