Ok so I really should update this a bit more as a lot has happened since Manly! Mona had decided that she was going to come up the coast with me, for a little while anyway, so I wasn't travelling on my own anymore.
After I left Sydney I travelled up the coast to Spot X (or Arrawarra to give it it's proper name) to have a surf lesson which was included in my oz experience pass. Managed to stand on the board first time... Fell off it first time too! All was good after a few more attempts and actual surfed into the beach a couple of times which was pretty sweet.
So Spot X was basically a day trip as we left the next day but I met some people that I would run into as I went further up the coast.
After Spot X it was up to Byron bay. Now I'd been told many good things about Byron, mostly that if you plan on spending a day in Byron you'll spend 3, if you plan to spend a few days you'll stay a week and if you plan any longer you'll be a lifer! All of this is understandable as it's an amazing place! The beach was gorgeous (with a lot of gorgeous people on it!), the surf was awesome and the views from the lighthouse (when you eventually get to it) are incredible! For all those that haven't been to Byron, it's a fairly small town that has paid a lot of money to fight company's like McDonalds from being able to set up shop which makes it a very boutiquey kind of a place! It's also a very very relaxed place with most of the local backpackers (i.e. the ones that work in the hostels) not wearing shoes... Ever!
After spending 5 very sunny days and 6 very messy nights in Byron it was time to head to Surfers Paradise which has a completely different feel altogether! In total contrast to Byron, Surfers is full of high rise buildings, McDonalds, KFC and hungry jacks (Australias burger king... Literally) are within a 5 minute walk from the beach and the nights out are mental!
After arriving in surfers and checking into my hostel I was dead from Byron and an early bus so I passed out on my bed while watching a cheeky bit of neighbours! The next night, however, was a completely different story! It was the birthday of someone in my room (a girl I'd met back in Sydney and then re-met in Byron) so we hit the town hard... Sort of! After having a bit of dinner it was off to join a 3 bar (beer garden, beach house tavern and blush) and 2 club (vanity and sin city) bar crawl! (It turns out that Australian bars all have the same playlists as we heard the same songs each time we moved on!) As you'd expect it was a long night with the final club being called sin city for a reason!
Another 10 o'clock check out later and it was off to Brisbane! As I was only there for one night I figured it'd be rude to not sample the night life! So after heading down to southbank to find the man made lagoon (which is actually pretty sweet) it was back to Bunk (the hostel I was staying in which was pretty nice) to get ready for the night ahead. I'd been told a club called Family was a good night so naturally ended up strolling to find it having had pre-drinks in the hostel bar (Birdees, which was pretty much the second busiest place to go for a night out) to find a queue down the road and a $20 entrance fee... It was definitely worth the money!
After I was done in brissy it was time to part ways with Mona, as she was staying a couple of nights, and head on up to Noosa.
Now I didn't know much about Noosa when I got to Australia but I'd been told to go to Australia zoo (or Steve Irwin's zoo as people may know it) and go check out the national park, so I did both... And that's about all there is to do in Noosa! The zoo was pretty cool got to hold a koala, feed kangaroos and see a croc show all for the bargain price of $70! (By Noosa I'd realised that australia is the most expensive in the world to go on holiday!) Thankfully going to the beach and seeing the national park is completely free!
After a couple more dirty nights out in Noosa it was off to my favourite part of the east coast (so far)... Fraser island! An overnight stay at dingos in Rainbow beach and then I was cruising in a 4x4 on the biggest sand island in the world with a sound group!
The first day was lake Mackenzie (stunning place!) and a rainforest walk followed by yet another very messy evening! Day two was Eli creek and the champagne pools, both very lovely places. Another messy evening later and it was off to lake Wobby via the sand dunes before heading back to rainbow for a final evening with the 30 strong Fraser family!
Now my plan was to go to Kroombit cattle farm after Fraser as it was partially included on my oz pass, however, as everyone knows, plans change! I got on with a group of guys from Fraser do well that I joined them in Agnes Water aka 1770. There was a festival on when we arrived so we thought we'd check it out after a few beers... 90 beers later the 6 of us were not up for a festival!
With not much to do in 1770 I decided to do the scooter-rooing that everyone had told me about! Basically 50cc mopeds that had been made to look like Harley's... Great fun! The next day rolled around and it was sunny enough to hit the beach before jumping on the bus to head up to Airlie beach... The gateway to the Whitsunday islands!
Again I had initially decided to book on a boat where I could sail the Whitsundays but then I got talking to people and changed my mind. I can appreciate sailing the Whitsundays when I'm older... I can't appreciate going on a party boat and having a cracking time! So I was on the Atlantic Clipper... THE party boat!
Again I was very lucky with my group. I got on with all of them very well and everyone was up for a laugh (a golden rule for going on the clipper). The first day was just a motor-sail to get to our first anchorage between Hook island and Whitsunday island. The first night of the two and, as expected, a messy night! The next day it was off to Whitehaven beach which was stunning... Even if it was overcast! Then it was off to luncheon bay to do a touch of snorkelling as well as using the 5m diving board and water slide on the boat. Then it was off to the second anchorage and a night organised by the crew... Very funny night! Third and final day got up and had a snorkel where we were anchored before heading back to dry land and a night out in Airlie!
And so after three days and three nights of great fun (even if the weather was a bit temperamental) it was time to hop on another bus and go to Magnetic Island... Where I'm writing this! So hopefully I won't leave it quite so long for the next update but I can't promise anything!