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Thread: Itinerary for Oz

  1. #11
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    We went "backpacking/working" years ago, and spent 12 months in Australia. So glad we had the time to do everything we wanted. You don't realise how big a place it is.

    Would love to go back, but my annual leave entitlement just wouldn't do it justice.
    Plus I think its a lot more expensive than 12 years ago when we were there.

  2. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by sr123 View Post
    Melbourne is nice, but in all honesty its just another Sydney. You would have to get out of the city centre to get the benefit of it more.
    If you want the tropical jungles and the reef head to Cairns. If you want fancy city living head to Melbourne.
    Shame you can't get across to the West Coast. Ningaloo Reef is amazing. A reef you can swim to from the shore.
    Singapore is a great city for 3 nights (no more). We went to a night zoo, there was a bat enclosure where they fly around you. I loved it. Mrs sr123 not so keen!
    I love a City
    Hubby doesn't do swimming so the reef isn't a must.
    We have 1 day in Singapore going out (staying at an airport hotel 1 night) and 2 full days on the way home where we will stay in the City.
    We love trains The Kuranda Scenic Railway looks up our street.

  3. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by sr123 View Post
    We went "backpacking/working" years ago, and spent 12 months in Australia. So glad we had the time to do everything we wanted. You don't realise how big a place it is.

    Would love to go back, but my annual leave entitlement just wouldn't do it justice.
    Plus I think its a lot more expensive than 12 years ago when we were there.
    My brother did the similar as well as NZ he fell in love with Singapore though and ended up staying there a lot longer than he anticipated

  4. #14
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    I have had some good advice from rapteam
    She has suggested staying in Port Douglas not Cairns

  5. #15
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    Default Itinerary for Oz

    Port Douglas was nice - we went there last time (not the most recent time). Not a huge amount there either though but better restaurants etc from memory.

    If doing Kuranda I strongly recommend splashing out on the gold class. Nice comfy seats, lovely fresh warm cheese muffins, something else I've forgotten, Anzac biscuits and free flowing wine! I think we had 4 glasses in the end!! You also get a little souvenir pen/badge/postcard pack and each carriage has it's own guide. You can also go in and see the little signal box at Kuranda and get some interesting info about the railway there too.

    Melbourne has trams including a free heritage tourist tram. If you like railways you may like this too? I loved it!
    Those who think they know it all are very annoying to those of us who actually do.

  6. #16

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    Melbourne over Cairns any day . Lots of trams both old and new in Melbourne ( and scary as hell when you see their bright lights behind you in your rear view car mirror lol ) .Don't get me started on the ridiculous hook turn invention either ....it's just wrong !
    7 nights in Sydney would probably be too long for me.
    Tasmania is awesome too ( and only a hop from SYD / MEL

  7. #17
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    It would be Cairns for me any day of the week over Melbourne. In my mind see one city then you've almost seen them all. Cairns itself isn't spectacular at all so staying in Port Douglas is probably better. We spent 2 weeks in a 'backpacker' place in Kurunda - not as bad as you might think as we had a huge Queenslander just to ourselves, apart from 1 night when a couple came in at 11pm and left at 8am. They kept one just for 'mature' people in huge grounds and in the heart of the rainforest. It was bliss and very, very inexpensive.

    You can see a lot in the Cairns area. A must do is the Scenic Railway UP to Kuranda and then have a look around the market, it's different to city markets, then maybe go to the bird sanctuary (Hubby had a huge black cockatoo that just wouldn't leave his shoulder and kept preening his hair & beard for him Even the staff couldn't get him off - said they'd never seen that from him before, he loved hubby!) You can also go to the 'petting zoo' It's nice to get close & personal with the kangaroos, wallabies, koalas, wombats etc.

    The Skyrail has to be done going back down from Kuranda (not the other way!) & you must try to get a gondola to yourselves. If you can't do this at the beginning get off at the second of the stops (worth stopping anyway) and be very slow rejoining so you get one to yourself - they can't wait around for long. You can probably ask that you be by yourselves for the last part of the journey. The last part as you come out of the rainforest is something you'll never ever forget. It's SO awe inspiring, it made me cry. You can see the curvature of the earth and it's SO beautiful. OMG! At the end of the Skyrail you can visit the Tjapukai aboriginal cultural park - again very interesting & well worthwhile going to.

