My unique experiences in Adelaide!

The vibrant Southern Australian city of Adelaide is no less than a package of historical walk through, graphitic lanes, wildlife encounters, getting intoxicated at the wine estates and exploring the unknown beaches.

It offers something to everyone, Adelaide may be known for the world-famous Barossa Valley but there’s more to the city that makes it stand apart.

Located just appx 2 hours by flight from Melbourne, the city welcomed us with its warm and sunny weather despite the Aussie autumn

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Cultural Precinct, Adelaide

Day 1

  • Cultural Tour
  • Taking a walk down the Historical lane

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The vacation day 1 started with the city tour, around the cultural precinct, this place is centrally located in the Adelaide city, so just hop on the free city bus while they drop you right in front of the Cultural precinct.

Museum, Art gallery, National Anzac Memorial, Mortlock Library, Adelaide University, the Cultural arena comprises of all of these.

The huge stretch of historical buildings, does makes you feel like a tourist who has dropped into an era, where you keep admiring the beautiful architectural carvings.

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Day 2

  • Barossa Valley/ Wine Estates
  • Toy Factory
  • Wild Life Encounter
  • Whispering Wall

The first-class wine region, does not allow you to be a teetotaller, just a short drive away lies more than 60 Winery estate that offers you all possible varieties of wine. The Adelaide Hills are closer to the capital city than any other wine region in the world.

Take a day tour or drive down yourself, all the wine estate is a visual retreat in themselves, drop down and you will be taken care by the bar manager with 5 variety of wines to choose from or taste all of them. I won’t get surprised, if you leave the hills intoxicated by the end of the tour, but no matter which state you are in don’t forget to carry some of these exotic wines for yourself or as a gift for someone who loves wine.

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Barossa Valley!

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The big Rocking Horse at the Toy factory in Adelaide is considered as the no one aussie icon, a great place for school executions and family fun.

Just for 2$ you get an entry to get up and close to the Australian Wildlife and not only this, you also get to feed the Kangaroos.

Take a short tour around the Toy Factory to see how quality wooden toys are made in the working Toy Factory.

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The Big Rocking Horse!

The Whispering Wall is one of Adelaide’s most interesting and playful spots. The acoustics of the Whispering Wall are responsible for the name. Words whispered from one side of the wall can clearly be heard across a 100 metre stretch and attract hundreds of visitors every year to test the walls abilities.

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The Whispering Wall!
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Whispering Wall and Barossa Reservoir!

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Day 3

  • Victor Harbour
  • Granite Island
  • Countryside Tour

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Victor Harbour!

Victor Harbour is a countryside town, known for its scenic coastline, untouched islands, ride the Horse Drawn Tram across to Granite Island, catch one of the heritage Steam Ranger trains with the kids. Swim, surf, jet ski, snorkel, kayak, paddle or canoe around Encounter Bay’s reefs and islands.

We had our Brunch at one of the Beach cafe, their brunch menu is worth trying while you watch the waves and enjoy this slow paced countryside lifestyle.

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Granite Island!

Granite Island is home to a small colony of wild Little Penguins, who return home from their day in the ocean at dusk. The island is easily accessible by foot or by the horse cart.

This countryside town offers a visual retreat who loves architectural buildings, a well planned town which has a small township and a good no of cafes that offers you a wide range of cuisines.

Day 4

  • Exploring Rundle Street
  • Indulging in Adelaide street cafes
  • Adelaide Botanical Gardens

The Rundle street is the place to be in Adelaide central, it has the historic charm with the modern sophistication. The best-known cafes, coffee parlours and International cuisines, the place has it all. Hot spot for party animals, this place transforms itself into the most happening corner of the city on friday night.

Grab a coffee and watch the sun go down, or catch a friend for a lunch with a glass of wine.

While you take a walk down the laneways, you could spot stunning street arts on the walls, don’t forget to get yourself click with them, wherever you spot one. If you’re a shopping freak, these laneways offers you some amazing boutiques and brands which you would love to explore.

