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Lord of Legoland
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi guys...

It looked like I had my summer vacation for 2008 planned - this time Australia - but alas, just when we had desided for 3 weeks in June it dawned on us that your crazy southerners have winter in our summer ( stupid hemisphere! :eek:hno: ) so that pretty much ruined everything - thank you very much Pythagoras :bash:

Anyway... then we started thinking about late winter here ( aka March ) and then unfortunatly only 2 weeks ( the Danish vacation system have 3 weeks in the summer and only 2 in winter )..

Now that would ofcause limit the coverage area even greater.. but hey 2 weeks is better than nothing right?

So for now the early plans looks like this:

Sydney for the first couple of days..

One day trip to Canberra..

Then north along the coast to Brisbane

A couple days in Surfer's Paridise

Maybe a short trip further up the coast ( perhaps Fraser Island?? )

And then back to Sydney and home..




The main mode of transportation will be train as I'm not too keen on left-side driving ( crazy side :cry: )..

The short timespan will also mean we'll have to leave Melbourne out it seems, but atleast it'll leave me with a good reason to re visit.. :)

I know 2 weeks is way too little time, but for a short trip what would you advice and any absolute must see places in the area mentioned?

And how's the weather in march in the areas mentioned... anything to be aware of?

Oh and finally I'm more an urban guy than nature fan, but I do love a nice palm filled beach :yes:


All help is greatly appreciated - cheers! :cheers1:
 

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Train! Are you mental? Sydney-Brisbane by Train would be death thats like 800km's on a 80km/h train! Horrible. I wouldn't Train from Canberra to Sydney is 4 hours alone and thats only 350kms. Even the Bus is faster! March here is like 21 degrees and higher, maximum would be 27 degrees probs (talking about Sydney, Brisbane) There are like 50 threads about where to go in Sydney in the Australian forum with question from people like yourself.
 

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Lord of Legoland
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
^ Yeah it does look like too much time will be spend on transportation.. both trains and planes... so it looks likes Australia will have to wait a year or two until I/we have the time needed for a proper visit to the country..

Thanks for the help anyway... but it seems a lot more than a measly two weeks is needed for a visit to your fine country :)

And I think I'll see if I can get a lefthand driver course or two in the UK to free myself of the hasle relying on public transportation in a foreign country can be :)
 

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Global Citizen
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Hi guys...

It looked like I had my summer vacation for 2008 planned - this time Australia - but alas, just when we had desided for 3 weeks in June it dawned on us that your crazy southerners have winter in our summer ( stupid hemisphere! :eek:hno: ) so that pretty much ruined everything - thank you very much Pythagoras :bash:

Anyway... then we started thinking about late winter here ( aka March ) and then unfortunatly only 2 weeks ( the Danish vacation system have 3 weeks in the summer and only 2 in winter )..

Ok, I'm not an Aussie, but I know Australia quite well. First of all, isn't it somehow possible that you can combine your two holidays into a 5 week holiday? Because 2 weeks is WAY too short, especially if you consider that the flight to Australia takes two entire days (22 hours flight + 2 hours stopover + 10 hours time difference). That leaves you with only 10 more days and trust me even 3 weeks is too short for your first visit Down Under.

My advise if you have very little time, would be to fly between the cities (check out the websites of the two largest Australian low-fare airlines 'Virgin Blue' and 'Jetstar Airways' for cheap flights), spend a few days there and than rent a rental car and explore the surrounding landscape, but even that requires a lot more time than 10 days.

My advise:

Sydney (4 days)
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2 days with a rental car (Sydney - Blue Mountains NP - Canberra - Sydney)
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than fly to Melbourne (3 days)
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3 days with a rental car (Melbourne - Great Ocean Road - Grampians NP - Melbourne)
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than fly to Alice Springs pick up another rental car and explore the Ayers Rock, the Olgas and the Kings Canyon for 3 days
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fly to Cairns and explore the Great Barrier Reef, the Atherton Tablelands and the Barron Gorge NP (4 days)
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fly to Brisbane (2 days) + 1 day down to the Gold Coast

adding the 2 days you'll lose on your flight to Australia and the one you'll need back makes 25 days (3.5 weeks).

The main mode of transportation will be train as I'm not too keen on left-side driving ( crazy side :cry: )..
You don't want to drive all over Australia with a train. Their train network is almost non-existent and the distances are HUGE to say the very least.
Believe me...there's nothing to be afraid of with driving on the left side, especially not in Australia. I've driven a car in over 20 countries on 5 continents and I have yet to meet more polite and non-aggressive drivers than Australians. And driving on the left is really only strange for the first 20-30 minutes. Simply go with the flow and you'll get used to it. And get a car with automatic shifting, because shifting with the left is indeed something that's a bit strange. Also, obey the road rules at all times, I've never seen more radar and alcohol controls in my entire life than I did in Australia.

