From Airlie Beach the greyhound did not take long to arrive at Townsville where we would board the ferry to the stunning Magnetic Island. Magnetic Island, named due to the pulling effect it had on Captain Cooks ship, is mostly national park with large granite boulders and cliffs rising out of the blue ocean.
After the smooth ferry we arrived at Nelly Bay. Our accommodation of choice was Magnetic Island YHA, which had an onsite Koala Sanctuary. This was round the other side of the Island at Horseshoe Bay so we boarded the local bus service and were promtly dropped off at the door.
The accommodation was great, small individual wigwam shaped huts made from wood with an onsite kitchen and bar only five minutes stroll from the beach at Horseshoe bay. After watching the sunset from the beach, with a cold beer, we came second in the pub quiz on Australian trivia, with the staff team winning!
The weather was now great very sunny but not too hot or humid. Perfect for golf you could say so Drew and I set off on the bus early and managed a round at the 9 hole Magnetic Island Golf course in Picnic Bay. The hire clubs were a sight to behold. I think they were the first model of club to come with a steel shaft. Still happy to be there we set off and after a storrming start I managed to hold off Drews come back to win the match.
As we had spotted a pie warmer in the clubhouse before teeing off the loser was to buy the winner a pie. Perhaps explaining my fine form, no better incentive than a pie. On return to the clubhouse however we were agahst to see the pies were only provided on competition days. We now had an hour before the next bus so walked into Picnic Bay in search of some food. Very dissapointing place with not even a shop and the landlady at the pub was very insulted when we asked if they served pies, "this is a restauraunt you know" her response.
On empty bellies we caught the bus back and checked in for the tour of the on site Koala sanctuary at the YHA. This was a real highlight. We got to hold and touch, salt water corocodiles (very young one I am pleased to say), dragon lizzards, blue tounge lizzards, Cockatoo, a python and of course a Koala bear.
We all enjoyed this except for me and the python. After much encouragement and teasing from the other three I refused to hold the snake. Big woose I think was Hannah's comment.
Packing as much as we could into the day we walked up to the fort lookout for great views back to the mainland and out into the Pacific. Unfortunately we never managed to spot any Koala Bears in the wild.
The next day we got the ferry back to Townsville and boarded the bus to Cairns.