these photos are in no particular order, the top one is a view of Port Douglas, north of Cairns. It used to be a sleepy little village with a wonderful 2 mile long beach, till Christopher Skase started splashing millions of dollars round in the 1980s. Now it is the trendy place where all the celebrities from round the world jet in to. I must confess I preferred it in its earlier incarnation.
This lovely Tradewinds Chapel by the Sea was at Kurramine Beach, south of Cairns - so beautifully cared for.
Sorry, this is the only photo of a cassowary I have, my camera battery died at that point and I had stupidly not learned from an earlier experience. I left the case with the spare battery in the bus! Cassowaries are very large birds, who are struggling to survive as so much of their habitat has been destroyed by cyclones in the last few years. We saw one just beside the road in a cleared area when we were driving home, I suspect it was starving and looking for food.
The cassowary, which does not fly, was part of hartleys Zoo. These beautiful Jabirus, or black necked storks have simply taken up residence there. I could not get any closer or they would have flown away, so the fence had to be in the picture.
These welcome swallows were sitting on the railings of the boat while the driver was feeding the crocs, every so often they flew up in the air, but then returned. They keep trying to build a nest under the awning, but the workers hose it all down every night, you would think they would learn and go elsewhere!
This cockatoo must have had its wing clipped. It was a pet at a coffee plantation we visited, it had a large aviary, with a door at the front and a feeding platform just outside. When Sue (pictured) got up close to talk to it, the cockatoo took a real fancy to her and hopped onto her shoulder. It pinched her hat, later retrieved, but was not going anywhere else - other than round to the other shoulder! Took quite a few minutes to persuade it back to its feeding platform - and provided much entertainment for the crowd!
This family of curlews was right outside our unit one afternoon late. I would like to have got closer to make Dad spread his wings and hiss a warning, but I had been lying on the bed in my shirt and knickers attached to the TENS machine. I could rush outside enough to get this photo but any further out and I would have been providing the sort of entertainment for the hotel guests I didn't really want to!
One excursion for the partners was to a fabulous resort in the Daintree Forest, called Silky Oaks Lodge. It is built on the bank of the Mossman river, pictured above - beautiful - but freezing all year round.
We were very well fed here, I forgot to take photos of the first course, a choice of barramundi or melt in the mouth beef. The dessert above is dragon fruit and berry compote with a lemon sorbet and I forget what they called the biscuit.
I had this on, the macadamia and caramel tart with banana and another concoction on the left which I found a bit sweet for my liking.
This fig tree was photographed on the way home. The photo above is a much older tree, with roots which have grown down to the ground to support the branches which have grown so far laterally they need that support. They end up looking like a huge grove of trees, but is really only one.
This is a closeup of another tree where when you click to enlarge you can see the small roots growing down on the left, which will eventually become as thick as the others in the photo.
I am sure you have had enough of me if you have managed to persevere as far as this. I had better go to get some dinner.