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Australia: Cairns during Cyclone Ita

Cairns, Australia

It’s been a balmy 30C the last couple of days in Cairns. Yesterday I walked into town, had a coffee, ate an ice cream and had a look around – lovely holiday, right? Except downtown looked like this:

 

Downtown Cairns during Cyclone Ita

Downtown Cairns during Cyclone Ita

Downtown Cairns during Cyclone Ita

Downtown Cairns during Cyclone Ita

Downtown Cairns during Cyclone Ita

Downtown Cairns during Cyclone Ita

On Friday the town started shutting up shop, I went to the mall and there were a few shops open but everyone was closing up quickly. With nothing else to do I got a haircut and then headed to the supermarket. It was hell in there – like Christmas Eve in Sainsbury’s! I bought water, cereal bars and an umbrella…pretty useless but never mind 🙂

The media really ramp things up here and all the cyclone coverage was making people panicky. Images like this don’t help (below) but my guide from Thursday, Bruce, told me that it usually gets ridiculously hyped up and to only look at the government weather warnings.

Cyclone Ita

Cyclone Ita

Cyclone Ita hit land on Friday night about 300km north of here so although there were strong winds and lots of rain, nothing too dramatic happened in Cairns.

Up north, I read that a few roofs had come off and more damage was done but it could have been a lot worse. As soon as the cyclone hit land, it calmed down a lot and was soon downgraded to category 2 then to category 1 as it moved south (5 is the worst and it was graded at category 5 on Thursday evening).

Yesterday afternoon flights started taking off again which was music to my ears – I had planned to take the scenic train route down the coastline to Brisbane today but unfortunately that has been cancelled too due to flooding.

Fingers crossed for my flight – sorry to say, I can’t wait to get out of here. If you want to visit Cairns, come in peak season!

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