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Mice Net : October 2008
tropical north queensland surprised us with a cooking challenge to make dessert, an Eton Mess. Following a quick demonstration it was on and cream was flying! Our aim was to whisk the cream as quickly as we could – throw in the rest of the ingredients and present an edible mess for the judging. It doesn’t matter who won - it wasn’t me, I was robbed! - because we were all winners in the end. And all full once more. DAY 2 The Novotel Cairns Oasis Resort hosted our first breakfast of the trip, and after a quick site inspection and bite to eat, it was time for a rainforest adventure. Our group was split in two to experience the Kuranda Scenic Railway and Skyrail Rainforest Cableway. Our guide Duncan explained how the Skyrail was constructed involving helicopters to bring the pylons into the rainforest in an effort to limit any damage to the area. Seeing the rainforest from a bird’s eye view is truly breathtaking and a great way to get to the small village of Kuranda. After some time to explore Kuranda we made the drive to Cairns Wildlife Safari for another amazing experience. Standing behind the wire fence of the lion enclosure our guides told us this is where you can host evening dinners, literally on the edge of the enclosure. Just on the other side of the fence, the lions were thrown their dream dinner - chunks of meat - in preparation for our experience. The pride of lions was released and came charging to us at maximum speed. Thankfully, the meat was more enticing than us. Watching these amazing beasts devour the meat was mesmerising, and for many was the first time they had seen a lion so close, let alone a whole pride. Imagine this set-up at night time for an evening event? The shear sound of the lions running and roaring is a frightening experience and would definitely add a unique surprise element to any event! After lunch we had a chance to explore more of the enclosures with one lucky participant given the opportunity to hand-feed a cheetah. Palm Cove was our next port of call where we were taken on a tour of the Rockford Novotel Palm Cove and Grand Mercure Rockford Esplanade Apartments. Palm Cove is a small coastal village that features a host of high-quality accommodation. Our evening started at the Sea Temple Resort & Spa for a site inspection and canapés by the pool. Two massage therapists from the resort’s spa were on hand for some well-needed shoulder massages! After feeling very relaxed our dine-around evening continued with a walk up the beach to the Angsana Resort and Spa for a glass of champagne and a site inspection. This beautiful resort is situated right on the beach and was our main-course venue. Glad to get up and walk off our hearty meal we were ready for a look around the Sebel Reef House and later enjoy dessert in its award-winning restaurant. DAY 3 Sitting at the Peppers Beach Club & Spa eating breakfast and overlooking the stunning beach and pure blue sky I had one of those ‘this is the life’ moments. Palm Cove is one of those picture postcard spots and all of the resorts we visited along this sandy strip make the most of their surrounds. It was time for our group to be a little bit more adventurous when we stopped off at Hartley’s Crocodile Adventures for a crocodile encounter. After watching these prehistoric beasts writhe out of the water to snap a snack we ventured further north along the scenic coastal road to Port Douglas. Roughly about 20 minutes past Port Douglas we drove into dense rainforest to the Silky Oaks Lodge & Healing Waters Spa for lunch. Offsite Connections had beaten us to the resort to set up a beautiful table for lunch. The table was decorated with peacock feathers and electric blue orchids and had everyone ooing and aahing. After feasting to our hearts’ content our next stop was Peppers Bale`. This resort is the ultimate in luxury accommodation and features beautiful rooms, fine-dining and a day spa that you won’t want to leave. And for any major celebrities that may be reading this… take note 76 mice.net