Posts Tagged ‘Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary’

Aloha Brisbane! – Part III: Koala Day! (#AlohaBNE)

February 1, 2013
Part I | Part II | Part III 

 

As with all good things, our time in Brisbane had come to an end. With bags packed, we, however, had one final expedition left in us before saying goodbye to the Queensland city by the river.

We started our morning by hopping into the van of the family-owned and operated Mr. Day Tours for their half day tour package. Val, the owner and tour guide for the day navigated and narrated our course for the day.

Mr Day Tours brochure
Mr Day Tours brochure

Our first stop was the Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary, the world’s first & largest koala sanctuary.

Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary sign
Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary sign

Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary map
Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary map

Me and da koala statue
Me and da koala statue

Directions at the Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary
Directions at the Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary

Our first koala sighting couldn’t have been any cuter. It was of this adorable little munchkin getting fed supplements. I just HAD to shoot a video of it!

 


Koala being fed supplements

 

As we continued, we saw many more, though mostly sleeping in awkward positions.

Sleeping koala
Sleeping koala

Another sleeping koala
Another sleeping koala

Hey! One's awake!
Hey! One’s awake!

We saw a bunch of other animals/creatures along the way like wombats, dingoes, reptiles and birds, but let’s be honest… they were all overshadowed by “the moment” that most of us were looking forward to the entire trip… It was time to hold some koalas baby!


“The moment”! Koala holding time!

And here are the video clips of our various experiences:

 


Me and the koala

 

 


Catherine Toth with her koala

 

 


Melissa Chang with her koala

 

 


Hawaiian Airlines’ Jeremy Althof (frightened) with his koala

 

 


Hawaiian Airlines’ Jesse Starmer with his koala

 

Eventually, with feed in hand (purchased at the gift shop), we made our way over to the kangaroo section of the sanctuary, which was equally as exhilarating.

This kangaroo smells the feed in my hand. Whatchu t'ink?
This kangaroo smells the feed in my hand. Whatchu t’ink?

Cute baby kangaroo just lounges around next to me
Cute baby kangaroo just lounges around next to me

This one let me get close and pet away
This one let me get close and pet away

Melissa feeds a baby kangaroo
Melissa feeds a baby kangaroo

This was quite an interesting scene. It appeared to be a baby kangaroo resting in his mommy's pouch
This was quite an interesting scene. It appeared to be a baby kangaroo resting in his mommy’s pouch

And here’s a video of it.

 


Baby kangaroo rests in his mommy’s pouch

 

Group of kangaroos just kickin' it. Kickin' it... get it? :P
Group of kangaroos just kickin’ it. Kickin’ it… get it? 😛

Val then drove us up to the Brisbane Lookout at Mount Coot-tha, which offered a panoramic view of Moreton Bay.

Panoramic view atop Mount Coot-tha (click to enlarge)
Panoramic view atop Mount Coot-tha

Brisbane Lookout's deck
Brisbane Lookout’s deck

Our group snapping away. Damn tourists!
Our group snapping away. Damn tourists!

Kaleo Lancaster (@islandtrails), me (@worldwideed), Melissa Chang (@Melissa808) and Catherine Toth (@thedailydish) at the Brisbane Lookout at Mount Coot-tha
Kaleo Lancaster (@islandtrails), me (@worldwideed), Melissa Chang (@Melissa808) and Catherine Toth (@thedailydish) at the Brisbane Lookout at Mount Coot-tha

We boarded up the van again and headed up to Kangaroo Point Lookout near the Cliffs Boardwalk.

The Cliff Boardwalk sign
The Cliff Boardwalk sign

The view from inside one of the lookout points
The view from inside one of the lookout points

A nice look at the Brisbane River
A nice look at the Brisbane River

With the grains of sand slowly vanishing from the top of the hourglass that was our tip, we had just enough time for one more stop: Lunch! The gastropub of choice? A place called The Shelter Bar, one of three restaurants at the Story Bridge Hotel, aptly named for its physical location, sheltered under the popular Story Bridge.

Outside the Shelter Bar
Outside the Shelter Bar

Melissa's Prime Rib Fillet Burger with bacon, egg, lettuce, tomato, caramelized onion, ranch dressing and beer battered fries ($18)
Melissa’s Prime Rib Fillet Burger with bacon, egg, lettuce, tomato, caramelized onion, ranch dressing and beer battered fries ($18)

Cat's Braised Short Rib Parpadelle with baby peas, rich Napoli sauce and shaved parmesan ($22)
Cat’s Braised Short Rib Parpadelle with baby peas, rich Napoli sauce and shaved parmesan ($22)

And my personal favorite (if I do say so myself! 😛 )…


My “Aussie Pizza” with double smoked ham, bacon, free range eggs and bbq sauce ($17.50)

With our tummies full, it was time to head to the airport for our 8-ish hour flight home. The Brisbane Airport is very clean and well kept, and Hawaiian Airlines‘ entrance into the market looks to have played a key part in all of it. Here are some sights from the airport.

