Everyday Australia—every day, a journey

Australia has charged imaginations around the world with its relative remoteness and its diversity of geography and wildlife. Much of the country, even for Australians, seems like an eternal frontier: untamed, unconquerable, sometimes deadly.

There are kinder regions of the continent, of course, like New South Wales (NSW). That this state is the most populous in Australia is perhaps no accident. With its cooler climes and more hospitable geography, NSW has an abundance of parks, public beaches and charming small towns. Many vacationers drive south from Sydney along the coast, passing out of NSW and curving west toward Melbourne. City to city only takes a couple days on the highway, but the point is to go slowly, take smaller roads, and make the journey a discovery.

My brother, a naturalized Australian from Vietnam with a bakery in a small, friendly coastal town, handed over the car keys, saying, “Watch out for kangaroos; if you hit one, the car will be all smashed up.” Haha, I thought, but he wasn’t kidding. And so the journey began, with cameras, water bottles and a rented Mick Mackie surfboard—by complete chance, Mackie himself was sitting beside us on the flight to Sydney, having literally just come off the slopes from snowboarding. Winter in Japan—summer in Oz!
What is ‘best’ about NSW is really a matter of personal taste. After life in the neon behemoth of Tokyo, the streets of Sydney, though lovely, seemed far less compelling than the wineries of Shoalhaven Coast, dense coastal forests like the Congo or the rolling hills on the way to Eden that pocket quaint towns like Tilba. Do stop for a bite (and a rest) along the way—the road can be tiring. Australian beef is of course well known, but fresh seafood and delicate lamb are definitely worth going for.

The beaches, gorgeous and seemingly never-ending, are probably the highlight for most travelers. Famous surf spots draw crowds, but there are plenty of lesser-known points along the coast. Ask locals about potential hazards and where (gulp) dangerous marine life might feed. Even if you aren’t surfing or swimming, the beaches offer plenty—a place to read or simply relax. Some of the best coastal areas are those you have to hike down to. Make sure you have some good shoes and be aware of other hiking opportunities in the many national parks.

NSW’s attractions, natural or otherwise, are but a small part of what Australia has to offer. The discovery never seems to end. Neither, then, does the journey.








Share and Enjoy:     These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • StumbleUpon
  • Reddit
  • Google Bookmarks
  • Facebook
  • MySpace
  • Propeller
  • Technorati
  • TwitThis

Comments are closed.