Wednesday - 10th of June. This was the day we had been waiting for. Cairns! It was probably going to be one of the furthest points on this trip. North East Queensland. The tropics. And it really did feel tropical. The green palms and the gorgeous weather..
We had a drive of around an hour or 2 through the mountains. Winding roads, bends, green palms and more and more people and tourists. We got to the city at around lunchtime and we were so excited. How cool! We couldn't quite believe that we had made it to this point. For 2 whole weeks of driving and being on the road, we had made it to paradise. Again. There was so much to see and do. So many backpackers all of a sudden and quite a lot of hustle and bustle. Especially considering that we were isolated for a few weeks. We were prepared for the commercial side of tourism and roadtripping, so it didn't disappoint us which it could have easily done, seeing as though we both want to steer as clear as possible from the main tourist attractions and sights.
We spent the day exploring the city, driving up and down the beaches and getting our bearings. We wanted to get somewhere, where we could stay for a few days and not have to think about driving or where we're heading. We just wanted to "be" in the moment. It wasn't until Friday before we finally found another little piece of paradise. Wednesday and Thursday we met some French girls and a German guy, and hung out with them. We watched the moonrise over the sea (just like the sunrise, but instead it's the fullmoon.. it was breathtaking..), we sat around, Jason played the didgeridoo, we drank and chatted and ended up camping at a truckstop with the 3 vans, in between planes, trains and automobiles, just outside of the city. We were literally in between the airport, a railway track, and 2 motorways.. The next day we did more or less the same. Checked out some more beaches, ran some errands, went for walks around the botanical gardens and hung out again with the French girls. It was so relaxing. We thought we'd be okay to camp in the same spot as the night before. There weren't any signs that "camping was prohibited". So we set up our camp and sat around doing the same as the night before. Then more and more vans started following our lead. Before we knew what was happening there were 10 vans parked around us.. And waking up the next morning we all discovered a formal warning from the police that we were violating the law and that our vehicles were going to be confiscated if we were caught camping on the side of the road again.. oops.. We got out of there as soon as poss.. Didn't want to push our luck!
This was a good thing though, because it meant we had to find a campsite, in order to park legally. That's what led us to Palm Cove. This is literally paradise. We got here on Friday afternoon, and instantly felt at home. We were so happy! The campsite was so cheap, small, friendly, with both young and old people and by the beach. We both said that this was our spot for the next while and already knew it would be hard to leave this place. Especially when we met a Canadian guy, who we hung out with for days and looked after, seeing as though he had no money and was traveling alone, and then meeting the German guy who we met on our first night in Cairns, so randomly. We even met our "saviours" who helped us when we broke down in Kurumba a week ago! How small this world is.
Each morning we were up watching the sunrise above the sea and in the evening we were stargazing through the palms leaves lieing in the grass on our backs. We even found a secluded beach on Saturday that was deserted and had our names on it ;) and hung out there just about everyday, soaking up the rays - or in my case, letting the rays bounce off my factor 50 sunscreen. We met some great people and had a blast the whole time.
Palm Cove is where I'm sitting right now. It's Tuesday morning and we'll be leaving this peace of paradise in a few hours. It's been the best. We've been on the campsite for 5 days and 4 nights. It's a place I could so easily stay. I was even tempted to go jobhunting at one stage.. But that's not what this trip is about. Not this roadtrip anyhow. That idea is for later on. For now though, we have to leave paradise behind again, but I'm pretty sure there's more to come. We'll be heading up the coast, to Port Douglas this afternoon, or to put in our terms: we're heading into the abyss, the unknown awaits again!