Posts for Australia

Top Ten Day Trips Around Queensland

Travel Blog, Travel Tips - Ross French - January 11, 2018

Marine life on the coral reef

When a state has almost 7,000 kilometers of coastline, you know you’re dealing with a big country. Queensland occupies a staggeringly big area in the North West of Australia and is characterized by its tropical rainforests, white sandy beaches, peaceful towns and of course, the Great Barrier Reef. You’d need more than a lifetime to explore everything that Queensland has to offer, but here’s 10 day trips which you shouldn’t miss on your first time. The best way to see them all? Grab yourself a car rental in Cairns.

1. Dive at the Great Barrier Reef. Let’s start with a biggie. If you’re going to do just one thing, make it a day trip to the Great Barrier Reef. The vast living structure is home to thousands of coral reefs, myriad islands and hundreds of cays, not to mention the colorful tropical fish, the curious turtles and the sharks. Unfortunately, the reef has been irreversible damaged. To stop any further damage, be sure to travel with a reputable agent. Leave your car rental in Cairns and head of to explore one of the world’s most amazing natural wonders.

2. Swim at the Tangalooma Wrecks. Haven’t had your fill of snorkeling or scuba diving? Swim off the coast of Moreton Island near Brisbane and you can dive down to explore the Tangalooma wrecks in the shallows. The calm waters make this a perfect trip for all ages.

3. Climb to SkyPoint Deck. How do you like heights? Down along the Gold Coast you can take the elevator up the 230-meter-high observation tower to look over the ocean and Surfer’s Paradise below. Few views in Australia match up to this one.

4. Take the train to Kuranda. While the town of Kuranda is interesting enough, it’s the train journey to reach it that is the real highlight. Take the scenic ride takes you across bridges, lush rainforest journey, and gorges before reaching town. Well worth the trip.

5. Check out the wildlife at Australia Zoo. Wildlife lovers should head straight to Australia Zoo located along the Sunshine Coast close to the Beerwah Mountains. While it may not be the only zoo in the state, it’s certainly the most famous in part down to Steve Irwin, the front man to the documentary series The Crocodile Hunter. Don’t take are word for it, the zoo has won plenty of awards over the years including the Australian Tourism Awards.

6. See the Australian Age of Dinosaurs Museum. If you have even the smallest interest in paleontology, don’t miss a visit to the Australian Age of Dinosaurs Museum which houses a seriously impressive collection of fossils including two found in Queensland.

7. Wander through Hou Wang Miau Temple. For something a little different, how about a visit to an authentic Chinese temple, the only one in Australia. Since it’s donation to the National Trust in the late 70s, the temple has been meticulously preserved offering guests a slice of Chinese history in the heart of Queensland. While you’re there, be sure to take a look at the information and artifacts to learn more about its significance.

8. Go wine tastings at Boireann Wines. If you love to sip of French-style wines, you won’t want to miss the wine tasting at Boireann Wines near Stanthorpe. Here, you can learn about the production of Queensland wine and tour the vineyards.

9. Drive across Fraser Island. Fraser Island is one of the most popular spot for backpackers coming to Australia. The huge sand island (the largest in the world) lies just off the coast of Queensland. When you arrive, you can spend your days racing around on 4×4 cars, camping under the stars, exploring the rainforest or swimming in the crystal-clear waters. Bliss.

10. Go underground at the Chillagoe?Mungana Caves National Park. Both geological and cultural interesting, the hundreds of limestone caves in this national park are made even more impressive by the ancient Aboriginal rock art that adorns them. Best explored with the help of an expert guide.

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How to Plan a Solo Traveling Trip

Travel Blog, Travel Tips - Ross French - November 10, 2017

How you plan your solo traveling trip – where you’ll go, what you’ll take and what you’ll do – depends on what kind of trip you want to have. This guide recognizes four themes for a solo traveling trip which all have different requirements and can be found in different places; nature, culture, luxury and adventure. Once you’ve decide where you want to go and you’ve come up with a basic outline for your trip, you’ll need to do more extensive and detailed research that focuses on how you’ll stay safe throughout your journey. This is a guide to planning a solo traveling trip.

