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Old 19 Sep 20, 07:13 AM  
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#11
Budmiester
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Originally Posted by Poppycat View Post
If you are in Sydney for a few days definately try to get out to the Blue Mountains, they are stunning. Hunter Valley is another great day trip, just don't offer to be designated driver for the day

Brisbane - Surfers paradise in the Gold Coast and Byron Bay just down the coast are in easy reach. Gold Coast is about a 4 hour drive south. Both ok, but we preferred the more natural beaches up North. Loved Port Macquarie, but may be too far for you to drive South from Brissy or North from Sydney.

Airlie Beach is a great stop off for the whitsundays and at the Southern tip of the barrier reef, lots of islands to explore..

Cairns - I'd personally stay here over Brisbane if you are short on time. Cape Tribulation rainforest is lovely, make sure you get out to Daintree and a trip up to Kuranda is well worth while. Personally opt for the cable car over the train as the latter takes ages and we needed a taxi to get back to town. Port Douglas preferred over Cairns for accommodation, just more relaxed vibe. Got to spend a very happy Rugby World Cup match night here with jugs of VB

If you are into aquatic a trip out to Green Island for some snorkelling is good. Sad to see a lot of coral had died off last time we went out though. If you get the opportunity, getting a PADI qualification before you go will give you the option to dive on the reef as a qualified diver rather than a shallower buddy dive. Lots of daily dive boats leave from both Cairns and Port Douglas. You should be out of Box jellyfish season (I think) so you won't have to don the very sexy blue jelly fish suits!

Aus is an amazing place to visit and experience.
Poppycat, are you a mind reader?, I've just spent the last few hours on the "tinterweb" looking at those very things
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Old 19 Sep 20, 03:10 PM  
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dizzymcfarlane
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This is fab. We are also planning a 2022 trip. Lots of ideas here. We want to do one of the trains but he wants to go up oz while I want to go west to east ! Not sure about Uluru as heard lots of stories about flies - I canít stand them here so donít know how Iíd cope - a Scottish midge net i suppose.

Edited at 03:12 PM.
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Old 20 Sep 20, 01:09 PM  
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Lola
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Weíve been twice. Liked it so much we went back and planning another trip when we can. We did the Ghan train, great experience and have been to all the main places except Canberra. Planning for the Perth to Sydney Indian Pacific next time
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Old 20 Sep 20, 05:43 PM  
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dizzymcfarlane
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Originally Posted by Lola View Post
Weíve been twice. Liked it so much we went back and planning another trip when we can. We did the Ghan train, great experience and have been to all the main places except Canberra. Planning for the Perth to Sydney Indian Pacific next time
Lola - did you book it all yourselves or use a agent ? Weíve had a couple of decent quotes ( albeit for next year ) from a couple of agencies. Just interested in what everyone else did. Thanks.
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Old 21 Sep 20, 08:33 AM  
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Claudette
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Originally Posted by Budmiester View Post
Well with our trip to Florida in April this year well and truly scuppered DW and I have decided to go big(ish) and head for Australia in March 2022. We are planning on Sydney than flying down to Melbourne then driving back via Canberra. Has anyone done something similar ? Looking for ideas where to stop off on the way back and intend in taking 7 days to get from Melbourne to Canberra.

For a one of Australia trip, I would really want to get some of Queensland in, it is the most interesting state (IMO). I wouldnít bother with Brisbane though, in south Queensland I would stick to places like Noosa or Maroochydore, but I think FNQ is where I would want more time.

I lived in Australia for five years. I have never driven Melbourne to Sydney but I have driven both ways between Canberra and Sydney and also done some road trips down the southern NSW coast.

I suspect that seven days will be too long to spend driving from Melbourne to Canberra. Although I havenít done it, I have done other long road trips around Australia and there is often not much in-between. I would recommend a day in Ballarat and Sovereign Hill, it is 1.5 hours from Melbourne although unfortunately it is the opposite direction to Canberra.

I have driven from Canberra to Sydney and opposite both inland and over and along the coast, we have done other trips down the south NSW coast too. If I were taking the coastal route, places worth a look are Batemans Bay, Mollymook, Jervis Bay, Shellharbour. Rick Stein has a gorgeous lodge and restaurant in Mollymook called Bannisters, we once stayed here for a couple of nights. If you do decide to head east to take the ocean road, make a breakfast stop at the Outsider Cafe in Captains Flat, it is amazingly quirky, more so for being in the middle of nowhere, and the food is good too.

