By Cate Palmer
Australia is a gorgeous and amazing country. Every year millions of tourists visit it for all sorts of reasons, from luxury travels to hiking expeditions. The land down under has it all: rain forests, deserts, beaches, urban centers and endless green landscapes. It is perfect for luxury travels and stays in the 5-star hotels, or jumping in the campervan and make it the trip around the country.
Every travel is unique to each traveler, and Australia can accommodate anyone’s taste. However, if you want to get that ultimate experience and travel around the country, prepare to go over 7 million square kilometers and come face to face with different natural wonders and meet incredible people.
As you see, Australia is big and that’s why you should concentrate on key destinations. This is especially important if you actively travel around the country since the last thing you would want is to come home tired and exhausted. That is why we prepared some hints and tips so you can have the best possible travel experience.
The most expensive way to travel around Australia is by plane, although it is the easiest. Some airlines may have fare sales and budget deals you can try to catch, but don’t get your hopes up. Australia doesn’t have many carriers flying in the country and so the ticket prices rarely are on the discount.
The best way is to book the tickets early, but that will ruin the brazen and nonchalance of the trip. You can always choose to opt for a plane ride to a certain destination and then continue your travels some other way.
There is romanticism around the train travel that never fades. It is enough to be an inspiration to go on the journey, which is not cheap, but there are backpacker discounts you can use which will lower the price significantly. There are two main railway routes, which cross Australia: the Ghan – north to south straight through the center, and the Indian Pacific – east to west, Sydney to Perth respectively. In addition, these two are perfect to lay back and enjoy the view since they are not high-speed train lines.
The Ghan starts from Darwin and makes stops at Katherine (five hours stop), Tennant Creek, Alice Springs (four hours stop), Kulgera, Chandler, Marla, Coober Pedy, Tarcoola, Kingoonya, Woomera, Port Augusta, Port Pirie and final destination Adelaide. Some of the stops have accommodations so you can stay and spend some time in the scenery, and others offer a few attractions like local pubs and landscapes, but you have to make additional arrangements to spend more time here. It is important to mention that the stops are the same if you start the travel from Adelaide.
The Indian Pacific is a 4,352 km long railroad and it takes three days to travel. The journey starts from Perth, and makes stops at the following places until it reaches Sydney: Northam, Merredin, Southern Cross, Kalgoorlie, Rawlinna, Loongana, Cook, Port Augusta, Port Pirie, Adelaide, Gladstone, Peterborough, Broken Hill, Menindee, Ivanhoe, Condobolin, Parkes, Orange, Blayney, Bathurst and Lithgow. You can change the travel route in Kalgoorlie or go on the couple-of-hours tour in Broken Hill organized during the time the train is in the station.
There are various ways you can travel around Australia by car and the great thing about this type of travel is that it’s cheap. You can share a ride with a friend, rent a car or take part in the carpool. Whatever you choose there is no more comfortable and free way to travel around the country and enjoy it just the way you want.
You can spend the nights in the motels and hostels on your route, go camping or rent the campervan instead of a car. There is also an option to buy a car at the local used car shops or from backpackers. That would cost you up to $2,000 AUD, and is cheaper than renting a car, especially if you share this expense with travel buddies. If you really want to use all the possible discounts on your road trip, consider getting a Greyhound pass.
Cycling around Australia
This is not uncommon, but also something only brave enough do. Dave Alley cycled 14,251 kilometers across three states in Australia and set the world record in 2011. It took him 37 days, 20 hours and 45 minutes with the average of 377 km per day.
Australian highways are not so appealing to ride a bike, but there are many routes, which are cycling-friendly and lead through the country. You can ride a mountain bike on Victoria’s High Country trails and at the same time have a tour of the craft breweries. Great Ocean Road is the most famous Australian scenic road and perfect for enjoyable bike rides because of the beaches, cliffs, and rainforests. Nevertheless, make sure you are ready for some heavy climbing since the 250-kilometer route can be demanding at times. So it’s better you put on your Metas Athletic workout clothes and comfortable Nike riding shoes to be as prepared as you can.
Mt. Buller is another wonderful way to enjoy the landscapes, only this time in the mountainous region of Australia. The 40-kilometer Alpine Epic trail was opened in December 2013 and immediately became a sensation even outside Australia according to the International Mountain Biking Association. If you want to spend several days cycling, try the Tasmanian East Coast route that goes through the hills. Another long option is the 1000-kilometer ride from Perth to Albany, the Munda Biddi Trail with campsites on the way and lasting for around three weeks.
In the end
If you like to travel and a good challenge, then Australia is the perfect way to treat yourself to the journey to remember. Just make sure to make enough stops and enjoy in gorgeous landscapes, natural wonders and beauties Australia has to offer.
Author: Cate Palmer
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