After a sleepless flight from Singapore we finally arrived in Australia early morning. Nina left the plane with soar throat and headache feeling very sick. But first we had to find the rental station to pick up the car we reserved for our trip. As soon we organized everything the highest priority was to arrive at the hostel and get some sleep. Feeling jet lagged and sick it made the lefthand drive to the hostel an adventure. As we arrived at the hostel the friendly girl at the desk told us the room would not be ready until afternoon but that the couches in the shared living room area are very comfy. Five minutes later we both fell asleep on the couches in the middle of teenagers having their breakfast.
After having some sleep we had enough energy to visit the city. The next day we walked around the town to see the main sights: The harbor bridge, opera house, the government house within the royal botanic garden, the Queen Victoria shopping center. Sydney is a lovely city with multiple green and large parks which makes you feel to not to be in a big city at all.
On the way up the east coast we slept one night in Bondi Beach which is part of Sydney. We rested a bit and enjoyed a walk at the beach and the sun. At that point we didn’t know that this would change over the next days…
The weather was still perfect when we arrived in Byron Bay. We had a beautiful first day trying out some surf. The atmosphere in this town is so relaxed and super friendly. We both still think it was our favorite place in Australia so far.
Unfortunately the next day it started raining. In the beginning we thought that it’s just a small rain shower, but after two days non stop raining we got impatient. Sadly there’s not too much to do in Byron Bay when raining so we decided to hike in the close Nightcap national park. The good thing about the rain was that the waterfall (Minyon Falls) was more impressive than usually during summer.
We continued north on the east coast on the pacific highway to Coolangatta. The city is right between the states Queensland and New South Wales and funnily there is a 1 hour time difference between the two… contributing to our jet lag 🙂
Coolangatta is the most southern city of the Gold Coast and home to some really great surf breaks. Apparently the longest wave that was ridden here was for 2km! Even though the waves we were riding were not quite that long, we had some really good time in the water… Despite the quite competitive mood in the crowded line up.
Weather wise we were still not lucky with 2 more days with mostly rain. So since it worked the previous time quite well, we simply went once more for a trip inland. This time the Lamington national park.
Lamington National Park
In the Lamington National Park we found a nice retreat to sleep, right in the middle of the jungle. We did a day trip through the forest, but the highlight was actually a night tour to see a glowworm cave. On the way we saw plenty of wildlife, a dingo, opossum, lamington spiny crayfish (that’s the guy in blue below) and jungle kangeroos.
When we arrived at the glowworm cave we first learned that glowworms isn’t the same as a glühwürmchen in German (which would be firefly in English). It’s rather an insect that can be normally found at riverbanks or caves with a bioluminescence that uses its light and a web to catch food. When we switched off our flashlights, the lights really began to shine and we felt like being in the desert and below a starlit sky again.