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Christmas Island. (AFF community report)

Scr77

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Christmas Island is an usual destination that many AFFers have been to. It’s the type of destination that would get differing reviews depending on what you would expect from an Australian Island. I have been three times, but invite anyone who has been to contribute.

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kpc

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In 2012, we went to Easter Island. A few years later my better 1/2 asked me tongue in cheek why we hadn't been to Xmas Island. Apart from the Detention Centre, I knew nothing about Xmas Island! After a bit of online researching I read about the Red Crab migration (David Attenborough described this as the Greatest Animal Migration in the world!) and we decided to go. Researching how to get there revealed limited options....it seems only Va flies there twice a week from Perth. I noticed that on one trip the plane made a stop...a bit of googling revealed this stop was the Cocos Keeling Islands...the first image of this island was white beaches, turquoise water and Coconut trees....so we decided to visit both! Airfares from Sydney on Va were around $1000 return in Y per person and to my delight, I could use Va points instead so in 2016 we visited both Cocos Keeling and Xmas Islands....one of the best trips I have done within Australia....don't want to hijack your TR so will just chip in from time to time. :)
 

Scr77

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The island is just short of 4 hours from Perth. Virgin flys twice a week from Perth in a loop that includes Cocos Island. VA flys clockwise on one trip and anticlockwise on the next trip, meaning a direct flight one day a week.

Virgin Australia Regional Airlines operate a a320 with only economy seating on the route. The fares are very expensive (over $1,000 return). Thankfully, there are at least 2 economy award seats available on each flight. Addition seats are available if coming from different mainland cities. Ie 2 seats from Perth but also 2 if coming from Melbourne or Sydney on the same date.
 

Scr77

Active Member
Joined
Feb 15, 2014
Messages
940
In 2012, we went to Easter Island. A few years later my better 1/2 asked me tongue in cheek why we hadn't been to Xmas Island. Apart from the Detention Centre, I knew nothing about Xmas Island! After a bit of online researching I read about the Red Crab migration (David Attenborough described this as the Greatest Animal Migration in the world!) and we decided to go. Researching how to get there revealed limited options....it seems only Va flies there twice a week from Perth. I noticed that on one trip the plane made a stop...a bit of googling revealed this stop was the Cocos Keeling Islands...the first image of this island was white beaches, turquoise water and Coconut trees....so we decided to visit both! Airfares from Sydney on Va were around $1000 return in Y per person and to my delight, I could use Va points instead so in 2016 we visited both Cocos Keeling and Xmas Islands....one of the best trips I have done within Australia....don't want to hijack your TR so will just chip in from time to time. :)
Pls contribute in anyway you like. Our first trip was Melbourne cup week in 2016. Yours?

I too, was draw to the Red Crab Migration and by Attenborough‘s comments.

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Cossie

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It's on the list! I particularly want a Christmas Island graphic number plate, it seems the easiest way to get one is to visit and buy an old vehicle with one on it as they are notoriously hard to acquire.
 

Major

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Christmas Is. is in the news at the moment for other reasons, certainly not red crabs.
 
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What is a “graphic” number plate - does it have crabs or something on it?

It's on the list! I particularly want a Christmas Island graphic number plate, it seems the easiest way to get one is to visit and buy an old vehicle with one on it as they are notoriously hard to acquire.
 

Scr77

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It's on the list! I particularly want a Christmas Island graphic number plate, it seems the easiest way to get one is to visit and buy an old vehicle with one on it as they are notoriously hard to acquire.
The cars are well knocked about and many are ex-phosphate mining vehicles. I would think a number plate would be doable!

I do love that everyone waves as you drive around the island. No one locks homes or cars.

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kpc

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Perhaps. Did you stay at The Sunset with a Father and son as neighbours?
We stayed at The Sunset from 20-22 Nov 2016...arrived a day late as flight from Cocos was delayed 24 hrs.
 

Scr77

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Christmas Is. is in the news at the moment for other reasons, certainly not red crabs.
This is very true and the reason I thought a TR was overdue. The islands Economy is based around the detention centre, a closing phosphate mine and tourism. The Island is a great nature destination with bugger all tourists. You can spend all day exploring and feel that you have the island to yourself. There is a cafe, pub on the beach and a few good Asian restaurants. The outdoor cinema is great for $5 a person and the locals are very friendly. The hospital is modern/well equipped and my son was admitted after arriving on the island with a illness.
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Scr77

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Hi Scr77. Is it an optical illusion or does one of the crabs have a gopro!
Well spotted. The gopro was there well before the crabs came to visit.

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The sunset from the Islands only pub are spectacular. Perhaps typical of tropical destinations, you need plenty of mozzie repellent in the wet season and none at all in the dry season.

A lot of Christmas Island locals have Chinese, Singaporean or Malaysian ties and the island has belonged/controlled by various countries through history. For this reason, the Asian food is excellent and the culture is rich. You stumble across temples, miles from anything like the one below.

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Scr77

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Feb 15, 2014
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If you're brave, you can swim in a grotto. The sounds are a tad scary and I feared getting sucked out to the ocean. It wasn't until our third visit that the tide was calmer and It was quite pleasant. The crabs don't mind sharing.

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Our favourite spot is the Islands only waterfall. It actually comes from a spring and is high in limestone. The walls and floor grow with the mineral deposits - just like stalagmites in a cave!

Depending on the crab migration and which roads are closed, it can be quite a hike, but that makes you appreciate the cool waterfall even more!

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kpc

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We weren't brave enough to swim in the Grotto....looked a bit menacing as we arrived around dusk time! But we did hike out to the Hughs Dale waterfall and were refreshed by the cool shower as shown in the photo in the post above and below....it was quite a hike maybe 60-90 mins in quite humid conditions as the road in was closed because of the red crab migration.

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We did see another type of crab on the hike....the blue crab! DSC08625.JPG
 
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