Author Topic: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia  (Read 3768 times)

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Online Lynda Bradford

Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« on: Apr 05, 2020, 11:24 AM »
Worldwide we are currently experiencing lockdown, travel has been restricted,  which is something most of us have never experienced in our lifetime.  So I hope you will join me as I share my amazing experience of cruising Australia:

I had always wanted to visit Australia, so last year when I saw QM2 was sailing from Hong Kong to Darwin then sailing round Australia for 25 nights to Fremantle I thought this is for me.  After some discussion with my financial adviser (husband Tom), the cruise was booked. 

Because of the Coronavirus situation there were times when I thought my dream cruise would not come to fruition.  However, because of Cunard making the decision not to visit Asian ports the epicentre of the virus in January/February, the cruise did go ahead with a changed itinerary to circumnavigate Australia.

PS: if you see a blue square with a question mark you may need to refresh the page to see the photo or just click on the blue square

On 18 February we stepped onboard QM2 for the start of an amazing experience. 

Day 1 - Fremantle, Western Australia: a port city with a population of 24,835 situated 19 Kilometres South West of Perth

In complete contrast to the cold February Scottish climate, when we stepped off the ship to explore Fremantle, we saw that the expected temperature high was 31 degrees, which would take a bit of getting used to, but we would try. 

Friendly Tourist Information staff provided a map with some suggestions of  what to see and do.  There was a limited shuttle bus service, but as we are reasonably fit we decided to walk into town, following the road to the beach. 

Photo 1:  View of harbour from balcony
Photo 2: QM2 and me
Photo 3: Port Authority Building

We stopped at The Round House, which had been completed in 1831 to be used as a prison.  Under the Round House was The 57 metres long Whalers Tunnel, built by prisoners, on the request of the Fremantle Whaling Company, to link Bathers Beach Whaling Station to the High Street.  This link is still used today.

Photo 4: taken from the High street where you can see the round house and the tunnel underneath. 

More photos in next post.....
« Last Edit: Jul 05, 2020, 11:37 AM by Lynda Bradford »
I was proud to be involved with planning QE2's 50 year conference in September 2017 in Clydebank
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Online Lynda Bradford

Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #1 on: Apr 05, 2020, 11:27 AM »
Photos 5, 6 and 7:  views of Bathers Beach and the sculpture of the sea birds
« Last Edit: Apr 19, 2020, 12:57 PM by Lynda Bradford »
I was proud to be involved with planning QE2's 50 year conference in September 2017 in Clydebank
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Online Lynda Bradford

Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #2 on: Apr 05, 2020, 11:30 AM »
Photo 8: Monument to Fishermen

Photo 9:  Shipwreck Museum

The shipwreck museum was on my list to see as I had read about shipwrecks in this area.  The museum was very interesting with information on the history of ships that had been wrecks along the Western Australia coast.  It was also a bit of respite from the Australian heat, to be in the air conditioned museum! The reconstructed remains of the Batavia that had been excavated in the 1970’s is a permanent display worth seeing.  But with only one day in Fremantle we could not spend us much time as I would have liked at the museum.   

Photo 10 and 11: High Street Heritage Buildings. 

We would have loved to have spent more time in Fremantle as there was so much more to see and do.  We did not visit the prison, or the maritime museum, because of limited time but we did enjoy our day in Fremantle, even though we were a bit jet lagged. 

Join me tomorrow for our next port of call. 
« Last Edit: May 03, 2020, 10:18 AM by Lynda Bradford »
I was proud to be involved with planning QE2's 50 year conference in September 2017 in Clydebank
www.qe2event.com

Offline June Ingram

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Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #3 on: Apr 05, 2020, 06:54 PM »
Hi Lynda -

Many thanks for the great photos and the commentary !  I am very much looking forward to the next installment !

It was very good that Cunard took the proper precautions which allowed your cruise to take place albeit with some itinerary changes.

June.  :)
QE2 - the ship for all of time, a ship of timeless beauty !

Online Lynda Bradford

Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #4 on: Apr 06, 2020, 02:38 PM »
Four days at sea before reaching the next port of call: Plenty of time to relax, go to lectures and films, walk around the deck and explore the ship. 

Day 7 and 8: Darwin, Northern Territory, Australia 32 degrees 100% humidity

Day 7: The ship was docked at Darwin for two days, which gave us the opportunity take a tour on the first day and the shuttle bus into town on the second day. 

