your advice for Perth, Adelaide, and Brisbane please

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Mar 9th, 2018, 09:56 AM
  #1
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your advice for Perth, Adelaide, and Brisbane please

We're heading back to Australia for our fourth visit later this year. We are scheduled to be on the ground during the last week of November and the first week of December, for a total of 16 nights. Our original plans had us visiting New Zealand for 3+ weeks, but the length of time away will just be more challenging this year given work considerations. Over the past couple of days we made a decision to hold New Zealand off until a similar time of year next year when we expect to have 3-4 weeks. Given that we've been back and forth to Australia a few times we're more comfortable with a shorter trip. Besides, Australia is always on our minds!

So, I've come to you once again for your feedback. Right now I'm looking at allocating my time as follows:

Perth - 4 nights
Adelaide - 2 nights
Kangaroo Island - 3 nights
Barossa Valley - 2 nights
Brisbane - 3 nights
Fraser Island? - 2 nights

We enjoy variety on our travels. We enjoy large cities but always want to incorporate the outdoors, especially in Australia. We aim for beautiful scenery, wildlife, good food, and enriching experiences.

Do you think our allocation of time among the cities (Perth, Adelaide, Brisbane) is good, or would you recommend redistributing among these cities?

Right now, I'm thinking about ending the trip in Fraser Island but I'm also interested in other areas in Southeast Queensland (no, I don't mean the theme parks). What are some of your favorites in this area?

Thanks, as usual.
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Mar 9th, 2018, 12:29 PM
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Hi Tripplanner,
nice to see you popping in!

Are you thinking of an open jaw into Perth & out of Brisbane?

On the surface, I think your city allocation looks about right - but would like to see what you’re planning for Perth.
If you’re thinking a day or so to decompress, some exploration in Perth, Fremantle & perhaps a couple of day trips, it should be ok. You know, you could easily spend a week having a look around - down to Albany, around the Margaret River.

Have a look for Melnq8’s fantastic trip reports in WA. She lived in Perth for a few years and really got the most out of exploring the area. And writing about it. And BTW - see her Trip Reports for NZ. And Songdoc’s too.

Having thrown that spanner in your planning ...

I think a couple of nights on Fraser Island would be a great finish. You asked about other areas in SEQ - nearby, I like Noosa and the hinterland of the Sunshine Coast very much. The thing is, I guess, , you will have to sacrifice something else
to include other options. As it is, with the qualifications/ queries I’ve noted, I think you have a good plan that would work well for your party.

Am I correct in thinking you’re a party of 4 non-drivers? If so, that might influence some thoughts I &others might have in recommendations. If not - I’m thinking about someone else & it doesn’t matter.
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Mar 9th, 2018, 01:59 PM
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Bokhara2, thank you; good to see you too! Yes, we will be flying open jaw and, yes, we are the 4 non-drivers. I'll check out Melnq8's reports; I've read her reports for NZ and look forward to her upcoming one later this year. Right now, for Perth, given that this will be our first visit, we're thinking about staying close to the city and Fremantle, although a day trip to Rottnest Island may be attractive. I will save the further places for another visit.
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Mar 9th, 2018, 02:36 PM
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The problem with only four nights in Perth is that you miss the best of what WA has to offer - which IMO is the SW part of the state. However, as non-drivers you'd have a devil of a time organizing a trip down south anyway.

Getting around the Perth CBD without a car is easy though. With four nights you'll get a decent taste of the city - you can get to Kings Park (on foot from downtown accommodation or via bus), Cottesloe Beach (via train and a 20-30 minute walk) and Fremantle (via ferry, then return via train). You can also get to South Perth (with attractions such as the zoo) via an easy ferry ride.

I'm not a fan of Rottnest, but it's also relatively easy to access from the Perth CBD/Freo. It's not a gentle ride though - do take precautions if you're prone to seasickness - it can be bloody awful.

There go your three days....plus some.

The Swan Valley is a whole different animal - very difficult to reach via public transport, and even more difficult to get around in. If you're keen, there are tours and some lovely chewy reds.

SA will present similar issues - difficult to get to the outlying areas without transport. I adore the Adelaide Hills and the Barossa, but always had a car. There are some lovely wineries and restaurants there, plus some beautiful walks. We never did venture to Kangaroo Island - too many other things to do in SA.

I have a few trip reports for SA posted here too. Lovely state (as is WA).

And thank you Bokhara.
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Mar 9th, 2018, 04:07 PM
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Thank you Melnq8. I know there is more to do than we have time; we expect to return as we have again and again.
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Mar 9th, 2018, 09:03 PM
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Your chewy red supply must be dwindling, Mel - time for a replenishing sortie!
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Mar 10th, 2018, 05:18 AM
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I hear you Bokhara!

Fortunately we have access to a small selection of excellent Aussie reds here, and and abundance of nice reds from Chile, Argentina, CA and Washington state. And the Pinot Noir from Oregon - heaven in a glass.

But we can't find anything remotely like the dry limey Riesling from the Mount Barker area that I love so much, or our favorite Liqueur Verdelho from the Swan. In fact, good fortified wine is as rare as hen's teeth around here. As is good Indian food, sadly.

