Day 59 At Sea, inside Great Barrier Reef, 82, rain/drizzle am, cloudy pm.
Schedule update: due to issues with docking in Myanmar, we will now be skipping it altogether and have the following schedule changes 3/18-3/25:
3/18 Port Klang, Malaysia
3/19 Penang, Malaysia
3/20 Phuket, Thailand
3/21 Phuket, Thailand
3/22 At Sea
3/23 At Sea
3/24 Colombo, Sri Lanka
3/25 Colombo, Sri Lanka
Frankly, we are delighted with the new schedule, although there are some on board that
Today we are passing through Islands, between the mainland and the Reef, with the Reef 25-30 miles toward sea. The gap between land and Reef will become much smaller tonight, such that after we leave Cairns tomorrow we should be able to see the Reef from the ship. We passed through a beautiful area, Whitsunday Straight, this morning. This is a very popular tourist area, and includes 72 islands, most uninhabited, but also some 6-8 world-class resorts. It was cloudy and raining as we traversed this area, so didn't get to really enjoy the apparent beauty. Three lectures today. We skipped the morning lecture and sat on the fantail watching the sea and rain. Noontime game..we cashed..lunch..nap..on to the next lecture, about the founding of the Smithsonian Institute. ( Relevance is that most of the lecturers are associated with the Smithsonian). The third lecture was by the Reef Pilot on the health of the Reef. And, his opinion is that the media are hyping whatever they can
Day 60. Cairns, 88. Rain, clouds, sun.
Now, this is THE get-away to the Great Barrier Reef, so we were really bummed to wake up to rain. Our tour was a pretty much an all day tour to the Reef. We departed from Cairns at 8:30 in the rain on a catamaran, holding, perhaps 200, going 1 1/2 hours offshore to a platform over a portion of the Reef. When we got there, it was cloudy, and our first activity was taking a tour on a semi-submersible of the Reef in this area. That was pretty amazing. Next, the sun came out, and stayed out, and we all donned light-weight wet-suits to go on a guided, by a Marine Biologist, beginners snorkel tour
Day 61. Cooktown, 90, partly cloudy.
Cooktown is, rightfully, described by the locals as a "one horse town". Pop. 2,000, it's claim to fame is that after Capt. Cook ran aground on the Reef, he came to this spot and spent 48 days here, repairing his ship. Cooktown gets 6 Cruise ships scheduled here a year, and usually 3 never make it, cause it's too rough and windy
At Sea, Cairns and Cooktown
Monday, March 06, 2017
Cooktown, Queensland, Australia