Sydney, Australia

Why everyone is travelling Australia in their 20s..

Travelled in: 2014

Australia – that far away land that has become THE place to emigrate or travel to for every 20 something Brit over the past couple of years (myself included)… Images of Bondi Beach or the Whitsundays pop up constantly on my news feed every day. Everyone it seems, appears to be living it up in Australia and quite frankly I’m JEALOUS!

Personally for me I have a massive soft spot for Australia… it was the country that gave me my travel bug and the first place I visited on my 6 month trip back in 2014. I spent 3 months in Aus travelling the east coast from Melbourne to Cairns and then came back for another month after a quick trip around New Zealand so that I could travel from Darwin to Central Australia and spend some more time with friends in Sydney. I made some amazing friends and had one of the best times of my life travelling the east coast, having a permanent tan was an added benefit, so I can completely see why so many people end up moving over there for a couple of years to gain a bit of life experience in their 20’s – I even considered it at one point, but ended up moving a bit closer to home to Italy instead…

For some people the fact that so many Brits have moved over there is off putting for them, probably because it doesn’t feel like it would be a unique experience because everyone else has already been there done that, which is fair enough, but you would be missing out on some of the amazing things that Australia has to offer….

Why everyone is going to Australia in their 20s…

Visas – If you want to travel over to Australia on a working holiday visa, you have to do it before you’re 30, as that is the cut off date for this visa, obviously there are other visas you can travel over on, but this is generally the most popular one, so that is probably why everyone in their 20’s feels like they should go over and have that experience before it’s too late. I personally went over on a tourist visa which was valid for a year and I could spend up to 3 months at one time in the country.

Quality of Life – Living in the UK is fast paced and there is a lot of pressure from peers, families and general society for the younger generation to be successful in everything they do regardless of the lifestyle it will mean they live. Some people simply go to Australia to escape the pressure from society as it is a much more chilled, easy and comfortable lifestyle. The weather is better, the people are friendly and the pace of life is slower which for some means a higher quality of life than you may get in the UK.

Language – An obvious one, but moving or travelling to Australia is super easy as everyone speaks English. Brits tend to be lazy when it comes to learning new languages so going to a country that speaks the same language as us makes for an even easier life.

Community – Out of all of the places I have visited I would say Australia has the biggest backpacker community I have experienced… A lot of travelers and even workers reside in hostels meaning making friends and being part of that “backpacker community” is very easy and a really nice thing to experience and life long friends are made.

Travel – Although a lot of people go over to Australia to work, many will eventually at some point end up travelling parts of the country and there are some incredible places to visit…

8 Things you must do whilst travelling Australia…

Alongside the obvious ones everyone is familiar with like the Sydney Opera House, Sydney Harbour Bridge, Fraser Island, Great Barrier Reef, Ayers Rock, Bondi Beach and the Whitsundays there are plenty more things to do and see in Australia, most of which I wasn’t so familiar with before I got there, but am so happy I got to experience them…

1. Sky dive on Mission Beach – Probably one of the most amazing experiences I have ever had was skydiving 14,000 ft and landing on Mission Beach, which is on the east coast of Aus fairly close to Cairns. There are a few places in Aus you can skydive, but I think Mission Beach is pretty incredible as you are directly over the Great Barrier Reef, you land on the beach with an incredible view of both land and sea.

2. Chill out in 1770 – One of my favourite spots on the east coast was 1770. There’s an amazing hostel called Cool Bananas which probably made my experience there as it had such a laid back and fun vibe. The whole town has such an amazing atmosphere, its really chilled and a great place to relax and I would also highly recommend trying out Scooteroo motorbiking experience as it is a LOT of fun!

3. Campervan the Great Ocean Road – Another highlight of my trip was camper vanning the Great Ocean Road, this was one of the first things I did when I got to Aus. We hired a Jucy camper van which was a lot of fun to drive down the Great Ocean Road in, stopping at the 12 Apostles, the round the twist lighthouse and some of the most beautiful beaches in Australia.

4. Watch the Penguin Parade on Phillip Island – I am a big fan of all things cute and fluffy so going to see the penguin migration on Phillip Island was a huge highlight (unfortunately I didn’t manage to get any good pictures of this). A couple of hours drive from Melbourne and you are on Phillip Island, I went there on the same trip as Great Ocean Road so we had the camper van – there are plenty of camp sites to stay in some free, some paid. Down on the Penguin Parade of Phillip Island at sunset you can watch the penguins return from a busy day of fishing.

5. Learn to surf at Spot X – One of my first destinations on my east coast trip was Spot X surf camp, situated between Sydney and Byron Bay, it is a great place to come for a few days if you fancy attempting to learn how to surf. You will get all of your meals included in a stay here and I made some amazing friends who I kept bumping in to throughout my travels… Unfortunately the 3 lessons I had did not turn me in to a pro surfer, but just left me with multiple bumps and bruises, but still Spot X was a great experience.

6. Get hippy in Nimbin – An amazing side trip from Byron Bay is a day in Nimbin. Hop on the hippy bus and enjoy some space cakes surrounded by the colourful locals…

7. Go white water rafting – Up near Cairns on the Tully river is a great place for adrenaline junkies to go white water rafting. We did this with Raging Thunder tours, there were two options a more mild trip down the river or the extreme white water rafting which included cliff jumps, river swims and waterfalls – obviously this is the package we went for and it was terrifying, but a lot of fun!

8. Go on nature walks in Noosa – Noosa was one of my favourite beach spots in Australia and great place for getting at one with nature in it’s national parks. You can also use Noosa as a base to go to Australia zoo and get up close and personal with the locals…

Travelling Australia…

On my trip I used the greyhound buses to travel all over Australia. I personally thought they were really good, reliable and easy to use… I just bought a pass which was valid for a certain time period and then you are free to hop on and off the bus wherever you want. You have to book your trips in advance, but you are able to change them online really easily, the buses generally have wifi and they stop in all of the major destinations around the country.

Other ways to travel are on organised tours such as Oz Experience where you travel around in a group under a pre planned itinerary. For me I felt like this was a bit too organised and didn’t allow me enough freedom, but for some people this is a great option as everything is pre organised for you. You can also drive if you have a car or camper, but as Australia is very vast be prepared for long journeys and spending a lot on petrol.

An easy way to plan all of your trips is using the backpackers travel agents, they generally have branches in all of the major cities where you can just pop in and one of their agents will book your whole trip for you. I used the company Peterpans, but there are other companies such as Global World Backpackers and even Hostels such as Nomads and Base usually have a travel desk to help plan your adventures.

I unfortunately didn’t get over to Western Australia on my first trip, so I am hoping to go back in the next couple of years to travel this area and maybe even squeeze in a trip to nearby Tasmania.


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