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View Full Version : Anyone ever vacationed in Australia?



registerthis
08-16-2005, 11:33 AM
Last night, perhaps against my better judgment, I broke out the plastic and purchased tickets for a trip to Australia for me and my girlfriend in October. She has a sister studying in Melbourne this semester, but whatever...any excuse to travel, right? :)

Anyway, we'll be flying into Sydney and staying there four nights before flying up to Cairns for 4 days, then to Melbourne for 4 days before flying back to Sydney and finally back to the U.S. We're planning on doing the major tourist stops, of course: Sydney Harbour, Bondi Beach, the Great Barrier Reef, etc. But beyond that, all we have are guidebooks to point us in the direction of places to see/go.

So, I'm open to any tips/ideas anyone may have who has been to these places and feel comfortable making recommendations. Food, hotels, museums, beaches, parks...etc. Anything like that, I'm looking for ideas/suggestions.

So...thanks in advance. Now, I need to get back to work so that I can pay off these tickets. :eek:

Jeremy Piergallini
08-16-2005, 12:39 PM
Yes, but on the way back, my plane crashed and I'm stuck on this god forsaken island with a crazy french woman and polar bears. Polar bears? Struck me as odd too, but I stear clear of them. Anyway, I triangulated a signal to email this to you. If there are some unsavory characters, don't get on the plane.

marcshoe
08-16-2005, 12:50 PM
I didn't vacation there, but I did live in Sydney (Dee Why, in the northern beaches area) for a while.

My biggest recommendation would be to do all possible research on how to beat jet lag before you go. I didn't know where I was the first week I was there. It was a surrealistic, dreamy, experience.

I would definitely recommend a harbour cruise. Beyond that, it's been too many years. Great beaches, though Bondi tends to be a bit crowded. October's not a bad time to go, though. Summer hasn't set in yet, so the beaches aren't as packed. Good grief, I went to the beach in June, in the heart of winter, and the water was still warm.

Melbourne has a nice feel to it, but the weather's always gloomy.

I pretty much went native when I was there, so I'm not sure about touristy type things, off the top of my head.

Oh, and beware the Vegemite.

Ah, it's been too many years.

remdog
08-16-2005, 01:01 PM
I'm interested in this thread because I'm thinking of making a similar trip in December. Any and all comments are welcome.

What about Brisbane? Worth a look?

Rem

registerthis
08-16-2005, 01:09 PM
I didn't vacation there, but I did live in Sydney (Dee Why, in the northern beaches area) for a while.

My biggest recommendation would be to do all possible research on how to beat jet lag before you go. I didn't know where I was the first week I was there. It was a surrealistic, dreamy, experience.Do you have any suggestions for this? I've heard it's best to start altering your sleep pattern several days before you go...and seeing as how they're pretty much on the opposite side of the globe, that's going to be significant. Jet lag actually concerns me, because it's a good way to not remember anything you're doing.


I would definitely recommend a harbour cruise. Beyond that, it's been too many years. Great beaches, though Bondi tends to be a bit crowded. October's not a bad time to go, though. Summer hasn't set in yet, so the beaches aren't as packed. Good grief, I went to the beach in June, in the heart of winter, and the water was still warm.
Well, we feel somewhat obligated to do Bondi, though of course we're open to checking out other beaches, I know Sydney has no shortage of them.


Melbourne has a nice feel to it, but the weather's always gloomy.

I pretty much went native when I was there, so I'm not sure about touristy type things, off the top of my head.

Oh, and beware the Vegemite.
Oi, the vegemite. yes, I know of it. Do they happen to have Shreddies too, or is that simply a British thing?

marcshoe
08-16-2005, 01:26 PM
I don't remember shreddies, but it's been many years.

The Chinese food, though, is excellent. I can't eat Chinese food here, now.

As to Jet Lag, I don't know. I didn't do a very good job with it. I've seen websites with tips, and thought about it a lot a couple of years ago when I was thinking about going back, but I have no solutions.

As far as the beaches go, I personally loved the northern beaches. There's a drive you can take up north up above the isthmus that's absolutely beautiful (or at least it used to be).

Rem, I liked Brisbane better than Melbourne, but that was largely because I had friends there. When I was there (and we're talking decades ago), The Gold Coast was a Myrtle Beach-style tourist trap. I did visit a nice area there with a hidden waterfall, but I don't remember where it was. As much as I liked the city, if I had a limited amount of time, I'm not sure I'd do Brisbane.

I'd better watch it. Much more of this and the melancholy will set in.

Australia was great. I'd love to go back someday, when I can get the time.

REDREAD
08-16-2005, 02:59 PM
Do you have any suggestions for this? I've heard it's best to start altering your sleep pattern several days before you go...and seeing as how they're pretty much on the opposite side of the globe, that's going to be significant. Jet lag actually concerns me, because it's a good way to not remember anything you're doing.


that's probably the ideal thing to do.. alter your sleep pattern before you go.
If you can't do that, I've done this going to Europe (on flights that arrive in the morning, Europe time). I stay up just about all night so that I'm exhausted on the plane, and can actually sleep on the plane. Then when the plane arrives, you've gotten some rest, and you are already shifted over in your schedule.

Whatever you do, avoid the temptation to take a nap in the afternoon when you arrive. That will just screw you up more. Stay up during the daytime at all costs. At worse, you feel bad only one day there. Of course, this is just my opinion.

remdog
08-16-2005, 03:08 PM
that's probably the ideal thing to do.. alter your sleep pattern before you go.
If you can't do that, I've done this going to Europe (on flights that arrive in the morning, Europe time). I stay up just about all night so that I'm exhausted on the plane, and can actually sleep on the plane. Then when the plane arrives, you've gotten some rest, and you are already shifted over in your schedule.

Whatever you do, avoid the temptation to take a nap in the afternoon when you arrive. That will just screw you up more. Stay up during the daytime at all costs. At worse, you feel bad only one day there. Of course, this is just my opinion.

I've used the same tactic that Redread described for flights to Europe and it worked out OK for me (keep in mind, I'm traveling from California). I've only been to Asia (Hong Kong) one time and wilted like a cut flower in the sun so I'm not sure how to approach that area.

Rem

remdog
08-16-2005, 03:13 PM
tixe:

About 10-12 years ago I used to do business with a woman that had moved from San Francisco to Brisbane to marry an Aussie. The funny thing was that we were both 'foodies' so she and I would fax (best way at that time) restaurant reviews back and forth. She claimed that Brisbane was one of those unknown 'jewels' that people should visit.

We've lost touch over the years but I still remember her recomendations. :)

Rem

RBA
08-16-2005, 03:27 PM
Yes, in the military, you get off the plane and you go directly to work and don't stop until the sun goes down to get you climitize fast. Than a few days later they put you on nights. ;)

registerthis
08-16-2005, 03:31 PM
Yes, in the military, you get off the plane and you go directly to work and don't stop until the sun goes down to get you climitize fast. Than a few days later they put you on nights. ;)
Now that's just cruel.

my goal is to be as tired as possible before embarking on that 18 hour flight from LA to Sydney. I normally can sleep on planes, but not heavily, so we'll see how this goes.

I'm also alarmed at the prospect of having to eat airline food. Haven't done that in a while! :barf:

SirFelixCat
08-17-2005, 02:14 AM
Had to bring the GF eh? :evil: Hands down, the most beautiful women on the planet. As a group. I swear they shipping all the non-supermodels off somewhere (Tazmania?). *sigh*

Stayed 3 months between Darwin and just north a few hours of Brisbane, in a town that Outback Steakhouse made famous: Rockhampton. Great people, great easy paced life...if it were not for Mrs. SC, I would not be here anymore. That simple. Have a great time and do your best not to gawk :giggle:


Vegemite... :nono:

registerthis
08-17-2005, 10:00 AM
Had to bring the GF eh? :evil: Hands down, the most beautiful women on the planet. As a group. I swear they shipping all the non-supermodels off somewhere (Tazmania?). *sigh*
Now THIS I don't need to hear. I'll need to watch myself, or it's gonna be a loooong flight back to L.A.


Stayed 3 months between Darwin and just north a few hours of Brisbane, in a town that Outback Steakhouse made famous: Rockhampton. Great people, great easy paced life...if it were not for Mrs. SC, I would not be here anymore. That simple. Have a great time and do your best not to gawk :giggle:
Ah, yes, I've heard of Rockhampton. I'm particularly interested to visit Cairns, both because it's accessible to the Reef and because it's a tropical climate near the rainforest.

One place we WON'T be eating is Outback Steakhouse, hah. Oh, and you can sneak in a little gawking so long as you have a pair of dark :cool: .

Nugget
08-17-2005, 10:56 PM
If your going to Cairns give Rocky a miss. You've got to go to Scuba Diving or snorkelling at least. Make sure you get one of the cruises that take you out to the outer reef.

No need to go to the outback steakhouse - just head to any local pub. Food and drink will be great and not too pricey.

Agree with tixie take a day and head out to Palm Beach when your in Sydney. Its much better than Bondi. If you want to mix it with the locals then Bronte and Clovelly which are closer to city is a go to.

Food wise go to The Rocks - its a bit touristy but there's a wide variety. Also there's heaps of good pubs. Stay away from the Orient and the Occidental if your taking your GF.

SirFelixCat
08-18-2005, 03:42 AM
Regarding Outback Steakhouse, I just made the comment about them making the town of Rockhampton famous due to the name of the steak there. That is all. Was not saying to eat there :-p. The local steakhouses are dirt cheap and quite good, on the east coast.


Also, it didn't hurt that the exchange rate was $2 AU to $1 US :D

registerthis
08-18-2005, 09:48 AM
Also, it didn't hurt that the exchange rate was $2 AU to $1 US :D
Wow, that's unbelieveably good, and nowhere close to what we're getting now. i checked recently and the conversion rate is about $1.30. It is climbing, so hopefully by the time we're there it will have gone up a few more cents.

registerthis
08-18-2005, 09:50 AM
If your going to Cairns give Rocky a miss. You've got to go to Scuba Diving or snorkelling at least. Make sure you get one of the cruises that take you out to the outer reef.

No need to go to the outback steakhouse - just head to any local pub. Food and drink will be great and not too pricey.

Agree with tixie take a day and head out to Palm Beach when your in Sydney. Its much better than Bondi. If you want to mix it with the locals then Bronte and Clovelly which are closer to city is a go to.

Food wise go to The Rocks - its a bit touristy but there's a wide variety. Also there's heaps of good pubs. Stay away from the Orient and the Occidental if your taking your GF.
Cheers, mate. Thanks for the tips! :)