I first became interested in Darwin when I was researching information on the role of  RMS Queen Elizabeth as a troop ship in Australia in 1940/41.  It was from doing this research that I became aware of the bombing of Darwin in 1941, so the Defence of Darwin tour was my choice.  I have to say I thoroughly enjoyed the tour as not only did we learn a lot about Darwin and the WW2 bombing, but we also saw some of the outskirts of the town.  The tour guide’s father gave a lot of first hand information on the journey about the history of the town and his family's war experience.  It was also a bit special to see a dingo and wallabies (where is your camera when you need it - in your bag of course)

The museum exhibits centred on stories of local people's experiences of the bombing.  There was also a very informative and moving film. In the grounds of the museum was military vehicles with information boards to for visitors to read.

Photo 1: Defence of Darwin Museum
Photo 2 and 3: Exhibits of Gun and ambulance

« Last Edit: May 03, 2020, 10:19 AM by Lynda Bradford »
I was proud to be involved with planning QE2's 50 year conference in September 2017 in Clydebank
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Online Lynda Bradford

Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #5 on: Apr 06, 2020, 02:48 PM »
We then went to the Charles Darwin National Park to see the ammumition storage bunkers, which now house exhibits and information boards about the bombing of Darwin and the storing and transport of bombs. The park had walking and cycling paths and picnic areas but no time for such leisure pursuits on the tour, plus it was too hot to walk.  There was a photo opportunity of the view of Darwin Bay plus information about the wetlands, where crocodiles can be found, but I didn’t wait around to see one.   

Photo 5: Bomb Trolley at Ammunition Bunker
Photo 5: Display Board
Photo 6: View over wetlands to bay, you can just see QM2 in the distance
Photo 7: QM2 in Darwin
« Last Edit: Apr 06, 2020, 02:50 PM by Lynda Bradford »
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Online Lynda Bradford

Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #6 on: Apr 06, 2020, 03:07 PM »
Day 8:  second day in Darwin:

On the second day in Darwin, we took the shuttle bus into town. 

We spent a pleasant morning wandering down through the shopping area reading information on the heritage plagues and taking refuge from the heat and humidity in the shops.

Photo 1:  Darwin sign   

I was particularly interested in The Star Village Arcade, which today housed some very nice boutique shops food shops etc., but it had started life as an open air cinema, in fact there is even an old projector on display.

Photo 2: Photo of picture of Star cinema and projector. 

Within the Star Village Arcade there was information, posters and photos, which added to understanding how important this cinema was to locals at the time.  One photo of people in the cinema shows the Aboriginal people in the stalls covering their eyes as they thought the camera would steal their soul. 

Photo 3: Inside The Star Arcade
Photo 4: Cinema Posters
Photo 5: Audience in cinema

Worth having read about this interesting piece of Darwin history

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Star_Theatre_(Darwin)

Tom Harris who leased and later owned the cinema was famed for running the Tomaris Melbourne Cup Sweep.  Apparently the Aboriginal people who frequented the cinema could not get their tongues around his full name - they called him Tomaris and the name stuck. 

Photo 6: Tomaris Darwin Melbourne Cup Sweep Board
I was proud to be involved with planning QE2's 50 year conference in September 2017 in Clydebank
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Online Lynda Bradford

Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #7 on: Apr 06, 2020, 03:11 PM »
The street art on the buildings were very interesting.  A local woman told us that this was allowed to help stop graffiti artists drawing on the buildings and it looks like it worked as well as it being a talking point. 

Attached: Various photos of street art

Loved spending time in Darwin and the locals made us feel very welcome.
I was proud to be involved with planning QE2's 50 year conference in September 2017 in Clydebank
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Online Thomas Hypher

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Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #8 on: Apr 06, 2020, 05:38 PM »
Great photos and commentary Lynda!
First sailed on QE2 in August 2003 aged 6 years old. Last sailed on QE2 in July 2008. Last saw the seagoing QE2 in person from the decks of QM2, on QE2's last Transatlantic crossing (Eastbound tandem) in October 2008. Visited QE2 in her new life, in Dubai, in January 2020 and August 2022.

Offline June Ingram

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Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #9 on: Apr 07, 2020, 12:21 AM »
I agree ! Great photos and commentary !  Many thanks !  :)
QE2 - the ship for all of time, a ship of timeless beauty !

Online Lynda Bradford

Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #10 on: Apr 07, 2020, 08:13 PM »
Three Sea Days - Cruising to The Great Barrier Reef Marine Park, Australia Coral Sea


Quote  “From the Navigator” on the Daily Programme 26 February:

Quote
“After passing clear of the Darwin Fairway yesterday evening, Queen Mary 2 passed east of Melville Island and continued through the Dundas Strait into the Arafura Sea.  Overnight Queen Mary 2 followed the coastline eastward and today will pass 14 nautical miles north of Marchinbar Island, the largest island that makes up part of the Wessel Islands."

