Mission beach isn’t the most common stop down the East Coast. It’s famous for its adrenaline sports such as sky diving but many people do this from Cairns as its only a two hour journey. We thought we’d spend a few nights seeing what else the town had to offer. Honestly, not a lot. We overheard one girl say that the highlight of her day was going to the supermarket, which sums it up quite well. The backpacker area is near Wongaling beach and apart two hostels there’s not a lot to do apart from enjoy the beautiful beach. The town seems eerily empty and not a thing is out of place. It reminds me of the town in the film Pleasantville.
We debated doing a skydive like pretty much everyone else in the east coast as we both definitely want to do one at some point but decided it was too early on in our trip and we were fed up of spending money! In my opinion skydiving can be done anywhere, and I’ve always thought I’d like to do it in New Zealand. So for now we decided to get our adrenaline kicks in another way, rafting the Tully river.
We wanted to book on to do the extreme rafting but once again Australia proved too fully booked for our unorganised selves. Instead we booked onto the normal rafting, which actually worked in our favour as we paid less but ended up being just as extreme as the more expensive trip! We shared a raft with two French guys and two Aussies and we were all (apart from one guy) up for falling in and being as rough as possible. Over half of the other boats were full of Chinese, Korean and Japanese tourists. They were so funny and up for a laugh, especially if you splashed them in the face. One boat had six over 50s from Taiwan and they were probably the most adventurous and excited on the river. One woman must have been in her 70s and looked tiny and fragile, but she had the biggest grin on her face the whole time. I hope I have that much energy when I’m older.
Whilst rafting we had to wear these rather fetching yellow tops and trousers to protect us from March flies, which were so annoying. Half our time on the river was spent swatting them away from our faces.
There was a lot of stop starting down the river as we waited for the coast to be clear, and we got stuck on the rocks a lot but it was such a laugh and there was lots of pushing each other in and flipping the raft. Steph and I were placed at the back of the boat because obviously we were the best. As our guide Jack said, have you ever seen a boat with the motor on the front?
The rest of our time in Mission Beach was very chilled, our days were spent lying on the beach and our evenings were spent in the hostel. We stayed at Absolute Backpackers which was lovely, although it was our first experience of wildlife. There were massive moths and bugs hanging out everywhere and an owl that made the kitchen its home. It was nice to have a few days to chill. In the four nights we spent there, we had one bottle of wine between us and spent our evenings cooking dinner and relaxing in the hostel lounge watching films.