My Australian Adventure
My travel through Australia started off good as we completed our first 1500km cycle stretch from Sydney to Adelaide. Through all my travels I like to build a perspective of a country before I finally get there and walk away with totally different views, knowledge, interesting facts and discoveries I made on my adventure and explorations!
I would like to share some of the things I’ve learned in the first few weeks. I will be speaking about the following:
– Few interesting facts
– Multicultural Australia
– Expensive Australia
– Magpie season
– Messy highways and interesting discoveries
– Big things in Australia
– Green Oz
– Flies, flies, flies and…. more flies…. and more flies… and a few more
– Small towns between cities
– Caravans and outdoor
1. Few interesting facts
– Capital city : Canberra
– New prime minister
– Population of only 22 million
– Australia is the only nation to govern an entire continents
– Australia is the flattest continent on earth
– highest point on the mainland, Mount Kosciuszko, is only 2,228 meters.
– Oz is the driest inhabited continent
– Australian federation consist out of six states and two territories
– the largest state is Western Australia and is about the same size as Western Europe
– Anna Creek Station is the world’s largest working cattle station in South Australia. Its area is roughly 6,000,000 acres (24,000 km2; 9,400 sq mi) which is slightly larger than Israel. It is eight times the size of the United States biggest ranch, King Ranch in Texas, which is 825,000 acres (3,340 km2; 1,289 sq mi).
2. Multicultural Oz
Australia’s lifestyle reflects its mainly Western origins, but Australia is also a multicultural society which has been enriched by over six million settlers from almost 200 nations. Four out of ten Australians are migrants or the first-generation children of migrants, half of them from non-English speaking backgrounds.
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people totaled 410 003 at the last census, nearly 2.2 per cent of the population. Two thirds of the indigenous people live in towns and cities. Many others live in rural and remote areas, and some still have a broadly traditional way of life. It is generally thought that Aboriginal people began living on the continent 50,000 to 60 000 years ago, and some authorities believe their occupation may date back 100,000 years.
3. Expensive Australia
Australia is definitely the most expensive country I’ve visited till now. Luckily im not paying for accommodation and travel expenses as I travel. Each time that we get to a city Im shocked on what the costs are of the normal things you have to use as a normal tourist.
Accommodation is crazy and even public transport is a bot ridiculous. I really think its will be more cost effective to drive your own car to work and back than to use the public transport… and i always thought it should be the other way around!
4. Magpie season and swooping 🙂
This is maybe one of the most funny things we encounter on almost a daily basis. We were introduced to the Magpie season when they mentioned it on the news! We asked our couchsurfing host, Ben, about this and he started explaining how these birds attack you if you get close to their territory when breeding.
They attack you as you get close, and this is called swooping!! So yea…. We’ve got swooped a dozen of time on the bicycle.
Things you can do to prevent being hit by magpie’s:
– stick fake eyes on the back of your cycling helmet
– put cable ties on top of you helmet
– don’t run or scream
– don’t walk past the same spot as magpies have excellent memory
Cycling through Australia really gives us a good perspective of the roadkill on the highways of Australia. There have not been a day that we have not seen a dead kangaroo, birds, fox, snake or some other animals.
90% of the roadkill is off coarse kangaroos and have such a nice smell when you pass them on your bicycle.
6. Messy highways and interesting discoveries
As you normally drive in a car and really look at the side of the road, I was shocked by how messy the side of the roads are. The sad thing is as you drive and see the pollution, you know these things will be there for decades!
On the interesting side, things we’ve seen on the side of the road:
– reading glasses
7. Big Things in Australia
This is probably the most interesting thing about Oz that i did not know about and can’t believe I have not heard about this before.
Australia has the most big things in their country than any other country in the world. When i say big things you will imagine lots of things as I did but here we are with two we have seen along the way so far:
Some of the other big things in Australia is:
– Big Galah
– Big playable guitar
– Big Trout
– Big Chook
– Big Apple
– Big Ram
…… And so many more!
8. Green Oz
Before I came to Oz I had the idea in my head of green coastlines and dry, flat and humid stretches in the inland.
Until this point I was totally wrong as its been absolutely beautiful all the way from Sydney to Adelaide, mostly along the Sturt Highway. It is green all the way with wine farms, orange farms, other grapes, lavender lands, cornola fields and many more. The one moment it feels like in in the bush-veld in South Africa and the next in the middle of the winelands in Stellenbosch.
Very diverse and beautiful scenery that impressed me allot.
9. Flies, flies, flies and…. more flies…. and more flies… and a few more
I really loved Australia so far, but one thing that I could not get used to until now and will probably not get used to before we leave in November is the flies!!! Its bad and its not even summer yet.
If someone told me about this before I could not imagine that it will get nearly as bad as it is. There are hundreds of flies attacking you when you stop next to the road to take a rest.
The one thing about this flies is that they are so much different than the flies in South Africa. When you wave your arms around your head they will fly away, circle your head and then approach for landing again. There is no way to get them away from you, don’t matter how hard you try!
The animal life has been amazing so far and we had a few opportunities to see some of Australians most popular and some other cool animals.
Some of the animals we have seen so far is the kangaroo, wallaby, kuala, Australian Magpie, Lyrebird, Australian Raven, Galah, cockatoo, fox, echidna, few spiders and allot more others.
11. Small town between cities
Between big cities the towns are much smaller than I expected. We have seen towns from with a population of 246 and some towns Australia consider big inland cities with population of 60 000.
12. Caravans and outdoors
Cycling on the highways I have a good view on the type of traffic coming past us all day. I would say that 85% of the traffic is trucks, caravans and motorhomes. Half of this traffic is more or less caravans. This is very cool to see, because it means that people get out and see their own country! Most of them is elderly people and have spoken to dozens of people that goes throughout the country to go and explore.