East coast treasures that have to be seen…

The Blue Mountains, best get used to low gears!

The Blue Mountains, best get used to low gears!

Over the past couple of days I’ve been reading through my Rough Guides book about the east coast. As a book that I bought off the back of a recommendation and one that I didn’t look at before I bought it, I’m happy to report that it’s turned out to be brilliant!

I’m not very far through it, but already it’s talked entry requirements, health, accommodation, food and drink, and even provided contacts for the local media! I can see from the contents too that there’s a decent amount of information in about what to do too in each place, so when I reach destinations I’ll know exactly what there is to do.

Close to the front of the book it lists 28 things not to miss, there’s a few that won’t apply to me because they’re specific events or are seasonal, like New Year for example, but the ones that tickle my fancy are:

  • Sydney Opera House (already been but love the vibe)
  • Wilsons Promontory National Park
  • Bondi Beach (already been but it’s full of birds, always a winner!)
  • The Daintree and Cape Tribulation
  • Sydney Harbour Ferries (already done them but I think they’re great fun)
  • The Blue Mountains (pictured above)
  • Australia Zoo
  • South Bank, Brisbane
  • Highland Waterfalls, Atherton Tablelands
  • Whitehaven Beach
  • The Great Barrier Reef

Is there anything that you would add to this?

Away from the above, there are some sights that I’d like to see during the trip, but I’m not sure if going out of my way for them is worth it. The city of Canberra is Australia’s capital, but through reading and looking on my maps, there really doesn’t seem to be that much going on, is this true?

On my maps the main road that I want to follow goes straight past the city, but goes through every other. In order to get to Canberra I need to go off the beaten track for a bit, something that I thought strange for a capital city, and don’t even get me started on the road maps, there aren’t any!

Any guidance you could give guys would be greatly appreciated…



6 thoughts on “East coast treasures that have to be seen…

  1. Hi Gary – I’m looking forward to following your adventure. I live in Canberra and it always makes me a bit sad when people say that it looks boring and they don’t think they’ll bother coming here. If you were travelling by car I would say that absolutely you must come at least for a couple of days and see the big ticket items. Since you are on a bike, I concede that it’s a pretty big commitment 🙂

    Whether you’ll like Canberra or not depends a lot on what you are into, and a little bit on the time of year you come.

    Canberra is one of the best cities for cycling in Australia. Dedicated cycle lanes all over the place, heaps of great rides on cycle paths around the lakes and though the parks and forests, even a (limited) bus service that will take your bike. If you’re into mountain biking, the new Stromlo Forest Park mountain biking centre, which is purpose built and I understand pretty impressive (I’m not a cyclist myself): http://www.stromloforestpark.com.au/.

    Apart from that, Canberra is the national capital, so we have the national stuff. Gallery, library, archives, museum. Blokes tend to like the Australian War Memorial, and it is rare to hear anyone say they are disappointed by it. Parliament House is a wonderful piece of architecture. The Australian Institute of Sport may be up your alley. All those things will be in your guidebook.

    The time of year is important. Summer is very hot (sometimes 40+). Winter is cold (sometimes 5 below). Autumn and spring are beautiful times of year in Canberra.

    This year Canberra is celebrating its centenary. One of the celebrations has involved getting Canberrans to vote on what they like about Canberra: http://www.likecanberra.com.au/. Maybe you’ll like some of these things too…

    • Hey Dani, thanks for the message and the links 🙂

      I think it would be rude to leave Canberra out if I’m honest, I can’t see myself leaving it out even if it is a bit of a detour. You can’t pass through a country on an expedition like mine and not do the capital city!! The links you’ve provided sound fantastic, I’ll definitely check them out when I’m on my computer and not my iPhone.

      I’m looking at doing the cycle is August so I don’t hit the rainy season in Queensland. As an Aussie, do you think that’s a good time? What do you reckon the weather will be like in Adelaide, Melbourne and Canberra at that time?

      • August will still be fairly cold and wet in the southern parts – top temperatures in all three cities will be in the mid teens.

  2. You are trying to travel through at least three climate zones in about six weeks, so you won’t be able to get perfect weather everywhere no matter what you do. I’d consider starting a month later perhaps. September will be lovely down south. I’ve been to Cairns a couple of times but I’m no expert – you might want to get some local advice on how dire the weather will be up there in September/October/November.

    • Great call Dani, I’ll have a look at my schedule when my route is done anyway so I’ll put it into effect then.

      I’ve decided to head to Canberra, I’ve just posted my route, would you be able to have a quick once over it for me?

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