Noosa was to be our last stop on the sunshine coast on our way to Brisbane.
Once a little-known surfer hangout, Noosa has become a more touristy destination on the sunshine coast, known for its pretty beaches and wonderful parks.
We based ourselves there for a few days happy to have found a spacious apartment at a reasonable price with full kitchen, wifi , and a big screen TV so James could catch up on the FIFA world cup in the evenings.
On our first day, we headed for Noosa National park, an area that provides great walks, either along the coast or inland. It is also rich in wildlife and you can sometimes spot koalas hanging in the eucalypt trees.
We started with a walk along the coast and were passed by surfers of all ages coming from or going to the beach.
We stopped a few times and watched as a storm was coming in. With the rain starting, we decided to cut inland to get more tree coverage and also up our chances to see koalas. With some pointers from a couple of women walking the path, we were able to spot one high in the tree. The next day, wanting to do something different we drove to the Blackall mountains. We hadn’t done much research and just had a general map, so the first 20kms or so we found ourselves on a dirt road instead of a paved road, going through a thick forest. Our poor little Toyota Corolla hatchback took a few hits.We stopped for lunch by a man made lake and enjoyed the quiet solitude. The dirt road finally gave way to pavement when we entered the small town of Mapleton. After searching a while for a particular hike (Mapleton falls appropriately enough), we happened on it about the time we were going to give up and head on down the road. While the view of the falls wasn’t great, it did offer a nice valley view with the hike also passing through some beautiful rainforest. Above: the deadly Green Garden Hose snake that made Sylvie jump out of her shoes 🙂Next stop was the cute touristy town of Montville. We stopped and window shopped at many of the arts-n-crafts stores and bought a koala christmas ornament. Below: view of the Glass House MountainsBy the time we hit the next cute town of Maleny, many stores were closing or already closed (it was 4pm mind you!), so we headed home after a quick walk on the main street.
Our last two days were spent chasing the sun along the coast and looking for good beaches to picnic on and get a swim in. Below: this little girl couldn’t have been more than 4Below: obviously, the surfboard (or paddle board in this case) is a way of life Above: we got a kick out of the patrolled swimming area between the flags – all 50 feet on a huge expanse of beach We used up every hour we could on the beach on our last day to the point where we had to strip out of our bathing suits into airport-acceptable clothes and repack in the BP station parking lot after refueling the rental car. We grabbed a cab with a very friendly Kiwi driver to the Brisbane airport and caught our flight to Sydney. Once in Sydney, we checked-in to our hotel and retrieved a package that was there waiting for us: our stolen beach towels had reappeared!! The Exmouth police had called us a few weeks ago saying they had retrieved our towels from the young thief. Well, they went as far as mailing it to us across the country and following-up with us by phone and email. Unbelievable!! We had a good but heavy dinner at Opium Den thai restaurant and tried to walk it off a bit but the air was cold in Sydney so we made a beeline back to the hotel.