First Time to Australia-eyes bigger than stomach?

Feb 13th, 2009, 07:25 AM
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 3,335
"The Great Ocean Road is an option, however I am not sure we will be up to another long drive after going to Flinders. We are from San Francisco, does anyone know if the GOR is similar to the California coast?"

You don't necessarily have to drive it yourself. If your time is limited, you could take a 1-day tour through someone like APT <> and see most of it in one day. We did this several years ago and it was not tiring at all.

Regarding similarity to the California coast along Hwy 1, I think there is enough of a difference that it would not be redundant. I have done both and found the GOR very scenic, but not a repeat of anything I've previously done. I would recommend it as one of the world's great coastal drives.
Orlando_Vic is offline  
Feb 13th, 2009, 12:39 PM
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That's a one dayer [albeit a long one] out of Melbourne and return Orlando.

oforparis has only got as far as Adelaide and was next scheduled to Sydney for departure.
Bushranger is offline  
Feb 14th, 2009, 03:26 PM
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 21
Have you booked your international flight yet? If not, think about flying in to Cairns and out of Sydney. That way you can do Cairns, H Island, Adelaide & the rest (I'm sure you are suitably confused about that by now) then back to Sydney for your 3 or 4 days before you fly home
Cessnock is offline  
Feb 17th, 2009, 09:44 PM
Join Date: Feb 2009
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As a long term South Aussie resident. I would suggest 2 nights in the Clare Valley on your way back from the Flinders Ranges and 2 nights in the Barossa Valley. Personally, I'm a big fan of the McLaren Vale wine region. You can easily do this area on a day trip. Would definitely go to KI. A unique and beautiful part of the world. Ideally you would need 2 days, but it can be done on a one day tour (albeit a very long day)
Nannajude is offline  
Feb 20th, 2009, 01:43 PM
Original Poster
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My head is spinning with so many wonderful options. We have decided to stay an extra day on Long Island and an extra day in Pt. Douglas, so Kangaroo Island will have to wait for another visit. We will then have 6 nights to spend in the Adelaide area. I thought a night in the Clare Valley on the way to Flinders, Rawnsley Park for 2 nights and then split the last 3 nights between Barossa Valley/Adelaide Hills/McLaren Vale before we have to fly back to Sydney for our flight home. Since we are not going to KI or driving the GOR, have I totally ruined my chance of seeing a koala in the wild? I am very interested in seeing a wombat and understand my best chance will be a wildlife park. Other than Sydney, are there any places on our itinery where I might see one? Too much wine, too little animals?
oforparis is offline  
Feb 20th, 2009, 02:44 PM
Join Date: Oct 2008
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You could find this site of use ofp -
There's a list of sanctuaries there, two of at least three wildlife parks around base of the Adelaide Hills shown, roughly NE of City and the narrow coastal plain has the Hills quite close to the City, The Gorge area and road in particular being a great scenic area.

Under FAQ on that site you'll get a list of possible places to see Koalas in the wild, Mt Lofty [Adelaide Hills] being one location.

One thing to remember though is that even if you are able to get to a spot where some are being sighted, you'll need to be risking a crinked neck unless you want to ly down on your back, for they're generally up high in trees.
Because they are a relatively inactive animal, sanctuaries do provide a good home away from home for them [out of harms way] and some have tree level board walks that allow closer easier viewing without disrupting the Koala's day - they'll probably be dozingly ignoring you.

Featherdale Wildlife Park in foothills of Blue Mountains is also quite well rated by people who have been there but it's a lot further out there from Sydney than what the Adelaide Hills are.

If by chance you wanted to cuddle a Koala, that is banned in most states but if you wanted to make your extra day a stop over in Brisbane, Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary there has provision for that and also one of the larger wildlife sanctuaries where you can also do some hand feeding of kangaroos.

Alternately, a drive from Whitsundays to Cairns/PD with an overnight stop on Magnetic Island could give you two chances of seeing in the wild.

There are few
Bushranger is offline  
Feb 20th, 2009, 08:33 PM
Join Date: Oct 2007
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Oforparis, this from the Victorian bushfires:

"Saved by a wombat burrow
A wombat burrow saved the lives of a mother and her two girls as a wall of flame bore down on them.
Nesh Sinclair pointed to the hole in the side of a hill that a wombat had made. 'This became our shelter,' said Mrs Sinclair, who lives near Kinglake.
'The fire was racing down the hill and we had no chance of running from it. I saw the burrow, grabbed the children and although it was pretty small we were partly able to get into it.
'But there was also a bit of embankment that the hole was in, so it gave us a bit more shelter. We kept our heads down and the fire jumped over us.
'It's a miracle
Bokhara2 is offline  
Feb 20th, 2009, 09:10 PM
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You're not suggesting Bokha that ofp go a burrowing are you?
In search of a Koala?
Bushranger is offline  
Mar 4th, 2009, 01:52 AM
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 3
Cleland Wildlife Park at Mount Lofty (Adelaide Hills - very easy distance and drive from nearly anywhere in Adelaide and surrounds) has Koalas and Kangaroo in a very open area and you can hold a koala.
Michele30 is offline  
Mar 4th, 2009, 10:25 AM
Join Date: Jun 2004
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This may not work for you ... but I want to share for others reading this thread.

A definite highlight of my trip was visiting the Australia Walkabout Park -- about an hour from Sydney. I loved feeding (and scratching) the very tame, friendly kanagroos and wallabys. But my heart totally and completely melted when I got to hug and snuggle with my adopted wombat. We cuddled for about twenty minutes. I'm in love!!!

They also had a koala -- and we got some nice pix -- but it preferred to be left alone. They also had a lovely walking trail that included caves and aboriginal art, in addition to lots of animals in as close to their natural setting as possible.
Songdoc is offline  

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