Australia

A lot of people choose Australia as their travel destination, particularly for gap years. This trip is likely to be a combination of nature and adventure. The nature in Australia is incredible and impossible to ignore – from wild kangaroos, to the insects and reptiles which you need to research and guard against – and any journey across this varied and stunning landscape will soon turn into an adventure. There are both advantages and disadvantages to it being so popular a destination; on the one hand, it should be easy to find temporary or casual work, while on the other employers and others can take advantage of young travelers, so you always need to be on your guard.

Caribbean

These islands should give you the opportunity to experience all four of the themes, and there are always a variety of Grand Cayman condos for sale if you decide to settle, as many do. The nature is self-explanatory, from the marine creatures to the rare birds of the mangrove forests, while there is a culture of music and celebration all around you. From the yachts cruising by to lavish parties, you’ll find luxury everywhere you look – and, as for adventure, each island brings something different, so expect the unexpected.

Thailand

This is another very popular location for travelers – so, again, do as much research about how to stay safe as possible. You can find luxury among the idyllic beaches, and nature waiting everywhere to be seen. There are luxury hotels and restaurants which give you almost an infinite choice, while you could volunteer in an elephant conservation program, for example, and you can also experience the power of a real monsoon.

Europe

The European tour can be done on a single train ticket that you can use all over the continent, and this will give you access to both the cultured and the luxurious nature of the continent. You could spend the warmer months among the museums and archives of Spain and Italy, learning about the past and the present, or seeing operas and shows in Germany, before heading to the luxury hotels and casinos of Monaco.

United States

The all-American road trip is known for its spontaneous and adventurous style; just pick up an old car and hit the country’s famous routes, which go up to three thousand miles in length. These will take you through the natural and cultural sites of greatest importance in the country, from the Grand Canyon to the historic Mount Rushmore.

However, because this will involve traveling through various states, make sure you know the law and the customs in each place you visit.

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5 of the Most Gnarly Surfing Spots in the World

Travel Blog - Ross French - September 22, 2017

Surfing Spots

You’ve probably heard the saying, “A bad day in the water is better than a good day working,” but what if days filled with bad surfing conditions were few and far between? You need to find a beach with an amazing surf, and it might be easier than you think. Stop randomly chasing the waves, and check out some of the most gnarly surfing destinations in the world.

1. Oahu, Hawaii

There’s a reason that Hawaii’s Banzai Pipeline is a fixture on the surf tour circuit — it’s one of the heaviest waves in the world. The flawless water tube hovers more than 19 feet over the shallow base of the reef that lines the shores of Ehukai Beach on Oahu’s north shore. Unfortunately, most surfers will never be good enough to surf the Pipeline. The granddaddy of all waves is also one of the most dangerous. If you need more practice, Honolua Bay in Maui. If you’re lucky, you might see a whale or two from your board.

2. La Jolla, California

Southern California has several excellent surfing spots, but La Jolla, CA is one of the best because it’s home to several surfing spots with varied wave levels. If you’re a beginner, check out La Jolla Shores. It’s a pretty basic beach, but its reliable, predictable waves make it a favorite among local surfers. To find the gnarliest waves in the area, head to La Jolla Cove. Some of the largest waves in the area break just outside the protected part of the cove.

3. Eastern Cape, South Africa

When traveling to South Africa consider staying in Jeffrey’s Bay in the Eastern Cape province. The laid-back beach town is about an hour’s drive from Port Elizabeth — one of the largest cities in South Africa. Jeffrey’s Bay has some of the best waves in the world, according to Surfer Today, and it’s known for its long, fast barrels and intense breaks. The bay itself is divided into sections, making it easy to choose a wave that matches your skill level. Find Magna Tubes, Kitchen Windows, Boneyards, and the craziest of them all, Supertubes.

4. Raglan, New Zealand

Raglan, New Zealand burst onto the surf scene in the 1960s when it was used as a filming location for the surf classic, “The Endless Summer.” The sleepy surf town is filled with cafes and bars that have surfing videos on continuous play. Manu Bay is the most popular surf spot in the area. It’s a long, left-hand point break along a boulder beach that has waves that start as a hollow drop before going into a barrel, and finally into a long walled section. On epic days, surfers can surf from Indicators straight through Whale Bay to Manu Bay.