I would love to see how the Perth foreshore has changed since the Elizabeth Quay project, which was just getting underway when we left.

https://www.mra.wa.gov.au/projects-a...th-quay/vision
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Mar 10th, 2018, 09:47 PM
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AmoMondo (TA) was there in December & Im pretty sure will be passing through Perth again on her way in in September, so we could ask her about the Elizabeth project. I think we should make her an honorary Australian, she s here so often & is such an enthusiastic explorer of remote spots - without a car, TPlanner.

Could you give me a couple of wineries for those Oregon Pinot Noirs, please? I have an American visitor coming next month, who wants to know what I would like. Good chance to try one of your favourite tipples - and more interesting than a tea towel or gawd forbid a baseball cap

Sorry, Tripplanner - normal transmission may now resume
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Mar 11th, 2018, 04:37 AM
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No worries, Bokhara2. I'm enjoying the banter.

By the way, the pictures of Elizabeth Quay makes me think of Melbourne's Southbank.
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Mar 11th, 2018, 06:20 AM
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Bokhara - you can't go wrong with a nice Pinot Noir from Lange or Ponzi. They can be expensive, but even their lower end range is darn good.

Erath has a very good 2015 Pinot Noir, and it's a bargain compared to Lange and Ponzi. It's often available at our Costco here in Colorado.

Barring that just about any Pinot Noir from the Willamette Valley is bound to be pretty good. These days I tend to shop by region, rather than winery, and it's served me pretty well.

Although Cab Sav is prolific in your neck of the woods, if you want to try one from Washington - Walla Walla is our Coonawarra.
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Mar 11th, 2018, 01:54 PM
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I've done more research into the wine regions of South Australia and am better appreciating how spoiled for choice we are. Naturally the Barossa comes to mind as it's the most well-known but we're not married to it. We hope to spend a couple of days touring a few wineries (we know we will need to book a tour as we are without wheels) but we also hope to enjoy some time walking in a town or village, visiting shops, and enjoying good food. What we continue referring back is our time in Franschhoek outside of Cape Town; it was perfect for our interests. Would you recommend Tanunda as our base? Or would a different wine region be even more suitable for us?
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Mar 11th, 2018, 02:32 PM
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Trip

i hope you find an area like Franshoek, we were there last year and it was a truely magical start to our trip to the Western Cape.

I have to to say that the immediate area of Perth is our most underwhelming trip to date. We have very good friends who have lived there for years and visited them three years ago.

I can fully understand why it is regularly voted as a top city in the world in which to live but as a travel destination, to us it was fairly lacking. We really enjoyed our trip to Rottnest, the colours were stunning and the Quokkas were really good fun, I’d agree with Mel, our ferry journey was rough going but the ferry was very expensive for what it was.

We we found the Fremantle area to be fairly down faded and scruffy but the Marine Museum had impressive installations.

We we drove up to the Swan River area which is a small scale wine growing area with a small number of vineyards offering meals but nothing like the Western Cape.

The beaches around Perth was very developed and urban, we were a little unnerved by the constant pantomime of the helicopters hovering and the public being told to leave the sea because of the presence of sharks. It was very unsavoury to see the local council arranging baited traps just offshore in an attempt to kill the sharks.

I’d cut your time down to two nights in Perth.
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Mar 11th, 2018, 03:16 PM
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tripplanner -

Regarding wine regions in SA, we like the Adelaide Hills, Barossa and the Clare. Not a fan of McClaren Vale, as due to it's proximity to Adelaide it felt more like a suburb to us than a proper wine region. We liked Tanunda, I'm trying to find my trip report for details, but having trouble with the new format and my lack of patience.
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Mar 11th, 2018, 04:45 PM
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BritishCaicos, thank you for your feedback. I'm hoping for a better experience in Perth. I suppose I can take a day trip or two if I get bored in the city.

Melnq8, I did read one of your reports on South Australia yesterday. I must admit that your report made me think about visiting Coober Pedy and the Flinders Range although I'm reminding myself to save it for when I'm not there in December.
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Mar 11th, 2018, 04:49 PM
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My favourite is the Clare, although that’s not at all to denigrate any of the others.
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Mar 12th, 2018, 02:16 AM
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We love the Sunshine Coast, north of Brisbane. Lots of different areas to stay, some are upmarket, others more old-fashioned. The hinterland is nice too - Maleny, Montville, Mapleton etc. I'm not sure how you'd get around this area without a car though. Public transport outside the Australian city centres is not good.

If you do stay north of Brisbane somewhere for your last night, allow enough time to get to the airport. There is only one north/south road and it is often clogged with traffic. An accident can mean traffic standstill. If you want to stay the night before your flight near Brisbane airport, sing out and I'll fish out the details of a quiet motel we've stayed at a couple of times.

Kay
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Mar 12th, 2018, 06:27 AM
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tripplanner - Yes, Coober Pedy is best left for a much cooler time of year!
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Mar 12th, 2018, 11:37 AM
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Bokhara2 and KayF, thank you.

Melnq8, the list of places that would be better for an Australian winter visit is growing...
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Mar 20th, 2018, 10:53 PM
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My daughter and I have visited Adelaide and went to Barossa without a car - we enjoyed the bus trip and went to a few very different wineries .
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Mar 21st, 2018, 10:05 AM
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Thank you Northie. Always encouraging to know that someone else's done it and enjoyed it. Do you remember the name of the company you used?
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