starting jan feb next year i am doing a road trip round australia flying in to perth and out of sidney , i am going to buy a vw camper use it for the stay and then ship it back ,my flights can be changed so i could go in sidney out perth e.t.c Anybody got any good ides as to what route to take , things i must see and parts of the trip best avoided , on an earlier post i saw that north australia is out during jan feb ,this was originally on my itinery as first stop from perth, any idea's will be greatfully recieved .
cheers jon and helen
[ Edit: Edited at Sep 7, 2006 1:10 PM by speedo ]
True, you'll probably travel best if you avoid the far north and central north in wet season (Nov - Feb), and beware the deserts in summer. It’s not that you can’t go to any of these places – just quite a good chance you’ll get stuck in a flooded creek in the North. And quite likely you'll tire quickly of 40+ degrees celcius across the Nullabor in mid summer.
Here’s a suggestion - a bit like a round trip really. From Perth, head southwest Mandurah, Yallingup, Margaret River, Augusta, Pemberton, Walpole, Denmark, Albany, Esperance, Norseman (side trip to Kalgoorlie if you’re ready for some heat), Eucla, Ceduna, take the Eyre peninsula round through to Adelaide, - you could do that in a month but probably better with another 2 weeks give or take... Then another month to cover Melbourne, Canberra, Sydney, – starting to cool down – a better time to head into Queensland – Gold Coast, Brisbane, Noosa, Fraser Island, Whitsundays, Cairns, Cape York, Gulf Country, Darwin, Kakadu NP, Lichfield NP, Katherine, Tennant Creek, down to Alice Springs, Uluru, Olgas, then you gotta choice between how you want to finish it off – with whatever time you have left and where you will depart. Assuming a Sydney departure, I've not driven any of the routes between Sydney / Alice Springs - but there are a few options and reports are its a long way (stating the obvious) but pretty rewarding and you'll catch a fair bit of the "real" Australia in there.
Specific Places worth checking:
Victoria - Great Ocean Road, Phillip Island, MCG with a big crowd (80000+) at the cricket or AFL ...
South Oz - Adelaide Hills, The Barossa wine regions, South Coast, Kangaroo Island, Yorkes Peninsula, West Coast (Port Lincoln, Elliston, Streaky Bay),
West Oz - Kalgoorlie, Esperance, Pemberton, Valley of the Giants, Tree Top Walk, Albany, Augusta caves & coast, Yallingup, Perth, cycling Rottnest Island, Lancelin, Jurien, Cervantes, Kalbarri
NT - Darwin, Kakadu Nat Park, Red Centre (Uluru, Olgas), Lichfield,
Qld – Cape York, Weipa, Cape Tribulation Nat Park, Daintree Rainforest, Great Barrier Reef, Hinchinbrook Island, the Whitsundays, Fraser Island, Noosa, Gold Coast, Mt Isa, Kingaroy,
NSW - North Coast (Tweed Coast, Byron Bay, Ballina … ), Sydney – climb the Harbour Bridge, tour the Opera House, Bondi Beach, Blue Mountains, South Coast.
Places to check out between Gold Coast and Sydney : Tweed, Byron, Ballina, Yamba/Angourie, Nambucca, Sawtell, Scotts Head, Hat Head, Crescent Head, Port Macquarie, Forster, Newcastle, Terrigal, Sydney.
There is so much I've missed - but hope that helps.
I guess if you really have the full 6 months, it's also possible to do the route as OzRocco described, but after visiting Alice Springs/Uluru, go north again towards Darwin and then south following the westcoast Darwin-Broome-Perth.
6 month is of course not enough to see everything in detail but it's certainly enough to do the full circle with some rests in between.
Is it possible for you to fly out of Perth as well as flying in?
Having lived in the NT for a few years I strongly recommend avoiding the Top End in Dec-Feb. If it is a mild to heavy wet season you can't go off the main roads (and some of the main roads may get closed) and therefore won't see anything the top has to offer. And that is just the start of it. It will be so hot and humid you can't get comfortable, the water from the cold shower is luke warm and you can't swim in the sea as it is stinger season.
If starting in Perth at that time of year, I suggest going across the bottom but that will be hot as well at that time of year. You might want to consider avoiding drivingthe Nullabour and, if you can afford it, catch the India-Pacific train from Perth to at least Adelaide. That way you can move about and meet people while being bored by the miles of nothing.
I lived in Oz for 37 years and still have a lot to see. 6 months will be just be enough to give you a real taste of we we have to offer and if you want to go right around in 6 months, it will be a sprint. That said, it will be a great sprint and you will see some amazing sites and meet some interesting people along the way. The good news is, so many people do it so you know it can be done.
You're going to have to cheat abit. Mix flying and ground travel to get the most out of your trip.
My suggestion -
yes Jan/Feb is hot up north but if you start in Feb leaving Perth and take abit of time travelling up the coast towards Broome - you COULD take 6-8 weeks and really enjoy exploring. Even do a trip to South West of WA before you head north? Its beautiful there too.
April in Broome the weather starts to change. North of WA and NT is the 'real' outback so it depends what 'experience' you want to get out of your trip. Western Australia is a THIRD of the country so don't think it can be done within a couple of weeks!!!
Fly to Darwin or to the centre (Uluru) from Broome and then fly to Melbourne and tour on the ground up to Cairns (or vice versa).
Virgin Blue usually have good cheap sales on all the time - keep an eye out www.virginblue.com.au
Happy travelling - you'll love oz.
[ Edit: sorry, no promos in the forum please. ]