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7 Tips for Travelling Around Australia in A Motorhome

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Travelling is a motorhome can be the ultimate adventure. It’s your chance to go where you want when the mood takes you. You can stay in the same place for a while, enjoying the sites, trying new things, soaking in the culture and getting to know the locals. You can drive right past the places that don’t appeal, and you can create your adventure on your own time, surrounded by your home comforts.

A long motorhome trip can be perfect for families, who would struggle to take a long holiday in a different way, or for anyone that enjoys the luxury of home and just can’t see themselves backpacking or checking into local hostels. It’s a wonderful option and allows many people that wouldn’t otherwise to have the chance for adventure.

Even for a seasoned traveller that’s been all over the world, the idea of spending an extended period, driving across one country is intoxicating. It’s the best way to tackle a vast country like Australia, or America, as it gives you more time. Book onto a package tour trip, and you’ll only ever have a night or two in one hotel before you are back on the coach heading somewhere new. You never get chance to fully enjoy the places that you love, but you are stuck in areas that you’d rather not have seen at all.

So, whether you own your motorhome and you want to see more of your home country, or you are hiring one on arrival in a foreign land, here are some tips to help you get the most out of your holiday.

Check the Van

Whether you are travelling in your own campervan or hiring a large RV, you’ll need to make sure it’s in great condition before setting off on any long trip. The last thing that you need is to find yourself in trouble in an unknown location across the coast. So, take it in for a mechanical check or make sure you are hiring from a reliable vendor.

Then, you’ll need to make sure you’ve got the proper registration, insurance and a roadworthy certificate for your vehicle. If you are travelling to Australia, you’ll also need an international driving permit, and if you plan on driving a large motorhome, you’ll need a large vehicle license. For a campervan, a standard car license is fine.

Check the Equipment

You’ll want to make sure that your temporary home has everything that you need for a long trip. You’ll need a dometic caravan fridge, cooking equipment, bathroom facilities, comfortable beds and seating, and anything else that you simply can’t be without.

Budget

Many people make the mistake of under budgeting and running out of money. Yes, travelling around the country in a caravan or motorhome can be much cheaper than staying in hotels or flying between locations. But, if you are planning on being away for an extended period, you still need to budget. Remember to include things like food and fuel, but also your insurance and licensing. Try to make sure at least 15% of your budget is free to cover emergencies.

If you need to, you can always find ways to earn money online while you travel, or even start a travel blog.

Buy Accessories

You’ll probably want more than just your van, so make sure you’ve bought anything else you need to be comfortable before you leave. Look at what’s included in your vehicle. If there’s no shower, invest in a cheap solar shower bag and a private shower screen. You may also want an awning to give yourself some outdoor space when you park up, a portable barbeque, some outdoor seating, torches, bedding, towels, a power board, rechargeable lanterns, books or a Kindle and music.

Prepare a Park Up Checklist

If you’ve found a free roadside park for a night, that’s fine. But, sometimes you’ll want to park up for longer, to give yourself a proper break and a chance to enjoy a location. At these times you’ll need a park up checklist to help you get settled and comfortable straight away. This can include things like finding a safe space, close to the sites facilities and electric hook up, securing your vehicle, setting up your awning and outdoor seating, hooking up to any sewerage facilities, water supplies and electricity that may be available, and exploring the area. As you travel, you’ll add more to your list based on your personal needs. But, having a checklist helps you to enjoy your time and stay safe.

Get to Know the Locals

Perhaps the best tip for travelling around Australia in a motorhome or campervan is to speak to people. If you live and work in a large city, you probably only ever speak to people you know. In our real lives, we’re often so busy and stressed out that we don’t even say hello to the people we sit next to every day on our commute. In many ways, this is the biggest shock to the system when travelling. People speak to each other. Get into the habit of saying hello and chatting with both locals and other travellers. You’ll get so much from it.

Yes, you can look online and pick up flyers for information about campsites and locations. But, speaking to people means all of your information is up to date and first hand, and you’ll get some amazing recommendations of things to do. You’ll experience a much more authentic view of local life if you live on the recommendations of locals. It also means that you’ll have help if ever you need it.

Be Flexible

It’s great to have a plan, and a list of places you want to go and things you want to see. This helps you make the most of your trip. But, it’s also good to be flexible. An overly rigid plan can ruin the fun of the trip. It’ll certainly limit you. So, keep your plan in mind, but be flexible to change and don’t get tied down by a schedule if you want to do something different.

