Today I’m featuring this superb shot from Kim Lookout Lord Howe Island taken by Marion Halliday from Australia by Red Nomad OZ Blog.
Marion is Red Nomad OZ – traveller, blogger, photographer and author of Australia’s quirkiest travel guide “Aussie Loos with Views!”
She shares her Aussie travels on her blog, where you can find holiday ideas, travel tips, itineraries, destinations and inspiration for your own down under adventures. Follow her on Facebook and Pinterest for more pictures.
Photo Story: Kim Lookout Lord Howe Island
‘I’ll take off 10 kilos for your red hair,’ the airport luggage handler said as I climbed onto the scales with my bags. A strong crosswind above the short airstrip bisecting the tiny island meant every passenger and every piece of baggage got weighed.
600 km north-east of Sydney, Lord Howe Island is a few km² of subtropical paradise with spectacular natural attractions and a surprising number of world exclusives.
So if the world’s highest volcanic stack, world’s southernmost subtropical reef and endemic wildlife like the Lord Howe Island Woodhen and Phasmid don’t do it for you, the only golf course on World Heritage-listed ground anywhere on the planet just might!
It’s not that far to paradise. Just a 2-hour flight – but those cross-winds make it one of the trickiest airstrips in Australia, so landing isn’t guaranteed. But a touch of uncertainty just adds to the adventure, right?
And being surrounded by spectacular scenery way out in the middle of nowhere with no car, limited internet and no mobile phone gives chilling out a whole new meaning.
And so, with all the snorkelling, swimming, boogie-boarding and kayaking; feeding the fish and bird-watching; cycling and walking on the trails all around the island, I discovered that action and adventure were actually more relaxing than lazing around by the pool!
I’d SO earned bakery night at the Golf Club!
But all that activity didn’t mean I’d magically lost the fear of heights that’s plagued me forever. So seeing the mega-scary ropes along the trackway high up the cliffs meant I didn’t do the island’s signature hike – an epic 8 hour, 14 km guided walk to the top of Mount Gower, 875 metres above sea level.
I did the steep and scary (to me, anyway) hike to Kims Lookout instead. But from there, with the magnificent view to the elusive Mount Gower way down the other end of the island stretched out in front of me, I found I didn’t care.
It was enough just to suck up the atmosphere of this glorious place and take enough photos to make everyone as jealous as hell.
And then it was time to leave. Hoping like hell that I and my bags would be WAY too heavy for the plane, I stepped on the scales. But sadly, all the passengers – including me – made it on board and just a few suitcases were left behind.
Bummer. I could have easily managed another night or two in paradise!
Kim’s Lookout is a short, 40 minutes long trek through the shady sub-tropical forest, you emerge on the top of a 200m vertical cliff.
To the south is the entire Lord Howe Island lagoon with its spectacular shades of blue, and two of the most dramatic mountains in Australia.
To the north are the most amazing cobalt blue ocean and thousands of seabirds that nest in the cliff caves.
The scene could be straight from a David Attenborough documentary. In fact, it was. He once wrote that Lord Howe is “so extraordinary it is almost unbelievable.”
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