Our Recent Holiday in Australia : Part 1

If you've known my partner, Sarah, & I for any length of time, you know that we LOVE to travel. We take at least 3-4 trips a year, and are constantly dreaming of the next place we'll go together. I have personally traveled a fair bit throughout the U.S, as well as to Mexico, Iceland, and an extended stay in Uganda. I had not, however, been to Australia. Apparently I had no idea what I was missing. Sarah had studied abroad in Sydney while we were in school, and she absolutely fell in love with the city. Now she works at Swain Destinations, where she customizes travel experiences for others wanting to see the South Pacific. All that to say, she really wanted our next big trip to be to Australia. 

Last March, she came home with an itinerary built for us. 

One year later, we were on our way! 

 Thanks  JCrew  for this sexy carry-on bag!

Thanks JCrew for this sexy carry-on bag!

 

Port Douglas

Our two week trip took us through four amazing, completely different regions of Australia. After a 35-hour travel day (and that one day we missed forever thanks to the date line), our first stop was Port Douglas. A cozy little beach strip in Northern Queensland.

Sarah had us stay in the most wonderful boutique hotel, right on the ocean. The view of the palm trees and waves was so dreamy, I could definitely imagine myself having coffee and their homemade croissants on that balcony every day for the rest of my life. 

This is also the place where I slipped waste deep into a swampy lagoon, while trying to get a sunrise picture. Yes. This really happened. Sarah was holding the camera, thank goodness, but she didn't manage to capture the actual fall. The aftermath picture isn't nearly as dramatic as the, "BABE, SHIT, BABE!" moment when I actually fell, but you get the idea. 

But I did get the picture in the end!

sunrise
 

Daintree Rainforest

Later that day, we drove 30mins down the road to our next destination- Silky Oaks Lodge and healing waters spa. When we checked in, we were greeted with welcome cocktails at a table for two, overlooking the gorgeous river that runs right behind the main lodge.

Our villa was, you know, average. Unknown to us, while we had been enjoying our welcome cocktails, our room had been prepared. Chilled wine, a handwritten note, lit candles, and soft music greeted us as we walked in. Every evening after dinner it was the same; candles, music, and chocolates instead of wine.

This location was probably our favorite of the trip. We spent nearly all of our time outside, taking advantage of every recreational activity the lodge had to offer. We got a picnic backpack from the kitchens and hiked a gorgeous trail that ended at a huge flat rock with a rope swing into the river. We kayaked. We swam in this unreal, outdoor heated stone pool.

We also tried biking, with the goal of getting sunset pictures. Maybe I should just stop trying to do this sunrise/sunset thing. But just look at this proud face! What could possibly go wrong?

Train tracks. Train tracks make things go wrong. Apparently, I'm the only one who saw the sign that said, "Cyclists dismount". And again, thankfully I was the one holding the camera. My favorite part of this whole ordeal was definitely having to ask the nice lady at the front desk for help. "Excuse me ma'am, do you have any bandaids? My friend here fell off her bike and scraped her knee." (Sarah still has the scars from this. It was actually pretty intense.)

 

Thus ends the first half of our adventure! 

Jessica Strom