If you decide to go inland and want to take your time, Goulburn might be the best place for an overnight base whilst you explore. We have always enjoyed a stop in Kangaroo Valley, which actually would not be much of a diversion if you were driving the coastal route either. Other than that, as you pass through the small towns it is worth stopping to stretch your legs and see old fashioned Australia, Picton is one I recall having a wander round.

Edited at 09:01 AM.
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Old 21 Sep 20, 08:58 AM  
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munmun
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Yesterday I watched the programme about Brolo the guy who has a kangaroo preserve and rears Joey's orphaned in car accidents and we sat and remembered being at the reserve outside Alice Springs 3 years ago, such a wonderful experience.

We have done a lot of the Northern Territoriesand really enjoyed the wildness. I try not to do big cities, enjoyed Sydney but to me a big city is just that. I want to be out on the road exploring. Even if it means eating the limited selection at roadside trucker stops.
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Old 21 Sep 20, 08:59 AM  
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Claudette
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Originally Posted by Gryff View Post
Yep 2022 we are planing Australia coast to coast,by luxury train well Iíve always wanted To go on the orient express
We are looking at hop,on hop,off staying in hotels with facilities ie laundry service the option of apartments with 4/5 days to explore destinations
Weíd actually planned at 7 month round the world tour for 20 20,but had to really alter it so did Europe stop Edinburgh Dublin then San Fran Hawaii Texas then Florida well you al know why
We are reluctant to book much right now to go the other way then end back at our/home in Florida
But it on the upside let us do some other places on the way to Australia
I have done two of the big train journeys in Australia, the Indian Pacific from Sydney to Perth and also the Ghan from Adelaide to Darwin. I think these would be the luxury trains you are referring to, although they are not particularly luxury unless in Platinum class which we fortunately were.

We did not break any of our journeys, other than for the few hours that it stops. I am not sure how you could manage hopping on and off as it would be days (a week even) before the train would be back.

On the Sydney to Perth trip the stops are Broken Hill, Adelaide, an abandoned town called Cooke and Kalgoorlie. I might have liked an overnight stay in Broken Hill and Kalgoorlie but as I say, I donít think it is manageable. We have made trips to Adelaide before so were happy with just having the scheduled stop there.

The Ghan stopped at Alice Springs and Katherine, both very interesting and wouldnít have minded a bit longer there, but not days. On that trip the train kept breaking down and having power cuts so we missed a few meals. I think we had cheese sandwiches for dinner one day.

Edited at 09:02 AM.
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Old 21 Sep 20, 09:47 AM  
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#18
Claudette
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Originally Posted by dizzymcfarlane View Post
This is fab. We are also planning a 2022 trip. Lots of ideas here. We want to do one of the trains but he wants to go up oz while I want to go west to east ! Not sure about Uluru as heard lots of stories about flies - I canít stand them here so donít know how Iíd cope - a Scottish midge net i suppose.
There are a lot of flies at Uluru and you really need one of those hats with a net on. But beware of Western Australia too, anywhere outside of Perth in the warmer months. You will be covered, and I mean covered in flies in seconds. I remember we had to beat them off each otherís backs before getting back into the car every time we made a stop, hundreds of them.

As per my other post, I have done both trains, we did the Ghan first as it is the really iconic train I think. Both trips were very good, but if I had to pick, I would recommend the Ghan (your husbands choice) as the red centre scenery is stunning, the stops are more interesting and an opportunity to learn about the indigenous people.
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Old 21 Sep 20, 09:56 AM  
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munmun
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Originally Posted by Claudette View Post
There are a lot of flies at Uluru and you really need one of those hats with a net on. But beware of Western Australia too, anywhere outside of Perth in the warmer months. You will be covered, and I mean covered in flies in seconds. I remember we had to beat them off each otherís backs before getting back into the car every time we made a stop, hundreds of them.

As per my other post, I have done both trains, we did the Ghan first as it is the really iconic train I think. Both trips were very good, but if I had to pick, I would recommend the Ghan (your husbands choice) as the red centre scenery is stunning, the stops are more interesting and an opportunity to learn about the indigenous people.
We were at Ularu in January 2017 no flies, did take a fly net hat but didnt wear it. Was very dry not sure if its weather dependent. Really enjoyed Ularu.
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Old 21 Sep 20, 08:33 PM  
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Budmiester
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Hi everyone, well now set on Australia for 2022 , just sent back our US Dollars LOL. One thing I'm not sure of at the moment is the visa requirements, do we need to apply for one before departure or is it on arrival, I have checked Timatic but due to the Covid situation it currently does not state if we need one , the computer says no.
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