Quote  “From the Navigator” on the Daily Programme 27 February:

Quote
“Today the Queen Mary 2 will navigate the islands and reefs that form the territory of Queensland heading East towards Yorkey’s Point.  Queen Mary 2 will pass by a group of islands that form part of the Torres Strait Island formation, such as Prince of Wales Island, Wednesday Island, Horn Island and Hammond Island.  At least 274 Islands make up the formation and Queen Mary 2 will pass to the North of these before altering into a Southerly course towards the Great Barrier Reef.”

On the afternoon of 27 February,  QM2 sailed North through the Torres Strait, which separates Australia from New Guinea. An experienced Pilot was on the bridge to give commentary on the islands (only 14 inhabited) and reefs that form the northern territory of Queensland.  Giving an insight into their history, he told us that the Spanish navigator Luís Vaez de Torres explored Torres Strait in 1606 and Captain Cook later claimed sovereignty and administrative control over the islands. 

It was a joy to see turtles and dolphins, be it a fleeting glance.  :)

The Pilot mentioned that at one point because there was only 2.5 metres beneath the ship’s keel, the ship was sailing very slowly to prevent any “bounce”.

The calm sea was a lovely shade of turquoise blue and to round off a beautiful day there was a beautiful sunset.  :) :)

Words and photos cannot describe the beauty of the scenery or the good feel factor, but the memory will live with me forever. 



« Last Edit: Apr 19, 2020, 01:03 PM by Lynda Bradford »
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Online Lynda Bradford

Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #11 on: Apr 07, 2020, 08:14 PM »
Beautiful Sunset and me trying to take a selfie to capture the moment:

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Online Thomas Hypher

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Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #12 on: Apr 07, 2020, 08:55 PM »
Wonderful photos, the sea is sooo blue!

The "bounce" would seem to be the same thing as "squatting" which was a contributing factor to QE2's Martha's Vineyard Grounding in 1992.
First sailed on QE2 in August 2003 aged 6 years old. Last sailed on QE2 in July 2008. Last saw the seagoing QE2 in person from the decks of QM2, on QE2's last Transatlantic crossing (Eastbound tandem) in October 2008. Visited QE2 in her new life, in Dubai, in January 2020 and August 2022.

Offline June Ingram

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Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #13 on: Apr 08, 2020, 12:32 AM »
Great photos and commentary, Lynda !  Many thanks !  The colors are just beautiful ! June   :)
QE2 - the ship for all of time, a ship of timeless beauty !

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Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #14 on: Apr 08, 2020, 07:50 AM »
Photos and commentary are great, really gives a feel for the cruise.
Passionate about QE2's service life for 40 years and creator of this website.  I have worked in IT for 28 years and created my personal QE2 website in 1994.

Online Lynda Bradford

Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #15 on: Apr 08, 2020, 06:56 PM »
Day 12 Cairns from Yorkey’s Knob: Temperature 32 degrees

This port had been a change to the original itinerary, and like Airlie Beach there was the opportunity to book a tour to Great Barrier Reef, which would have been a four hour journey to and from the reef and four hours at the platoon where people could snorkel, dive or spend time on the platoon, but we choose to go into Cairns for the day. 

Where do I begin. Beautiful scenery, blue skies and warm weather, friendly people. Tender service from ship. A free shuttle bus to Cairns (30 minutes) was available.  There  is not a lot to do at Yorkey’s Knob, but having said that if you wanted to chill out at the Marina Bar or walk along the beach it is a beautiful place. The driver gave a commentary en route and provided information on places of interest.

The indigenous Yirriganydji people of this area were both seafaring and rainforest dweller and had a vast knowledge of the land.  However with the settlement of Europeans this changed when their land was taken over for farming and gold mining.  Since the founding of Cairns in 1876 the population is made up of diverse nationalities.   

We walked the promenade and just enjoyed the views, reading the information boards on the history of Cairns and watching the migrant birds on the mudflats. See Photos:
I was proud to be involved with planning QE2's 50 year conference in September 2017 in Clydebank
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Online Lynda Bradford

Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #16 on: Apr 08, 2020, 07:01 PM »
Cairns continued.....

There is a fantastic 6 metres high and 11 metres wide sculpture by artist Brian Robinson.  If you look closely you can see marine life depicted within the sculpture.  I managed to capture a helicopter flying across the bay, which you can see in the middle of the sculpture. 

Another fascinating sculpture is the Fish Sculpture at the Esplanade Lagoon, which was very popular with both adults and children.  It is not safe to swim in the sea during the months November to May because of the risk of Stingers.  I read that there are also Salt Water Crocodiles around Cairns, but more likely to be where rivers meet the sea.  People who took the tour to the Barrier Reef, who wanted to snorkel or dive, were required to rent Stinger Suits and would not be allowed in the water without one. 

