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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Houston, TX
    Posts
    303

    Talking Another TEer headed to Oz... looking for recommendations

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    Hello all you ladies from Down Under!
    I found out recently that I get to go to a conference down in Australia, so now am planning the requisite personal trip for before/after the conference (can we say free plane ticket!)

    Due to time constraints, and the tickets going quickly I had to book before having all my plans in place. So, I know where I am going to be for what days, but am looking for recommendations of what to do and see and what to skip in my limited time in OZ.

    Here is the flight plan:
    Arrive Sydney Wed April 11 8:45 pm
    I have all day Thursday and Friday in Sydney.
    Fly to Brisbane Saturday April 14... 1 day in Brisbane before taking the train to Gold Coast where the conference is on Sunday.
    Monday April 16- Friday April 20: conference in Gold Coast (there is a field trip, so I will see some stuff there too).
    Saturday April 21, train to Brisbane, then fly to Hobart, Tasmania.
    I will have all day Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday in Tasmania... planning on renting a car.
    Wed. Fly back to Sydney for 1 more day before leaving on Friday.

    I know that I don't have enough time to really experience Sydney or Tasmania, but I really wanted to see both, and figure that this is a first trip to Australia, and I will be back! :-)

    I love to walk around town and just explore and get out and do hikes. Some of the things I am thinking about doing while I am there are:
    Bridge climb in Sydney (is it worth the $$??)
    Maybe one day out to the Blue Mountains
    Time walking around the Rocks and the opera house probably

    I have friends in Brisbane, so that will be taken care of by them.

    In Tasmania, I would like to see Port Arthur, probably as a day trip from Hobart. Then I am thinking of doing one of the driving tours up towards Lake St. Clair in the center of the Island and spending one or two nights up there before heading back to Hobart and flying back to Sydney.

    Also, any suggestions for places to stay? I am a grad student, so $$ is an issue, and I will be traveling alone. I am not real big on the Hostel scene, so was thinking of some of the Pubs that have accomedation since then I get my own room, but it is cheaper than a hotel or B&B... any experience with this?

    Thanks ladies! I am really excited for this trip, and all I want to do is plan and not do the work that I have to do to present at the conference!

    Ellen

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Perth, Western Australia
    Posts
    5,316

    Tassie!!!

    Ohhh..Pooey..I'm on the other side...

    Tassie's a place i'd love to visit!!! Great mtn biking & hiking there!@!!

    Have tons of fun & enjoy Australia!!!

    c

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    WA, Australia
    Posts
    3,292
    Quote Originally Posted by PABadger View Post
    Hello all you ladies from Down Under!
    I found out recently that I get to go to a conference down in Australia, so now am planning the requisite personal trip for before/after the conference (can we say free plane ticket!)

    Due to time constraints, and the tickets going quickly I had to book before having all my plans in place. So, I know where I am going to be for what days, but am looking for recommendations of what to do and see and what to skip in my limited time in OZ.

    Here is the flight plan:
    Arrive Sydney Wed April 11 8:45 pm
    I have all day Thursday and Friday in Sydney.
    Fly to Brisbane Saturday April 14... 1 day in Brisbane before taking the train to Gold Coast where the conference is on Sunday.
    Monday April 16- Friday April 20: conference in Gold Coast (there is a field trip, so I will see some stuff there too).
    Saturday April 21, train to Brisbane, then fly to Hobart, Tasmania.
    I will have all day Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday in Tasmania... planning on renting a car.
    Wed. Fly back to Sydney for 1 more day before leaving on Friday.

    I know that I don't have enough time to really experience Sydney or Tasmania, but I really wanted to see both, and figure that this is a first trip to Australia, and I will be back! :-)

    I love to walk around town and just explore and get out and do hikes. Some of the things I am thinking about doing while I am there are:
    Bridge climb in Sydney (is it worth the $$??)
    Maybe one day out to the Blue Mountains
    Time walking around the Rocks and the opera house probably

    I have friends in Brisbane, so that will be taken care of by them.

