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Hamilton Island to Brisbane

November 29, 2012

It was with a sense of reluctance that we had to depart Hamilton Island today but as the saying goes ‘all good things have to come to an end’ and this was that time for us. We’ve had an amazing time at the Beach Club and on the island and whilst it’s always difficult to compare each place that we have visited in our travels not just on this holiday but over a number of years this place has to be in our top 3.

We made use of the last few hours we had in the resort before departing for the airport by packing last evening, having an early breakfast then being on the beach by 9am. It was already hot and the sky was clear of clouds. We so wanted the 2hrs we had left to go really slowly!! Sadly they didn’t so once we had changed into our travelling cloth’s (t-shirt and shorts) it was off with other guests on the short trip to the airport in one of the hotel’s buggies – about 10mins in total. The driver sensed our reluctance in wanting to leave so was in no hurry to get us there which us allowed us a few extra moments to savour the beauty of the island.

Our flight with Virgin  Australia was due to depart for Brisbane at 12.55 and everything looked great as the plane arrived in before it was due. However, there were technical problems with an earlier Virgin flight bound for Sydney and because of this and the offer to some passengers on that flight to change to the Brisbane flight and therefore the need to take their luggage off the Sydney plane and be processed again to give them new labels etc we eventually left 45mins late.

Whilst I have every sympathy for the Sydney bound passengers what was disappointing was the lack of communication for all passengers from the Virgin ground staff about what was happening – I feel a letter of complaint will probably be pinged off to Virgin about this when we return home.

However, the Virgin staff on our aircraft couldn’t have been more helpful in telling us what was going on. The flight was pleasant and visibility was superb most of the way with clear skies. We had a great view of many of the islands that are part of the Whitsundays.

The long and short of all this though was a 1hr late arrival at Brisbane due to having missed the landing slot and air traffic control putting the plane in a holding position for around 20mins. Those of you who have experienced this will know that it’s not much fun going round in circles!!

When I fly I’m always amazed with how the clouds look from above – they always remind me of lots of cotton wool balls of all shapes and sizes! Hopefully the picture opposite taken is a good example of this!

As I mentioned we arrived 1hr late so we were a little concerned that the transport arranged for the transfer to our Brisbane hotel may not be waiting for us. Thankfully it was and the driver couldn’t have been more friendly and understanding of our plight.

The journey into the city centre (about 40mins) was smooth and at one point took us through an underpass (underground) for around 5km. The only other time we have experienced anything similar was in Brussels. We learned later that they are now constructing another one on the opposite side of the river to divert even more traffic away  from the city centre. The UK does have a lot to learn from other countries!

Our hotel is amazing and we have great views overlooking the Brisbane river. We are up on the 20th floor so the views are quite spectacular! Hopefully the picture opposite provides a feeling of this!

The other thing we are really finding quite strange is the city, and of course the whole of the southern hemisphere, are gearing up for Christmas. The current temperature in Brisbane is circa 30c!!

The hotel we are staying at ‘The Stamford Plaza’ has its’ decorations up! The city streets have got the Christmas bunting and lights on display. It does feel really odd that in less than 4 wks they will be celebrating Christmas – in the hot sun!! The pictures below are taken in our hotel.

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One Comment
  1. Mavis Andradez permalink

    I know what you mean about the strange feeling of seeing Christmas decorations up when it is so hot. I always found it a bit wierd.

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