Day 88 – The Thrills and Spills of My Meandering Adventure!

As I leave Australia and begin the journey back to Los Angeles I leave you with my thoughts.

I started my Australian journey in Melbourne, worked my way up the east coast to Sydney, Brisbane, Cairns then Central Australia exploring the Red Country in Uluru and Alice Springs and over to the west coast to Perth and finally Adelaide.  That’s a total of 5824kms/3618miles driving miles!

Adelaide is only 587 kms/365miles from Point Fairy which was the furthest point I got to along the Great Ocean Road when I started this trip.

Australia is such a vast country it is hard to even think I’ve scratched the surface of the sights and sounds of this amazing land.

I’ve seen more koalas, kangaroos, lorikeets & wonderful other animals, not only in zoos but in the real outdoors when I’ve been out hiking and checking out the fabulous scenery.

I’ve found there has always been more to see and find in places than just what you read in the guide book. Every town or city I’ve visited has had an interesting nook and cranny that I’ve been able to uncover which has proved fascinating!

I chose to mix up my mode of transport more in Australia than New Zealand mostly due to the vast distances involved. I’m glad I did!  It was fun zipping along the Great Ocean Road in a car rather than a camper van. It was awesome staying with the Wallers and Dew’s in Sydney and Port Macquarie. Then 21 days in a camper van which was certainly not as much time as I had in Beast in New Zealand. More zipping around Kata Tjuta National Park in a car admiring the gargantuan Uluru and Olgas and pottering around Alice Springs exploring more desert offerings as well as beanies!

It’s been three months of thrills and spills, trying things I never thought I would dare to do, challenging myself when I was feeling brave or just a little bit crazy!

Scaling the Sydney Harbour Bridge was no mean feat for me.  Driving some of the distances on a day by day basis was tough on occasion. The route from Airlie Beach to Rockhampton to Cairns was long, with miles and miles of sugar cane fields and not much more!

I’ve met some fantastic and interesting people. They have always been happy to share their journeys, where they are going next and always ready to give advice. I’ve had offers from people I’ve only known for a few hours of a bed for the night the next time I come back to Australia, so very generous!

With helicopter rides to the top of glaciers, cruises through Sounds, snorkeling in fabulous reefs ,swimming in beautiful lakes & oceans, walking the length of beaches & the breadth of cities. I may not have explored every nook and cranny of New Zealand or Australia but I certainly gave it my all.

A few words to my nearest and dearest. When I went home home to the U.K. last Christmas and talked about going on this trip, not a single member of my family said don’t do it or what are you thinking? They have been 100% supportive the whole time and I’m extremely grateful for that.

To both my lovely family & friends, who (in their own ways) have checked in to make sure I’ve not completely lost it. With their reassuring hello’s & how ya doing, they have given me the strength and courage to carry on when I may just have been doubting myself.  It’s good to know they had my back even though I was many many miles away!

So as this trip draws to a close I ask myself one final question: would I do it all again?

The answer to that my friends is ‘Hell Yeah!!’

 

Number of driving kms today = 8

Total number of driving kms in Aus = 5824

Cumulative driving kms to date (NZ &  Aus) = 11,088

Total Number of flight kms = 32,383

Cumulative driving & flight kms = 43,471

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