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Driving around Australia

Driving around Australia

Old Mar 29th 2019, 4:17 pm
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Default Driving around Australia

No, not planning to do it. Not even in Oz. But have been looking at the Google map since that guy tried to flee on the jetski, and it does seem that there are enough highways such that someone could circumnavigate the whole continent keeping to a near costal route. Anyone done that? Is it a thing in Australia (like an ambition of some people)? How long would it take to drive?
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Old Mar 29th 2019, 4:29 pm
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Default Re: Driving around Australia

Originally Posted by Shard View Post
No, not planning to do it. Not even in Oz. But have been looking at the Google map since that guy tried to flee on the jetski, and it does seem that there are enough highways such that someone could circumnavigate the whole continent keeping to a near costal route. Anyone done that? Is it a thing in Australia (like an ambition of some people)? How long would it take to drive?
Have done it twice, although rather than a complete circumnavigation we drove from Perth to Ayr in the north of Queensland, and back the 'southern' way the first time. Crossing (and camping in) the Nullarbor Desert was a particular experience!
Second time we did the north route, Perth, up the WA coast, cross into the Northern Territory and through Katherine, into Queensland, stopping at Julia Creek for a spot of wild pig hunting (husband, not me!) and sleeping rough in freezing temps, waking up to find the canvas had frozen. Then up to Ayr and back the same way.
It'd kill me these days

Australia has a lot of 'grey nomads', retirees who pack up their caravan and travel around the country.
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Old Mar 29th 2019, 4:40 pm
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Default Re: Driving around Australia

Originally Posted by spouse of scouse View Post
Have done it twice, although rather than a complete circumnavigation we drove from Perth to Ayr in the north of Queensland, and back the 'southern' way the first time. Crossing (and camping in) the Nullarbor Desert was a particular experience!
Second time we did the north route, Perth, up the WA coast, cross into the Northern Territory and through Katherine, into Queensland, stopping at Julia Creek for a spot of wild pig hunting (husband, not me!) and sleeping rough in freezing temps, waking up to find the canvas had frozen. Then up to Ayr and back the same way.
It'd kill me these days

Australia has a lot of 'grey nomads', retirees who pack up their caravan and travel around the country.
Very cool. How long does it take? I wouldn't mind being a grey nomad one day. Need to work on the grey part first !
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Old Mar 29th 2019, 7:32 pm
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Default Re: Driving around Australia

My cousin and her husband did the round trip in one go back in the mid-1990s, after they had both retired. They took it leisurely, so months.
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Old Mar 29th 2019, 9:20 pm
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Default Re: Driving around Australia

This bloke cycled around Australia in just under 38 days - he probably didn't stop to take in any of the sights though
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Old Mar 30th 2019, 12:39 am
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Default Re: Driving around Australia

Originally Posted by Shard View Post
No, not planning to do it. Not even in Oz. But have been looking at the Google map since that guy tried to flee on the jetski, and it does seem that there are enough highways such that someone could circumnavigate the whole continent keeping to a near costal route. Anyone done that? Is it a thing in Australia (like an ambition of some people)? How long would it take to drive?
Not possible to do a coastal route right around. The turn off from highway to secondary roads to towns on the coast can be long. I haven't done the entire of Australia but large chunks of it including inland. Enjoyed some of the free camping sites scattered around, though few are convenient to larger towns for obvious reasons. Yes loads of so called Grey Nomads, (they have a web site) and foreign back packers, getting around in rather old and worn vehicles, some barely up to the job.
With free camp sites and less paid accommodation as possible costs can be' kept down'. Some towns like Broome, in WA are very expensive to camp in town, as if they don't really want Grey Nomads or Backpackers but only high paying tourists. But for me the main attraction is certainly not the long and arduous route. It is the night sky, the flora and fauna and some of the people on the road. I'd say worth doing once in a life.
How long? Well never done the entire rounding of the Continent. But expect three months would be a comfortable period of time.
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Old Mar 30th 2019, 1:27 am
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Default Re: Driving around Australia

Always wondered that if I were to look at the gray nomad thing, I'd look at sailing the circumference, and living aboard. Then maybe looking at doing the 'snowbird' thing, but afloat, up and down the east coast, and across to NZ, chasing the decent weather.
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Old Mar 30th 2019, 6:56 am
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Default Re: Driving around Australia

