Day 12, 01/02/15 – Airlie Beach

After packing all of our stuff in Melbourne, we flew north to Airlie Beach. Here we stayed in another hostel and had plans to go sailing around the Whitsundays the next day/night. We stayed at Magnums hostel and I was impressed yet again. This hostel had a little bit more of a party vibe than the one in Apollo Beach. It was on the main strip of a down town and had a bar + pool tables on the property. It also felt like you were camping out in the jungle because of all the tress surrounding the rooms.  It was pretty hot up north so I was thankful  the rooms had AC. The only thing that was mehh… were the outdoor bathrooms/showers but, as I’ve learned from vacationing with Mike’s family, travelers cannot be picky!

For dinner, Wendy found this amazing place called Fish D’Vine that was both a restaurant and a rum bar. Suffice to say, we found our spot for the evening. After chowing down on fresh fish we headed to another part of the restaurant to sample different rums. It is a joke between my dad and Mike that I (the girl) never gets to drink the “man’s drink” (whatever they are drinking). I told Barb about this cruel game and she was sure to include me in the boys sampling of every rum which was (pricey for Mike haha) appreciated!

After we were well and buzzed (except Wendy, mom-to-be!), we went back to the hostel where Mike and Andy played pool for a bit.

Ashley and the boyz

Mike joking around, me clearly entertained…
Day 13, 01/03/15 

We woke up early this day to go on an overnight sailing adventure. Remember how I mentioned I have a fear of the ocean? Yeah, I was feeling pretty anxious about being on a sailboat for 1.5 days. Plus, I suffer from motion sickness so I was skeptical about how I would do on this trip. I think this is another instance of not really realizing how much fun you’re having while you’re having it and then, in retrospect, understanding it actually wasn’t all so bad. …Granted the weather was pretty raining the first day we were out; Mike and I got terribly sun burnt; and there were these wretched little things called March flies biting all of us. However, looking back, there was also breathtaking scenery and some good laughs too.

Really contemplating this whole sailing thing… (just prior to this I got a text from my dad telling me about the time he threw up fruity pebbles all over the deck from sailing as a kid. I was sure I was going to puke at some point.)
The captain and skipper of our sailboat were entertaining and well versed in weathering the waters from years and years of sailing. I forget their names now but I’m glad we were on board with them. On the first day  out at sea, they dropped us off at Whitehaven beach to explore and relax for 2 hours. This beach was INSANE! Like, the most gorgeous, picturesque beach I have ever been to. Like, if I was rich, I would fly (and then sail, I presume) everyone I loved here for my wedding.

I couldn’t believe how pretty it was except that, while we were there, it was raining – which obliviously put a damper on the experience. So, if you can imagine all of us sitting on this immaculate beach, in our sting suits (which are basically wet suits but made of lighter material), trying to take cover from the rain in a few bushes way up shore, eating Tim Tams and drinking beer (eventually deciding to go for a walk up and down the beach instead of just sitting and stewing in our own gorgeous misery). It is a pretty funny scene and one that I would repeat in a heartbeat.

Willingly going sailing again? A completely different story. Am I glad for the experience? Yes. Would  I do it again? Never. Luckily I was so sun burnt and tired, I fell asleep fast and hard the night we spent on the boat and the next day was a lot better than the first but, still, I want to see someone try to get this girl on a sailboat again…

Mike swatting at the March flies

IS THIS REAL!?!?!?!?

Below deck #mate
Day 14, 01/04/15

We woke up the next day to MUCH better weather and had breakfast on the deck with a nice side of annoying March flies. Not the best way to start the day… Luckily, we did some amazing snorkeling shortly after to make up for the aggravating little (but actually big, by fly standards….) flies.

As mentioned, I am pretty scared of the ocean and was certain I was going to die while snorkeling.

I’m happy to report the feeling was an over-exaggeration!

Our first snorkeling stop was the best. It was in this (safe-feeling) little cove with gorgeous coral and so.many.fish. I had never been snorkeling before but I really enjoyed the experience. And I only saw myself getting attacked by a shark (or an alligator as the skipper so nicely informed me that alligators are actually more dangerous than sharks) a handful of times.

The second place we went wasn’t as good but still had some pretty nice coral to look at. After snorkeling we had a tea break back on the boat and then did some REAL sailing. (The first day we mostly traveled by motor because the winds weren’t strong enough to sail.) Actual sailing was a lot of fun …just sitting on the side of the boat – letting the men do all of the work – and enjoying the sensation of your toes dipping ever so slightly into the water when the boat leaned on it’s side enough…

But I still stand by my point that I will never go sailing again. Besides, we were sailing back to shore – I’m sure that had something to do with my excitement.

Obliviously a natural

Our skipper in his “bed” (he really did sleep in there!)

Casually sailing and taking it allll in, especially Dan the party man
When we got back to land (I  wanted to kiss it!), we headed to the hostel to shower and get ready for dinner. We went to a place where there was $15 meal + drink deal (a steal in Australia, ok!?) but weren’t all too impressed with the food. I specifically remember I ordered nachos and they were terrible. Word to the wise, don’t even try to order Mexican food in other places unless you are in California (or, of course, Mexico). After eating, the boys left us to play a few arcade game while we stayed at the table and chatted until a bachelor party came and basically fell in love with Barb. Wendy and I were chopped liver. 


To be continued…


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