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Rundle Street!

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Autumn is the best time to enjoy the colours of nature, therefore we spend the last evening of our vacation amidst the blossoms.

Take a guided walk in the Garden to collect curious botanic bits such as seedpods and leaves, then create a cute critter to take home or visit their Tropical rain forests or the Rose Garden gallery. If you don’t wish to do any of these then visit their Dalian flower section and relax in the lap of nature.

This place is highly recommended if you happen to travel with kids as one of the spots you wouldn’t like to miss.

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Botanical Gardens , Adelaide!

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So, if your thinking where to head this Easter with Family, dont forget to give Adelaide a try. This short vacay will give you memories to last really long and if not get a wallpaper worthy pic on from their colorful walls.

Cairns: Gateway to the Great Barrier Reef!

The Great Barrier Reef has been on my Bucket list since long, and Cairns was the only Gateway to those gorgeous Coral Reefs, which stretches across 2300kms.

A region that encapsulates the stories of indigenous Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders, the Tropical rain forest with its wilderness, the home to various rare corals and turtles.

The 6 day long itinerary was planned up as enumerated below:

Day 1

√ Lazying around the Cairns Esplanade

√ Exploring the Cairn’s Wharf precinct

√ Pub hopping at the Cairns Waterfront

We started the day by city sighting, though Cairns city has nothing much to offer therefore the first thing we did is to grab a quick lunch at a Thai cafe at the Orchid Plaza. The 1st night we stayed at the Hides hotel, located at the Hides corner,City center. This is an 18th Century Hotel and was the first of its kind in the City.

The Esplanade is at a walking distance from the Hides corner, it has a Lagoon and a man made sandy pool, just the perfect place for the kids to jump in having loads of fun. There’s a small summer market, adjacent to this lagoon selling handmade crafts. My 3 year old enjoyed her water splash , while i was busy exploring the other side of the Lagoon. There are cafes and restaurants along the Lagoon and this would be a perfect hideout from the city chaos, specially on a lazy afternoon.

I would highly recommend the Woolshed Pub, its the no#1 party joint in the city and we simply loved the variety of cocktails it had in-store.

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Woolshed Pub!
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Lagoon
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Lagoon
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City Center

The Cairns waterfront is one of the recommended place to visit in Cairns City; and has one of the best scenic views on offer. After grabbing some drinks at the Lagoon shacks, we headed towards the much talked about waterfront.

The waterfront is located at the Reef Fleet terminal, the berthing dockyard for  all the Cruises and ferries that take off, for the great barrier reef. We enjoyed dinning at Mondo, its a fine dining restaurant, which (famously claims) to have the best view and indeed it did, we were just mesmerized.

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Cairns Waterfront
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Dinner at Mondo, Waterfront Cairns

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Sunset, by the Waterfront, Cairns

Day 2 / Day 3

√ Reef Fleet Terminal

√ Fitzroy Island Resort

√ Nudey Beach, Fitzroy Island

√ Secret Garden, Fitzroy Island

√ Turtle Sanctuary

√ Rain-forest Walking Trail

√ Snorkeling

A trip to Cairns is incomplete without a stay at the Fitzroy Island Resort, an ultimate destination for all tropical island lovers.We hopped on the early morning Ferry from the Reef fleet terminal , Cairns city, cruising through scenic rain forest and abandoned islands to reach to this Luxury coral island.

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Nudey Beach, Fitzroy Island Resort
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Fitzroy Island Resort

Our 2 day long stay in this Island on the Great Barrier Reef was no less than a dream. If your an adventure lover, then this island with Virgin Beaches, Secret Garden, rain forest trails is the place to be.

Do read my previous blog, Destination review on Fitzroy Island Resort here!