Cole is one half of New Zealand's leading adventure travel blogging couple who have been wearing out their jandals around the world since 2009. He loves any adventure activities and anything to do with the water whether it is Surfing, Diving, Swimming, Snorkeling or just lounging nearby on the beach. You can follow Cole on Google+. Or consider following us via RSS Feed, Twitter, Facebook and subscribe to our Newsletter.

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Adventure Travel

Explore Auckland’s Coasts With One Exquisite Walking Hike

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There is a wonderful place found in the far southwest of the Pacific Ocean. It is a place called Auckland, and it is found in the amazing terrain of New Zealand. It is a place that commands the attention of over 1 million people who prefer to live and reside in this majestic city.

Did you know that Auckland claims the top spot in New Zealand with its wide range of people and the most concentrated number of people within a city in New Zealand?

But why do so many people come to Auckland, New Zealand, and live there? What do they appreciate the most?

The truth is that the answer may vary, and it may differ from person to person, but it is hard to deny that nature is not a crucial part of their decision making. The beautiful city has fantastic places that offer great adventure and recreational activity.

You can take advantage of the diverse coasts, hidden coves, and more of the northern area in the North Island. It is known for its various boats, and some believe that it has more ships than any other city in the entire world.

It is a city that resides between two large fantastic natural harbors.

Let us find out more about how you can explore this majestic city with one fantastic walking hike.

The Auckland Coast

For those who want to stay near to Auckland’s city and travel well, it is necessary to start your journey with the Auckland Coast’s breathtaking area.

Did you know that Auckland’s coast ranges over 15km, will take over four hours to traverse, and is somewhat challenging to navigate? But the truth is that it is worth it. Why is it worth it? Well, you can seemingly walk the length of an entire nation within the span of a few hours. If you wake up early in the morning and go on this journey, you can finish your hike by noon or an hour past noon.

But in that brief timeframe, you can experience several oceans, notice a slew of volcanoes, and have a glimpse into people’s regular lives in the New Zealand area.

This fantastic walk is excellent because of its duration and because you are able to experience lush greenery and park settings over 30% of the time. It is a great way to clear your head, get to know more about the people you are traveling with, and experience the refreshing Auckland air.

Experts suggest beginning your journey at the less intriguing Onehunga area and then moving forward with public transportation at the Britomart stop. You will find that you can travel east to take in the water sights with a bit of work.

When your walk is over, you can grab a fresh beverage at the Waitemata Harbour, a premium harbor.

You will want to make sure to bring some healthy snacks along for the walk because you may not notice different places to eat as you go on this part of the hike.

It is best to ensure that you understand that you must input the Ferry Building into your mobile device or ensure to use the local municipal iSITE for further guidance.

If you are limited on time, I would suggest that you go on this route because it lets you take in the entire area and understand this excellent place.

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Adventure Travel

Hammock vs Tent Camping

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Camping with a hammock is slowly but surely becoming more popular in recent years with new and improved hammock designs being preferred by some campers, compared to the traditional tent.

In this article we will discuss some of the key benefits and drawbacks of sleeping without a tent, and analyze key criteria so that you can choose your preferred shelter choice!

Weatherproof

Most tents work well in the rain; however, you’ll need to bring a tarp if you’re using a hammock. Traditional hammocks are not waterproof, and are generally open at the top, allowing water to find itself inside if you don’t have an adequate tarp. Moreover, a decent under quilt is also a good idea so that you can stay warm and cozy during cold and stormy nights.

Packing up your hammock after a long night of rain isn’t too bad, whereas packing up a soaking wet tent is always annoying. You almost always get wet in the process.

Setup

For first time campers, pop-up tents are the simplest to setup. All you need to do is find flat ground, and bam, your setup is complete! The beauty of pop-up tents is that you don’t need to worry about figuring out where to insert the poles and erect the tent. Although, traditional tents are usually more robust, and have a longer life span.

Essentially, a tent is simple, but a hammock can become a little more complicated for first timers. You’ll need to find 2 trees facing a good direction and tie each end of the hammock to them. If your hammock setup is too tight, you will generally wake up with sore ancles, but if it’s too loose, you run the risk of the hammock touching the floor, and insects crawling in with you.