Hawaiian Airlines flight number 444 (HA444) to Hawaii, although just two days old at the time, was already bustling!
Hawaiian Airlines flight number 444 (HA444) to Hawaii, although just two days old at the time, was already bustling!

The fancy entrance to the departure area downstairs
The fancy entrance to the departure area downstairs

Hawaiian Airlines signage at Brisbane Airport
Hawaiian Airlines signage at Brisbane Airport

Directions at Brisbane Airport
Directions at Brisbane Airport

Lounge areas (with FREE public WiFi! - which is hard to come by in Brisbane) outside the gates.
Lounge areas (with FREE public WiFi! – which is hard to come by in Brisbane) outside the gates.

Neat sand sculpture with our Hawaiian Airlines plane in the background
Neat sand sculpture with our Hawaiian Airlines plane in the background

Although it was a whirlwind 3 day, 2 night visit, we were able to get a lot squeezed into our tight timelines. If the adventures from any part in this series of articles interested you (part I, part II, & this part III), be sure to Fly Hawaiian when booking your flight: http://www.hawaiianairlines.com/Brisbane .

A HUGE Mahalo to Hawaiian Airlines (President and CEO Mark Dunkerley, Senior Vice President of Corporate Communications and Public Affairs Ann Botticelli, Director of Advertising and Promotions Kevin Yim, Ross Saito from Product Development, and the social media team: Asiana Ponciano, Jeremy Althof, and Jesse Starmer, etc.) for the unbelievable opportunity to cover such an event. Mahalos also to my fellow social medialites Kaleo Lancaster, Catherine Toth and Melissa Chang, who made the trip super rad! Yeah, I just said rad. 😉

And with that, we say Aloha and goodbye to Brisbane. Until we meet again!

To view all of my photos from Brisbane Australia, click here:
https://picasaweb.google.com/114302480978989244855/AlohaBrisbaneAlohaBNE

Melissa Chang’s #AlohaBNE blogs:
http://www.nonstophonolulu.com/?s=brisbane&searchsubmit=Go

Catherine Toth’s #AlohaBNE blogs:
http://www.thecatdish.com/?s=brisbane

Kaleo Lancaster’s #AlohaBNE blog:
http://kaleolancaster.blogspot.com/2012/12/brisbane-australia-hawaiian-airlines.html

My #AlohaBNE blogs/posts:
http://www.world-wide-ed.com/?s=brisbane

Instagram search results for #AlohaBNE:
http://web.stagram.com/tag/alohabne/

Twitter search results for #AlohaBNE:
https://twitter.com/search?q=%23AlohaBNE&src=typd

 

Part I | Part II | Part III 

 

 

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Aloha Brisbane! – Part I: Hawaiian Airlines Launches Their Newest Route to Australia (#AlohaBNE)

December 5, 2012

 

 Part I  | Part II | Part III

 

Traveling to Australia has always been a dream of mine. I mean, let's face it, they've got so many interesting and unique things going for them…

  • Their seasons are completely opposite from ours.
  • They've got koalas and kangaroos to ogle over.
  • They have cute sayings like "G'day Mate!", "Barbie" (BBQ), and "Oi (Oi Oi)!" (LOL!)
  • Their toilet seats (supposedly) flush in the opposite direction.
  • Regional Beers like Hahn, Tooheys and XXXX.
  • And, uh, Vegemite… I guess.

So when the opportunity arose for me to join Hawaiian Airlines' inaugural flight to Brisbane, I could not say "Yer, mate" fast enough!

On Tuesday, November 27th, of 2012, Hawaiian Airlines launched its newest direct route to Australia's third most populous city: Brisbane. Like some of Hawaiian's previous inaugural flights (Tokyo, Osaka, Fukuoka, Seoul, New York City and Sapporo), they invited members of the (new) media to help document the journey, every step of the way. The recruits this time around were Melissa Chang (@Melissa808) of NonstopHonolulu.com, Catherine Toth (@thedailydish) of TheCatDish.com, Kaleo Lancaster (@islandtrails) of Island Trails, and myself (@worldwideed) of World-Wide-Ed.com.