Cairns was a lot bigger than I thought it would be, so there probably was a lot more to see if you had more time.  But with the limited time we had to explore I was happy with what I saw and just being there. 

On return to Yorkey’s Knob a catamaran was waiting to transfer passengers back to ship.
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Offline June Ingram

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Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #17 on: Apr 10, 2020, 12:16 AM »
Great commentary, Lynda !  Many thanks !  And the photos are wonderful !   :)
QE2 - the ship for all of time, a ship of timeless beauty !

Online Lynda Bradford

Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #18 on: Apr 10, 2020, 10:15 AM »
Day 13: 1 March Airlie Beach - a tropical paradise.

Airlie Beach is a small town (population circa 4000) on the coral sea coast of Queensland. This was another tender port where the ship’s tenders were assisted by local catamarans.

We took the short journey on the shuttle bus to the town (AUD 5 ).  Airlie Beach is a one street town, with mainly tourist shops in addition to shops with essential items.  We walked down to the market, where a young man with his family stopped to speak to us as he had noticed Tom’s “Scotland/Australia friendship badge” on his hat.  He was from town not far from where we live and had immigrated to Australia a couple of years ago, small world.   
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Online Lynda Bradford

Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #19 on: Apr 10, 2020, 10:20 AM »
Beautiful lagoon where we enjoyed taking time to enjoy the view and the warmer temperatures (30 degrees) just a bit warmer than what we are accustomed.

We walked back to the ship and decided that a pit stop at the Sailing Club for a welcome glass of cold beer was in order.  Airlie Beach and the Whitsunday Isles are popular for scuba divers and snorkelling and no wonder as I said at the start it is indeed a tropical paradise. 
« Last Edit: Apr 10, 2020, 02:15 PM by Lynda Bradford »
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Offline shipnshore

Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #20 on: Apr 10, 2020, 11:07 AM »
I agree with everyone, the photo's & commentary's are great. Thank you for posting!

Online Lynda Bradford

Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #21 on: Apr 10, 2020, 02:10 PM »
Thanks to everyone for their kind comments.  I am enjoying reliving the memory and hope members are enjoying joining me on my cruising adventure. 
I was proud to be involved with planning QE2's 50 year conference in September 2017 in Clydebank
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Offline Rod

Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #22 on: Apr 10, 2020, 04:09 PM »
Very few people realize how beautiful Oz can be.
Thanks Lynda!

Online Lynda Bradford

Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #23 on: Apr 11, 2020, 01:49 PM »
2 March - Day at Sea

Day 15: 3 March, Brisbane 32 degrees

In contrast to the last two ports, Brisbane is a large city so in order to try to see as much as possible we booked the Leisurely Brisbane tour.  The ship was docked at Fisherman Island a distance of around 25 km from the city centre. There was a complimentary shuttle bus (45 minutes each way) this also could have been a good option to see the city centre.  I was also aware that there was a catamaran service, but it did not go out as far as the cruise terminal. 

The benefit of the tour is the additional information the tour guide provides and you get a good overview of the city.  However, I would have liked an extra day in Brisbane so that we could have taken the shuttle bus into the city to explore on our own to see even more of this lovely city. 

My lasting impression of Brisbane was the architecture, the beautiful parks and the waterfront.  As there was only two photo stops on the bus tour, the majority of photos I took were from the bus, so although not as good as you would expect when you are on foot, I was quite pleased with what I had captured of our day in Brisbane. 

There was a brief comfort stop at the Brisbane Botanical gardens, a beautiful area in the city.  But unfortunately no time was given to have a walk to explore the gardens. 

Mt Coot-tha Summit was the planned stop to take photos of the view over Brisbane, shop or have something to eat or drink at the cafe.

I have added a short note about each photo: 

Photo 1: Sir Thomas Brisbane Planetarium, Brisbane Botanical Gardens
Photo 2: Sculpture “Gone to Seed” Stuart Green - Commissioned as part of City of Brisbane’s Mt Coot-tha Botanic Gardens ‘platform’ project, the work takes as its starting point, seed forms and fruit structure that might be encountered at the site.
Photo 3: Mt Coot-tha Summit - view from cafe
Photo 4: Mt Coot-tha Summit - admiring the view
Photo 5: Mt Coot-tha Summit - enjoying my visit

More photos to follow.....
« Last Edit: Apr 19, 2020, 01:09 PM by Lynda Bradford »
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Online Lynda Bradford

Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #24 on: Apr 11, 2020, 02:00 PM »
Brisbane contd.....