If your campground doesn’t have many trees, or if the trees are dead (they could break and injure you), hammock stands come to the rescue! Basically, hammock stands allow you to pitch a hammock if there are no trees nearby. They are portable, adjustable, and are easy to setup. The only drawback is that the ground should be relatively flat, whereas if you were to hang a hammock between 2 trees, there won’t be any stands touching the ground, so a rocky floor wouldn’t be a problem.

Comfort

One of the main reasons for choosing a hammock is the comfort that it provides you! It has a basically has in-built seat which is arguably more comfortable than a standard blow up mattress. You need to pick your tree’s wisely though! You don’t want a pinecone falling on your face mid-sleep.

If you have constant back pain and find it hard to sleep inside tents, you should give hammocks a try as they cause you to sleep sideways, similar to a banana shape, which a lot people find much more comfortable.

Price

Hammocks are usually lighter and don’t include a wealth of poles and gear that tents do. Depending on the type of hammock that you purchase, they are usually quite similar to tents. You can however, find very cheap tents <$60, but they most likely won’t last long.

A good tent or hammock can cost between $200-500 without accessories. If you need a hammock stand, that will add to your cost, just like a mattress and other tent necessities will to its cost.

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Adventure Travel

Yacht Charter Destination Of The Month: The Middle East

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Mysterious and exotic, the Middle East is full of surprises, blending fascinating cultural heritage with stunning contemporary architecture. What’s more, with guaranteed sunshine and warmth, the winter months of November and April are the perfect time to visit. That’s why we’ve made the Middle East our yacht charter destination of the month.

What makes the Middle East such an exciting yacht charter destination?

Dubai: Glamour and shopping

An ideal starting point for your luxury yacht charter, Dubai is famous for its tax-free designer shopping, five-star resorts and world-class gastronomy. Thrill seekers can head into its vast desert for four-wheel-drive adventures across the dunes, while families will love the Dubai Aquarium and Underwater Zoo, Legoland, or the magnificent water park at Atlantis on The Palm.

Abu Dhabi: Art and architecture

Neighbouring Abu Dhabi offers a more relaxed yacht charter destination – here, lovers of art and architecture will appreciate the iconic Louvre Abu Dhabi, which boasts some 9,200 m2 of galleries within its striking contemporary design.

The Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque is one of the world’s largest, and its open-door policy encourages visitors from around the world. The elegant Qasr Al Hosn museum, former home of the ruling family, is Abu Dhabi’s oldest standing structure, and displays artefacts dating back to 6000BC.

Oman: An understated gem

The understated, hidden gem of the Middle East, yacht charter destination Oman has an abundance of natural beauty, from spectacular mountains and wind-blown deserts to a pristine coastline.

At its northernmost tip, visit the red-hued fjords of the Musandam Peninsula. Action-seekers can admire the rugged Al Hajar mountain range by microlight, while land-based activities include desert sand-boarding, jeep rides and quad biking.

Capital city Muscat is steeped in history, with centuries-old souks where you can pick up fine pashminas, spices and frankincense, or even dazzling jewellery in the Gold Souk.

The Kingdom of Bahrain: Home of diving

It is said that diving was invented in Bahrain, and pearl diving is considered the quintessential Bahraini experience. Expect to find up to 30 types of coral and over 200 species of fish, too, making this yacht charter destination ideal for underwater enthusiasts.

Bahrain’s rich trading history is palpable in the Qalat al-Bahrain fort and museum, a registered UNESCO world heritage site. The Bahrain National Museum, found next to the Art and Cultural Centres, blends cultural heritage with contemporary ambience. Or, to indulge in some retail therapy, enjoy a traditional shopping experience at the Manama Souk, selling natural-oil perfumes and incense, fabrics and handicrafts.

The Red Sea: Reefs, diving and beaches

The Red Sea is another popular Middle Eastern yacht charter destination due to its year-round sunshine, warm water, coral reefs and incredible dive sites, including one of the world’s best wreck dives, the WWII British cargo ship SS Thistlegorm. In the south, the relatively undiscovered Marsa’ Alam promises incredible shore or beach diving around its natural fringing reef.

Mysterious, timeless and alluring, the Middle East is a yacht charter destination full of contrasts and surprises. Better still, it’s best visited in winter. What are you waiting for?

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Meet Cole and Adela

Cole and AdelaWe have been wearing out our jandals (Kiwi for flip-flops) on our travel adventures around the world since 2009. We think our blog is thought provoking and a little witty. But we have been proven wrong before. Find out more about us here...

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