8 Day Trip to Australia

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by teflon, Nov 19, 2007.

  1. teflon macrumors 6502a

    teflon

    Joined:
    May 28, 2007
    #1
    I'm going to Australia for vacation this Christmas for 8 days. Since I know nothing about Australia, can anyone suggest any tourist attractions/cities to visit? And also, how many cities can I visit in 8 days? How long should I stay in each city? I know I'm definitely visiting Sydney and the Great Barrier Reef, but I have no idea how long each spot would take. Thanks in advance! :)
     
  2. BCains macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2007
    Location:
    Gold Coast, Australia
    #2
    Woah prepare for the heat then considering you're coming from BC!

    8 Days isn't nearly enough to see the best bits of Oz but its a start
    and gives you another reason to come back and see the rest.

    Here's whats i'd do:

    Arrive into Sydney

    2 Nights - Sydney - Opera House, Bondi Beach, Harbour Bridge, Shopping
    2 Nights - Melbourne - Arts, Music, Shopping, Crown Ent (Casino), Eureka Skydeck 88
    2 Nights - Cairns, Port Douglas - Barrier Reef, Snorkeling
    2 Nights - Gold Coast/ Brisbane - Theme Parks, Beaches, Shopping, Clubs, Q1,
    The Valley (Music & Markets), Surfers Paradise, Jupiters Casino

    Fly out of Brisbane (its only 1hours drive between GC and Brisbane)

    Just google the places for more attractions etc. Hope that helps abit.

    P.S I'm heading over to Canada for Christmas/New Years (for just over 2 weeks)
    I'm going to Whistler, B.C and Toronto than on the way home via San Fran.
     
  3. hartwork macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2007
    Location:
    Sydney, Australia
    #3
    It depends what you want to do! If you looking to boogie like there's no tomorrow, Kings Cross in Sydney is the place to go.

    Tour: There's a fantastic group bike ride you can do that takes you through some of Sydney's best attractions. I did a five-hour ride on the weekend with tourists from Chicago. It starts at the Opera House and goes to the Rocks, over the Harbour Bridge, Milson's Point, Luna Park, Kirribilli and back via the Sydney Observatory. Great fun and a great way to see the sights.

    There are some great galleries, beaches, shopping strips and events in Sydney and I'd be happy to take you to some of these places. Just let me know when you get here!
     
  4. Abstract macrumors Penryn

    Abstract

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    #4

    I like your itinerary, but I'm going to suggest an alternative one.

    As a tourist, I'd avoid going into cities and staying there for long. There's no point. Sydney isn't really a culturally rich place, and if you come to Australia just to walk around the cities, you're really wasting the little time you have in Oz. :eek: Enjoy the scenery, the sun, and the beaches.


    Itinerary:

    1 days: Sydney - Opera House, Bridge (possibly do the $200 Bridgeclimb), Darling Harbour, Botanical Gardens, The Rocks market, Queen Victoria Building (QVB....it's an old, fancy shopping mall), ferry ride to Manly (Beach). All of this is easily do-able in 1 day. In fact, the Opera House, Bridge, and The Rocks Market are within a 0.5 km radius. ;)

    2 days: Gold Coast. Spend one day bumming around the beaches at Surfer's Paradise, and another day at one of the theme parks.

    1 day: Brisbane, but only go there so that you can go with a tour company that'll take you to Morton Island, one of the largest sand dune islands in the world. Frasier Island is the biggest, and is definitely an alternative (although it's a bit further from Brisbane). Don't bother spending time in Brisbane. While I'm sure there's stuff to do, it'll feel like a wasted day. Trust me, I'm Canadian, and I've been to Brisbane twice, including my trip 1.5 months ago. ;)

    3 days: Go to Cairns, and do as much as you can. Go to some small island somewhere and chill out, go snorkelling, do some diving at the Great Barrier Reef, and possibly go to "Daintree Rain Forest" for one day.