    In Tasmania, I would like to see Port Arthur, probably as a day trip from Hobart. Then I am thinking of doing one of the driving tours up towards Lake St. Clair in the center of the Island and spending one or two nights up there before heading back to Hobart and flying back to Sydney.

    Also, any suggestions for places to stay? I am a grad student, so $$ is an issue, and I will be traveling alone. I am not real big on the Hostel scene, so was thinking of some of the Pubs that have accomedation since then I get my own room, but it is cheaper than a hotel or B&B... any experience with this?

    Thanks ladies! I am really excited for this trip, and all I want to do is plan and not do the work that I have to do to present at the conference!

    Ellen
    Wow what a whirlwind trip. I love Tasmania (hope to live there in the future) and because its so small you really can experience a fair bit in a short amount of time. Check out the links below

    http://www.discovertasmania.com.au/home/index.cfm
    http://www.tas.gov.au/
    http://www.tasmania.com/

    Bikerchick68 should be able to tell you if the bridge climb is worth the money as I think she did it on her recent trip to Aust. The Blue Mountains are gorgeous and worth a look.

    Have a great holiday and dont forget to post a holiday report when you get back.
    The most effective way to do it, is to do it.
    Amelia Earhart

    2005 Trek 5000 road/Avocet 02 40W
    2006 Colnago C50 road/SSM Atola
    2005 SC Juliana SL mtb/WTB Laser V

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Brisbane, QLD, Australia
    Posts
    529
    I can give you advice from a locals perspective here in brisbane!

    http://www.ourbrisbane.com/
    http://www.queenslandholidays.com.au

    These two sites are really useful. If you have time to do anything in Brissie that is. ^_^

    If you are here for enough time to check out the sites, South Bank is pretty good. The best thing as someone who's never been to QLD before is buy an all day rover ticket and jump on the citycat and explore brisbane by river. Take about 2 hours round trip. ^_^

    As for the gold coast... Surfers Paradise is a must. Luckily you're coming in april which means no schoolies. ^_^

    But yeah, Surfers is a must see, If you can't find a spot on the sand head to broadbeach. (30min walk south along the sand) The main drag is also home to a lot of duty free shopping.

    There's heaps of themeparks if you're into that sorta thing. Dreamworld, Wet n Wild, Movieworld (Paris Hilton's movie burnt down one of the soundstages there. I think it was house of WAX), Sea World, Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary

    And lots of "touristy" attractions.

    Steve Irwin's Australia Zoo is about 2 hours north of Brisbane. You can get there by train. If you're going there for the wildlife though Currumbin is fantastic! It doesn't have the international pull that Australia Zoo does.

    And you get to feed the Lorikeets. ^_^

    As for Sydney. Try and see the opera house at night. They sometimes light it up with different colours and it's so pretty

    go on the ferry to manly. Not the cat the OLDER ferry. It's quite an experience. Check out the beaches again

    Ummm... What else... Hmmm...Even if you don't get to CLIMB the bridge you can still walk accross it. ^_^

    Fox studios is in Sydney. (The Matrix trilogy, Star Wars Episodes II and III and a few other movies which escape me...)
    @LIGHTSABE*R(::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

    Beginner Triathlete Log

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Canberra, Australia
    Posts
    1
    I'm live in Canberra but study in Melbourne during school times so I can't offer you any advice on Brisvegas or Taswegia (as the locals call them ). But I'm sure you'll end up finding the "good" things to see and do.

    Sounds like you'll have a ball.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    San Diego
    Posts
    1,516
    I just got home a month ago from 2 weeks there! It was AWESOME!

    Be sure to go to Hyde Park at night... it's just up from Saint Andrews Cathedral... the walk is tree lined and strung with white lights... St. Mary's church in the background and flying foxes overhead in the trees!!! I was there on a night with a full moon... St. Mary's looks very gothic and the foxes look like MASSIVE bats! They were flying across the moon in front of the belfry... truly spectacular!

