Post # 1
My fiance and I are considering going to Australia for our honeymoon (we’re from California); we are planning on going end of February, and going for 10-14 days.
What kind of weather can we expect? What are some must-do things we should consider in building our itinerary….any tips???
thanks in advance!!
Post # 3
@Margaritachka: hi, depending on where you go depends on the weather. If your thinking of going to south australia, victoria, sydney it will be nice. Up here in darwin its in between wet and dry season so it will be pot luck really.
There is heaps to do in australia you can go to sydney and do tours of the opera house, harbour bridge, Melbourne is fantastic for the shopping and food and there is heaps of things to see if you travel outside the main city. Brisbane or gold coast has a ton of theme parks as well as the sunshine coast. South australia is the wine country and the city of churches and a nice relax feel about it. If you go to central australia (northern territory) we have ayres rock, alice springs, katherine and we have natural hot springs as well as kakadu national park. In Australia’s capital territory (ACT) is where out prime minister lives and there is a war memorial plus alot of things to see.
I have been to all these places and must say i have enjoyed each and everyone, im yet to travel to western australia but i have been told its just as beautiful as the rest of australia.
If you need more information on darwin/ northern territory id be more than happy to help out, good luck with your travels if you do make the big trip down under and im sure a few other aussie bee’s will tell you some other great places.
ETA: I hope i wasnt rambling on too much and it all makes sense =)
Post # 4
Hey, I’m from CA originally and living in Aus now.
One big tip I’d have is try to fly Qantas and on their A380. We just came back from a trip to CA 3 weeks ago and I flew it for the first time and while economy never will be super comfortable, it’s the most comfortable that I have been. The seats recline in a slightly different way that is more natural, they give you tons of quality food plus there is a snack bar at the back of the plane if you’re still hungry or thirsty and you get your own seat back movie screen and there were literally over 100 movies to watch- new releases and classics, like each Academy Award winning movie of the year going back to like 1970 or something. We found it didn’t cost anymore than flying United, either.
In NSW, where you will fly in to and where Sydney is, February will be hot and humid. Anywhere from 80-110 degrees. Sydney is a must, it has a kind of San Francisco feel to it. From there you can catch a ferry to Manly to surf, snorkle or just walk the beach paths or hang out in one of the cafes. You can also walk the Harbour Bridge, check out the Opera House, go to the Taronga Zoo or Sydney Wildlife World and pet kangaroos and get your picture taken with them and koalas.
Queensland has the Great Barrier Reef, but the time of year you’re coming I think is (deadly) box jelly fish season so you have to be careful in the water. I think they have special suits you can wear and netted areas you can snorkle in. GBR is pretty incredible-we saw fish bigger than I am and tons of reef sharks and stayed on a really neat little island called Green Island. In that part of Queensland there is also a rainforest called the Daintree that is pretty nice and a good spot to rent a place to just hang out and commune with nature. The place we stayed at had wild parrots that came in to eat everyday and you could hold them as they ate out of your hand.
Melbourne is the cafe, shopping, and bar scene (I haven’t been but find the shopping here pretty dismal and super pricey, but the bars, restaurants and cafes are supposed to be great).
You can drive from Sydney to Melbourne along the Great Ocean Road. That is supposed to be a spectacular trip and may show you a bit of everything.
For a 2 week trip, Western Aus may be too far away to get to as it is an additional 5-6 flight from Sydney. But it is supposed to have spectacular snorkeling. They even have whale sharks part of the year. Google Ningaloo Reef.
Let me know if I can offer you anymore suggestions or help.
Post # 5
@OzToCaBride: You can’t drive from Melbourne to Sydney on the Great Ocean Road, that is west of Melbourne along the south coast. Maybe you are thinking of the great dividing ranges?
I wouldn’t reccomend driving from Sydney to Melbourne, thats about a 10-12 hour drive, and a lot of it is through the sticks with not much to see, unless you like dairy farms. 🙂
End of February is the hottest time of the year, It can get up to 40 degrees Celcius quite regularly. Pack sundresses and shorts, and lots of sunscreen because the sun is different here and you WILL get burnt.
Personally I’d reccomend Melbourne over Sydney. But if you have 10-14 days you could easily do both. Melbourne has so much more culture, fantasic food, fashion, museums, and still lots of touristy things, its only an hours drive to the yarra valley wine country, and the dandenong ranges which are beautiful bushland mountains with views from the city to the coast. You could drive along the great ocean road, and check out the beautiful beaches at Torquay and Lorne. Melbourne has a bit of everything, PM me if you have any specific questions, I’d be happy to help you organise a rough itinerary depending on if you want an adventure or touristy or relaxing honeymoon. 🙂
Post # 6
Aus has so many different experiences. It really depends on if you want a tropical holiday, an outback holiday, a rainforest holiday, a urban culture holiday and it goes on.
I’m from NSW so I know more of this state. If you want to see Sydney you could day trip to the Blue Mountains, Central Coast, Newcastle and Hunter Valley Vineyards and Port Stephens. All those are within 2 – 2.5 hours from Sydney.
My suggestion would be to choose one major centre and then plan your trip around that because with 12+ hour drives between capital cities it can really eat into your holiday.
I’m sure you will have a fab trip, we really are blessed with a beautiful country that has many faces. 🙂
Post # 7
and on the subject of the Great Ocean Rd, it is an awesome drive!! It follows the South Coast of Victoria along into South Australia and is stunning. A real must if you decided to holiday south. 🙂
Post # 8
- Wedding: June 2011 - Sydney, Australia
Be prepared for HOT and HUMID weather!!!
