‘Stayaaaaaaa!!! A roadtrip in our own car through Australia, Oz, the land Down Undah, oh my... a dream come true! Total freedom and all the time in the world to relax and enjoy nature. Sounds good right?
For this enormous country we calculated three months that eventually became five... In this time we made a roadtrip from Cairns through the outback to Melbourne. Armed with our Ford Territory and some campinggear we conquered the long roads through this enormous land, right through the hot red centre and down to the south where Jos has relatives. We had a big get together reunion thingy in the end of January so there was a time goal to get there in time.
Along this journey we expected to see much of the awesome stuff like kangaroos, wombats, spiders and snakes and tattooed Ozzies. We were not disappointed.
Our free eVisitor visa gave us three months time to explore. So we needed to extend our visa by flying abroad. Three days in New Zealand like we went on a city trip.
Then we went to Tassie for three weeks and when we got back to Melbourne we continued our adventure by driving towards Sydney.
Some background information if you’re interested: this huge country has a surface of about 7.6 million square kilometres which is three quarters of Europe. It has about 23 million inhabitants of which 2.8% indigenous people like Aboriginals.
Australia (which means ‘Southern Land’) was discovered in 1606 by the Dutchy Willem Jansz, different parts of the country were divided as Dutch and British colonies until their independence in 1901 when the six states united into one federation, ‘the Commonwealth of Australia’. Australia is a federal parliamentary constitutional monarchy with Queen Elizabeth II on the throne but a parliament to call the shots. We know Q. Elizabeth from many other countries like Great Britain and New Zealand.
Australia has six states and territories, and we’ll visit every one except West Australia, which is also the biggest. We’ll travel through Queensland, Northern Territory, South Australia, Victoria, Tasmania, New South Wales and Australian Capital Territory. This last area covers only the country’s capital city Canberra.
Everything in Australia is big, big veggies, big houses, big cars, big egos, big hearts, even the people are big. They are a special kind, these Aussies and we like ‘em!
They even have their own language, which can be quite hard to understand when you think you can understand English. Check this out...
After a fantastic month along the Eastcoast we decide to follow our heart and move land inward. The outback is calling us! Absolutely a whole different side of Australia that definitely did not disappoint us...
From Townsville we follow Flinders Highway to the border with Northern Territory and find some real gems!
After meeting some authentic countryside Aussies we are ready for the real thing... life in the Red Centre of Australia is something else. Something completely new. Hermit farmers, extreme heat, looooong distances and a whole lotta nothing. What started as just an adventure ended in absolute amazement...
More good stuff under the grey button!
Our roadtrip through Australia continues. We cross the border in the middle of the outback to the state South Australia. A uniquely divers state with only one disadvantage... it's just so freaking hot!! But the beauty and the contrast was impressive. From the worst heat ever in the desert to the most beautiful blue waters we've ever seen. We absolutely loved and hated this part of our roadtrip... see for yourself!
Tasmania wow Tasmania, we were expecting a green explosion and it did not let us down. Extraordinary farsights and breathtaking scenery. Impressive heights and awesome valleys, pristine white beaches and kangaroos in every size. Phooey this is our Island! Except when it rains... and when it’s only 3 degrees at night and humid as the deep blue sea. Bad combination those three. But other than that, Tassie totally rocks!
Pfeeewww... how can it be... This state’s got it all, winding roads through lush green hills, with beautiful farms, real forests and high tree covered mountains. Serene beaches followed by a rugged untouched coastline. An all in one state! All in two weeks time... Eventhough our meet was short, it was love at first sight.
Currency: 1 Australian Dollar = € 0.64
In these 151 days (5 months) we've spend:
Transportation: € 3294 | A$ 5272* (includes ferry to Tasmania)
Accommodation: € 2535 | A$ 4057
Food and drinks: € 2850 | A$ 4561
Entrance (park) fees: € 105 | A$ 168
Other: € 756 | A$ 1210 (a.o. internet, camping gear and clothing)
That brings us to a daily budget of: € 63.15 | A$ 101 for two persons including everything, except international flights.