    I did the Bridge Climb and enjoyed it... it takes about 3 hours and you climb up and have an amazing view of Sydney Harbour and get your pics taken with the Opera House in the background... it's cool... I think it was about $70 American...

    my favorite thing I did? I absolutely LOVED a "Walkabout" I did of the Blue Mountains... walkabout my butt. It was a full-on hike. But absolutely amazing. The guide is of Aboriginal descent of the Darug Clan... really knows a ton of history. You hike from the top of the Blue Mountains at the Faulconbridge station, to the rainforest floor and back 3 times. Visit a handful of sacred sites and see cave art... Lunch in a cave where you make your own Aboriginal style art piece... practice some bush medicine with tasting of leaves etc...

    If you are fascinated with nature and learning about the Aborigines and history, this could be a good one for you. I have to say, I ride centuries and consider myself in good shape and this still kicked my behind... my legs were sore the next day (OK, the next 3 days but whatever) but it was a true highlight of my trip!

    you carry your own food and water... fyi. Have good shoes for climbing on and over rocks etc... the link tells you what you need to birng... I carried PBnJ sandwishes, fig newton type cookies, 2 pears and water! If you do this say hi to Evan, the guide, for me! this is about $100 American and a FULL day excursion!

    http://www.bluemountainswalkabout.com/frames.htm

    have a great time! I cannot WAIT to visit again someday!
    Last edited by bikerchick68; 10-27-2006 at 08:54 PM.
    There is a fine line between "hobby" and "mental illness".

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Downunder
    Posts
    292
    Quote Originally Posted by PABadger View Post
    I am a grad student, so $$ is an issue, and I will be traveling alone. I am not real big on the Hostel scene, so was thinking of some of the Pubs that have accomedation since then I get my own room, but it is cheaper than a hotel or B&B... any experience with this?

    Thanks ladies! I am really excited for this trip, and all I want to do is plan and not do the work that I have to do to present at the conference!

    Ellen
    What area are you studying in? is the conference study related? Do you want to visit anyone at ANU while you're here? That's where i study and i'm happy to put you up and show you around....

    Dont really know any accommodation places in tassie, but your trip sounds great!

    Thea
    To know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived This is to have succeeded - Emerson

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Houston, TX
    Posts
    303
    Hey Thea-
    I am a graduate student in Geophysics. The conference is the International Coastal Symposium which is being hosted by Griffith University. The work I am doing now is on the role of oil and gas production on subsidence in southern Louisiana (and yes, we had actually started working on this before Hurricaine Katrina last year).

    Thanks for the offer to show me around ANU and Canberra, but I don't think that I will make it to Canberra on this trip.

    I am having fun planning what I am going to do in Tassie though.

    I am sure I will be back with more specific questions as the trip gets closer, right now I am just really paranoid about having to drive on the "wrong" side of the road when I am in Tassie... I am sure that it will be fine, but when I was in New Zealand and was the passanger in a car on a really windey road I just about jumped out of the car when another car came around the corner on what I thought was the wrong side Made my friend who was driving laugh histarically...

    Thanks for the input you all, these boards are great!
    Ellen

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Melbourne Oz
    Posts
    174
    Shame you don't get to Melbourne, so you could ride Beach Road. Next time.

    Sydney - certainly the Opera House, and I'd suggest a Harbour cruise and maybe dinner over at Darling Harbour, but I wouldn't count on a lot of time at The Rocks unless you like tourist shops. Sydney has a red tourist bus, called Sydney Explorer I think, which is really good (and includes the Opera House). You get a ticket, and hop on and off at nearly a dozen locations during the day. It just keeps doing circuits, so you can get your bearings, without the hassle of getting to everything separately. Also, try to get to Bondi, Australia's most famous beach, which is just a few km east of the CBD. The Blue Mountains are beautiful.

    Tassie - the wilderness areas are Tassie's jewel, and if you're into hiking, there'd be nowhere better. I'd do that over Port Arthur personally. Maybe Cradle Mountain too - there's a good web site, some fabulous hikes and food. Lake St Clair is a good idea too. Tassie is very pretty, and small, so you can get around pretty quick.

    Have fun.

 

 

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