One of the longest journeys of my life!! A full 18 hours to get from Airlie to Brisbane - but atleast most of it was through the night. The worst part had to be stopping off at one of the 24 hr petrol stations where dead cockroaches inhabited the toilets and toads had been squished by lorry tyres - nice. I was glad to arrive in Brisbane though! It's quite quiet here for a city, and not as touristy as other places. After settling in at the Anderson's I stretched my legs in the Orleigh Park down in West End, where they live and took a City cat ferry down to South Bank, which was pretty cool with an artificial beach and lots of bars and restaurants and the ends of a Sunday market. Unfortunately I was too late to pick up any souvenirs, but there's never a shortage of boomerangs here!
It's just really nice to be back in a nice bed with a proper shower and be able to catch up on some washing and emails!
We went to Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary today - home of lots and lots of cute koalas! There are so many of them and lots in their own special areas, including the exclusive 'bachelor's pad'! Unusually quite a few of them were awake and active and interacting with us. a couple were even running up and down and coming to say hello; I nearly melted when one of them looked up at me with its little brown eyes! Although they can make some pretty wierd noises too - apparently it's territorial, but it sounds like a deep grunting/coughing noise and not all that pleasant! I had my picture taken with Saffron, who was so adorable (and very photogenic!). The sanctuary is also home to lots of typical Australian animals and I saw my first wallabies, kangaroos, dingoes, venomous snakes and wombats up close (although Mummy and Daddy will know it wasn't my first time with the emus - they still kept their distance!)
We got some good views of Brisbane and the nearby Gold Coast from the top of Mount Coot-tha, which is just outside to the West of the city.
Afterwards we went for a drive around Brisbane through the different districts which are all distinctive; quaint Paddington was my favourite although New Farm and Fortitude Valley seem cool too, and the Story Bridge is a good 'kodak' moment when lit up at night.