Australia in 4 weeks
Replies: 9 - Last Post: Sep 17, 2012 5:59 PM Last Post By: LynneV
Jun 25, 2012 7:29 AM
Australia in 4 weeksHi all,
I am looking to head out to Australia around May 2013 to visit my best mate who has recently gone to live in Perth.
My intention, as it stands, is to fly out to Perth and spend a week catching up/seeing the city. However, I also intend to take 4 weeks annual leave from work, and after seeing my pal will then look to spend 3 weeks on my travels.
Having been to Australia before, where I visited Sydney and Melbourne back in 2007, this time I am interested in heading up to Queensland. My dilemma, however, is which areas to visit, and how long to spend in each.
Darwin, Cairns and the Whitsundays all hold an appeal; I guess my first question would be is this realistic across 3 weeks?
I am at the very early planning stages at the moment, so haven't gone in to great depth in terms of research, and am primarily looking for a little bit of inspiration from those of you that have travelled in Queensland. What were your highlights? What would you say is a 'must see'?
I don't hold any diving certificates, and whilst the marine life is of interest to me I perhaps wouldn't venture much beyond snorkelling, so I wouldn't be going solely for that purpose.
I'd thought about having two weeks in Australia and then perhaps the other two weeks in either New Zealand or the likes of Fiji, but perhaps I'd be better served sticking within Australia and seeing more there?
Any advice is most welcome. I'm not on the tightest of budgets, so internal flights etc shouldn't prove too much of a barrier for me, though I will be looking to stay in hostels after leaving Perth to minimise cost to an extent.
Looking forward to your thoughts, and any guideline itineraries that you feel would be well suited to 4 weeks (effectively 3 after removing Perth from the equation) in that part of the world.
Jun 25, 2012 8:44 AM
1Obvious question really - why not see Western Australia? There's a lot more to it than just Perth especially, as you said, you've been to the east coast already!
May is a good month to go north and, since you're not into diving, why not visit the world's longest frond reef, Ningaloo, which, for the most part is accessible from the shore, which makes it perfect for snorkelling. Whale sharks are seen there at that time of year too, although you need to join a boat trip to do that (and amazing exeperience it was too) - this is all from Exmouth, but there's Coral Bay too.
We had a fabulous two weeks there a couple of years ago - by flying to Kununurra from Perth and renting a 4WD to explore some of the Kimberley, then flew to Broome for a couple of days, then Exmouth and camped with Salsalis wilderness camps, snorkelled and swam with whalesharks before back to Perth.
Check out guide books for the west before deciding on east - Broome, Monkey Mia, the Kimberley. Or the south west, which is beautiful.
Jun 25, 2012 2:16 PM
2Internal flights is a must if you are covering that distance in that time. Perhaps you don't realise the distances between places in Australia? Have a look on qantas and see how long the flights are.
What interests you in Darwin? Actually, what are your interests in general? What are you looking to see? Cities? Crocodiles? Beaches? What are you wanting to do?
I would say Darwin doesn't hold much interest for a traveller. You really want to look at getting to Litchfield or Kakadu. I'm wondering what grabbed your attention about Darwin. Please also note that Darwin is not in Queensland and to associate 'the territory' with Queensland in Darwin wouldn't be smart.
What's your budget? Can you rent a car?
Whitsundays are great for snorkelling and beaches.
You are covering a lot of area in three weeks but it is doable I suppose if you are taking flights. Obviously the less you have to mve about the less you spend and the less time you waste on an aeroplane seat. As the previous poster suggested you could stick to the WA. Or if you are intent on visiting Queensland you could stay within the Whitsunday Brisbane area. Perhaps spend the time driving up from Brisbane to whitsundays: a couple days in Brisbane, sunshine coast, hervey bay, one of the islands maybe etc.
Depends what you want to do...
Jun 25, 2012 2:23 PM
Thanks for the responses.
James, as my OP states I'm more than happy to take internal flights, indeed I intend to as a means of saving time.
I had previously read that Darwin was a nice place, that is as far as it goes as I just wanted to garner a few opinions prior to conducting further research.
I guess I am primarily interested in scenery and wildlife.
I could rent a car as I have a UK driving license and am 25 years old. Budget should be fairly comfortable without being extravagant.
Jun 26, 2012 5:39 AM
4Half of those aren't cities of Queensland! And some aren't cities... and there are no 'states' of Queensland.
Don't be influenced by that post!
Jun 26, 2012 5:44 AM
Jun 26, 2012 2:22 PM
6Work your way from Kakadu to whitsundays? Do you mean by driving there? Not sure about flight options but it would definitely involve going through at least one major centre. Perhaps a flight to Darwin from Perth, rent a car and drive to Kakadu or Litchfield for 5 days plus a night either side in Darwin. Are you bring camping equipment? There is hotel accommodation there but I would rather camp. And it might blow your budget. Darwin can be nice, try the sailing club at sunset but you wouldn't find too mch to do. Then a flight to Brisbane or Cairns and work your way up/down to whitsundays with a car. You can take a flight from there to a major hub and then out of the country.
Off the top of my head I don't think there is much between Kakadu and the whitsundays. And it's a long way. I'd think you are better off doing something similar to above.
Kakadu and whitsundays are great for scenery and wildlife. You could probably find more than I could tell you about them on this forum. May would be pretty ideal time in terms of weather to visit the top end.
Jun 27, 2012 1:06 AM
Jun 28, 2012 3:42 AM
8No, won't be bringing camping equipment, so I'll be looking at hostels.
Must admit I'm very confused as to what to do in my three weeks. It doesn't seem all that simple to get around in the Queensland area!
I certainly want to see the Whitsundays, but likewise something like Kakadu holds a big appeal, the tropical rainforests there sound fascinating.
Sep 17, 2012 5:59 PM
I'm from Melbourne and have travelled extensively throughout Australia. Here are my tips! If you're spending a week in Perth with your mate, head down to Margaret River for at least a day or two. As you are a lover of nature and beautiful scenery, I would then fly directly from Perth to Darwin and book an Intrepid Tour for 3-4 days around the far northwhich will take you through Kakadu, Katherine Gorge and Litchfield Park. All are MUST SEES! Then fly from Darwin directly to Brisbane From there you can hire a car and drive 2 hours north to Noosa Heads, stay there a few days and get a day trip to Fraser Island from there. The National Park in Noosa is gorgeous as are the beaches! You could then fly to Cairns and stay in Port Douglas. From there you go out on a Quicksilver cruise to the Great Barrier Reef. Then fly home from Cairns!
Hope this helps!
The WestBook now
(4 star Hotel)
From US$141.96 per night
Port MacquarieBook now
(0 star Hotel)
From US$23.06 per night
(5 star Hotel)
From US$302.86 per night