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Holiday Photographs from East Coast Australia


Established Member
My wife, Naomi, and I had an amazing holiday in Australia during September - probably the last major one for a while due the upcoming arrival of our first child. We've been back a week or so now and I've uploaded a selection of photographs to flickr so that I can start a thread here.

We flew into Sydney to spend the first few days with various relatives who are living out there at the moment. My sister-in-law has a flat which is a short walk from the Opera House. I woke up very early the first couple of mornings we were there so I decided to pop round and see what I could make as dawn broke.

Dawn at the Opera House

We spent quite a lot of time in that area and I must have taken dozens of photographs of the Opera House and Harbour Bridge, but here are a couple of my favourites.

Moon Over the Opera House

Sydney Harbour Tourist Attractions

I like the one of the bridge because you can see a group of people nearing the top of the bridge climb which was something we had enjoyed doing earlier (Unfortunately, no camera equipment was allowed on the climb though).

We were very fortunate with the weather as it was only early spring out there. One fantastic day was spent in the Hunter Valley visiting various vineyards - very handy having Naomi as a designated driver once again! Here is the setting of the Audrey Wilkinson vineyard.

Audrey Wilkinson Vineyard, Hunter Valley

More to follow...
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Established Member
Leaving Sydney, we flew up to Cairns for the next part of the holiday. We headed north as far as Cape Tribulation which is as far as we could get in our non-4x4 hire car. We found a very quiet beach and, although the weather was very cloudy, Naomi still somehow managed to get sunburn!

Cape Tribulation

On that beach, we came across lots of tiny crabs that were darting around before diving for cover in these tiny holes that they had dug. The balls of sand that were created while they tunnelled were scattered around the hole and made all sorts of abstract patterns.

Crab Art

Heading back south again, we decided to go on a river tour to see the crocodiles of the Daintree River. We didn't manage to see any large male crocs but saw a few smaller examples waiting patiently at the river bank.

Crocodile at Daintree Rainforest

We headed down to Port Douglas and booked ourselves onto a catamaran which sailed for a couple of hours out to a horseshoe shaped reef. I've never been snorkelling before but it was one of the highlights of the holiday for me. The vast array of coral and fish on display was magnificent - unfortunately, my use of an underwater disposable camera was not! Here are a few photographs from the relaxing journey to and from the reef.

Catamaran to the Reef

Blue Sea Sailing

Blue Sky Sailing

Having spent the night in Palm Cove, we set off on a day trip to Kuranda which we got to on a historic railway and returned from via a cable car over the jungle. Kuranda itself was a small tourist town set in the rainforest. While we were there we happened upon a butterfly sanctuary where you could walk through and enclosed area where the butterflies were everywhere and would often land on you. I managed to photograph a couple that were good enough to rest in one place for long enough!

Butterfly at Kuranda

Butterfly at Kuranda

We drove down as far as the Whitsunday Islands where we stayed for a few days R&R. On one of the days we decided to head out on another snorkelling trip. This time in a slightly less relaxing twin 225hp rib. This took us from our island round to Whitsunday Island itself for a picnic on the beach.

Our Ride

A short walk up to a lookout gave us this view which I have made into a panoramic.

Whitsunday Island Panoramic

On our way around the islands we came across two humpback whales which were having a great time jumping out of the sea, splashing their fins and blowing water into the air. Unfortunately, I had stowed my camera away so didn't managed to take any photographs but it was a fantastic experience just to sit and watch these amazing creatures at play. It also meant that we wanted to book on a whale watching touch later in the holiday.

More to follow...
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Established Member
At the end of the short few days on the islands, we flew down to Brisbane for the last leg of the journey back to Sydney.

One of the things we had wanted to do in that area was to visit Steve Irwin's Australia Zoo.

One Up, All Up

Cuteness at Australia Zoo

There is a "Crocoseum" at the zoo where they put on an excellent display with one of the large male crocs. The sound of its jaws snapping shut was really impressive.

Rather Him than Me

Come and Get It

While we were there we noticed that the zoo did whale watching tours from a town called Mooloolaba so we booked onto a dawn tour for the following morning. Unfortunately, they later called to cancel the trip due to forecast heavy seas. We managed to get booked onto a different trip run by Sea World out of Surfers Paradise which is a bit further south down the coast.

