Ok, so I'm going to Australia. Is this a cultural tour? A desire to tour the world & discover it's mysteries? No, There's a Champ Car Indy Race in Surfers Paradise on October 24th. So while I'm there I might as well check out as much of Australia as I can. Click on the highlighted names on the map for local information.
This page was last updated on: January 5, 2016
We planned a three week visit. Start out in the Outback @ Longreach, take a 24 hour train ride back to Brisbane and then fly to Cairns and stay @ Silky Oaks Lodge in the Daintree Rain Forest. Then we would transfer to Dunk Island for some relaxation & visit the Great Barrier Reef, then fly to Surfers Paradise for the race. Next we would rent a car & drive north to Maryborough where I could meet a friend and then fly to Sydney for a visit.
This a typical view of the terrain of the Outback, nothing, nothing & more nothing with occasional not much. This is a view of the road to Longreach. Longreach gets their rain usually once a year in February, the rainy season. The rest of the time it is dry & barren. We would wake up early in the morning, the temperature was chilly & by 2 P.M. it would be about 90 degrees.
Our tour guide Heather, raises orphaned Kangaroos. Here she took us to her house for a visit. That's Heather on the left and Louise on the right holding a baby. Heather has 6 or 7 Kangaroos living with her right now. We just walked around & petted them. What an experience.
Downtown Longreach. The tallest building is the local hotel, two stories. Both sides of the street have covered sidewalks. You need it in the afternoon & we're here at the beginning of their summer.
We were treated to Banjo's Outback Theatre. (a tin shed in the middle of nowhere). The entertainment was great, educational & entertaining. They put on a short play which included some of the audience & portrayed a scene from the Outback past. At the end we watched while they sheared a sheep.
Longreach is the home of The Quantas Museum where the airline got it's start. Quantas stands for The Queensland and Northern Territory Airoline Service. This is a picture of the 747 Quantas donated to the museum. We got to tour the airplane & the large museum & original hangar. Photo on the right is one of their first airplanes.
We arrived in Brisbane about 6:30 A.M. local time and rented a day room to freshen up after the long flight. Our next flight was to Longreach and didn't leave until 5:oo P.M. so we had the day to walk the city. Brisbane is beautiful. We walked to the river & along the promenade. This is a picture of a riverboat we found there.
We toured the Oakley Station (read "ranch"). They raise goats and cattle. It is so dry out here they have to manage their water. It rains usually once a year. Picture on the right; Louise found a cat.
The is the Stockman's Hall of Fame Museum. We spent several hours here & could have spent more. The history of the Outback & the culture of it's people is interesting to say the least. I would say that what the early settlers here endured makes our western settlers look like they were walking in a park.
This is probably a tyical house out of town. Built on the flood plain the entire area floods each February in the rainy season.
Our last night in Longreach we took a river cruise. Notice the bottle of champagne.
This is a picture of a large lizard. He was approximately 5 ft long.
Dinner under the stars. After a lovely cruise we landed for a genuine Outback Bar-b-que. That's Alan Smith the owner of Outback Aussie Tours.
Louise & Me with friends @ dinner.
We were treated to the wonderful music of Grant Millar. He played & sang numerous songs depicting the Outback experience & character of it's people. Thanks Grant!
I would recommend a visit to Longreach if you really want to get in touch with what Australia is really about.