I’m going to be honest now, before I came to Australia I was a bit lazy with my planning. I didn’t really have a set plan of what places I was going to and when I was going to be there. All I knew is that I had 2 months to travel up the east coast with a Greyhound bus ticket which covered me from Sydney to Cairns. In a way, glad that I didn’t have a clue where I was going because I went to places with an open mind and it gave me the freedom to do what I wanted. If we liked somewhere we would stay there longer, and if we weren’t feeling it, we’d leave. What I’m trying to say is, having no plan is sometimes the best plan.
During my time in Australia I went on 1 plane journey, 11 boat rides, 13 coach journeys and went to 19 destinations. In that time I discovered some of my favourite places in the world, which I will hopefully return to some day. So you’re not here all day reading this post, I’ve decided to narrow it down to my top 3 places that I visited. In my opinion, these places are ones not to be missed when travelling the east coast of Australia. These places are ones which I thought were particularly special, whether it’s because they had a banging nightlife, or beautiful views; my reasons vary.
Number 1 on my list, is the all mighty Sydney. Sydney is such a big and busy city where there is constantly something to do and see. As a city, Sydney is quite spread out and certain parts have to be reached by ferry or bus. Some people don’t like this about the city, but I liked it as it meant that you could go out and explore the entire surroundings of the city, rather than being stuck to one part. Some days we would just go into the city, whilst on others we’d visit more far out places like Manly, Bondi or Watson Bay.
Another thing I enjoyed about Sydney was the contrasting activities. On one hand you can enjoy the lively vibe of the city, there’s plenty of restaurants and bars to get lost in for an evening (or a day in some cases). Where as on the other hand, Sydney also has loads of beaches and national parks for its visitors to enjoy, with plenty of coastal walks and look out points. We stayed in Sydney for a total of 10 days and to be honest I could have stayed much longer!
Number 2 would have to be Fraser Island. I’ve done a whole blog post about my time on Fraser so I won’t ramble on too much about it in this post. But trust me when I say, Fraser Island is not to be missed. The views on the island are incredible, you learn about some of the history of the island (not too much to bore you) which is interesting especially finding out about how the Aboriginal people used to live on the Island.
With Fraser, one of the things that makes it so good is the people that you meet and the atmosphere you create. Now you can read that and think that I was just lucky and I had a really good group of people that I got on with really well; but that’s not the case at all. The best thing is to go into the tour with an open, and happy mind set and it will work for you. Ask anyone who has travelled the east coast of Australia and I guarantee they will tell you that Fraser Island was near the top of the places they went. Although the trip itself was a little bit pricey, and you pay for what you get in my opinion.
Number 3 is beautiful Byron Bay. If you already have a mental image of what Byron Bay is like and it’s a hippy beach town, filled with dread locks and good vibes, you’ve pretty much hit the nail on the head already. I loved Byron, everyone is so laid back and friendly and the town itself is nice too. We stayed at a hostel called Byron Beach Resort and it was the best hostel I’ve ever stayed in. The staff were all really friendly and it was a great place to meet other travellers. Whilst we were in Byron we did a couple of activities, the first one being sea kayaking. I’ve never been kayaking before so I didn’t really know what to expect, and I did find the thought of it daunting, but it was completely fine. The water was really calm when we were out there, and we sore tones of dolphins swimming and a few sea turtles came the say hello. The second thing we did was the lighthouse walk. Please listen carefully and take my advance when I say do not do this with a hangover. The views were great once you were up there, but it’s getting up there that’s the strenuous part.
Byron also has a good nightlife, check out Cheeky Monkeys, Woodys and the Beach Club if you do ever go there. We were lucky when we went as the Beach Club was holding an annual event called ‘Sneaky Sundays’ which was like an indoor festival and it was an epic night. So, overall Byron is a bit of an allrounder as it has a bit of everything to offer you.
Please let me know where your favourite places up the east coast are, and why you’ve chosen them. Thank you for reading!