    1 day: Back to Sydney. I'm assuming you're flying home from here, right? Spend a relaxing day just hanging around here. The IMAX at Darling Harbour has the largest screen in the world. Absolutely incredible experience!! I highly recommend "Deep Sea 3D" if it's still playing there. :)
     
  5. NewMacGirl macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2007
    #5
    Heres my suggestions, for what they are worth. We live in Sydney so have some knowledge

    As you only have 8 days try not to spread yourself too thinly or you'll end up spending too much time traveling (its a BIG country)

    Sydney 1 -2 days

    Down by the Harbour is beautiful, a harbour cruise, the Bridge, Opera House, The Rocks, Circular Quay, CBD (Queen Victoria Building etc) and Darling Harbour/Cockle Bay are worth seeing. As for beaches, honestly Bondi is really over rated but people love to go there as they want to say I went to Bondi- its hard to get parked, its crowded, it isn't really that nice to look at I think . If you have been to Blackpool in the UK its something like Bondi (I am from the UK originally so not being biased here) however the walk round to Clovelly and even Coogee is brilliant. There are other better beaches like Dee Why or Balmoral a little gem. Theres a great harbourside walk from Balmoral to Chowder Bay.

    You could go to the Hunter Valley ~ 3-4 hours drive from Sydney (one of OZ's wine regions ) winery crawls are great fun

    Gold Coast 2 days ( 2 hours or so flight from Sydney I think)

    Is a fun place to go but some say tacky. I would stay in Broadbeach if you can (its just next to Surfers Paradise) Amazing buildings-you can go up Q1, when built was the tallest residential tower in the World (not sure if it still is) great look out up there. Lots to do there. A fun night out is Draculas cabaret

    Brisbane 1/2 day maybe (but if you have other places to go I would miss it out)
    an hours drive north from Gold Coast
    Down by the river is nice, a unique city.

    Sunshine Coast 2 days
    Just a couple of hours north of Gold Coast- I would recommend Noosa - one of the iconic Australian towns-If you go stay in Hastings street which is lined with restaurants, cafes and hotels. The walk up to the national park is beautiful .Quite pricey though

    One of the Whitsunday Islands say Hamilton Island (2 days)

    Bliss-Real sense of escapism and you can ride round on golf buggies, lounge around the resorts (huge pools with a swim up bar etc) and you can tour the Great Barrier Reef from there

    If you go further north it could get wet. Even the Whitsundays could be wet as at Christmas its getting into Tropical Queenslands wet season and they do have cyclones up there at that time of year. For any other time of the year I would definetly say Port Douglas 1 hour north of Cairns-it could be OK but if you go prepared to get wet (it will still be over 30 C though!) some say the rainforests are at their best then though.

    Depending on the time you could go to Uluru in the Northern territory (in the geographic centre of Australia) so it will be hot but it is a unique experience.

    Melbourne is OK too perhaps??.

    Have a good time
     
  6. keirnna macrumors regular

    keirnna

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2006
    Location:
    Japan
    #6
    I spent 35 days in Queensland this year. I was in Rockhampton for most of my time. If you are in Queensland watch out for the aboes. They are crazy. The aborigines I dealt with would follow me and try to get $2 from me any chance they got. They are really a site to be pitied. Drinking goons of wine every night.
     
  7. keirnna macrumors regular

    keirnna

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    Japan
    #7
    Also the great barrier reef is nice, but not really that nice of diving. If you have never been diving anywhere else you will love it.
     
  8. gadgetgirl85 macrumors 68040

    gadgetgirl85

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2006
    #8
    Yep make sure you come to the Gold Coast. Not a nice place to be at the moment though because of schoolies. That ends in a couple of weeks though
     
  9. hartwork macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2007
    Location:
    Sydney, Australia
    #9
    This applies to all Queenslanders, not just the Aborigines :eek: ;)

    Seriously though, you probably won't be going to Rockhampton. The Aborigines make up very a small percentage of the urban cities and while some truly are a sorry sight (largely due to an apathetic majority failing them in every sense), it's not right to establish this sort of stereotype.

