An extended weekend in Townsville

Car problems ensured that we stay in Townsville for more than the 2 nights we had originally planned. Just some 15km out of town on a Friday, the front axle/bearing really started to vibrate and make noises at a strength we had not encountered previously. It wasn’t going to make it to Bundaberg, where we had hoped to engage the assistance of my brother in law to pull the whole thing apart.

Our car has a mind of its own and has previously demonstrated that he didn’t like mechanics. As soon as one enters the car, he decides to purr like a baby, and the same goes on this day! As it was it took 3 trips around the town before it gave a hint of the troubles and then the mechanic believed us enough to schedule us for repairs but not until after the weekend.

One of the views from the craggy heights of Castle Hill

We booked ourselves into the Coral Coast Caravan Park mainly because it was one of the closest to the mechanics. It is a lovely park and well shaded though it is tight for getting any van in, let alone our big Robbiebago. Though it is not on a highway, it is on a major back road through the industrial part of town and right next to the RAAF base and the airport. The resulting fumes from the airports were bad especially when there was no breeze to chase the fumes away. Since we were in town for 3 or 4 days, we decided to make use of the town’s shops and do some sightseeing as well over the weekend. The 360 degree panorama views from the dramatic craggy heights of Castle Hill Lookout are superb. How the locals can run (or walk) up the hill beats me. I don’t know whether to admire them or think they’re nuts.

Another view from the Castle
Water fun! Whoo Hoo!
You might recall that I think the Cairns Esplanade is great, well the Townsville’s one on The Strand leaves it for dead. There’s something like 2km of waterfront that has been extremely well planned, with park lands, seatings , BBQs and picnic areas all along the length.

The Strand beach
BBQs on The Strand

There are playgrounds scattered throughout and then the whole area culminating in this absolutely fantastic water park that has water cannons, fountains, slippery slides and then this gigantic bucket above the whole thing, filling up with something like 1,000 litres of water and then when it gets to a certain depth it tips over and pours the water over a specially designed roof that splayed the water in all directions at once. Ooh I wish I had my grandkids with me so that I had a good excuse to play in the water.

Water Park on The Strand
Such a friendly Church
On the Sunday, we ventured into the C3 church which is held in the Imax theatre right in the heart of town. It is a very welcoming church with an active Sunday School and a very gifted preacher. We were warmly welcomed several times before the service had began and then afterwards at coffee too. I love it when a church is welcoming to strangers. I believe that this is part of what Christ wanted for his people.

To market, to market
As we were driving back we discovered a great market running in town that we just had to stop and see what they have to offer. I am particularly interested in handcrafts and what others are making. I saw beautiful bead works. I just had to buy a fancy hair clip for myself. We also went past many children’s clothing and patchwork type of stalls. There was some beautiful slumped bottle work and wood works too. As always there are the various food stalls. I have always thought that if you were going to do a market stall purely for the money, then do a food stall, they are always popular.

A painted building on The Strand
Car fixed
Bright and early on Monday, Bob take the car to the mechanic and waits anxiously for the results half expecting it to take all day and cost a small fortune. The mechanic was experienced in 4WD vehicles and discovered that the hubs were dry and the right hand one was very severely restricted. We were told that we were very fortunate in that there was minimal damage. Both sides were cleaned and greased and see free for more travelling. So you can imagine our delight when we get a call to come and pick it up after just 3 ½ hours work and the resulting smaller repair costs too.

Yabba Dabba Doo. We decided to continue our journey first thing the next day.


  1. I want to take my kids to the water parks both here and Cairns. They sound great. Keep us posted with more fun things to do.

    1. It was great fun, but I don't aways have my grandkids with me for the extra touch of motivation. Though we did have a swell day at the Botanical Gardens of Bundaberg. Read that entry one day. As we are a tad older, our fun is a little more sedate. :)


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