Photo 6, 7, 8: Kangaroo Point Cliffs Park Views of city and river
Photos 9 and 10: View through arch Kurilpa Point Park and Bridge, plus second view of bridge and skyline.
Photo 11: Queensland Cultural Centre, Brisbane - glance as we go past.
I was proud to be involved with planning QE2's 50 year conference in September 2017 in Clydebank
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Online Lynda Bradford

Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #25 on: Apr 11, 2020, 02:08 PM »
Photos of Brisbane contd. .....

Photo 12: Customs House - beautiful architecture.  This building is now a restaurant and events venue.   if I had had more time in Brisbane I would have loved to have seen inside this building and maybe dine in the restaurant. 
https://customshouse.com.au/about/

Photo 13: Naldham House Originally built for the Australian United Steam Navigation Company.  In 1994 the building was purchased by the Brisbane Polo Club and was sold in 2015 to a Singapore hotelier.

Photo 14: The Mansions 1889 - heritage listed row of six terraced houses built in the 1880’s
https://www.brisbane-australia.com/brisbane-mansions-george-street.html

Photo 15: “The Tower of Power” - The 259 metre high skyscraper in William Street, is the second tallest building in Brisbane.  This modernist style Government Office building, when completed in 2016, was given the nickname the tower of power, by locals. 

See video of interior shown in this Brisbane newspaper:
https://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/national/queensland/1-william-street-brisbane-look-inside-the-tower-of-power-before-5000-public-servants-move-in-20161021-gs7r0p.html
and a little about the design:
https://www.designbuild-network.com/projects/1-william-street-tower-brisbane/

Photo 16: 169 Mary Street, Coal Board Building,  built in 1887/88 was added to the Queensland Heritage list in October 1992. 
Photo 17: Brisbane City Hall, King George Square
« Last Edit: Apr 19, 2020, 01:11 PM by Lynda Bradford »
I was proud to be involved with planning QE2's 50 year conference in September 2017 in Clydebank
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Online Lynda Bradford

Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #26 on: Apr 11, 2020, 02:12 PM »
I will finish my tour of Brisbane with a few general views of this beautiful city.  Thank-you Brisbane for a wonderful day. 

I was proud to be involved with planning QE2's 50 year conference in September 2017 in Clydebank
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Online Lynda Bradford

Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #27 on: Apr 13, 2020, 10:35 AM »
Day 16: at Sea

Days 17 and 18: Sydney 5th and 6th March

Sydney, the most populous city in Australia has a population of 4.28 million.  Queen Mary 2 was at anchor on the first day and docked for the second day of our visit to the port.

As we were meeting friends in Sydney we had not booked any tours.  We took the tender to the shore and took a few photos of the iconic Opera House, designed by Jorn Utzon,  before meeting up with our friends.

Up until now we had had very warm temperatures, but unfortunately on the first day of our visit there was torrential rain, but this did not stop our enjoyment. 

Our friends had planned a visit to Sydney Tower, the city’s highest structure (305 metres high).  We took a train to St James Station, the nearest station.  Even although the the view was restricted because of the rain, we still enjoyed the experience.  If the weather had been better we would have spent more time in the area, but instead we had lunch in a restaurant near the tower, then took the train back to Circular Quay to visit The Rocks.  You can see from the pictures that there was very few people in what would normally be a crowded area.  With the rain so heavy there was only one thing to do - go to the pub for a wine and a beer. 

Overnight the ship had left the harbour then sailed back in to dock beside Sydney Bridge. 

Photos 1: Sydney Opera Stairs from bar area
Photos 2: View of  Sydney in the rain
Photos 3 and 4: The Rocks in the rain
Photo 5: A bit of rain didn't stop us having fun
« Last Edit: Apr 13, 2020, 11:41 AM by Lynda Bradford »
I was proud to be involved with planning QE2's 50 year conference in September 2017 in Clydebank
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Online Lynda Bradford

Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #28 on: Apr 13, 2020, 05:58 PM »
Sydney Day 2: it was all change with warm weather and blue skies. We took a few photos up on deck before going ashore. 

After meeting our friends for a coffee, we walked through the Botanical Gardens, before getting an Uber Taxi that had been arranged to take us to Bondi Beach. A table had been booked at Icebergs Restaurant for lunch, where there were spectacular views, plus excellent service and food, which made this a memorable experience. 

After lunch we walked along the promenade enjoying watching the surfers and the waves crashing on the beach.

Interesting little sculpture commemorating a century of life saving. Information on Black Sunday in 1938 when three huge waves dragged hundred of swimmers out to sea.  The sculpture plaque gave details of lifesavers rescuing 100 people from the water, only 5 people died as a result of the life savers’ action. 