    I would suggest the bike ride mentioned earlier over the bridge climb. It's not as expensive, more comprehensive, you don't have to hold your pee for three hours, more fun and definitely more fulfilling. The bridge climb is so overrated.

    My pick of attractions would be Sydney or Melbourne, the Gold Coast (not Brisbane), Cairns and Uluru.
     
  10. pincho macrumors regular

    pincho

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2006
    Location:
    Sydney, Australia
    #10
    thats if your not part of schoolies.. which i will be in 9 days :D haha
     
  11. puckhead193 macrumors G3

    puckhead193

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    May 25, 2004
    Location:
    NY
    #11
    8 day.... :eek: you need at least a 2 weeks. The first week to get over the jet lag... but the above sounds good
     
  12. gadgetgirl85 macrumors 68040

    gadgetgirl85

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2006
    #12
    *is staying far far away from surfers paradise for the next few weeks* :D I never did go to schoolies when it was my turn 5 years ago. Just didn't interest me. In fact it freaked me out :eek:
     
  13. Abstract macrumors Penryn

    Abstract

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    #13
    Watch out for those white people as well.

    I saw someone's small digital camera get snatched by a white thief while he was trying to take a picture. This was in the Gold Coast. Drunk white people every night. They are really a site to be pitied.
     
  14. teflon thread starter macrumors 6502a

    teflon

    Joined:
    May 28, 2007
    #14
    Thanks for all the responses guys! It's been very helpful! I think I've came up with a plan:
    day 1: arrive in Sydney. Probably won't do much that day since it'd be evening or later by the time we checked in the hotel. Unless it arrives in the morning, then maybe we'll visit some sites.
    day 2: Sydney. Sorry, I forgot to mention I'm going with my dad. While the bike ride sounds awesome, I don't know if he can bike for 5 hours. But if he agrees, it'd be a blast!
    day 3&4: Gold Coast. The surfing + theme park suggestion seems great. I've never surfed before, do they have surfing lessons on the beach?
    day 5&6: Cairn. Snorkeling, see the Great Barrier Reef, if we have time, visit the rain forest.
    day 7: back to Sydney. Relax and maybe see some sites we missed. The IMAX sounds great! Maybe if we have time then I'd visit Brisbane on one of the days and skip this day in Sydney. The sand dune islands would be fun to visit.
    day 8: fly back to China.

    I can only make it for 8 days because I also have to visit family in China for a couple of days. My whole vacation is only 14 days. I know 8 days is way too little, some day, probably when I'm in college or something, I'd love to spend a summer backpacking with friends across Australia. For now, I guess I'll settle for this.
    Thanks for the offer hartwork, that's very sweet of you :). But my dad would freak out if I meet with someone that I met on the internet. Can't blame him, he just learned how to check his email last year or so, online community would be too big of an idea for him to grasp. Maybe next time ;).

    One more questions, how do I get from Sydney to all these places? Train, bus, plane? Someone suggested a bus tour from a travel agency that takes you from Sydney up to Cairn. Do anyone know of deals like this or a good travel agency?
     
  15. BCains macrumors regular

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    Feb 2, 2007
    Location:
    Gold Coast, Australia
    #15
    that'd be one helll of a bus trip (Sydney to Cairns)! where does it stop?

    For cheap internal flights check out www.jetstar.com.au

    P.S Do the loop cause you can only get flights from Sydney to Cairns.

    So Sydney -> Cairns -> Gold Coast -> Sydney
     
  16. hartwork macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2007
    Location:
    Sydney, Australia
    #16
    There are shorter bike rides, the five-hour one is the longest one.

    You don't want to catch a bus anywhere if you're only staying for eight days. There are cheap domestic flights.
    I reckon your itinerary is quite exhausting. I would give Brisbane a miss and leave Cairns for another time. Or perhaps it's good to go see what's left of the GBR now before it completely disappears.
     
