Kessia Virah-Sawmy: Celebrating Australia Day like a real Aussie

For the first time in 3 years, I get to be in Townsville in the peak of summer. Not sure if I am enjoying the heat yet. But it also means that I get to experience Australia Day with my Australian friends! So here we were on a Thursday morning, up and ready to hit the road at 8am, with our Ute filled with coolers full of drinks, snacks and all kinds of goodies.

If there is something that Townsvillians love to do is enjoy a swim in a creek, where the cool water helps to forget about the excruciating heat and humidity. So first stop… Jourama falls. Pumping the music as loud as we can and singing along with our “amazing” voices, we drove for about 1.5 hours North of Townsville. Off this dirt road track, we found this amazing creek and waterfall. But of course, being hungry people, as soon as we got there, we got our crackers and dip out, together with our fairy bread, which is basically bread, butter and lots and lots of sprinkles. With a content belly, we were now ready to go for a plunge in the creek. We were adventurous enough to climb some rocks to go from creek to creek, even though it might have been easier to just swim from creek to creek like some people did.

Jourama Falls

Jourama Falls

1pm- Everyone is starving, time for the Barbie to be heated up. You cannot celebrate Australia Day without a snag on the barbie of course. And I feel like every real Aussie knows pretty much how to get the barbie going- it must be in their genes or something. So with our little portable grill, here we were, cooking our snags, potatoes and marinated chicken. To accompany our meat, we had some cold pasta and potato salad and some tomato sauce. What a feast… it was absolutely delicious! Dessert was definitely on the menu as well with a fruit salad (yummy, yummy!) and lamingtons of course.

Barbie Time

Barbie Time

Typical Aussie Lunch

Typical Aussie Lunch

3:00pm- Time for some ice creammmmm… You cannot go through this area without stopping at Frosty Mango. As every proper tourist does, and apparently, Aussies as well, we took a selfie with the giant Mango! Since Frosty Mango is supposed to be a very exotic place with special ice cream flavours, I decided to try something new, a flavour that I would only get at Frosty Mango. So I went for the Mulberry flavour, which was not bad. But having tasted almost all the flavours our group got, I think the Mango flavour was by far the best.

Selfie time at Frosty Mango

Selfie time at Frosty Mango

4:00pm- Since we didn’t want to go home yet, we decided to go for a drive up the Paluma range and visit Lake Paluma. I had never been past Big Crystal Creek and I was totally surprised to find a tiny village all the way up the mountain about an hour from Crystal Creek. And, what a lake we saw! Such a beautiful and peaceful scenery. I would recommend this to anyone going to Crystal Creek: go up to the little village and see for yourself the beautiful lake there. People can do kayaking and camp near the lake. We are already planning on going there again sometime for a camping trip.

Paluma Range

Paluma Range

l

Lake Paluma

6:30pm- The Sun is getting down so it’s time to head back home. On the way back, we were just so content with how beautiful a day we had spent. We saw beautiful waterfalls, swam in cool creeks, drove in the rainforest, and ate so much food we nearly burst. But I think the best part was the company… being able to spend Australia Day with real Aussie friends who do things simply but beautifully.

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