Sydney Road Trip To Brisbane -- Taking It Slowly
There are a great many road trips people embark on in Australia that look quite breezy on a map, but turn out to be just slightly longer than you thought.
Sydney to Brisbane is one of those kinds of trips, which, if you were keen on sticky-taping a brick to your accelerator, you?d make it in about 12 hours. It?s more than likely, however, that you?d end up having fairly robust conversations with drivers of semi-trailers. And those men are fairly large and possess many tattoos.
The other, more road-safe option is to meander your way up the Pacific Highway, and stop off at your leisure. There?s all sorts of nooks and crannies dotted up the coast ? sublime fishing spots in the seclusion of scrubland, hustle and bustle beach towns, national parks, hippies in the hillsides, and just plainly odd little villages (like Mooball, which nestles in the Burringbar ranges near the NSW/QLD border).
If you don?t have a car, you can save money by organising a rental online ? sites like www.vroomvroomvroom.com.au pool together all of the latest prices on offer from the most popular car rental companies. You can be sure of getting a great car hire Sydney deal. Once you've got out of North Sydney and onto the Pacific Highway, one of the popular places for a rest would be by the Hawkesbury River, which flows into Broken Bay, and is surrounded by three national parks. If bushwalking isn?t your thing, then maybe a spot of fishing in the bay might just take your fancy?
Newcastle ? a few hours on ? is another place you?ll stop by. Sometimes the word of mouth for this place is less than encouraging, but it?s well worth a visit. It?s blessed with many beaches ? the most popular being Nobbys Beach (for some reason a very common name when it comes to beaches in Australia). There are also loads of students and therefore a thriving music scene. And there?s some beautiful architecture to be found in the terraced houses and old colonial buildings.
Further onwards will find you pulling in to Port Stephens, which is barely an hours drive away from Newcastle. If you?ve ever dreamt of dolphin spotting, then this is one of the places to do it. There are a load of charter vessels whose business it is to search out the 150 or so local bottle-nose dolphins that play in the waves close to the coast. There?s also plenty of little resort towns and villages nearby.
There are plenty of other little towns and laid-back cities like Port Stephens to varying degrees ? you?ll be passing by the beach-laden Port Macquarie, the tiny resort town of Nambucca Heads, the big banana near Coffs Harbour. But you?re now fast-approaching one of the most popular corners of NSW.
The farmers grow bananas and sugar cane. The hippies hug the trees. The yuppies (who always follow the hippies wherever they go) make everything fashionable and sell coffee. And the backpackers and students just drink the beer.
The north-east corner of NSW takes in the truly picturesque towns like Bangalow, Mullumbimby, Byron Bay and Murwillumbah. There?s the determinedly-alternative Nimbin. And then there?s just odd little villages like Mooball ? where the telephone poles and local servo are painted in the pattern of dairy cows.
It?s only another two-and-a-half hours to Brisbane after that (some people fall into the trap of stopping in at Surfers Paradise and giving all their money to the Jupiter?s Casino or the clubs on Orchid Ave).
Laid-back Brisbane, with it?s unendingly sunny days (bad for the gardens, but good for the soul) and its rolling river, and its Queenslander houses all leaning up against each other while everyone?s down in West End having coffee and people-watching. It's hard not to like Brisbane ? the weather is a bit like natural prozac. Have a lovely time in Queensland.
About the Author: Alyssa Betts has travelled around to different parts of the world testing out the local beverages and desserts. She now works for http://www.vroomvroomvroom.com.au