Day 4

√ Palm Cove Beach

√ Palm Cove Shopping Village

√ Pub Hopping

We wanted to extend our stay at the Fitzroy island resort, but we had to cover the remaining joints in the itinerary as well. Therefore we spent a free and relaxed day at the Gorgeous beaches of Pam cove. Palm Cove lies 27 kms North of the city Cairns, just 45 mins drive by car or by public buses that run every hour from the city center bus stop, Cairns.

A perfect family getaway, sit back, relax and enjoy the palm tree lined up Sandy beaches. Its not advisable to venture out in the waters due to the Jelly fishes, however, there’s a barricade made by the Queensland beach authority for families to swim within the restricted area. These islands, as you can see below are privately owned by the Chinese and they have their own private resort too.

There aren’t any dearth of beach shacks, pubs or restaurants, the other side of road has a wide plethora of options that spoil you to pass the correct judgement. We chose the option to go for the local branded beer and sat down at a pub enjoying the breathtaking sunset views. The Palm Cove Shopping village has many cuisines to offer and one must visit this small, heavenly yet cosy shopping paradise. The public buses run until late in the night, so even if your not driving there isn’t any hurry for you to return back to the city.

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Palm Cove beach, North Queensland
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Palm Cove Shopping Village!
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Palm Cove, North Queensland!
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Palm Cove, beach pub

Day 5

√ Green island Cruise

√ Green island Underwater exploration

√ Snorkeling

We were back with are 3 year old toddler to cruise yet again on the blue waters to explore yet another island on the Great barrier reef, known as Green Island. This is the smallest habituated island in this region,and the Big Cat Green island Reef Cruise connects this tiny island to Cairns. You can check Cruise timings here Timetable

A bumpy ride of an Hour and 15 mins in a open top Luxury Reef Cruise, brings upon you, this colorful Coral experience. The beaches are sandy and the water is much clearer, while snorkeling we could spot turtles and sea cucumber. Soak in the sandy waters or take a beer and chill at the Green island resort pool bar or walk down the National park to have a trail water guiding you along as you explore the island. The day trip is good enough to cover Green island, i wouldn’t personally recommend anyone for an overnight stay here.

We took the National Park trail walk and reached the other part of the island in less than 15 mins, the  beaches at this end are much more clean, clear and unexplored.There’s a Crocodile farm, a small souvenir shop and the water activity centers.While exploring the National Park in the Island you will get to read about the aboriginals natural and cultural heritage and how they evolved.

The day tour included a Submarine ride with its clear Glass bottom view cruising towards the deeper part of the Reef, to capture the scenic beauty of the Corals. This tour is recommended specially if you cant swim or dive deeper into the Coral sea.

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Green island, Great barrier reef!
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Green island Cruise
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National Park, Green island
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Green island, Great Barrier Reef!

Day 6

√ Port Douglas

√ Daintree Rain Forest

√ Mossman gorge

The last day of our vacation, we preferred to spend it in the wilderness of the Rain forest known as Daintree Forest and Mossman Gorge, is just one section of this vast Forest.

Port Douglas, lies further north of Queensland approximately 1.5 hours from the city center. We had pre-booked the day tour in advance, almost all the travel agents run similar tours daily.

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Port Douglas, North of Queensland!

There are several virgin beaches you may stumble upon, while driving towards Port Douglas, this was one of them where we made a stopover.

We explored a section of the Daintree Rain Forest, known as Mossman Gorge and a potion of the Rain forest as well. One can explore this part of the Daintree Rain forest in less than 6 hours, inclusive of several walking trails. The fresh water Gorge is worth a dip and was a much needed break from the sea water too, my daughter enjoyed this part of the Gorge to the max. The Gorge covers the entire section of the rain forest and is the major source of water fresh water as well ,so make sure to carry your bikini to enjoy in the fresh water

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Mossman Gorge
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Mossman Gorge
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Mossman Gorge

I went ahead to explore the remaining part of the rain forest and the walking trails, all i could hear was the shimmering sound of water from the Gorge that kept me company all along the Daintree forest. Make sure to have your walking shoes and drinking water with you as the trails are more than 5 kms long walk each way.