This year for the second-rate of our Australian adventure we headed further North to Tropical North Queensland. Landing in Cairns we picked up our dodgy old hire car and set off up the coast to Port Douglas - our home for the next 2 weeks.
I had read that the road from Cairns north is one of the most picturesque in Australia - and it didn't disappoint.
We stopped for a late lunch at Palm Cove, and saw our first crocodile warning sign...eeek
Tempting as it was to stay all day we were really keen to keep going and find our holiday house before it got dark.
I had wanted to book an amazing looking house owned by an artist Tina called 'Artist Beach House'. Unfortunately it was fully booked for August but Tina suggested I got in touch with her Mum who also rented out her home in order to spend more time travelling.
The house was amazing - full of interesting things to look at and art work. And the garden was a tropical paradise - lots of little nooks and crannies to sit and read. I knew we'd relax here!
After a quick trip to the super market the boys tried out the pool and set up the first of many games of scrabble.
Cleggy was still poorly so we took it easy for the first couple of days - lazy breakfast, a mooch down the main street
and walk on the beach.
Macrossan Street in Port Douglas is beautiful - lots of nice shops, cafes and plenty more lush planting.
Hard to believe this is the main street.
Port Douglas was named no.3 in Australian Travellers 100 best towns. It was almost completely destroyed by a cyclone in 1911 - when all but 2 buildings survived. By that point it had a population of around 100.
Its popularity grew in the 1980's when Sheraton opened the first big hotel in the town.
I'd decided we needed to partake in some yoga while we were away - and plumped for the Deep yoga studio. We tentatively booked a session...oh, and drank some more coffee.
Still quite can't believe that a constant 24 degrees is winter...
The four mile beach is just stunning.
The council have permitted ANY building along the whole stretch, so you can enjoy the coral sea without any sign of development.
One of our favourite days out was to Mossman Gorge - about 20 minutes north of PD.
The area is officially part of the Daintree National Park, and the traditional homeland of the indigenous
There's loads you can do there - but we chose the 2.5km walk around the rain forest - bizarre to think it was formed over a million years ago.
It's home to 430 species of birds - including the Kingfisher. We didn't see any - but the sounds were amazing.
The forest is incredibly dense - home to more than 500 species of native Australian plants.
And the best part? A natural swim hole. Which, of course, Geordie got straight in!! Fully dressed
And like everywhere we've ever come across in Australia, the centre included a great cafe.
Be rude not to stop for an ice cream before leaving for home.
One of my abiding memories of this holiday is constantly spotting little beaches by the side of the road...and saying 'Oooh Cleggy, can we stop?',
or ''can we just stop for a photos?'. Usually to a chorus of 'really???' from the back seat.
And often a 'Do I actually have to get out??' from GB.
But to be fair - that's how we discovered Wonga. For there are barely any signs for these places. No big brown signs telling everyone to park up. Just lovely little beaches sitting there with literally none on them. For it is winter remember!
But sometimes they all had to admit that my research paid off - especially since I am obsessed with finding the best place to watch the sunset!
Which is Port Douglas is undoubtedly a drive up to Flagstaff Point...
...followed by winding down to Rex Smeal Park.
Where from about 4pm onwards you'll find like minded sunset seekers, with picnics, games, tightropes and guitars, all there to witness the most beautiful changing light.
And climb trees and play on the nearby cove.