Week Three. (From Sunday 21 July to Sunday 28 July)

We left Shute Harbour on a fast boat and arrived at Hook Island to experience a tropical island. I'm pleased to tell you i got over my breathing co-ordination problem of not being able to use a Snorkle. i can now use a Snorkle. SNORKLE-SNORKLE-SNORKLE.

As a result of being able to use a Snorkle, i saw lots and lots of Coral, Fishes and Sand. I spent the first half hour hyperventilating but i am now a moderate expert. Then i spent the next half hour singing whilst breathing underwater. Must take care not to laugh too loud and take in water. The tropical fish just remain nonchalant and leave me in peace to gurgle an "octopus's garden" and the other such hits as "that mean old box jelly fish ain't gonna get me"

We rested and relaxed at the Hook Island resort, essentially trapped with nowhere to go but into the Coral water. We missed XQU, but only slightly. Then we started to appreciate what a tropical island is all about. We saw lots of Bat fish eating bread crumbs (floating naturally in the water) and went underwater in a submersive observatory to look at Coral closeup without fear of Marine Stingers and spooky pointy nose fishes who love to chase Hu-Mans.

After Hook Island, we laundered and stocked up at Airlie Beach for the next few days travel north. We stayed near Mandalay one night. From there we headed past Townsville (not turning off), passed Magnetic Island without compass mishap, then headed for the Paluma National Park, which is the beginning of the tropical rainforests of Australia. We stayed near and swam in cold cold waters at Crystal Creek Falls and later on swam at another waterhole which was resident to the Bullrout StoneFish. Having duly taken care not to be stung, we swam with our friends Bernhardt and Lola who we met on Hook Island. They were heading off to Hinchinbrook island to go camping with crocodiles and mosquitos. The waiting list is one year, so they booked very early.

Our next stay was Mission Beach, where we discovered (unbeknownst to us) the incredibly rare large bird, the Cassowary. After numerous signs saying 'slow down, watch out, don't knock over Cassowarries', we found one quietly playing with his Son, next to a crocodile infested esturary. South Misson beach was very beautiful and peaceful.

View the images below as columns.