I’m a Sydney girl, so I know most about the East coast – but you could do the whole coast using flights (Sydney – Melbourne, or Sydney – Brisbane/Gold Coast/Cairns) and you’d see loads. I don’t recommend driving the whole way, because Australia is MASSIVE, and you’ll spend heaps of time just driving from place to place.
It’s going to be wonderful. And yes. YES to the A380. 🙂
Post # 9
Sorry, Roux, you’re right. I haven’t done it personally and got mixed up. Most people fly from Sydney to Melbourne do a few days there and then do the ocean road before flying back to Sydney. My mistake!
Post # 10
I’ve lived in Melbourne, Cairns, and Brisbane now and have travelled a fair bit around Australia – really, you can’t go wrong no matter where you go!
If you’re coming for two weeks, I would pick two locations to base yourself out of (one for each week) and see the sites from there. A logical plan would be to spend a week in Sydney/NSW and see some sites from there – maybe finish that with a drive up to Byron Bay for a couple of nights. Beware though, driving distances are MASSIVE in Australia! Aus is nearly the same size as mainland USA, just so you have a frame of reference.
From Byron Bay, you could fly to Melbourne and spend a week there – drive along the Great Ocean Road, stay in Lorne for a night or two. You could also head southeast from Melbourne and go to Wilsons Prom for a night or two (you’re bound to see kookaburras and wombats there, amongst other native Australian animals!) If you want to base yourself out of Melbs, you could easily do a day trip down to the Mornington Peninsula and have a lovely seaside day there. Melbourne itself is an awesome city and has so much fun stuff to do there! I think it’s still a bit too early for the footy season but see if you can’t try to take in some major sporting event – without question, Melbourne is the world’s greatest sporting city!
Australia is so awesome – I can’t wait to head back there after FI and I get married in 3 weeks! 🙂
Post # 11
WA in late feb = SUPER HOT. this is the time of year we get the hottest weather imaginable. Talking high 30’s to low 40s (i’m in Perth WA).
Melbs is generally a little cooler and i’m guessing that the same goes for SA and Tassie? Sydney is usaully about the same. QLD and NT hit their wet seasons in Feb so expect rain and humidity paired with the high 30s temps.
i loved Melbourne, there was so much to see and do. Sydney, eh, not so much. Just didnt feel it i guess. Cairns is very touristy and Surfers is just that – for surfers (beaches galore).
Again, it totally depends on what you want to do and see. If you want to laze by the beach, easy. Shopping, no probs. See the sights, we have those too. Just let us know and we will tell the you THE place to be =)
though, you could always rent a kangaroo or two, save driving? and you MUST try vegemite!
Post # 12
wow!!! you guys are so so super helpful!!!
So here’s the next question……originally, the Fi and i were going to do tahiti – relax on the beach. That then became Fiji (apparently easier to fly to from Cali). But i know that 2 weeks sitting on the beach and relaxing will drive us bonkers – we do need some action! But we still want some beachtime. Where is a good place in Australia that we can take a few days to just relax and lay by the beach or the such…
Post # 13
north qld (Cairns) is beach-y, Bondi is supposed to be nice in NSW, or Surfers Paradise (again in Qld). Quiet beaches prob best to go to Exmouth or Broome in WA – west coast beaches are so much nicer =P
you are gonna need a ton of suncream through in late Feb… beach at 40+ degrees (celcius) = red and owwies
Post # 14
I’m from the san fernando valley in Southern California, and i grew up in THE hotspot. Sunscreen and hot weather are my BFFs 🙂
Thanks for the suggestions! and keep them coming:)
Post # 15
You can also do all that in Melbourne, About an hour and a half away from the city is the mornington peninsula that is great in Feb as also there is phillip island. Plus you can head back to the city for shopping food etc
As ive lived in Melbourne, Sydney and Darwin id say melbourne by far and you can take a car on the boat over to tasmania and drive around there for a few days but be warned it gets cold.
Post # 16
If you want beaches, stay south of the Tropic of Capricorn, which runs through the lower third or so of Queensland, eliminating Cairns, Port Douglas, and the Daintree. Stinger season is from October to May in the tropics and the waters are a serious no go zone. Not only are box jellyfish lethal, but there are also irikundji (sp?) that are smaller than the box jellies and can get through stinger nets. It’s just not worth it IMO.
In February, you can go anywhere in Australia and find extremely hot temperatures, suitable for the beach. Melbourne will get up into the upper 30s/low 40s in Feb (that’s 90s – 100s F) and pretty much all the other areas will be about the same. Sydney has beautiful beaches, Melbourne has beautiful beaches within an hour and a half’s drive, and I can’t say enough about how gorgeous Perth and WA is!!! The only drawback to WA is that it is another 4 hours beyond Sydney, so count on additional time and money to get there. Really though, there are gorgeous beaches abound in Australia and at that time of year, you can’t go wrong (excepting the places listed in the first paragraph of course).
Oh and one more thing on the sunscreen issue – the sun in Australia is INTENSE! It’s like nothing we have in America. Sadly, the hole in the ozone layer is pretty much centred over Tasmania and Victoria (Melbourne) so the sun there is of an intensity that cannot be described. If you wear SPF 15 at home, wear a minimum of 30 there. And make sure you have good quality sunglasses as well if you don’t want to be squinting the whole time!
My advice – go out and buy a travel guide to Australia. You’ll probably be able to better figure out where you want to go after skimming through a book and looking at some pictures of the different places. Oh and if you want an hilarious read on Australia before you go, may I recommend Bill Bryson’s In A Sunburned Country? Bill Bryson is an awesome writer and the way he describes his travels around Australia is classic, just classic. I actually laughed aloud many, many times whilst reading that book! 🙂