Northern Exposure

Queensland, Australia

May 15 2009 Written by:Pedro O'Connor

The “Best Job in the World” was recently won by an excited young Englishman. He has no comprehension just how amazing his next 6 months of living on the Great Barrier Reef is going to be. I have been fortunate to grow up with the reef as my playground and I am still blown away every time I spend a day on the water after 40 plus years.

I was privileged to have the opportunity to show off my backyard of Port Douglas, the Daintree Rainforest and Lizard Island to a small group of clients. The flight over the Ribbon Reefs, en route to Lizard Island, puts into context the immensity of the reef system, yet it is not until you place you head underwater that you start to comprehend its complexity. Descending onto Lizard Island, the undisputed gem in the crown, one client declared the main beach at the lodge as “the best I have ever seen” … and there are 23 more like it scattered around the island!

Ranked as one of the top 5 dive sites in the world, you can’t miss the Cod Hole. My Brazilian friend (who had never snorkelled in her life) could not believe her eyes and stayed mesmerised by the natural splendour of the diversity of marine life. She was in a trance-like state for some time after! After a quick flight back to Port Douglas we lounged in luxury on a 72 ft yacht at Low Isles, while enjoying sunset drinks and some of the best and freshest seafood on the planet. Juxtaposing nicely, we then ventured to a typical Aussie pub for the weekly Cane Toad Races. Our illustrious leader from Los Angeles was fortunate to be drawn as a jockey but was pipped at the post and came in second after many anxious moments and laughs.

We ‘hunted’ and ‘gathered’ with local aborigines, and visited a world of tropical fruits of all colours, shapes, sizes and flavours unknown to most people. A sensory delight in so many ways, this is a must see on any North Queensland itinerary. As the ultimate refresher we then drift snorkelled down a pristine rainforest stream, floating through a wonderland of natural beauty.

I could continue to wax lyrical but I believe the email I received today from my new Texan friend says it all – “The landscape, water and wildlife are some of the most incredible I have ever seen. But far more important than that I had the pleasure and privilege of meeting some of the most wonderful people in the entire world. I can’t even put in to words how much I appreciate the kindness that was shown me during my visit and have to tell you that in all my travels, because of each of you, this was by far the best. I look forward to working with you, and most especially to our next visit.” I rest my case – come see for yourself!

If you would like more information on the islands of the Great Barrier Reef, the Daintree Rainforest, or Port Douglas and its surrounds, please contact us.