The seas turned out to have quite a swell but the trip went ahead and we were so pleased it did as we found several pods of whales, two of which had playful calves amongst them. Here is a selection from the trip (Unfortunately, I was never in the right place at the right time to capture one jumping out of the water - maybe another time).

Going Down

Humpback Whale

Humpback Whale

Bye Bye

The final few days drive down the coast included a day at Coffs Harbour. The weather was spectacular! Strong winds and heavy seas. I've already posted this photograph in the "Not Valid" thread of the competition but I saw this chap doing his best to stay dry as he made his way around the harbour.


The next photograph was made at Seal Rocks but it could have been taken anywhere I suppose. Naomi patiently waited in the car while I set the tripod up for this long exposure of the sea lapping around some rocks. I've not done this before but was quite pleased with the result so it is something I would like to do more of. The long exposure was achieved using a B+W 10 stop filter.

Sea Mist

Finally, we were back down to the Blue Mountains. I took the opportunity to take the token photograph of the Three Sisters. We waited until sunset so the light was at its best but were also fortunate that the valley in front of and behind the "sisters" were in deep shadow which made the rocks stand out nicely.

Three Sisters

And here is the sunset facing the other direction.


It was a fantastic holiday with amazing scenery and wildlife. I just wish my photographs could do it justice.

Thanks for looking.
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Prominent Member
Whoosh, I am a bit breath taken. there is holiday snaps and then there is holiday snaps.. yours are somthing else!



Established Member
An amazing collection of photo's, first one has an almost velvety quality to it. One place I have always wanted to visit, after seeing these, a trip could become reality.


Distinguished Member
A fantastic set, the shots of the whales are my favourites but that is as much about the animal as the photographic quality. :thumbsup::clap:

Looking forward to seeing the rest - what kit have you used for these?


Established Member
Thanks for the comments everyone.

John - yes, the whales were just amazing. I could have watched them for hours.

I took my Canon 30D, 10-22, 17-55, 70-300 & 100 macro as well as a tripod and flash.



Established Member
Beautiful shots, great compositions and amazing colours - thanks for sharing, looks like it was quite a trip!!



Distinguished Member
I am with Tomato, that first shot is by far the pick of a very good bunch for me, a superb clean photograph:thumbsup:


Established Member
Nice photo's, shame they are not larger, or linked to larger versions. The second Butterfly is my favourite.

I was concerned about the 300KB limit on some of them so decided to post them all at the flickr's medium size. If you click on them it takes you to the flickr photo page where you can then choose to see them larger via the "All Sizes" button.

Thanks again for the comments everyone, much appreciated.



Prominent Member
Saw some of these on your flickr earlier in the week.

I didn't want to look at this thread, as I knew they'd be depressingly good, and I was right !

What a great set, and I'd pick the dawn Opera House shot, Blue Sea Sailing and the pano as my faves. Good work.


Prominent Member
Wow, what a holiday. And some cracking shots too. I love the 1st of the opera house, the first butterfly, the pano, the koala and the sunset shot.

But you are right when you say it will be the last major one for a while - once jr arrives you'll be lucky to travel a couple of miles let a lone thousands!


Established Member
... how did you fit all that gear into hand luggage - surely you didn't trust the baggage handlers with tose lenses did you?

Hi Bill,

The camera, flash and lenses all went into a Lowepro Slingshot 200AW. The tripod went into the checked luggage but was fine. I think the hand luggage was a little over weight (It certainly felt like it when lugging it around all day) but it was never actually weighed at any airport and the bag is a lot smaller than other hand luggage people manage to take on.



Prominent Member
Amazing shots Keith. Really enjoyed looking through them and reading your comments.
I'll go through and add some comments to Flickr, but Protection and Dawn at the Opera House look absolutely perfect to me.


Established Member
Nice photo's, shame they are not larger, or linked to larger versions. The second Butterfly is my favourite.

I've changed the "img" tags to "imglink" as per Stuart's instructions and the images now seem to link correctly back to the flickr photo page - so you should be able to see the larger sizes now.


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