Previous entry Next entry

Kim’s Travel Diary

Thursday, 12 Apr 2007

Location: Port Douglas, Australia

MapWell I am still here and I did it, survived the boat journey and proved to myself that I am not a total coward!!!!

Onto the boat which was a 45 metre cat and set sail to Agincourt Reef about 90 minutes or so from shore. The first announcement was that it was a little choppy out there and sea sick tablets were available from the bar - Oh, what joy to someone that hates sailing but when all around me started to lose their heads, I kept mine and managed to last until the last few minutes of the journey without feeling too sick.

The boat ties up to a series of pontoons just above the reef and here all activities happen along with lunch. Sandra went off and snorkled and I decided that I must do something - walk the sea platform!! Yes, before I could second think it.

Into a wetsuit ( pictures to follow and NO laughing please), dry suit, boots and finally weights - Bessie Bunter had nothing on me. Once in the water, instructions were given and a basic course in hand signals, moved down the line and the helmet was lowered - imagine something from any basic sci-fi film and you get the picture. Guided down the stairs frantically clearing ears and then there you are, standing on this platform in the middle of the ocean with coral below you and fish all around. Really strange feeling and as the helmets give you 180 degree vision, sense of distance is lost. It was an amazing experience and either the longest or quickest 20 minutes of my life. I now understand why people learn to dive. The biggest shame was that due to the bad weather above, the water was cloudy and with no sun, no colours to the coral. Getting out was a real shame but it was done slowly to make sure no-one got the bends so there was plenty of time for second looks.

After that experience, I took to the sub for a bigger view of the coral. This was a boat with glass windows under the water line and took us on a voyage through the outer reef. There was plenty to see and go "oh and ah" at but again the weather did not help.

Back to the boat and the long trip back - the weather had changed again and 90 minutes on holding onto the stomach followed but we arrived and docked safely. The worst thing about boat travel is the feeling afterwards and everything moving - I am not cut out for a cruise!!! A really early bed was required