Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Time for a "Vitamin Me" boost in Queensland

The last time I went to Queensland was (gulp) about 23 years ago.

Back then, my Mum had a perm (and a stern look), my Dad got tuckered out from driving our campervan around, and my sister liked to pig out on ice cream. Me too.

I remember my time in Queensland involving a lot of swimming, struggling with the humidity of Kuranda, watching a bird land on my sister's head and in a presumably unrelated incident, waiting in the Whitsundays for my sister to get her conjunctivitis checked by a doctor.

Time has marched inexorably onwards. Some things have changed, some haven't. My Mum no longer has a perm, but I still catch my Dad taking cat naps during the day. My sister watches her weight instead of pigging out on ice cream, and I try to watch my weight but still pig out on ice cream.

Queensland's on my mind because Tourism Queensland and Nuffnang Australia are running a competition to win a Vitamin Me-boosting holiday in Queensland. Normally those ads that go on about the million vitamins we should take bore me stupid, but I definitely rather like the idea of Vitamin Me, Tourism Queensland's latest smart move to bring the droves of tourists in. Want a scientific definition?
It’s activated by adrenaline, wonder and excitement. Found in oysters, white wine, nature and good times. It’s the antidote to routine, an elixir for the spirit.
I want some. So let me put on my imagining hat ... if I won a $5,000 trip to Queensland, I would boost my Vitamin Me levels with a few special stops:

Caffe E Gelato Milany: Queensland's best ice cream

Athletics fans will remember Russian-turned-Australian Olympic champion polevaulter Tatiana Grigorieva. It turns out that as well as being fit and healthy, she loves ice cream, and a banana-flavoured speciality from her Brisbane cafe Caffe e Gelato Milany won the ribbons at the Royal Queensland Food and Wine Show last year. Ice cream is definitely an elixir for the spirit for me, and I'm holding on to the (ridiculous, I know) idea that if it's made by an Olympian it is a little bit more healthy.

Italian Gelato. But I think Queensland's best will be better. And closer.

Australian Butterfly Sanctuary: One of Kuranda's rainforest attractions

Last time round it was a bird on my sister's head, and I'm not keen on repeating that - but the idea of a butterfly with bright wings landing on my head is much more pleasing. Especially if it will pose long enough for a photograph. The Australian Butterfly Sanctuary in the far north will probably be a touch too humid for my liking, but the wonder of seeing so many gorgeous creatures should make up for it.

Kuranda butterfly on a leaf. I want it on my head, please.

Long Island: Waiting in the Whitsundays (for a l-o-n-g time)

At the expense of my poor sister's sore eye, my last experience in Queensland did involve a bit of waiting in the Whitsundays. But if I'm lucky enough to get to Queensland again, I think some deliberately planned waiting (and relaxing and resting and lots of doing nothing) on Long Island in the Whitsundays would be a huge boost to my Vitamin Me levels. There are a bunch of gorgeous islands in the Whitsundays but Long Island is mostly national park (you know I like that) and the local Long Island Resort looks over Happy Bay - how could you be unhappy staring out over Happy Bay?!

Flying in to Long Island. Wow. I could wait there for a very long time.
I think at the end of this kind of Queensland trip I'd be bursting with so much Vitamin Me that I could wash dishes and vacuum the house non-stop for a month without feeling down. (Don't tell my husband I said that, though.)

(Aussie) blogging friends, you can enter this contest too, but only if you promise to take me with you if you win.

Photo credits (via Flickr/Creative Commons): Gelato by fortes, butterfly by Gary Hayes, Long Island by krossbow.


  1. Only for Australian bloggers though! Queensland do have some good marketing ideas.

    1. Oh Jenny, I didn't even notice it was only for Australian bloggers - sorry about that, hope I didn't get your hopes up! But you're right, there must be some very creative people sitting over there in Queensland, they do have some really original ideas.

  2. I love your old pics. It definitely is time to came out here again. 23 years is a loooong time x

    1. Thanks! And you're right. Saying I was last somewhere 23 years ago makes me feel REALLY old! Definitely time for a Queensland trip.

  3. Lovely post Amanda. Gosh it definitely was a while back. I feel the same when I think that I went to some country ages and ages ago...although sometimes it feels as if it was just 3 or 4 years ago.

    1. Thanks Sami. Yes, it's so scary, isn't it? The years just fly by and suddenly it's 23 years since I went to Queensland. I didn't even think I was 23 years old yet!!!

  4. I love Queensland. Your retro photos were fantastic.... We are off to Tassie briefly at the end of Feb so I have been checking out your Tassie posts. We are staying on a friends property near Bridport so will have some local knowledge to draw on.

    1. Thanks AFW - glad you liked the photos, not sure what my family members will say if they stumble across them! I just "google mapped" Bridport and found it's in a lovely spot (although it's probably hard to find an unlovely spot in Tassie), I hope I'll be able to read about your adventures on your blog, too!

  5. I loved your old photos!! and the others made me homesick :(
    I'm off now to check out other posts on your blog (I see a little pic of the Curtain Fig Tree in the You Might Also LIke bit) but before I go, GOOD LUCK with the competition!!

    1. Thanks Toni, and apologies for making you homesick! Keep your fingers crossed for me (it closes Friday!).


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