On the promenade had a look at the Graffiti artwork. 

Photo 1: Sydney Bridge from Grills Terrace
Photo 2: QM2 docked in Sydney
Photo 3: View of Sydney Skyline from Botanical Gardens
Photo 4: View from Icebergs Restaurant
Photo 5:Bondi Beach
Photo 6: Surfers on Bondi Beach
Photo 7: A Century of Life Saving Sculpture
Photo 8: Graffiti Wall at Bondi Beach
« Last Edit: Apr 19, 2020, 01:17 PM by Lynda Bradford »
I was proud to be involved with planning QE2's 50 year conference in September 2017 in Clydebank
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Online Lynda Bradford

Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #29 on: Apr 13, 2020, 06:06 PM »
Sydney continued:

We returned to Sydney by bus, using the Opal Card that our friends had bought for us the day before for the train journey.  What better way to end the day with friends than to have a glass of wine at one of the bars beneath the Opera House, where there was a  wonderful view of Sydney Bridge and Queen Mary 2, what could be better. 

We were exhausted by the time we returned to the ship and did not feel like dining in the restaurant so we had a light meal in the Kings Court then went up on deck to take some pictures of the fantastic view of Sydney Opera House and Bridge at night.

Photo 1: View of QM2 from Opera House Bar area
Photo 2: Entertainer at Opera House Bar area
Photo 3: Photogenic QM2 with Sydney Bridge
Photo 4: Sydney Opera House at night from QM
Photo 5: View over Deck 8 ready for sail away party
Photo 6: View down to Deck 8 and skyline
« Last Edit: Apr 17, 2020, 09:39 PM by Lynda Bradford »
I was proud to be involved with planning QE2's 50 year conference in September 2017 in Clydebank
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Offline June Ingram

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Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #30 on: Apr 14, 2020, 01:23 AM »
Thank you very much, Lynda, for the wonderful photos and descriptive commentary !  It is great to enjoy with photo and word all of the marvelous things you did and saw on your trip !  :)
QE2 - the ship for all of time, a ship of timeless beauty !

Online Lynda Bradford

Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #31 on: Apr 15, 2020, 03:59 PM »
Day 19: Sea Day

Day 20: 8 March Melbourne Temperature 22 degrees,. but it felt warmer. 

Today we were pleased to meet up with our friends, from Melbourne,  who gave us a little tour with some history of the dock area.  It was interesting to see the housing and to hear firsthand family history.  Our friends then took us to Arthur’s Seat State Park (named by British explorers in 1802, after Arthur’s Seat in Edinburgh).  The journey was about an hour’s drive from where the ship was docked, which I enjoyed as it gave us an opportunity to see the farm crops and animals.   

What a fantastic experience being transported (around 14 minutes) on the Arthur’s Seat Eagle Gondola, to the summit. 

Apparently a chair lift was in operation in the 19th century (see photo) but I prefer the gondola!

Once at the top we walked one of the trails to see Matthew Flinders Cairn and the amazing view across the bay.  I was also fascinated to see the “Cairn” which I always associated as being a marker that you have reached the summit of a Scottish Munro.  Apparently Captain Flinders was a navigator and a cartographer, who was the leader of the first circumnavigation of Australia and identified it as a continent. 


« Last Edit: Apr 16, 2020, 02:03 PM by Lynda Bradford »
I was proud to be involved with planning QE2's 50 year conference in September 2017 in Clydebank
www.qe2event.com

Online Lynda Bradford

Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #32 on: Apr 15, 2020, 04:05 PM »
We then walked to the Seawinds Gardens to see the some of the William Ricketts sculptures, inspired by the traditions and cultures of the indigenous people. 

Having the opportunity to walk the trails was wonderful, especially as the surroundings reminded us of walking in Scotland.

The state park is the home of many wild animals, including kangaroos, but we did not see any - just their poo!

We then went to the Mornington  National Park to look for Kangaroos and although we didn’t see them close up, we did see large herds of them on the hillside. Amazing to see them in their natural environment and seeing the road signs to be aware of Kangaroos on the road was a reminder of home where we see signs to be aware of deer on the road.

We finished the day with a pizza and a very welcome cool beer, at a local brewery then a coffee before returning to the ship. Thanks to our friends we had a wonderful day!
I was proud to be involved with planning QE2's 50 year conference in September 2017 in Clydebank
www.qe2event.com

Offline June Ingram

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Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #33 on: Apr 16, 2020, 02:05 AM »
Many thanks, Lynda, for your commentary and beautiful photos as we accompany you on your holiday !  :)
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Online Rob Lightbody

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Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #34 on: Apr 16, 2020, 02:55 PM »
This is a wondeful topic, I feel like I went along with you for the trip (almost).