And how's the weather in march in the areas mentioned... anything to be aware of?
March-April is indeed about the best time to visit. The worst of the summer heat is gone in the south and the wet season is over around mid-March to end-March in the north.
 

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I'm also going to Australia yay! at 22 of June.... but to perth though.... so what sites should I visit? and is there a good shoe store? cuz I wanna buy some shoes there...
 

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Just bring enough warm clothes. It can get realy cold in the nights, even up north. And dont expect heaters in the motels and hotels. If its 8C outside, its 8C inside.
 

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Lord of Legoland
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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
Ok, I'm not an Aussie, but I know Australia quite well. First of all, isn't it somehow possible that you can combine your two holidays into a 5 week holiday? Because 2 weeks is WAY too short, especially if you consider that the flight to Australia takes two entire days (22 hours flight + 2 hours stopover + 10 hours time difference). That leaves you with only 10 more days and trust me even 3 weeks is too short for your first visit Down Under.
Thanks for the advice - and yes I too have come to the conclusion that 2 weeks is way to short for a country that big...

So instead it's prosponed until I/we can find the time needed to visit the country as it should be visited..
 

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^^
Very wise. Without an acclimatising Asian stopover you'd sleep for the first week.

I'd never consider going to Oz for any less than 2 weeks + at least another week on stopovers there and back.

I've been 3 times:

1999:

Direct to Cairns
1 week SCUBA on the Great Barrier Reef (Advanced PADI)
1 week Cape Tribulation camping
1 week Sydney in a backpacker hostel in King's Cross
1 week Melbourne in a seedy Gay hotel
1 week Perth staying with a **** from London
Back home via Sydney

2004:

3 Nights New York
3 Nights San Francisco
7 Nights Sydney
1 Night Cairns
3 Nights Daintree Rainforest (Silky Oaks Lodge)
3 Nights Lizard Island (Great Barrier Reef)
1 Nights Cairns
7 Nights Alice Springs (Red Centre tour: Uluru, Kata Tjuta, Kings Canyon, Palm Valley etc)
4 Nights Melbourne
4 Nights Hong Kong

2007:

3 Nights Bangkok
7 Nights Sydney
2 Nights Brisbane
7 Nights Heron Island (Great Barrier Reef)
3 Nights Dubai

Personally if I was pressed for time (i.e. had to do it all in 3 weeks) I'd give Perth, Brisbane, Cairns and Alice Springs a miss. As a European you'll find them barren and devoid of life or 'buzz'... I haven't been to Adelaide or Darwin but I suspect they are very much in the same league.

In my opinion only Sydney and Melbourne are worth a look in as city destinations, but to be blunt 3 nights in each is ample. I'd recommend:

Sydney:

Bridge Climb
Taronga Zoo
Ferry to Manly / Manly Beach
Queen Victoria Building
Blue Mountains (day trip)

Try to stay close to Circular Quay

Melbourne

Botanical Gardens
Melbourne Zoo
Rialto Tower observation deck
Restaurant tram (book well in advance)
Oriental cooking dirt cheap on Victoria Street
Twelve Apostles / Cape Otway (day trip)

I stayed in the same hotel both times (The Laird in South Collingwood) but its Gay... the location is a bit shit, I'm sure there are much better located hotels.

Spend the rest of your time seeing what makes Australia so amazing: the great outdoors. Stopovers aside I'm assuming you've got 10 days tops left to play with after your 6 nights in Sydney / Melbourne... Personally I'd recommend the 'Voyages' resorts (formerly P&O)... I'd go for 3 nights at Silky Oaks Lodge (Daintree Rainforest, nearest airport Cairns) then a short hop offshore to their amazing resorts at Lizard or Bedarra islands... They aint cheap, but they're so worth it. Then perhaps fly to Alice Springs (utter craphole) for a couple of days in the Red Centre (to see Uluru and Kata Tjuta if nothing else).

Regarding stopovers, I found the flying continually west the least punishing on the body clock. Try a West Coast USA stopover on the way there and an Asian stopover on the way back (personally I'd choose San Frnacisco and Hong Kong again). Don't bother with the trains in Oz: I took the train from Sydney to Melbourne once and it took 11 hours... Just use planes and taxis.
 

