10 Must-know Australia travel tips
A trip to the land down under means a lot of flying time, so if you plan to go, then it’s best to plan ahead, so you don’t waste a single day. With cosmopolitan cities, the wildness of the bush and some of the best beaches in the world, Australia has a lot to offer visitors from the other side of the world and here are ten Australia travel tips to help you make the most of your trip:
1. You will need bug repellent and sunscreen
There are two inescapable facts about Australia: the heat and the bugs. If you are going to travel outside of the cities, and you’d be missing out if you didn’t, then be sure to pack a good sunscreen and insect repellent. The sun is stronger in Australia and the bugs are both bigger and much more persistent.
2. They drive on the left in Australia
Don’t get caught out when crossing the road or driving your hire car, they drive on the left hand side of the road in Australia. Actually, about 35% of the world’s countries do, mostly ex-British colonies. The reason, in case you didn’t know, is that people used to ride their horses on the left, so that they could defend themselves more easily, with their sword arm being on the right.
3. Stay for more than a week
From most countries, a flight to Australia will take you around twenty four hours and you would be well advised to take a stopover break on the way. That’s a lot of time travelling, so it is always advisable to plan to spend at least two weeks in the country, or it will feel you did little more than sit on a plane your entire vacation.
4. How to beat the jet lag
You will get jet lag because Australia is nearly a full twelve hours ahead of GMT, in some areas. The best thing to do is to get into the local time as fast as possible and don’t give in to the temptation to sleep during the day.
4. Don’t discard Australian coins
The coins in Australia are worth a lot more than you might think, so don’t ignore them. The ‘gold’ ones are worth one or two dollars each, so don’t underestimate how much money you might have in loose change.
5. Be realistic about the distance
If you have never been to Australia before, then it’s hard to really appreciate just how big the country is. Make your travel plans realistic and leave enough time to actually see the sights while you are there. What may look like a short trip on the map is probably far further, than you think and some areas in between destinations are very remote and unpopulated.
6. Do get out into the bush
You aren’t going to see kangaroos and koalas in the city, so definitely do take a trip out into the bush. It’s advisable to go with a guide, on an organised tour though. That way you won’t get lost and you will see a lot more.
7. Try the local food
Australia has some really fine wine and food on offer, so don’t restrict yourself to just eat at the big chain outlets that you recognise. Try some of the local delicacies like Kangaroo or emu, they taste really great!
8. Stay hydrated
Australia can get very hot, especially in the summer months. Sunstroke will ruin any holiday, so always wear a hat and take a bottle of water wherever you go. A cold beer may look inviting and feel like you’re being very Australian, but have some water as well!
9. Watch for the weather in the wet season
In the North of Australia, the summer brings the wet season with it. That doesn’t mean that you can’t go there, but it does mean lots of humidity and, of course, the potential for cyclones and lots of rain, so plan your journeys accordingly.
10. Be respectful of the wildlife, but not paranoid about it
Everyone has heard about the spiders and snakes in Australia, but if you’re sensible, then they will not be a problem at all. In the cities, you are unlikely to see any scary creepy crawlies at all and, if you go out into the bush, just wear sensible footwear and use your common sense. When swimming in the sea, always swim only between the flags, in the designated area, as that will most likely be protected against any dangerous wildlife in the water. If you do think you have been bitten or stung, seek medical advice straight away but, remember that deaths from spiders and snakes are extremely rare, even in Australia.
What are your favorite Australia travel tips?