  17. Abstract macrumors Penryn

    Abstract

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    #17
    You're very unlucky. Yesterday, they were selling tickets from Sydney to the Gold Coast for $1. ;)

    I didn't even bother getting the tickets. Why should I go to Surfers again? I was just there. (Abstract = jaded)
     
  18. BCains macrumors regular

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    Location:
    Gold Coast, Australia
    #18
    Did you see all those flights going for 5cents!? ridiculous.
     
  19. 748s macrumors 6502a

    748s

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2001
    Location:
    Tiger Bay
    #19
    8 days?
    Flying is the only way for your plan.
    Driving from Sydney to Cairns is a three day trip, around 3,000 kilometres.
    It's the wet/cyclone season in the far North at that time,
    roads can be flooded and cut for weeks.
    About 900KM from Sydney to the gold coast, so that's a days drive or bus trip.

    Lots of free information here
    http://www.lonelyplanet.com/
     
  20. A.T.M macrumors newbie

    A.T.M

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    Nov 22, 2007
    Location:
    UK
    #20
    OOO Im going to Australia in Jan too for a few monthes.

    I cant wait! Im so excited!
     
  21. teflon thread starter macrumors 6502a

    teflon

    Joined:
    May 28, 2007
    #21
    Update: I've decided to go with a travel agency because it's a lot easier since they'll book all the domestic flights and hotels for you. It goes like this:
    Day 1 - arrive in Sydney
    Day 2 & 3 - tour in Sydney
    Day 4 & 5 - Cairn
    Day 6 - Brisbane
    Day 7 - Gold Coast
    Day 8 - fly back to Sydney, then fly again to China.
    Sounds busy and tiring I know, but it's worth it to me to be able to see so many sites and cities. It should be a blast! Can't wait until Christmas :D. Thanks for all your help! You guys are the best!
     
  22. Abstract macrumors Penryn

    Abstract

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    Dec 27, 2002
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    #22
    A 2 day tour in Sydney? Only 2 days in Cairns? One day in Brisbane?

    You should have done it yourself, but better! ;)


    www.jetstar.com and www.virginblue.com.au were your best friends.
     
  23. teflon thread starter macrumors 6502a

    teflon

    Joined:
    May 28, 2007
    #23
    Haha but I'm going around Christmas time, so all domestic flight's price were like doubled when I check. It's probably better if I plan it myself, but I'm just too lazy to do it :eek:. Too little time and too much other work to do. Ahh if only my winter break started now.
     
  24. Jimmieboy macrumors 6502

    Jimmieboy

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2005
    Location:
    Australia
    #24
    hahah. I love hearing advice from people who may not have been to Australia or who don't actually live here.

    Well I suggest that you fly up from Sydney to Brisbane or the Gold Coast. It's a one hour flight and costs around $100 AUD one-way. I'd then catch the train to the Gold Coast if I wasn't already there. Spend a day at a theme park and another day at the beech, though without the schoolies. I'd then head up to the Sunshine Coast to go to Australia Zoo, which was home to Steve Irwin the cro hunter. It would be around a 3 hour drive from the Gold Coast, though you'd be able to get a bus with Greyhound bus operators.

    Thats basically the 5 cents worth of info I can give you. I've been to those places so I know what I'm talking about.

    My parents went up the the Barrier Reef a month ago. You'll need to get a plane, or the train to Cairns. It's a 2 and a half our flight from Brisbane and takes a very long time on the train. I'd reccomend the plane as it's heaps faster. I'd spend at LEAST 2 days there and go out and go snorkelling and to a remote Island. There are heaps of companies up there that sort all that kind of thing out.

    If you wanted to, I'm pretty sure that there are flights from Cairns to Sydney so that would be the way to go.

    For airfares check out: http://www.virginblue.com.au (budget airline)
    http://www.jetstar.com.au (budget airline)
    http://www.qantas.com.au

    Have a great trip and let us know how it goes!
     
  25. 748s macrumors 6502a

    748s

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    Location:
    Tiger Bay
    #25
    Because it's such a short time, getting someone else to organise it is a good idea. Costs more but it will free you up from the worry of getting where you are going.
    Have a good trip.
     

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