The Train, Finally

For the past several days I’ve been trying to get up at 7am so I could catch the Kuranda Scenic Railway to Kuranda and spend the day there. Due to various things I’ve not made it till today. Two hangovers, impossible roommates and laziness conspired against me till now.

The night before last I went out for a beer with my new roommates, who were all very cool, and it turned into 10 beers and I didn’t stumble home till about 2am.

So today I finally got on the train and took the nice ride up to Kuranda. To be honest, if you look at all the pictures in the brochure you’ve basically got it covered, but I won’t say it was a waste of money. It was better than sitting around the hostel 🙂

I bought a return ticket, although I kind of wanted to ride the cable car too, but it was too expensive. Well, once I got up and saw the cable car (Skyrail) all over the place I decided it would be worth it so I traded in my return ticket and got a ticket down via the Skyrail and bus instead.

The Skyrail definitely made it all worth it. It’s a 7.5km long cable car / sky ride thing over the rainforest and down the mountain. It’s absolutely awesome and a little scary. I saw some really cool birds in the forest, and lots of awesome rainforest scenery. There were also two stops where you could get off for a while and look around and they were great. One overlooked the Barron Falls and had signs explaining the hydro electric plant and the other was a little boardwalk through the rainforest.

So that was really sweet. Short day, and kinda expensive but it was great and a fitting end to my Australian adventure. Tomorrow I finally check out of Global Palace, Cairns, get on a plane and land in Tokyo! I am really, really excited about that, and kinda nervous. It’s going to be a big change to go from a place where people (sort of) speak English to a place where I can’t even read the signs. I’m excited for the challenge, and of course, to finally see Japan.

I’ve also decided that I will climb Mt. Fuji, even if it takes me a week instead of of the 4-5 hours it takes most people. Apparently most people start the last part of the climb at midnight so they can be at the summit for sunrise. Crazy.

So that’s all for now! I’ve had a great time in Australia, and met some very fun people but I’m looking forward to moving on. Australia has been just a little too much like America for me to really feel like I am traveling. I’ve seen a lot, but I really didn’t even scratch the surface. It would take months or years to really explore this place, and I would need to be much more mobile. Maybe some day I’ll devote an entire trip just to Australia (and make it to New Zealand!) by car or van and really feel like I got the Aussie experience.
Tomorrow I’ll be staying at the Juyoh Hotel ($24 tiny, private rooms!) in Tokyo where they are supposed to have free Wifi. I’m pretty excited about both of those things. I’m getting used to dorm life, but there is nothing like having your own place to chill out now and then and free Wifi means I can download some more Battlestar Galactica episodes while I sleep 🙂 So, till then, check out the lovely pictures from Kuranda and wish me luck in finding my bed in Tokyo!