I love that shot looking over the stern decks at the Sydney Harbour Bridge - spectacular.
Passionate about QE2's service life for 40 years and creator of this website.  I have worked in IT for 28 years and created my personal QE2 website in 1994.

Online Lynda Bradford

Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #35 on: Apr 18, 2020, 01:49 PM »
Day 21 Sea Day

Day 22:  10 March - Adelaide temperature 28 degrees

Adelaide, South Australia, is the fifth largest city in Australia with a population of around 1.38 million. It is on the Eastern shores of the gulf of St Vincent. The city, founded in 1836 was named after Queen Adelaide, the consort of King William IV and was the planned capital in the only freely colonised British Provence in Australia.

We took the free shuttle bus (around 40 minutes each way) into the city.  Passing through Port Adelaide it was significant to learn that the town has one of the best concentrations of colonial buildings in South Australia, which was recognised in May 1982, when a sizeable part of the town centre was declared a State Heritage Area.  It is a town that would be worth a visit to learn more about the heritage and history. 

The shuttle bus stopped near to Adelaide's Rundle Mall, a pedestrianised shopping area.  Having discovered the cost onboard ship to get my nail gels off and on was over £100, the first stop was a nail bar in the shopping mall, where I got the same service for £15. Makes sense!

We enjoyed the vibe of this lovely city and liked the mixed of old and modern architecture, the street cafes and the sculptures: 

Photo 1: Port of Adelaide
Photo 2: Mix of old and modern architecture
Photo 3: Rundle Mall Pigs - “A day out” shows four pigs exploring the city on a day out
Photo 4: “On further reflection”  known as “Malls Balls” 
Photo 5: “The Dolls House” on display during the Adelaide’s Festival 60th year anniversary. It was fun to see the delight in children’s faces as they moved through the life sized house. 

“Visionary Japanese artist Tatzu Nishi, who has been transforming public spaces in jaw-dropping ways across the world since 2000, presents his life-sized, three-storeyed Doll’s House for your delight and discovery. It has been created only once before, outside the Palais de Tokyo art museum in Paris, and now it will be available to visit, free of charge, in the middle of Rundle Mall. “ see Adelaide Festival

« Last Edit: Apr 19, 2020, 01:26 PM by Lynda Bradford »
I was proud to be involved with planning QE2's 50 year conference in September 2017 in Clydebank
www.qe2event.com

Online Lynda Bradford

Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #36 on: Apr 18, 2020, 01:57 PM »
More Adelaide pictures:

Photo 6: Street Scene
Photo 7: View inside Adelaide Arcade
Photo 8: Regent Arcade - originally the Regent Theatre that opened in 1928 and closed in 1967.  Now a shopping arcade. 
Photo 9: Rundle Mall Fountain
« Last Edit: Feb 20, 2021, 11:49 AM by Lynda Bradford »
I was proud to be involved with planning QE2's 50 year conference in September 2017 in Clydebank
www.qe2event.com

Online Lynda Bradford

Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #37 on: Apr 19, 2020, 11:53 AM »
Now onto the last part of my Circumnavigating Australia story:

Day 23 and 24 sea days

Day 25 Friday 13 March - Busselton. We had booked a tour to  Margaret Rivers, a wine producing area, however on the evening before the trip, we received notification that one of the wineries was not allowing tours from cruise ships because of fear of coronavirus, which was fair enough.  However because extra shopping time, replaced the winery visit, we decided to cancel the tour and to spend time in Busselton instead. 

Well as in the words of Robert Burns “The best laid plans of mice and men often go awry”.  After an initial tender service getting people on tours off the ship, passengers were advised that the tender service had been suspended because of of rough sea conditions and to wait for further announcements.  We went for a walk around the deck,  9 times equals around 3 miles.  By the time the tender service was running again we had decided to go for lunch and as we were disembarking ship the next day spent time packing our cases.  So we didn’t see Busselton, which was unfortunate as it looked a nice place to visit.  But we did enjoy relaxing on QM2


Day 26: Saturday 14 March disembarked QM2 in Fremantle where a transfer had been arranged to take us to the Novotel in Perth for our two night stay in the city.

We found that there was lots to see in Perth, within walking distance from our hotel, but we could also have used the local bus service or the popular hop-on hop-off bus.  I have selected photos and stories that gives an overview of the two days we had in Perth, but there is so much more that I could say about this lovely city,

Photo 1: St George’s Cathedral - reflections through a window!

