Backpacking in Australia

by timobalk

Australia is a very big country for a backpacker to explore. The long distances and relatively high cost (by relatively high I mean similar to USA or Western Europe) make it a little hard for backpackers to get around. But your efforts will be fully rewarded by the country’s terrific scenery and unique attractions. Paces like the Grand Barrier Reef, Tanzania or Uluru Rock are all worthy of the ‘see before you die’ category and just pure delight for any outdoor lover. If the cities of Australia are those that interest you most, you’ll be happy to hear that hostels are widely available here. Here come some very useful tips and facts for all the independent travelers interested in backpacking in Australia:

Getting Around

by rameckers

As I stated before, long distance transportation might imply some serious costs in Australia, especially when traveling by plane. The low-cost operators that exist in US and Europe are not present on the Australian market, so don’t rely too much on discounted airfares. Due to few connections and lack of enough speed trains, train is also not the best option.
Your best choice when traveling alone on long distances would be the bus, although there are differences in prices between West and East. For groups of backpackers, the best way to save money is to rent a campers van or buy a cheap car that all of you can share. There are several companies in Australia specialized in selling affordable second hand cars and RV’s for travelers.

Accomodation

The cheapest accommodation you can get is represented by a friend’s couch :), but next in line are camp sites and hostels. If you are hiking and camping through a national park, make sure you get familiar with the park’s regulations beforehand, as camping might be restricted to certain areas. Hostels are present in the big Australian cities and can sometimes offer free breakfast and discounts for a several day staying. You might also ask around for a temporary job, like helping the hotel staff or in a restaurant’s kitchen.

Food and activities

by vagabond9

Traveling a in big city is not cheap, especially when you want to visit as many museums as possible, eat out and maybe get a few drinks in a bar. It would be ideal to have the possibility to cook for yourself, but if not, supermarket or Mc. Donald’s sandwiches are always an option. Try to hang around student campuses, here you will always find a decent, low-priced meal.
The price of recreational and fun activities can vary a lot, depending on its length, the resources involved and the amount of danger. Here prices are similar to US so budgeting depends entirely on your priorities.

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