Sunday 14 August 2011

Magical Maggie

Magnet Island  is located 8km from Townsville and is 52 km2 in size of which 27km2  is World Heritage listed National Park. Huge granite boulders are softened by tall Hoop pines, eucalypt forest and small patches of rainforest.

The island has a permanent population of 2,500 people many of whom commute daily on the 30 minute ferry ride to Townsville.
I travelled over with the Kelly family and we decided to take their car to be able to explore more freely with 2 young children.  You can hire mopeds (in Queensland can ride them on a motor vehicle licence) or small "topless" cars.  It cost $152 to take the car over but that fare includes all passengers in the vehicle.

Charlie enjoyed a trip to the bridge and the Skipper allowed her to "drive" the boat steering with the 4cm high steering "wheel".  He allowed her to weave the boat from side to side, much to the consternation of the passengers up on deck!
Our first destination (on recommendation of the crew) was Radical Bay, a steepish, but accessible 3.5km drive from the main road.

We felt like we were in Paradise - soft sand, warm ocean, huge bolders, Hoop Pines and Palm trees and sharing all this with just a handful of other folks.

Next stop was Florence Bay which was slightly smaller and just as beautiful.  There is a coral reef very close to the beach and Trent went snorkelling here - he returned very excitedly to tell us of hitching a ride on a turtle.

Last stop was back to civilisation at Horseshoe Bay with it's many cafes.