Photo 2: Perth Town Hall built by convicts and free men between 1867 and 1870. Restoration work on the interior of the building and the exterior gothic arches was done in the late 1990’s. 

Photo 3: London Court Clock.  We were intrigued by the mock Tudor facade with the clock that had four mechanised knights appear above the clock and move in a semi circle every time the clock chimed.  It was not until I came home that I found out more about London Court and the clock.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/London_Court

Photo 4: Stirling Gardens 3.5 metre high Pen Nibs Sculpture dedicated to the planners who designed Stirling Gardens, Western Australia’s first Botanical Gardens. 

More photos ......
« Last Edit: Apr 19, 2020, 01:28 PM by Lynda Bradford »
I was proud to be involved with planning QE2's 50 year conference in September 2017 in Clydebank
www.qe2event.com

Online Lynda Bradford

Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #38 on: Apr 19, 2020, 12:04 PM »
Photos of Perth contd. 

Photo 5: Elizabeth Quay, a waterfront development area, named in honour of Queen Elizabeth II’s diamond Jubilee, was officially opened in January 2016.  The photo shows a view over the marina area.  You can see the Spanda sculpture to the right of the picture

Photo 6: Elizabeth Quay Pedestrian Bridge - reminded me of “The Squinty Bridge” in Glasgow.  It’s official name is the Clyde Arc Bridge but locals have named it “The Squinty”

Photo 7: Cormorant
 
Photo 8: “The First Contact” by Laurel Nannup is a 5 metre high sculpture with the words surrounding the sculpture depicting how the native Noongar people thought the European boats bringing settlers, were bringing their ancestors back from the sea. 

“They first saw a boat with white sails coming to shore, which they haven’t seen before.  You know it would have looked like a big white bird and the sailors being “wadjellas” made Noongar people think it was their ancestors’ spirits coming back from the dead, from the sea."

Photo 9: The Island Microbrewery, where we enjoyed a pizza and a beer has an interesting history. The building was originally a tearoom and kiosk built in 1928.  In the 1980’s it was used as a Day Centre and renamed The Florence Hummerston Day Centre.  As part of the redevelopment of the esplanade area the building was dismantled brick by brick and reconstructed on the island at Elizabeth Quay.  I am sure there is much more to the history of this building but interesting to learn these details.  You can see the red roof of this building in this photo.
« Last Edit: Apr 19, 2020, 01:32 PM by Lynda Bradford »
I was proud to be involved with planning QE2's 50 year conference in September 2017 in Clydebank
www.qe2event.com

Online Lynda Bradford

Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #39 on: Apr 19, 2020, 01:35 PM »
Thank-you for joining me as I relived my memories of circumnavigating Australia.   It was a fantastic experience and my only regret is that I had not visited Australia, earlier in my life it is such an interesting country with so much more to see.  Australia has a history and culture that is worth researching.

Thank-you Australia and thank-you to all the people we met along the way that added to our experience. 

On the cruise the ship visited Fremantle, Darwin, Yorkey’s Knob for Cairns, Airlie Beach, Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide, Busselton, and back to Fremantle for Perth.  When we were not in port we had the luxury of enjoying the facilities onboard Cunard’s flagship, Queen Mary 2

A truly memorable journey!
« Last Edit: Apr 21, 2020, 10:53 AM by Lynda Bradford »
I was proud to be involved with planning QE2's 50 year conference in September 2017 in Clydebank
www.qe2event.com

Offline June Ingram

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Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #40 on: Apr 19, 2020, 10:05 PM »
Thank you so much, Lynda, for letting us accompany you on your voyage and land excursions.  If certainly must have been a wonderful experience with many great memories and photos to bring back home !   :)
QE2 - the ship for all of time, a ship of timeless beauty !

Offline Chris

Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #41 on: Apr 30, 2020, 03:46 PM »
What a wonderful topic.
It is so nice to see my country displayed so well in your photos.
It was an absolute pleasure to meet you aboard QM2!
🎥 Check out my QE2 & Cruise Ship Videos: https://www.youtube.com/chrisframeofficial/

Online Lynda Bradford

Re: Queen Mary 2 Cruise 2020: Circumnavigating Australia
« Reply #42 on: May 03, 2020, 10:15 AM »
Thanks June and Chris for your comments. 

What a wonderful topic.
It is so nice to see my country displayed so well in your photos.
It was an absolute pleasure to meet you aboard QM2!

Chris is was lovely to meet you on QM2 and to have the opportunity to attend your lectures and meet up with you for cocktails. 

I was proud to be involved with planning QE2's 50 year conference in September 2017 in Clydebank
www.qe2event.com

 

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