I am not sure how to put it nicely, so I am going to use the words of my wise Ozzie friend Oliver:
'Cairns is a sh$thole so you might want to go somewhere else!'
We have arrived in Cairns 2 days ago and at the moment I am writing while I wait for the taxi to take us back to the airport to get on a return flight to Sydney. Our 1 week of Great Barrier Reef has become a 48 hour of thunderstorm and frizzy hair thank to the storm Ellie!
Beside the storm though, I wouldn't know how to describe Cairns, really there is nothing, it is just a series of hostels and agencies that sell adventure packages be it jumping off a plan with your mate, visiting the rainforest (200km from here!!!) or do some diving and snokelling.
We opted for the Dive trip and attempted an introductory dive. I had been thinking for months about getting my PADI on the GBR, I am quite scared of water, or being under it so this was going to be my big 2009 challenge. On the day of the dive I was really excited and nervous, I followed the brief like a good student and got in my gear ready to go as we reached the reef.
3 minutes before going down I was NOT feeling well, the sea was quite rough and being on the boat, not much fun.
Anyhow I went off the boat and started going under water but unfortunately once I was 2 meter below water my ears stopped popping, the horrible cold I had, didn't help, so I had to go back to the boat, a bit gutted really but happy I didn't freak out underwater like I thought I would.
The best bit came later on when I was jumping in the water for some snorkelling and saw a baby sharks just below me, it was soooo beautiful, a grey reef shark of about a meter and half. My camera's flah wasn't working then so I didn't manage to take a picture! :o(
As we came back from the boat trip under a terrible storm we decided to get the hell out of Cairs, so we quickly changed our tickets and off we went the next day.
Next stop will be Sydney and Blue Mountains.