Back out on the road again to drive about 2km’s we headed back towards Mary River. There is a boat ramp just by the bridge across the river but we decided to pop in to the Mary River Wilderness Retreat. The retreat has accommodation for visitors but we discovered that for just $5 each we could visit as day visitors and get to enjoy quite a lot of the facilities available including the swimming pool.
There are 3 walks that you can do at the resort; the Wallaby Walk which is 1.5km and easy to cycle around after seeing lots of children and families doing it, the bamboo walk which is about 4km’s and the last one whose name we can’t remember which is an extension of the bamboo walk and 8km’s in length. The 8km was closed was closed (“sadly”) as it was still a bit wet to clear the path for access but we went for a wander around the Wallaby Walk and bamboo walk, well I did half of the bamboo walk because I was a little bit overheated but the Aussie did most of it.
Both walks are very scenic and in places you get views over the Mary River as well as the billabongs around and about and allegedly there are crocodiles around (I only say allegedly because we didn’t see any – we were assured there are lots around the river and we were shown a picture of a crocodile that had been literally bitten in half by another crocodile and left on the banks of the river).
You wander along the track and about of a third of the way along you can cross the swing bridge to look at the billabong before carrying on your journey around the main track.
This bridge is across a billabong where a crocodile lives. It’s literally in among the plants growing out of the billabong so your very close to the crocodile if it is in there as you walk across! Sadly none were seen.
There’s a crocodile out there somewhere in the billabong but we didn’t see it. Even my usual method of throwing a stone in (I seem to think this will make the crocodiles think that a person just fell in) didn’t work.
This is the longer walk that was open and begins with a wire fence and door that you have to walk through to gain access! No idea why but did wonder if it was a bit Narniaesque!
Along the path we had some nice views of the river.
We also saw some cockatoo’s and red winged parrots that were very pretty looking and these are the male parrots.
There were also some butterflies fluttering around looking very pretty. I quite like butterflies so am always very pleased to see them around. I was explaining to the Aussie that I’d like for one to land on my hand but would probably freak out if one did!
I was very impressed by this “bugs” cleverness in finding the gap between the lid and seal to locate water. Only after the Aussie returned from his extra walk was it noticed that this is in fact a mosquito – yep I hate them and didn’t even realise. In defence of the mosquito, it didn’t try and bite me even though I was close!!!
There was a very pretty bamboo walk along the way back surrounded by beautiful bamboo archways and magical looking billabongs. The Aussie thought I should get really close to the edge of the water to see the lily pads but I thought this might not be the best choice given the proximity of crocodiles.
Finally a proper look at the river which was not so pretty looking but is full of barramundi apparently.