    Personally I'd try and 'do it yourself' rather than be herded with guided tours - so may people were complaining that they just didn't give them enough time in Kuranda to see everything they wanted to see. I think you could get a bus/taxi back from the aboriginal park to the railway station pretty easily.

    Another day could be spent visiting the Atherton tablelands. I did a tour when I went by myself, which was extremely interesting. When we had the car we did our own tour with me as the guide, not sure if hubby missed too much as I think I remembered so much.

    Another day could be spent exploring the Daintree River rainforest area and the deserted coastal area. It's amazing to walk on a beach that stretches for miles with powder sand and not see a soul on it. You're not supposed to take a hire car up past the daintree river crossing (there's plenty to see before crossing the river) BUT if you ignore the hire car company rules you feel like an early settler. I went about 50 miles past where I should have, on my own, but enjoyed it immensely.

    Of course you have the Great Barrier Reef too - just make sure you pick the right tour. I went diving with the same company that managed to leave 2 people out in the middle of the ocean - just 3 weeks after I took their tour. OMG!

    Cairns is OK but I'm SO glad that I visited the Cairns area more than once. There is SO much to see in the area. I stayed a week the first trip, on my own & we spent 2 weeks there before taking a week in a Winnebago driving down to Brisbane (stopping at glorious unspoilt beaches, panning for gold, having barbies with strangers & generally chilling & having fun) to visit my aunt. Loved Brisbane too + Botany Bay, & a brief visit to Sydney.

    Have a look what the region has to offer - there's LOTS!
    NO more Tescos for me and 'customer service?' by Basil Fawlties - WHY didn't they let them watch the WHOLE of the training DVD's?

  8. #18

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    Haven't done Cairns so can't comment, and agree to an extend about seen 1 city, seen all, so wouldn't spend more than a day in the city itself, but around Melbourne there is a fair bit - a couple of wine regions if that's up your street (do Yarra Valley before Mornington Penninsula), a drive around the Dandenongs which has a great rhododendron garden in the Spring (good on way to/from Yarra). In the other direction is the Great Ocean Road which is a lovely scenic drive - can do one day to Port Campbell (far enough), one day back, or less if you go inland route.

    I was there 11 years ago and surprised at the cost - now it'll be more and their currency is stronger, so hate to think...

    As for Singapore, I'd say 2 nights is enough, and I can also recommend the night drive in the zoo. If you like trains and jungle though, then the jungle train through Taman Negara in Malaysia is a good bet.

  9. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dominic View Post
    Port Douglas was nice - we went there last time (not the most recent time). Not a huge amount there either though but better restaurants etc from memory.

    If doing Kuranda I strongly recommend splashing out on the gold class. Nice comfy seats, lovely fresh warm cheese muffins, something else I've forgotten, Anzac biscuits and free flowing wine! I think we had 4 glasses in the end!! You also get a little souvenir pen/badge/postcard pack and each carriage has it's own guide. You can also go in and see the little signal box at Kuranda and get some interesting info about the railway there too.

    Melbourne has trams including a free heritage tourist tram. If you like railways you may like this too? I loved it!
    Quote Originally Posted by rapteam View Post
    Melbourne over Cairns any day . Lots of trams both old and new in Melbourne ( and scary as hell when you see their bright lights behind you in your rear view car mirror lol ) .Don't get me started on the ridiculous hook turn invention either ....it's just wrong !
    7 nights in Sydney would probably be too long for me.
    Tasmania is awesome too ( and only a hop from SYD / MEL
    Quote Originally Posted by Wishes View Post
    It would be Cairns for me any day of the week over Melbourne. In my mind see one city then you've almost seen them all. Cairns itself isn't spectacular at all so staying in Port Douglas is probably better. We spent 2 weeks in a 'backpacker' place in Kurunda - not as bad as you might think as we had a huge Queenslander just to ourselves, apart from 1 night when a couple came in at 11pm and left at 8am. They kept one just for 'mature' people in huge grounds and in the heart of the rainforest. It was bliss and very, very inexpensive.

