A Christmas Island experience

Flying Fish Cove, Christmas Island. Photo: Candace McBride

As a fledgling graduate in the department, I was thrilled to be offered a trip to Christmas Island — what an amazing opportunity! It was great to see first-hand the issues that had been occupying me at my desk.

This remote island is tucked away in the middle of the Indian Ocean some three and a half hours flying time from Perth.

Pre-warned about the realities of island life, I wasn’t surprised to learn that weather had delayed my flight and to find myself circling the island due to landing difficulties — but what a magnificent view of the island — an oasis in the vast deep blue sea!

I was amazed to see just how mountainous this island is, its pinnacle jutting out from the deep ocean floor and covered in lush green rainforest.

A Christmas Island sunset. Photo: Candace McBride

But it wasn’t until I arrived on the island that I really understood what ‘island life’ really meant. Christmas Island is unlike any other island community I have visited — an interesting blend of Australian, Chinese and Malaysian culture as well as stunning natural beauty.

I was also excited to realise that the poor weather conditions with rain and wind also meant one thing — red crab migrations!

Candace McBride Graduate