Date: 13-14th May 2021
Travelled: 160 kms from Mossman to Cairns and back
Visited: Cairns, far North Queensland.
Stayed: First City Caravilla, $47, all services. S16.93853, E145.74331
Budget: 33 days @ $139 per day.
We make an early start today, coffee, fruit and 20 laps of Mossman pool. We have an appointment at the Iveco Service Agent in Cairns at 10.30am so we are on the road just after 9am. We arrive at JSC Diesel on time hoping for the best. By lunch time they have diagnosed a bearing failure most likely the radiator fan, but they will have to pull the front end down to confirm. Be back tomorrow morning at 8am.
So we find ourselves an overnight a kilometre away. Caravilla has a nice pool and plenty of shade, so we settle in, have a swim and relax. In the late afternoon we take a short walk to Stocklands Cairns for a little shopping and a takeaway for dinner.
Next morning we drop the Jayco off at JSC and Uber it to the city. Our very chatty driver Peter, drops us off at the marina so we explore Cairns starting from there.
We walk the marina looking at the rich people’s boats for a while before trying a cafe for breakfast. We decide against a warm croissant or muffin and continued on. The waterfront boardwalk provides great views across the bay and back to the city and park. It’s 30 degrees already and we wish we had brought the swimmers and a towel.
Having walked for a kilometre of so still having no luck with breakfast we cross the Esplanade and walk into the commercial precinct.
Out of desperation we eventually settle for a toasted sandwich and a milk shake.
We step into a couple of the Galleries but there’s not much on offer to keep our interest other than their air conditioning. Anyway we continue walking up and down the streets for another hour. Obviously a lot of Cairns relies on foreign visitors. Virtually all the high end shops are closed up, as are the opal and watch shops.
Frankly we have walked as far as we can given the heat, humidity and the lack of breeze. We manage to find our way back to the marina hunting shade as we go. I doubt the Jayco is finished but we may as well sit in JSC’s air-conditioned waiting room as melt here. So we Uber back, our driver on this occasion doesn’t say a word.
Anyway back at the JSC they diagnose the issue as a failed water pump bearing. So another water pump and 5.5 hours labour later we are back on the road. No more noise and our confidence back, as we will head west into the Savanna country in a day or so.
Visiting Mossman Gorge was on our list and I don’t feel inclined to miss it because of a water pump. So we drive the 70 kms or so back to Mossman getting there on dusk.
After a long and stressful day, we decide on the pub for dinner. They serve a great schnitty at The Exchange. Too big to be chicken I’m presuming it was emu, covered with a wicked pepper gravy, who knows its genetic origins .
Anyway we are thinking some laps in the pool tomorrow first thing, then on to Mossman Gorge…
Michael + Pam