 


Hawaiian Airlines Flies to Brisbane, Australia! (via HawaiianAirlines' YouTube channel)

 

It was a whirlwind 3 day, 2-night tour, but we definitely got to experience Brisbane the only way Hawaiian Airlines knows how: with Aloha. Here are some of the sights and sounds that we were fortunate enough to experience.

Hula dancers giving us a nice sendoff
Hula dancers giving us a nice sendoff

HA443 departs Honolulu at 10:20am every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday and arrives in Brisbane (BNE) at 4pm the following day.

Blessing by Kahu Richard Kamanu
Blessing by Kahu Richard Kamanu

The awesome Hawaiian Airlines crew for our HA443 flight to Brisbane
The awesome Hawaiian Airlines crew for our HA443 flight to Brisbane

 


On the flight to Brisbane (via AlohaMelissa808's YouTube channel)

 


On the flight to Brisbane (via thedailydish's YouTube channel)

 

After about 10 hours in the air, we finally get to the beautiful city of Brisbane
After about 10 hours in the air, we finally get to the beautiful city of Brisbane

These two (Melissa Chang and Catherine Toth) are happy to be on the ground
These two (Melissa Chang and Catherine Toth) are happy to be on the ground

Our hale for the next few days was the French based luxury hotel chain called Sofitel Brisbane Central Hotel. Conveniently located in the middle of the city, it was in walking distance to quite a few key points during our trip, including ANZAC Square, which was literally across the street. Here's the view from my hotel room window!

Looking down at ANZAC Square from the Sofitel Brisbane Central Hotel
Looking down at ANZAC Square from the Sofitel Brisbane Central Hotel

It wasn't long before we had to get dolled up (I wore a tie!) and head down to the Ballroom Le Grand for the official Welcome Gala.

Hawaiian Airlines Welcome Gala
Hawaiian Airlines Welcome Gala

It was a packed house filled with members of the local (Brisbane) media, tour industry professionals, airline executives, and local entertainers Sean Na`auao and Lehua Kalima (formerly of Na Leo), among others.

 


Lehua Kalima Sings "Waikiki" at the Hawaiian Airlines Welcome Gala

Hawaiian Airlines President and CEO Mark Dunkerley addresses the crowd
Hawaiian Airlines President and CEO Mark Dunkerley addresses the crowd

And of course, we can't forget about the food p0rn shots! 😉

Bomboocha wok of fried rice!
Bomboocha wok of fried rice!

My serving of fried rice
My serving of fried rice

Poke samplers
Poke samplers

Chef Chai's popular Fried Kataifi Prawns
Chef Chai's popular Fried Kataifi Prawns

Following the gala, we decided to take a stroll around our neighborhood.

The Shrine of Remembrance at ANZAC Square
The Shrine of Remembrance at ANZAC Square

Possibly the best named street in all the land: Edward Street. 8)
Possibly the best named street in all the land: Edward Street. 8)

Brisbane's cool CityCycle bike hire program
Brisbane's cool CityCycle bike hire program

We decided to check out a popular local pub called the Pig 'N' Whistle on Queen Street.

Partial beer selection on tap
Partial beer selection on tap

Since we weren't that hungry, we just got a side of "chips" (fries in the U.S.) to share.

Chunky Chips with Garlic Aioli ($8.90)
Chunky Chips with Garlic Aioli ($8.90)

After all that eating and drinking, combined with our jetlag, it was time to call it a night. From the expressions on the ladies' faces, I think they agreed.

Cat and Melissa are either extremely drunk or jetlagged. You decide.
Cat and Melissa are either extremely drunk or jetlagged. You decide.

And that's it for our first night in Brisbane. I'll be back again soon to post more about our adventures including South Bank, King of Kings Seafood Yum Cha Restaurant in Chinatown, Alfred & Constance, koala and kangaroo sightings at the Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary, The Shelter Bar, and our departure.

To view more photos from the trip and get a sneak preview of what's to come:
https://picasaweb.google.com/114302480978989244855/AlohaBrisbaneAlohaBNE

Melissa Chang's #AlohaBNE blogs:
http://www.nonstophonolulu.com/?s=brisbane&searchsubmit=Go

Catherine Toth's #AlohaBNE blogs:
http://www.thecatdish.com/?s=brisbane

Kaleo Lancaster's #AlohaBNE blog:
http://kaleolancaster.blogspot.com/2012/12/brisbane-australia-hawaiian-airlines.html

My #AlohaBNE blogs/posts:
http://www.world-wide-ed.com/?s=brisbane

Instagram search results for #AlohaBNE:
http://web.stagram.com/tag/alohabne/

Twitter search results for #AlohaBNE:
https://twitter.com/search?q=%23AlohaBNE&src=typd

 

 Part I  | Part II | Part III

 

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