So back in 2015, I went to the wonderful land of Australia for a 3 week trip up the east coast. What a crazy experience! Before I went, I had so many questions. How much money should I take? Whats my itinerary going to be? Should I drive the east coast of Australia? How do you get up the east coast of Australia?
Well, there are many ways. You could walk it if you wanted to, but it would take you a good year or so. I got the bus and I’m very glad I did it. Some people decide to drive the east coast and its a long old drive, and you always have to find somewhere to park the car. With the bus, you can relax, catch up on some news, watch a film – the options are endless.
There are 2 options I would recommend for getting the bus. One would be Greyhound and the other would be Premier Motor Service. With Premier, its a little cheaper than Greyhound, but the busses are older. They also only have one bus a day going to each destination – so if you miss the bus after a heavy one the night before, you are pretty screwed. Greyhound is a little bit more expensive, but they do offer a hop on hop off service down the east coast. The busses are quite modern and have free wifi. However, the Wifi is pretty bad. You can also do overnight busses on Greyhound – so if you are on a budget its good for saving money on accommodation.
So thats travel sorted, but where do you stay? It depends on the sort of person you are. If you are not one for sharing a room with strangers and partying until the early hours – I would suggest avoiding hostels altogether and book yourself into a hotel. However, if you want to meet people and have a great time – stay in youth hostels. They are full of backpackers who are always up for a good time. When I went, there were only 2 hostel chains I stayed in. One was X Base, and one was Nomads. You can buy a 10 night BASE jump pass, which allows you to stay in any X base or Nomads hostel anywhere up the east coast. All you have to do is email or call at least 1 day before to let them know you are coming. Be aware though, try and call ahead as much as possible because they can fill up very quickly. If you want to find out more about these hostels, get in touch with us and we can help!
So enough about the boring stuff. Where is good to go on the east coast of Australia?
Time Spent: 3 Days
Hostel In Sydney: X Base Hostel
What To Do In Sydney:
- Sydney Opera House
- Sydney Bridge. You can climb the bridge but its expensive.
- Bondi Beach
- Darling Harbour
How Expensive Is Sydney? £££
Time Spent: 2 Days
Hostel In Byron Bay: X Base Hostel
What To Do In Byron Bay:
- Day trip to Ninbin. This is a great day out to a small town about an hour outside of Byron Bay. The whole of this town is based around weed. Its a very strange town where everyone is stoned. If weed isn’t your sort of thing, don’t worry – its still very interesting to walk around and watch. Be careful of undercover police if you are going to buy weed though, the locals usually tell you if they police are wandering around.
- Byron Beach. This is a perfect place to lay down a towel, chill out and catch some rays. Weather depending obviously.
- Cheeky Monkeys is a great night out in Byron Bay. If you love dancing on the tables or beer pong, this place is for you. They sometimes do free food here. I got a free roast dinner.
How Expensive Is Byron Bay: ££
Hostel In Brisbane: X Base Hostel
Time Spent: 2 Days
What To Do In Brisbane:
- Get Drunk During The Day. Brisbane is a business city, but there are lots of cool trendy bars to get drunk in during the day.
- Brisbane Zoo. This is where Steve Irwin brought up and cared for many animals including crocodiles. Its a great zoo with a great vibe.
How Expensive Is Brisbane? ££
Hostel In Surfers Paradise: Surfers Paradise Backpacker Resort
Time Spent: 2 Days
What To Do In Surfers Paradise:
- Infinity Attraction. If you are in to weird illusions, this is the place for you. You won’t be there for longer than a few hours, but its certainly something do do whilst you are there.
- Sin City Nightclub. Is a glitz and glam nightclub, so chuck on your best clothes for this one. It has great DJ’s, you will be dancing until the early hours.
- Wet n Wild Waterpark. This is a great waterpark, with some wicked slides. It has a lazy river to chill in to kill off your hangover form the night before.
How Expensive Is Surfers Paradise? £££
Time Spent: 2 Days
Hostel In Noosa: Nomads
What To Do In Noosa:
- Noosa everglades. This is a great opportunity to see crocodiles in their real life habitat. Its a little pricey, but worth seeing the animals in their natural habitat rather than a zoo.
- Beach day. Noosa beach is a great place to unwind with a few beers, catch some sun. Maybe, just maybe – you could try out some surfing.
How Expensive Is Noosa? £
Hostel In Fraser Island: Camping/Arranged Accommodation
What To Do In Fraser Island:
- Embrace The Madness. Fraser island was my favourite part of Australia. We had a fantastic group of people, and you meet so many new people. We went as part of a Nomads organised tour, which meant we drove around in Jeeps and stayed in nice accommodation. Some tour operators are much cheaper, but it means you are camping and you drive around on a bus. Driving a 4X4 is great fun with old and new friends. If you want to drive a 4X4, you are going to need your driving licence! You might get chance to see a Dingo!
How Expensive Is Fraser Island? ££
Hostel In Airlie Beach: Nomads
What To Do In Airlie Beach:
- Whitsundays tour. This was utterly amazing, not many people in life get to say they have been and snorkelled around the great barrier reef. Again we booked ourselves onto this tour about a week before it was due to set sail. All the boat tours last a couple of days. We decided to go onto the CLIPPER, the party boat. The boat sets sail very early every morning, so be prepared for early starts. However, you get the chance to snorkel in some of the most amazing spots the world has ever seen! There are other boats available, some people we spoke to went on the BROOMSTICK boat, and the vibe was much quieter. I would strongly recommend to do a Whitsundays boat tour. However, you are not allowed any bags with Zips on board, but don’t worry – your boat company will provide you with alternative bags.
How Expensive Is Airlie Beach? ££
Hostel In Sydney: Gilligans Backpackers
What To Do In Cairnes:
- Cairnes Zoo. If you didn’t get chance to go and see the zoo in Brisbane, you can always catch the crocs in Cairnes. You can rent a car and drive to the Zoo which is about an hour from the Gilligans hostel. There are plenty of car rental places near Gilligans hostel, and its not that expensive!
- Have a mad one in Gilligans. The hostel has a massive bar, and it always has events on. Drinks are cheap and everyone is up for a good time. When we were there they had mud wrestling in the bar, and everyone was cheering. It was great fun!
How Expensive Is Cairnes? £££
So how much does 3 weeks in Australia cost?
Again, it depends on who you are as a person. If you are fine with small dinners, am happy walking around and don’t drink a lot of alcohol you won’t need much. However if you like to do activities, get drunk everyday and your life revolves around food then you will need to take a sensible amount with you. Australia is not the cheapest place to go in the world. Alcohol is expensive, so I would suggest not to drink every night, however it is a great way of meeting people.
3 weeks in Australia with as many stops as I did was very intense. It felt like you were always on the move. However, I did some of the most amazing activities and met some truly amazing characters. I would of love to of spent more time in each place, however in such a short space of time I saw and did so much. So much so, that I would strongly recommend to get yourself over there and experience it!