Originally Posted by GarryP View Post
Always wondered that if I were to look at the gray nomad thing, I'd look at sailing the circumference, and living aboard. Then maybe looking at doing the 'snowbird' thing, but afloat, up and down the east coast, and across to NZ, chasing the decent weather.
By sailing I take you mean on own boat/yacht and not as a passenger aboard a floating gin palace? Way to go, if so. That would enable calling into geographical places not possible by either road nor normal ship. Follow that up with NZ coast, then who knows?
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Old Mar 30th 2019, 8:39 am
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Default Re: Driving around Australia

Originally Posted by Dreamy View Post
This bloke cycled around Australia in just under 38 days - he probably didn't stop to take in any of the sights though
Incredible. He needs a gold Olympic medal for endurance ! I would have thought it would take 3-4 months on bike.
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Old Mar 30th 2019, 9:02 am
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Default Re: Driving around Australia

Originally Posted by the troubadour View Post
By sailing I take you mean on own boat/yacht and not as a passenger aboard a floating gin palace? Way to go, if so. That would enable calling into geographical places not possible by either road nor normal ship. Follow that up with NZ coast, then who knows?
Yeah, having your own boat means you can go where you want - including off the beaten track. And at the same time you can call into a marina if you want. Add on an electric bike for transport ashore and some decent satellite comms (come on Elon), and you have roughly the same mobile lifestyle as the camper van crowd, but exchanging islands and NZ for the red centre. Only issue the upkeep of the boat is more taxing probably.
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Old Mar 30th 2019, 11:38 am
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Default Re: Driving around Australia

Originally Posted by Shard View Post
Very cool. How long does it take? I wouldn't mind being a grey nomad one day. Need to work on the grey part first !
I couldn't really say how long it took, too long ago. But I do remember getting to Qld very quickly the first time we went, mainly because my (then) father in law had appointed himself the wagon leader. He'd wake us up in the pitch black with the cheery observation that it was nearly sunrise so we'd better hit the road. Three hours of driving later, it was still pitch black...he always was a lying old coot

When we travelled around the North way, the ex and I took our bull terrier. We'd stopped at a river for morning smoko, I think it was the Gascoyne, and our dog drank some river water. We we driving the next day when the ex said 'oh no!' He was looking in the rear view mirror and Buster (our dog) was turning in circles on the back seat with his tail in the air. In the time it took to stop the car he'd had a huge 'accident', no doubt brought on by his sneaky dash to the river when we weren't looking. We had to throw all our bedding out - which is why we were wrapped up in icy canvas a few mornings later

I have plenty of spare grey hair if you'd like some, get in quick though because I'm off to the hairdresser on Monday.
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Old Mar 30th 2019, 12:32 pm
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Default Re: Driving around Australia

I looked at some of they grey nomad sites. It really does seem a popular lifestyle option for retirees down there. Like the snowbirds in NA. It might get a bit repetitive though. In your story I thought you were going to say you forgot the dog. After that, maybe you wish you had !
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Old Mar 31st 2019, 6:40 am
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Default Re: Driving around Australia

Originally Posted by Shard View Post
I looked at some of they grey nomad sites. It really does seem a popular lifestyle option for retirees down there. Like the snowbirds in NA. It might get a bit repetitive though. In your story I thought you were going to say you forgot the dog. After that, maybe you wish you had !

I love travelling and camping and want to see all of Australia but that whole Grey Nomad story just looks pretty shit to me - your life's basically over

No thanks!
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Old Mar 31st 2019, 8:22 am
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Default Re: Driving around Australia

Originally Posted by Amazulu View Post
I love travelling and camping and want to see all of Australia but that whole Grey Nomad story just looks pretty shit to me - your life's basically over

No thanks!
Well, it's not yachting from marina to marina, but it's also not sitting around the house day after day. Seems ok if you like road travel and camping.
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Old Mar 31st 2019, 8:27 am
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Default Re: Driving around Australia

Originally Posted by Shard View Post
I looked at some of they grey nomad sites. It really does seem a popular lifestyle option for retirees down there. Like the snowbirds in NA. It might get a bit repetitive though. In your story I thought you were going to say you forgot the dog. After that, maybe you wish you had !
Yes the repetitive nature of being a grey nomad would definitely grate after awhile. Far better 'doing' Asia, as increasingly numbers of ageing Aussies are indeed doing. Some I've met have moved on from the 'grey nomad' travel due to expense and tedium.
The yachting scenario of having own boat and go around the coastline and further horizons, does appeal though.
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