We’ve slept on different campsites, with or without showers/toilets, but always unpowered. The average price for a campingplace with sanitary would be € 15.60 | A$ 25.00, depending on the location. Add about € 4.35 | A$ 7.00 per night for electricity. Most campsites have a communal kitchen with electricity sockets and a washing machine (usually € 2.50 | A$ 4.00 per cycle).
Australia has a lot of free or really cheap campsites. Most have a long drop toilet or bio toilet but some have none or a surprisingly nice sanitary block. These campsites are mostly in the middle of nature or right on the beach. No need to pay if you can get it for free!
We did spend about five weeks with relatives where we didn’t have to pay for the accommodation. Nevertheless we spend our money on things we normally wouldn’t do and didn’t save too much on our budget, so we counted these weeks in in our budget summary.
In these 5 months we mostly cooked ourselves on our two flame stove. We had a healthy meal with lots of veggies every night and fresh fruit and egg in the morning.
We didn’t do any tours and tried to do mostly the free stuff. There are so many places you can go, see and do for free here your really don’t need to spend money.
Here are some examples of products and prices:
Fresh bread in supermarket: € 2 | A$ 3
Fresh French bread in supermarket: € 1 | A$ 1.50
Cafe latte in a lunchroom: € 3 | A$ 4.50
Beer (330 ml) in a cafe: € 4.35 | A$ 7
Beer (330 ml) liquor store: € 2.50 | A$ 4
Bottle of wine in liquor store: > € 3.15 | A$ 5
Fresh salad in restaurant: € 10 | A$ 15
Sandwich in restaurant: € 9.50 | A$ 14
Hot meal in restaurant: € 14.50 | A$ 23
Sim with 28 days data 5 gb: € 20 | A$ 30
Petrol per liter city/outback: € 0.71 - 1.25 | A$ 1.15 - 2.00
* Transportation costs:
We bought an SUV at a dealer in Cairns including full warranty. We used the car as a campervan and bought a good mattress and camping gear. We have driven 13,250 kilometres without having any trouble. Luck? We don’t know but a little preparation is a good start!
Click the title below to read our blog about buying a car in Australia.
When you visit Australia you can expect many interesting things, surprisingly gorgeous nature and animals of all sorts. Unfortunately amongst these animals are bugs too, flies to be specific. In fact, there are over 30,000 different kinds of flies in Australia, all of them equally annoying. They are everywhere and come with their whole family. These uninvited buzzers can really ruin your nice campingtrip or social picnic. They absolutely love the face, looking deep into your eyes, romantically blow your ear and suck your lips like a lollipop. The one arm salute is a well known fly repellent, but only helps for a second.
Supermarkets offer a wide range of fly sprays, sticky traps and charming headnets. The last one might be the only thing that actually works, but of course nobody wears them for the obvious reasons.
These small buzzers nearly drove me insane during our roadtrip. Trying to get attention by circling around before my eyes just when I’m cutting veggies with a sharp knife. AAAAARRRGGHHHH!!! Luckily I still have all of my fingers. Tip: don’t try the one arm salute with that knife still in your hand... that almost ended in a massacre. Phew.
My last resort was trying to befriend them. Make some deals. Talking nicely...
* You can sit on my legs but not on my face
* Look I’ve got some nice rotting meat for you, just don’t sit on my face
* Don’t bother me while I’m cooking, instead I’ll save you some juicy leftovers
* The enormous outside is for you guys, inside is for mama
It was worth a try. Some actually seemed to respect my request and others probably flew in from Samoa... ignoring my attempt to compromise. Bugger...
You might ask yourself, why are they here, them good for nothing scoundrels! Well, flies reproduce really fast, some hugging, some kissing, and then... a lot of laying eggs in smelly gunk. Some mellow poo, rotting roadkill or our yummy composting leftovers from last weeks meals, all incredibly delicious and makes them procreate even faster. Up to 15 generations per year of buzzing idiots. Their function in life? Cleaning. If it wouldn’t be for these singing bastards we’d be zigzagging through smelly shambles everywhere. They clean up the mess we make and thank us for it by flying a melody and kissing our face. Yep, we should actually be grateful for their existence.