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|The first day we spent in Sydney and then we flew out to the Ayers Rock Resort to hike around Uluru (Ayers Rock in the European tongue) and Kata Tjuta (the Olgas in the European tongue). We stayed at the Outback Pioneer Hotel and Lodge.|
Uluru (far left) and Kata Tjuta (far right) with the Ayers Rock Resort in the foreground. View from the lookout next to lodge we stayed at. A larger version of this picture will be posted to Nick's "Beautiful Earth" photo album in the future.
One side of Uluru that we could photograph. This picture taken just before sunrise so the colors are a bit muted. Skull Cavern is the prominent feature in the middle.
Walpa Gorge of Kata Tjuta before we took our hike into the gorge.
After Ayers Rock we flew north to the coastal city of Cairns to see the rainforest and go snorkeling in the Great Barrier Reef. We stayed at the Lilybank Bed and Breakfast. We highly recommend this place!
Quick-and-dirty mosaic of the view outside our room at the Lilybank BB. Lots of greenery even though it was winter!
On the first full day we took a hike into the rainforest up a steep rise and rested at a lake. That evening we went to the "Cairns Night Zoo" at the Cairn Tropical Zoo. The next day we took the train up the mountain to Kuranda and toured the attractions there including the Australian Butterfly Sanctuary, Birdworld Kuranda, and the Kuranda Koala Gardens. Right off the train we wondered into a shop that had a bunch of didgeridoos and a very outgoing shop owner who gave us lessons. I could make only one note on the instrument. We took the skyrail (gondola) back down the mountain to Cairns. The third day was spent snorkeling at the eastern end of Moore Reef which is part of the Great Barrier Reef. We went with the Reef Magic Cruises. We had fun with all of these activities!
These pictures are from Sydney before and after our post-conference tour of the astronomy sites in New South Wales. Below: First a picture from our first walk to the Royal Botanic Gardens. This is in Domain Phillip Precinct.
Below: Now a view of Sydney Harbour from Mrs Macquaries Point at the end of the Royal Botanic Gardens. Unfortunately, part of the panorama is into the Sun and it was winter so the Sun was low in the sky.
Below: People climbing Sydney Harbour Bridge as seen from the Royal Botanic Garden:
Below: Zoom-in to climbers at the left side of the Syndney Bridge climbers picture above:
Below: Zoom-in to the climbers at the top of the bridge:
Below: Lisa sitting at the steps into a sandstone wall near Fleet Steps of the Royal Botanic Garden. First a wide-angle shot and then a close-up of her.
Below: Lisa at a point in Manly (eastern end of Sydney Harbour) looking out to Pacific Ocean
Below: A gibbous Moon over the Sydney Tower (tallest building in Sydney).
Below: Pictures of and inside the Queen Victoria Building in Sydney on our last full day in Australia. "The most beautiful shopping center in the world."
Below: Dawn arriving in our flight back across the Pacific to home.
last updated: April 10, 2007
Author of original content: Nick Strobel