Australia's Winter

Old Jan 14th, 2004, 06:00 PM
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Australia's Winter

Please let me know if a trip to Australia & New Zeland will be a good choice during the months of June or July /2004. My tour operator says is O.K., but I want the real opinion of someone that has been there at that time.I dislike cold weather, and don't want to ruin my vacations. Any feedback will be highly appreciated.
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Old Jan 14th, 2004, 07:41 PM
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Northern Australia (Darwin, Broome, Nth Qld)is glorious in June/July. If you head south it get cooler-it snows in the mountains of Southern Australia in those months. New Zealand is cooler still!!I live in Australia and would advise anyone who was contemplating a visit that Mar/April and Oct/November are generally the best months to see most parts of Australia. Have also visited NZ in May/June and unless you ski it is not much fun and very cool in the south island especially since you dislike cold weather. Sorry!!!
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Old Jan 14th, 2004, 09:24 PM
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In New Zealand you may also have the problem of some of the roads being blocked by snow at that time of the year. I agree with Lyndie that March/April and October/November are good times to visit both countries. However if you only intend to visit the top part of Australia (Northern Territory and Queensland) then June and July are perfect months for travelling around.
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Old Jan 15th, 2004, 02:04 AM
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Hi Doris-I could only go to NZ and OZ in July/August as I work in a school in the States and it's the only time I get a big chunk of time available. I really didn't have a major problem, except that NZ is pretty cold at that time. It was weird to see snow in July but if you are prepared for that and know you are not going to have a typical summer holiday thenyou will be okay. I spent the majority of NZ in long underwear and a ski jacket, but I also got to go skiing for a full week so it was more than worth it for me. I still did many of the adventure activities I wanted to do-the weather does not stop that. The only difference was that it was chillier! The driving is much more hazardous but honestly, the highways are small and one-lane so I think it would be treacherous anyway although better with warmer weather. Australia in July is much better. I did a tour in 2001 from Cairns to Sydney and it was beautiful until I got to Sydney. Then it was in the 50s and raining. However, I was in Sydney this August and one day I was at the Bondi Icebergs gym on Bondi Beach, having a private boxing lesson outside, overlooking the beach, wearing a tank top and workout pants. It was 70 degrees! Maybe I got blessed with great weather this time, but it certainly didn't feel like winter! Basically, if you don't like cold weather this is not the time to visit NZ. Australia is bette
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Old Jan 15th, 2004, 02:06 AM
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Oops..I hit the wrong button. As I was saying NZ will be cold but Australia was much warmer when I was in the Northern part-i.e. Cairns, Queensland, Byron Bay, in July. If you really want to go to those countries, and June/July is the only time you can go, then don't let it stop you. But, if you are flexible I could say go in Feb/March or in the fall.
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Old Jan 15th, 2004, 07:34 AM
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I also work in a school and can only travel in July and August. Cold is relative. I live in the N.E. U.S. where it is 6 degrees farenheit right now. NZ was never even close to being that cold. We were there in July and August, and while I did wear long underwear and layered clothes, I was never uncomfortable. We spent a great deal of time hiking and enjoying outside. The coldest was in Te Anau where it hit 0 C. I did not find the cold difficult as many days were well above freezing. The north island was even warmer. If that is the time you can go, I would go anyway. We are hoping to return in July and Aug. 2004 and I am most excited. Except in the mountains, the winter temps seem much like the mid-atlantic winters in the states (these past few weeks excepted)
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Old Jan 15th, 2004, 08:30 AM
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Not to poach on someone else's post, but am going to South Island in late May/early June and would love to know if the warnings (roads blocked by snow, etc.) apply to that slightly earlier time of year, too. I expect cold weather (info I've read says between 30-50F) but wasn't sure about driving conditions.

Thanks, in advance, for any feedback.
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Old Jan 15th, 2004, 01:15 PM
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Heather-I don't know/remember how to check road conditions but I do remember they talk about it a lot on the news so you will know in advance what is open or closed. Also, if you have lived through Chicago weather you will survive cold weather ANYWHERE!!! I lived in Chicago for 8 years and while I was cold in NZ in July, I still managed to get out and do all the activities. I figured if I could live through a typical Chicago winter I could live through cold weather on my holiday.

Also, make sure with the rental car company that you have chains in the car. This is very important. I got caught in a snowstorm in the NI and there were no chains. I had been VERY thorough with my rental agency, APEX, about having chains in the car for my entire trip, which include both the NI and SI island. They failed to tell me that chains were only in the SI cars. Suffice to say, I was royally angry when I got stuck and had no chains. Have a great time!
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Old Jan 15th, 2004, 01:23 PM
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Abby, thanks so much for the feedback. Didn't realize it was going to be quite so cold and snowy. But, like a truly demented Chicagoan, I enjoy cold weather. Somehow, my "beach" trip to Europe transformed itself to a winter time visit to NZ. Funny how that worked out.

Definitely will make certain that the rental has chains and can explain how to put them on the tires. Can completely imagine how frustrated you were to be stuck ... not pleasant at any time let alone on vacation.
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Old Jan 15th, 2004, 03:58 PM
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Heather-I'm not sure if it will be that cold and snowy when you go. I was there in July 2003 and it snowed on July 4. I think living in Chicago made me demented as well, as I prefer to go to winter climates during my summer holiday as opposed to going to the beach! But remember, when we get older, our skin will be less damanged and we will look younger than everyone else. Let me know if you need help planning. My email is [email protected].
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