5. Gold Coast, Australia

Gold Coast, a coastal city in Queensland, is a well-known surfing mecca. The surfer’s paradise is home to over 40 miles of pristine beaches and four epic point breaks, including the Superbreak. Generally considered one of the best surfing spots on the Gold Coast, the Superbreak, is a right-hand wave that barrels regularly — it’s known for producing heavy, hollow barrels only suitable for experienced surfers. Surfers also flock to Currumbin Alley. Known simply as the Alley, the popular surf spot produces consistent, world-class waves that advanced surfers love, as well as whitewash waves ideal for beginners.

The key to finding an amazing surf spot is finding beaches that produce surf-worthy waves on a regular basis. This way, when you’re ready to hang ten, the waves are ready for you.

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TOP THREE PLACES TO VISIT IN MELBOURNE

Australia - Ross French - September 2, 2017

Attractions in melbourne

Famous for its live music, bars, charming alleyways, and lively people, Melbourne, the capital of the South East Coast Australia is a beautiful metropolitan city which has been attracting travelers with all of its hidden treasures. The ‘European enclave’ of Australia is known for being scenic yet cosmopolitan, business centric yet young and trendy. There is a thriving art scene, and a lot of unique shops and award winning restaurants in Melbourne . The city charms everybody who visits the place and it is a popular spot for cruise vacations . However, Melbourne is not all about business and no beauty. In fact, there are a lot of beautiful places in and around the city for you to explore during your trip to Melbourne . Here are the top three attractions in Melbourne which you must visit for the ultimate Melbourne sightseeing experience. Continue Reading

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Where to Eat: A Guide to Sydney’s Best Italian Restaurants

Australia, Travel Blog - Ross French - July 27, 2017

pilu at freshwater

Sydney is one of the most-travelled destinations in the world. There are numerous things to do and see while visiting this beautiful city in Australia with your loved ones. Certainly, you are going to have a memorable and fun trip here.

To experience flavorful and mouth-watering dishes is on top of everybody’s travel to-do list. Whenever you travel, it is a must to know where is best to eat to satisfy your wandering soul. If you visit Sydney, you should try different cuisines, especially the Italian one. In fact, there are a lot of Best Italian restaurants in the area which you can try out. Italian cuisine has greatly influenced a lot of restaurants in the city. Research for the ideal restaurants beforehand to easily find the place when you already get there or you can opt for a car hire in Sydney that can advice you the recommended Italian food spots in the city.

So, are you ready for a food trip? Listed below are some of the must-visit restaurants while you are in Sydney:

Pilu at Freshwater

Celebrate any occasions in Pilu at Freshwater with your most favorite people. This restaurant has a stunning scenery with classic beachside setting. You will definitely have an awesome dining experience with your family or friends here. Expect first-rate Italian cooking by Chef Giovanni Pilu as well as great-tasting wine that you will all enjoy.

Balla Restaurant

If you are craving for legit Italian food, then visit one of The Star’s best eateries, Balla Restaurant. It was named after the poet and writer, Giacomo Balla, and put up by Australia’s leading supporter of Italian cuisine, Chef Stefano. This restaurant brings a cutting-edge twist on conventional Italian dishes that you will love once you’ve had a taste of it.

Otto RistoranteOtto Ristorante

One of the best Italian restaurants in Sydney is Otto Ristorante. Situated at The Finger Wharf, it offers everyone the finest Italian cuisine you will ever taste in your life. Its head chef, Richard Ptacnik, uses organic produce in preparing every dish. Also, the fabulous view while dining here makes it more interesting to visit the restaurant and spend a wonderful dinner time.

Ormeggio at The Spit

Ormeggio is an Italian word that means berth and mooring. The Ormeggio at The Spit is a modern restaurant that has an amazing waterfront setting. It offers delectable meals that are prepared using fresh produce. Executive Chef Alessandro Pavoni and his team make sure to serve each visitor tasty meals that satisfy the soul.

Sydney is also a food lover’s paradise. There are various things you can do while in this city aside from checking out the best tourist spots or trying out its outdoor activities. Never miss the chance to taste Italian cuisine in the restaurants mentioned above. Who says you need to go to Italy to eat authentic Italian food? So, if you are planning to visit Sydney, don’t forget to add these best italian restaurants in your itinerary!

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