Ok, so I arrive in Sydney on June 4th and I am trying to figure out where to go from there. Originally, my plan was to greyhound bus it up to brisbane and stop in a few places along the way - such as Coffs Harbour, Byron Bay, Surfers Paradise, and then continue to Cairns. However, I know that June is going to be winter in Australia so is it still worth it to stop in these places when its going to be cooler? Or should I just go straight to Brisbane and head up the north coast from there where it will be warmer? I'm meeting up with a friend in Brisbane and he's telling me I should just skip the drive up to brisbane and just fly there because it will be too cold (however, he is not australian, and has yet to make that drive himself). Is he right, or will I be missing out if I skip this area? Time is not an issue as I'm coming over on a WHV so I have the whole year.
Also, we're thinking of renting a campervan for the drive from Brisbane to Cairns. Is this the best way to travel? Are there a lot of places to camp? How expensive is it to stay in camp places? Also, does anyone have any idea if if my Canadian drivers license will be valid there?
Any advice would be greatly appreciated! Thanks!
From Sydney to Brisbane in June is still going to have nice warm days. Wont be blazing hot and probably not everyday good for the beach, but still some good ones. I think your friend just wants to see you sooner! Certainly these are some of the most famous beaches in Australia and worth driving that coast.
Campervans are of course always going to be the best way to travel. You can eat and sleep in them and your gear is safely stored away. You do become a little insulated from meeting others and experiencing the locals, but a few nights down the pub can sort that out! Camp sites range from basic state run sites that are cheap. To more expensive private run ones, But they are still cheap compared to a hotel or guest house. When looking into renting your campervan be sure to check out the relocation deals. Sometimes the companys are trying to move vehicles from one location to another and if its where you want to go, then you can get some really cheap if not free rentals.
Hi Nyssa, I drove from Sydney to Cairns in May 2007 and while it was cold in Sydney, by the time I got to Byron bay it felt warm enough to swim. The drive was well worth it and I stayed a couple of nights in Byron Bay to try out some surfing. If you're going to do the trip quickly as Dodger said you could get a relocation campervan from Sydney to Brisbane, check out Standby Relocations, I've never used them but it looks like a good way to get cheap transport from city to city.
what about flying from Sydney to the Goldcoast getting a campervan driving down to Bryon Bay only takes 45 minute and these heaps around the area lots to see and do .Then heading up to carins and giving you stops along the way. Dont get me wrong but dont think there is really much to do between sydney and Byron this is a drive you can do in one day( 8-9 hours).I never stop when taking this rouate but if your on a coach for and the only stop if coff Harbout forget it no point at this time of year.
I just got back from exactly those regions 4 days ago and I can tell you...the UK Is bloody freezing compared to Australia and the Cairns region is a balmy 26c for the next 6 months! I lived in my own bought van for 8 months travelling through SA, Vic, living around the Byron Hinterland over summer and just spent 2 months in the Cairns region and unless you are only planning on travelling in the van for about 6 weeks, I highly recommend buying your own as hiring with Wicked/Travellers AutoBarn etc is a fortune and there are so many hidden costs eg. windscreen insurance, varying insurance rates.
Go for a van that has quite a long REGO still to go, preferably a NSW plate or QL plate so you can sell it more easily when you are done with it and with a roadworthy certificate. ANd if you need to sell it in Cairns get there early and give yourself up to 3 weeks to sell it and not one week til you fly on.
As for things to see and camping, there is a ton of things to do all the way from Syd to Cairns (although the drive from Townsville to Cairns is quite honestly the most boring drives in the world...you will start to beg for banana trees and not the 600 kms of sugar cane that surrounds you!) Camp in National parks if you can as you can invariably get away with camping for free. The council campsite at Mission Beach is only $15. A lot of the good stuff to see on the Brissy to Cairns road is off the highway but Bowen is well worth a visit - one of the only places on the east coast you will get a sunSET! Platypus viewing at Eungella, cheap access to Fraser Island from Rainbow Beach (not Hervey Bay), dolphin feeding at Tin Can Bay, gorgeous sunsets at 1770 and good lower reef trips.
Syd to Brisbane, check out Myall Lakes and then Bellingen (behind Coffs) and visit all the hinterland around Byron. Dont try and do thedrive in a day cos it is a bit of a killer (in a van that can only do 100kph its more like 12 hours!), break it up at Coffs if you have to. Oh and avoid the Gold Coast by going inland via Springbrook National Park for stunning views over NSW whilst standing at the edge of the volcano watching the sun come up.
And pray...coming from Canada...what is the description of cold? Yes, it gets a bit nippy if you can call 18c cold and it willbe a constant 26c in Cairns!!!
Good luck and dont buy your van from Germans! Sorry...(experienced more than once!) they have a tendency to sell on shocking vehicles but pass them off as fine!!!
Forecasts for Sydney are saying we will have a mild winter this year. If you decide on the Greyhound option from Sydney to Brisbane it will only get warmer as you travel north. However, picking up on Dodger's advice, if I was travelling alone I would take a cheap one way Jetstar flight to Brisbane and meet up with your friend. Travel together back down along the Gold Coast and on to Byron Bay and hinterland. Return to Brisbane and then head north to Cairns. Regarding type of transport, if you intend to check out a place and then move on etc then a campervan is the way to go. If your intention is to take a number of months travelling then I would seriously consider purchasing a motor vehicle as it would work out a lot lot cheaper. I'm not 100% but I'm pretty sure you will need an Intern. Drivers Licence. Hope you have a safe and enjoyable visit.
Whatever you do, just remember that even though you might have "warm days", you are still going to have cool mornings and cool afternoons. Sure, it might be warm in the middle of the day but that's about it.
yeah ur canadian license is valid here, just need to show ID with ur license.