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Cuddling Koalas and Feeding Kangaroos!

While traveling in Queensland, Australia, we made a stopover in Brisbane. We specifically went to Brisbane to visit the Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary. It is the world’s first and largest koala sanctuary. It serves as a habitat for at least 130 koalas.

At the sanctuary, observing and learning about the koalas was very educational. However, I was mostly eager to cuddle a koala.

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This rare opportunity to hold and cuddle a koala was very special. Surprisingly, I felt very comfortable holding the koala, even though I could feel its tiny claws.

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Within the sanctuary, there was also a 5-acre kangaroo reserve, where over 130 kangaroos roamed around freely. It was possible to both pet and feed these animals.

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Even though I love animals, I was particularly nervous about feeding this kangaroo!

Besides, the koalas and kangaroos, the sanctuary was also home to various colourful Australian parrots and cockatoos, as well as Tasmanian devils. Our trip to the Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary was very lovely and memorable. I would highly recommend it!

Is it Worth Climbing the Syndey Habour Bridge?

The Syndey Habour Bridge, is one of Australia’s most famous landmarks. It is nicknamed “The Coathanger” due to its arch-based design. It stands 134 metres above the Syndey harbour, and is the world’s largest (but not the longest) steel arch bridge. Tourists and locals have the opportunity to climb to the top of this bridge with an organization named Bridge Climb.

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We had only one day left in Australia and we were still on the fence of whether we should climb the bridge. It was a rainy day, and this adventure was extremely costly. It was about $220 per person for the climb. After some contemplating, we finally decided perhaps it would be worth the experience. We had never before climbed to the top of a bridge. Thus, although we were not absolutely confident about our decision, we figured it might be fun to climb such an incredible bridge and see the city from a different perspective.

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It was a poor decision. Our climbing experience was mediocre. It was a very slow and uneventful climb, not very thrilling. Of course the weather really didn’t help much either. Even though the views of Syndey from the iconic bridge were interesting, the cost of this adventure was definitely not worth it.

Scuba Diving in Australia’s Great Barrier Reef

I never imagined my very first scuba diving experience would be in Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, the world’s largest coral reef system! I remember, Jason and I explored the beautiful corals and aquatic life with 2 other divers and our dive master. We got a very quick introduction about how to dive. Before entering the waters, I wasn’t feeling absolutely confident about my diving abilities so I felt nervous. But yet, I was also excited because this was going to be a new adventure!

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The experience of seeing the underwater world for the very first time was absolutely incredible! I remember my senses being so captivated by the numerous colorful fish and corals. I had entered this amazing new world. I truly felt time had stopped, and nothing else mattered except my curiosity for this fascinating aquatic world. I was so present. In fact, I was so enthralled by the underwater life, that I actually lost sight of all the other divers for a brief moment.

When I realized I was alone, I strangely felt pleased at first. I was thrilled that I was all alone enjoying and appreciating the beauty of marine life. However, when I started feeling disoriented in this enchanting but foreign world, I felt a pang of panic. My heavy breathing began affecting my buoyancy and from somewhere my vigilant dive master quickly arrived to help me.

The rest of the dive was smooth sailing. So, that was my first scuba diving experience. I will always remember that brief but special moment, when I was all alone in the world’s largest coral reef system!

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Taking a Risk at Australia’s Whitsunday Islands

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Situated off the central coast of Queensland, Australia lie the pristine Whitsunday Islands. These 74 islands make a stunning archipelago at the heart of the Great Barrier Reef. However, all year around, within these gorgeous waters lie numerous deadly jellyfish. The two main stingers found within this area are the Box Jellyfish and the Irukandji Jellyfish. The Box Jellyfish produces potent venom and is one of the most deadly creatures in the world. Its sting causes immediate severe pain and sometimes even death. The Irukandji jellyfish, whose body is transparent, has been known to cause serious illnesses to humans. Although an encounter with these jellyfish may be rare, it is always better to take precautions.

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Since we were visiting during the higher risk season for encountering jellyfish, we were advised to wear stinger suits for protection. We could not resist the temptation of the beautiful waters, so we put on our stinger suits, and took the risk. Luckily, we ended up having a wonderful day in a tropical paradise!

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