It would have been very easy to have driven from Townsville to Cairns in a day, after all it’s only 350 kilometres or so. There were a few places I wanted to see though, so I decided to spit the journey into two with an overnight stop off in Cardwell.
A quick look on any map, for example this one from Google, will show you that Cardwell is pretty much the halfway point and possibly the only small town along the way that is on the coast.
The first place I wanted to stop off at before getting to Cardwell though was Balgal Beach, 60 kilometres north of Townsville. I was getting quite used to northern Queensland beaches by now, so I was not surprised to see yet another quiet, rugged and uncommercialised seaside destination…
As I continued my journey north, Ingham looked like the perfect place to stop for lunch. What I didn’t know though was Ingham boasts the original ‘pub with no beer’…
A pub with no beer sounded pretty scary to me, but apparently the pub does have beer. ‘A Pub With No Beer‘ is the title of the popular and amusing country song made famous by Slim Dusty. The song was based on an original poem called ‘A Pub Without Beer‘ by Dan Sheahan who was from Ingham.
It’s an interesting story; the pub was drunk dry by some soldiers in 1943 and the following morning, Dan Sheahan popped in to the same pub wanting a beer. He ended up drinking a glass of warm wine instead, found himself somewhere to sit and wrote the poem.
You can read the full story over at the Lees Hotel website.
I also decided to take the quite substantial two hour round trip detour east of Ingham to check out Wallaman Falls. It was an enjoyable drive. I was most definitely in cassowary country, I was constantly seeing road signs warning me to look out for them on the road.
It was probably just after 3 PM when I left Wallaman Falls to head towards my next stop which, as I’ve already mentioned, is Cardwell. But before I go, and just because I can, here’s Slim Dusty…