"Not what I expected..." Australia by unaS
Australia Travel Guide: 44,987 reviews and 113,736 photos
25 September – 14 October 2003
Wrote lots of emails, but didn't save copies of them for myself, so no trip report. Am transcribing some very sketchy notes and using my photos to remind me of what I did and saw, what I recommend and what I suggest not bothering with. For sure others will disagree, but then variety and all that…
Almost the whole 6-week trip was pre-planned with reservations made over the internet.
Flew via Bangkok. Was the off season so I treated myself to a really posh hotel for the 1 overnight. WOW! If I ever win the lottery… (Tips – Marriott Resort Spa) The flight was amazing; thick, heavy clouds, amazing scenes of boulders and caves, saw lightening strikes in the sky .
In Sydney stayed at the budget hotel Noah Lodge. (Tips)
Arrived very early morning. Had arranged for a tour to the Blue Mountains but was fast asleep when it left, so I missed out on that to my regret.
Woke up with the flu! Warm and sunny so I went on a self-guided walking tour. Saw the Harbour view, the Bridge, the Opera House, the Botanical Gardens and the Promenade.
Next day took the Ferry to Taronga Zoo. Great view of the Bridge and the Opera House from the water! It was windy so no cable car. Walked up & down. Not impressed. Later visited “Mrs. McQuaries Chair” from the Botanical Gardens for view of Sydney from there.
Took the ferry to Manley Island. Nice walk up to the top. Circular Quey for tourists, but a pleasant place to sit in the sun and eat, have a cuppa’ Evening Didgeroo & slide show. Visited the Aquarium. Frightening even through plastic/glass when the sharks swim over you!
Best part of visit to Sydney : Late at night from the hotel roof watching the bats that live in the Botanical Gardens swooping and diving over the centre of the city. They reflect the light - look like living lights dancing! Just beautiful.
Flew to Alice Springs. Virgin Blue - small plane. (Tips) Stayed at the Swagman’s Rest (Tips). Hot & dry – reminds me of Eilat.
Still sick with flu but feeling a bit better. Tired but cough less painful. Rested, slept a bit.
In the evening went to an Aboriginal ‘Dreaming’ dinner & show - commercial. (Tips)
Next day visited the Desert Park. Marvelous! (Tips)
From Alice took an organized overnight trip to Uluru and Kata Tjuta (the Red Rock & Olgas Rocks) Very impressive trip, with the spiritual aspects emphasized. Excellent guide. The bus trip through the desert provided me with a poster picture.
The overnight at the Red Centre was pure tourist oriented. (Tips)
Flew to Cairns. High Chaparral Motel (Tips). Trip improved a lot!
Snorkeling at the Barrier Reef was phenomenal. Whole day in the water discovering and enjoying new experience. Have never been to a coral reef before.
Bought a disposable underwater camera. Very worth while!
Went on the Tjapukai Cultural Tour, took the Kurunda trip; Skyrail up and Scenic railway down. The Rainforest Habitat was awesome! Very much recommended! (Tips)
Flew to Adelaide. Festival City Hotel (Tips). Met up with friend for 2-day Kangaroo Island Tour. Spent ½ day walking around Adelaide. Next morning coach & ferry to KI.
Great trip with Wayward Tours (Tips). Spent an extra night to see fairy penguins. Do It!
A dream of a place to visit for nature lovers !
Return ferry next morning no extra charge.
Ferry and coach back to Adelaide; then flew via Melbourne, to Hobart, Tasmania. Hotel Marquis (Tips)
Visited Mt. Field Nat’l Park, Russell Falls and nature reserve. Entrancing visit. Enjoyed this very much indeed.
Visited Port Arthur. Interesting.
In Hobart eat at the Ristorante Maldini!!
Return flight via Melbourne (goodbye to friend) to Sydney for flight onwards to NZ.
Have begun Tips with hotels. Lots more to come.
- Pros:Expensive flight but the visit can be done on a budget.
- Cons:Most popular sites very tourist oriented.
- In a nutshell:Australia was fine. The problem is that I followed it up with NZ – and the comparison was too much. I fell in love with NZ.
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