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If only two weeks - you can eliminate some of more ambitious routes

depends what you like

but visiting Sydney and Melbourne (if you like urban) will be a must

believe me - save some moneys for avoiding Canberra ! oops

you can start with this thread in OZscraper

http://www.skyscrapercity.com/showthread.php?t=80708

and all cities thread are nice too

http://www.skyscrapercity.com/forumdisplay.php?f=68

and of course is my own thread of Melbourne

http://www.skyscrapercity.com/showthread.php?t=460389


tell us what you expect to see/enjoy and you may be able to squeze the time to 2 weeks !


re accommodation

they are plenty of serviced apartments and good quality like Quest or Medina (depending your budget)
so many good values for moneys are available
 

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Im in Gold Coast, its been 2-3 weeks now and its really wonderful here, still lots to do and the weather is not bad (19C-21C) coming from Canada. Highly recommend this city if you ever stop by Australia!
 

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the one
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dont worry about our winter my European friends consider Australia's winter the equivalent to Europe summer.Its quite weird ,Im like wearing 3 layers while they are wearing only 1 layer.
 

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Australia is a really big country and our transportation kinda sucks to get to other cities unless you fly but if you come to Australia you can't miss out on Melbourne, it's a great city with lots to do
 

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dont worry about our winter my European friends consider Australia's winter the equivalent to Europe summer.Its quite weird ,Im like wearing 3 layers while they are wearing only 1 layer.
Ummm. Now don't go exaggerating here. Sure, in Northern Queensland that is certainly the case, but little of Australia's population live there.

Sydney and especially Melbourne can get quite cold in winter, and I would hardly say that their winters are like even central or Northern European summers - not in the slightest. We have hot summers here in Germany, in Frankfurt it's already in the 30's now and summer hasn't even begun. I don't remember a 33° day in Sydney's winter.

Also, keep in mind that around 150million European's live in a climate zone that is not that different to Melbourne, Sydney, Perth weather. That's a lot of people. Winter's in central or northern Europe can get cold in winter - very cold, but the summers are usually long and hot as well.
 

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dont worry about our winter my European friends consider Australia's winter the equivalent to Europe summer.Its quite weird ,Im like wearing 3 layers while they are wearing only 1 layer.
Canberra's winter is as bad as Europe! It is quite freaking cold.
Canberra has the same weather as Madrid, cold in winter, extremely hot in summer (30+ degees)
 

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It is winter now - and max about 16-18 degree celcius
and still sunny though


march is perfect - can be hot still ie 27 ++ degrees
but mainly fine

and most cities (Melb / Sydney) will be very very busy with all major/international events being held in March -
Generally speaking, winter officially starts on the winter solstice 21st June, so effectively, it’s still Autumn in Melbourne. Then again, I accept that many conventions include the whole month so if you follow that it’s the beginning of winter.

That said, 16°-18° for the beginning of winter, whilst we are having 32° (double) in Frankfurt for the beginning of summer does suggest that Australian winter temps are not compatible with German summers. And Germany is certainly not in the warmest part of Europe.:

Next 8 day forecast for Frankfurt: (both from wetter.com)
32°, 30°, 29°, 29°, 26°, 26°, 27°, 30°

Next 7 day forecast for Melbourne:
14°,13°, 12°, 12°, 12°, 12°, 12°, 13°

Granted, Sydney can average 20° this time of the year, and possibly average not much less in mid winter, but I come from Sydney and know that anything like your 27° claim is an extreme and not common. The simple fact is, that with the exception of Northern Australia which is tropical and certainly does have hot winters (but few people actually live there), and Northern Europe & UK which can have cool summers (although even Stockholm today is 29°-30°) the general population of Australia does not experience winters that average European summers.

You have to remember as well that Europe has quite large climatic regions as well, it’s not all bundled into one group “cold” as you may imagine. Southern Europe experience weather not that dissimilar to how most Australian’s do. i.e. between Brisbane, Sydney, Perth and Adelaide. And yet there are over 150million European’s living in that region compared to 20million Australians. Central Europe have very cold winters, but also very hot summers and the bulk of the rest of the population. Only in the northern parts of Europe and the UK are summers much milder but even in places like London the average summer temperature is certainly warmer than the average winter temps for most Australians.

I’m Australian mate, don’t try to pull one over my eyes. Especially whilst I am basking in 32° and sunshine today whilst you are half that right now.
 

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boooooo you guys didn't help me...

I'm also going to Australia yay! at 22 of June.... but to perth though.... so what sites should I visit? and is there a good shoe store? cuz I wanna buy some shoes there...
:tongue:
 
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