- It’s huge (about the same area as the lower 49 states)
- It’s empty (less than 1/10 of the U.S. population)
- It’s expensive (the price level is well above Switzerland
Due to cost, the only way we could possibly travel for 8 weeks is with a camper van (we are currently thinking of this one … maybe with a flight to cut down on driving days. That means we won’t be able to cover anywhere near all of the country in eight weeks and will have to make some choices.
The other problem is that people, who’ve been in Australia, have very different opinions of what there is to see and where to go. Take Ayers Rock for example. We’ve heard anything from “One of the best experiences of my life” to “It’s a big rock. If it were next to the highway in Utah, you wouldn’t even take your foot of the gas”. Same goes for the Great Barrier Reef … it’s either “Best diving ever” or “Five time the cost of the Red Sea and one fifth of the fish”.
Right now we are pretty set on doing it in two stages. Start by flying into Brisbane and taking four weeks to drive up the coast to Cairns (should give us a good idea of the coast line and the Great Barrier Reef). Then taking a plane from Cairns to Alice Springs and renting a four-wheel drive for another three weeks to drive up to Darwin (we’ll see the Outback and the sub-tropical national parks on the northern coast).
Seriously, let us know if you have any opinions on Australia. Where to go? What to do? Any insider tips we wouldn’t find in the Lonely Planet?