I have now been in Australia for almost a month. I have not blogged because this is my 6th trip and I only like to write about new experiences. But just a quick overview: I did go to visit my friends in Tasmania (the gals I met in Darwin - a few blogs ago!) - we picked up where we left off and had a wonderful weekend. I got to see more sights, went on a boat, stayed in what they call their shack (not really a shack). I even got to see a platypus (apparently a rare occurrence).
In Sydney I stayed with Gaille for a few days (had to tent it more like glamping as I had a mattress) her house is in the middle of renovations - it will look amazing when finished. We went to the Sydney zoo finally and I got to see gorillas -but after seeing animals running wild in africia a zoo environment is just not that exciting. Marianne treated us to an afternoon sailing on a tail ship in sidney harbour. They tried to get me to climb the mast - but oh darn I had the wrong shoes on! We also went to see Dirty Dancing on stage and it was fabulous. Lots of great dinners and bbq's.
While I have been here Marianne and Brian have sold their house (first she tells me she is leaving work so that ends the staff travel - then they sell the all inclusive - are they trying to tell me something!). I will need to look for new friends who work for qantas!
Now what I really want to tell you about is my trip to Broome Australia - not somewhere a lot of people get to:
Broome is a coastal and pearling and tourist town in the Kimberley region of Western Australia, 2,240 km (1,390 mi) north of Perth( Perth is about 3500km west of Sydney). The permanent population is estimated at 14,436, growing to over 45,000 per month during the tourist season. Broome has a wet and a dry season - February is the wet season and the low tourist season hence the reason I got 5 star accommodation (Cable Beach Resort and Spa for $75 a night).
This is suppose to be the wet season but there has been very little rain and the temperature is in the mid 30's every day with a 70 - 90 percent humidity.
Flying in I could see the beautiful color of the Indian Ocean - later dipping in my feet to find the water is very warm. However, I will not be tempted to do a full body dip as there are stingers and jellyfish - so unfortunate as it does look inviting - guess I will Just stick to the pool!
Broome is situated on the traditional lands of the Yawuru people. The town has a deep history based around the exploits of the men and women who developed the pearling industry, starting with the harvesting of oysters for mother of pearl in the 1880s to the current major cultured pearl farming enterprises.
At first, aborigines were enslaved and forced to dive naked, with little or no equipment. Especially pregnant girls were used as they were believed to have superior lung capacity.
When slavery was abolished, Asians and islanders were given the dangerous job instead. Especially Japanese were valued for their experience. The riches from the pearl beds did not come cheaply, however, and the town's Japanese cemetery is the resting place of 919 Japanese divers who lost their lives working in the industry. Many more were lost at sea, and the exact number of deaths is unknown.
There are lots of pearl farm tours - however since I have seen pearl farms in Thailand and Vietnam - this time I decided to purchase pearls!
Broome was attacked at least four times by Japanese aircraft during the Second World War, and the worst attack was the 3 March 1942 air raid in which at least 88 people (mostly civilians who were refugees from the Dutch East Indies) were killed.
The West Australian mining boom of the 1960s, as well as the growth of the tourism industry, also helped Broome develop and diversify. Broome is one of the fastest growing towns in Australia.
In 1889, a telegraph undersea cable was laid from Broome to Singapore, connecting to England. Hence the name Cable Beach given to the landfall site. Cable Beach is a 22 kilometres (14 mi) stretch of beach near Broome - it is not only one of the most magnificient beaches I have ever seen but it also has the most amazing sunsets.
about 25 Feb. 2014, a 12 foot (approx. 4 metre)-long saltwater crocodile caused a brief-but-excited shutdown of this beach to all public swimming - this could be one of the reasons!
Broome although out of the way is a beautiful place to visit and there are lots of tour options Available especially if you want to see more of the outback - although nothing is cheap so bring your pocket book!