    You can see a lot in the Cairns area. A must do is the Scenic Railway UP to Kuranda and then have a look around the market, it's different to city markets, then maybe go to the bird sanctuary (Hubby had a huge black cockatoo that just wouldn't leave his shoulder and kept preening his hair & beard for him Even the staff couldn't get him off - said they'd never seen that from him before, he loved hubby!) You can also go to the 'petting zoo' It's nice to get close & personal with the kangaroos, wallabies, koalas, wombats etc.

    The Skyrail has to be done going back down from Kuranda (not the other way!) & you must try to get a gondola to yourselves. If you can't do this at the beginning get off at the second of the stops (worth stopping anyway) and be very slow rejoining so you get one to yourself - they can't wait around for long. You can probably ask that you be by yourselves for the last part of the journey. The last part as you come out of the rainforest is something you'll never ever forget. It's SO awe inspiring, it made me cry. You can see the curvature of the earth and it's SO beautiful. OMG! At the end of the Skyrail you can visit the Tjapukai aboriginal cultural park - again very interesting & well worthwhile going to.

    Personally I'd try and 'do it yourself' rather than be herded with guided tours - so may people were complaining that they just didn't give them enough time in Kuranda to see everything they wanted to see. I think you could get a bus/taxi back from the aboriginal park to the railway station pretty easily.

    Another day could be spent visiting the Atherton tablelands. I did a tour when I went by myself, which was extremely interesting. When we had the car we did our own tour with me as the guide, not sure if hubby missed too much as I think I remembered so much.

    Another day could be spent exploring the Daintree River rainforest area and the deserted coastal area. It's amazing to walk on a beach that stretches for miles with powder sand and not see a soul on it. You're not supposed to take a hire car up past the daintree river crossing (there's plenty to see before crossing the river) BUT if you ignore the hire car company rules you feel like an early settler. I went about 50 miles past where I should have, on my own, but enjoyed it immensely.

    Of course you have the Great Barrier Reef too - just make sure you pick the right tour. I went diving with the same company that managed to leave 2 people out in the middle of the ocean - just 3 weeks after I took their tour. OMG!

    Cairns is OK but I'm SO glad that I visited the Cairns area more than once. There is SO much to see in the area. I stayed a week the first trip, on my own & we spent 2 weeks there before taking a week in a Winnebago driving down to Brisbane (stopping at glorious unspoilt beaches, panning for gold, having barbies with strangers & generally chilling & having fun) to visit my aunt. Loved Brisbane too + Botany Bay, & a brief visit to Sydney.

    Have a look what the region has to offer - there's LOTS!
    Quote Originally Posted by archlives View Post
    Haven't done Cairns so can't comment, and agree to an extend about seen 1 city, seen all, so wouldn't spend more than a day in the city itself, but around Melbourne there is a fair bit - a couple of wine regions if that's up your street (do Yarra Valley before Mornington Penninsula), a drive around the Dandenongs which has a great rhododendron garden in the Spring (good on way to/from Yarra). In the other direction is the Great Ocean Road which is a lovely scenic drive - can do one day to Port Campbell (far enough), one day back, or less if you go inland route.

    I was there 11 years ago and surprised at the cost - now it'll be more and their currency is stronger, so hate to think...

    As for Singapore, I'd say 2 nights is enough, and I can also recommend the night drive in the zoo. If you like trains and jungle though, then the jungle train through Taman Negara in Malaysia is a good bet.
    Wow so much information thank you
    I May have to do all 3 now lol
    We all have different ideas about which is the the must to visit.
    When we went to Canada last year I was told similar about Montreal, Ottawa, Toronto and Niagara
    I didn't like Montreal, absolutely fell in love with Ottawa(want to go again), Toronto been it done it and glad I went, Niagara ok maybe a bit overated
    I will digest all the info and thank you all for taking the time to reply.

    Dom and Wishes
    The railway really appeals and I had read about coming back down on the Skyrail
    We don't do organised trips all diy which seems to be the way to go

    rapteam
    I think I have to see Melbourne if only for 2 nights

    archlives
    we were hoping not to drive but may have to think again
    I had heard the night drive in the zoo was worth doing.

    I have also been told the Blue Mountains is worth a trip. I need to look into that
    Last edited by tyroleandancer; 7th January 2015 at 11:07.

  10. #20

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    And I think you can go and see penguins from Melbourne.

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