sydney0269 One travels to Australia for many reasons–the reefs, the deserts, the rainforests, the animals…but I went there to earn my Delta Platinum Medallion for 2011. Shallow? Yes. Frivolous? Certainly…but when I read that a flight to Sydney could be had for less than 1000 dollars this summer, I could not argue with the Medallion Qualification Mile (MQM) calculus—this trip would add the most MQMs for the least price to my hoard of MQMs. Talk about bang for the buck…even if it meant fifteen hours in an aluminum tube (did I mention coach class?). 
And it was thus that I found myself on my way to Sydney. I will summarize my experience: I went there for the miles, but would happily return for the country. 
The route seems frightening when you study it on a globe: You fly over thousands of miles of open ocean, not even seeing fabled destinations like Tahiti, Rarotonga, Fiji or New Caledonia–these are mere specks in that vast ocean. However, Sydney is closer to LA than the Eastern US is to Johannesburg–seems wrong, doesn’t it? 
But it is still long: This was brought home to us when the plane ran short of fuel due to headwinds and had to stop in Brisbane instead. we reached Sydney after this refueling stop. Covering the distance between Brisbane and Sydney, I could not believe that I came all the way here without a firm plan of sightseeing this country–no, make that continent! 
My first night in Australia was spent in Port Douglas (PD), a resort town (pop. 948!) north of Cairns. PD is a gateway to one (of many) outstanding sections of the Great Barrier Reef (The Agincourt Reef), and the Daintree Rainforest. Diving at the Agincourt Reef lived up to all the hype, and I was heartened to see how the reef is reclaiming the areas killed off by the Crown of Thorns anemone. North of PD, the Mossman Gorge, Newell beach and the Daintree Rainforest are all on your way north to Cape Tribulation, which gets its misleading name from the disaster that befell Captain Cook’s ship — misleading because it is framed by a long sandy beach, a rain forest and mangroves. queensland0421

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  1. Link Building says:

    Amazing freakin blog here. I love all the pictures

  2. Daniel says:

    great post, thanks for sharing

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