Mossman Gorge and Vanilla Slices

Have had a short day trip of about 20km up the coast to Mossman Gorge. This is a low level rainforest environment (as opposed to those in the Gold Coast hinterland which are highland ones) through which the Mossman River tumbles down from the highlands to the sea. When not in flood it is a tranquil flowing stream but can turn into a torrent after rain. An easy stroll along the boardwalk takes you to a couple of swimming holes among the river boulders. A few people enjoying a splash around in the shallow waters, jungle perch swimming around among them. Very green with numerous species of trees and creepers.


Boardwalk through the Gorge

Mossman River

Some little fern thingos


We were thankful for a number of rest spots along the way, Allthego found it not nearly as demanding as the Mt Bartle Frere expedition. Homealone had her usual experience of crossing a swinging bridge over a short gorge section. It was a pleasant couple of hours among the trees and beside the River. Later back in the  Mossman township the River flowed beside the road along sandy banks and overhanging trees.


Mossman Gorge swing bridge

Mossman River near Mossman township

Unusual little creeper


It is, however, time for an update on the vanilla slices we have encountered since the last commentary. It is often said that when one passes into North Queensland there can be a bit of a cultural shift. In the case of vanilla slices we have certainly found this to be the case. There is a lot of sugar cane in North Queensland and the industry has a murky past when it comes to labour practices. First, it was the ‘black birding’ of South Pacific Islanders to work on the farms as arguably slave labour and after this the ‘Italian invasion’ of workers in the industry, many of who later became landowners in their own right. There is a lot of South Sea Islander and Italian cultural influence in the North that has permeated and filtered into Australian life today. All good.


Is this an Italian influence, pink icing and then south sea islanders added the coconut flakes!

Port Douglas Vanilla slice….passionfruit icing ???

A layer of cream! At least the icing is white and a chocolate swirl or two Vanilla very pale, but then maybe it is a bit French as well!

Except, it seems to have influenced vanilla slices. We came across a vanilla slice at the bakery in Home Hill with pink icing (the Italian input) dusted with desiccated coconut (the South Sea Islander influence). There was another one with a layer of cream on a milky white filling at South Mourilyan. The icing in both cases was quite sweet. To top it off in Port Douglas we got one with passionfruit icing, with a couple of seeds for good measure. None of these really measured up to expectations. But, interesting culinary variations to say the least. In Port Douglas we also came across a baker who had the ‘Best Ever French Vanilla Slice’, but the shop was shut and wouldn’t reopen till we left town a couple of days later. Knew we were coming obviously! Try them another time!


Best Ever….we will see…

So, we are now moving to Daintree Village a short 56 km hop north and the gateway to Cape Tribulation. It is now feeling like we are starting the Cape journey. We may not see a vanilla slice for 2 or 3 weeks.

About allthegobro

I am a retired accountant who does a bit of consulting work from time to time. Leanne and I enjoy travelling around seeing the world and we are now going to have some fun recording our experiences in this blog

Posted on August 11, 2020, in Cape York 2020. Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. Hello again Allthego and Homealone. You’ll be delighted to know that a new bakery has opened in Westlake specialising in Vanilla Slices. Hold your judging results until you have experienced one of its divine creations upon your return. It features emu eggs I’m reliably informed. ‘Slice’ is liberal use of the term.

  2. And of course you made her stop on the swing bridge for a photo 🙄

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: