Since I got a bunch of shit for writing a kind of negative article about things that I don’t like about Australia, I figured it was time to spread some positive feedback on my adventure travel blog about this lovely country. Of course I do not hate Australia and yes I loved living in Sydney on my working holiday visa in 2017. Plus I had a really great time on my 3 month trip Down Under in 2009. Therefore I came up with this new blog post to spread some love.
The reasons why it is a little harder to travel to Australia concern mainly the country’s remoteness but that exact same reason is also an advantage. Road trips in Australia are out of this world if you love to go off the beaten path. When talking about best places in the world to backpack I will definitely not mention Australia. Simply too expensive. But when you are looking for the best countries for road trips I always come up with Australia.
Check out my list of best places to backpack in the world. These 15 destinations are basically cheap countries where it is safe to travel and where you can do cool stuff and visit amazing places.
Here are some tips for an amazing road trip in Australia.
1. Australia is safe
First of all traveling in Australia is safe. There are hardly any safety issues in the country. Road traffic may be one of the most dangerous things in Australia I could come up with, but nothing else like an every Western country. Speed limits are very tight and strict. So traffic is not crazy at all, it depends on yourself. Always drive safely, but that goes for everywhere you go!
Find here the latest Health and Safety tips for traveling to Australia, by the Tourism Authority.
2. Drive on the left
Remember that they drive on the other side of the road, like UK style. In total I drove over 4,000 kilometer on the left side of the road. I never had any problems. For me I adapted naturally to traffic on the left. Just follow the car in front of you. I did have a lot of problems with the indicators and the windshield wipers. I kept on mixing them up even after 3 months! LOL
3. Always check your gas level
This is not Europe where every 30 kilometers or so you will find a little village and a gas station. You gotta plan your trip carefully, you definitely don’t want to end up in the middle of nowhere without gas. It can be another great story about your trip to Australia you can tell your friends, but the moment this really happens you probably won’t laugh about it. LOL
4. Random police checks
It was may be a weird coincidence, but I have been stopped several times on my road trip in Australia. Somehow the police always picked out the tourists. Mostly it was just a quick check and without any problems I was able to continue my way. Drinking an driving is NOT DONE in any country around the world, but definitely don’t try this in Australia. Unless you are willing to pay a lot of money on fines!
5. Off the beaten path
Looking to go completely remote? This is your chance. Australia has probably the most beaches in the world and finding a deserted beach all for yourself is not a hard thing. Wild camping is not allowed everywhere, but it is also so off the beaten path that no one will come and check you either. Don’t risk a fine, but planting your tent on a deserted beach far away from civilisation is easily possible here.
No clue how insanely big Australia is? Click here to read about the geography of Australia on Wikipedia and get to know more about the country and its extremes.
6. Be aware of fire bans
Australia is known for severe bush fires and rules around making fires are extremely strict. Don’t get caught making fire when there is a fire ban. This could send you to jail in a heartbeat! Honestly be aware that Australia takes this topic very serious! Check this website to find out about the fire bans in the areas where you are going to do your Australian road trip. This is where you find all the national warnings for Australia, just click here.
7. Rent or buy a car
So back in 2008 I was contemplating about buying or renting a car to travel around Australia and found out that buying a selling is actually the best option. We looked around on Gumtree, an online marketplace where you buy and sell stuff. It is very popular in Australia. There a plenty motorhomes to choose from, but they are obviously very pricey. Australia is an expensive country to travel so you have to have a bit of budget. Me and my friend had a budget of 8,000 to 10,000 for buying a car to backpack the East Coast.
Renting a car in Australia is really expensive and unless you are sharing with 4 people I would not recommend it. When renting with 4 people you gonna have the luggage issue. Where are you going to put all these backpacks? And you know I might be a backpacker by heart, but I have never travelled with one. I have a big ass suitcase and I am loving it. Not convenient though for road trips in Australia I can tell you.
Though for a certain stretch we rented a car simply because we only needed it for like 4-6 days. So when we were traveling between Melbourne and Adelaide me and my best friend decided to rent a car. Buying a car for this little road trip would have been a little too much hassle.
Buying a car for an Australian road trip is worth it if you at least go for a good couple weeks and cover a lot of distance. I traveled from Sydney to Cairns in about 6 weeks.
If you have any more valuable Australian road trip tips please leave me a comment. Thanks for reading my blog post and in case this was helpful please share it on social media, that would be really kind and mean a big thing for me.