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Australia, Sydney

Looking for a long stay.

I am looking at going to Australia in a couple of years and plan to stay a month so I can visit many of the cities. Sydney, Perth,Brisbane are defenites. I would like to try to do this on my own but wonder if a tour would be better and cheaper although know there are no tours that last a month. Would have to do a lot on my own which I am use to doing. Are there any cities that are a must see and others a no. Also would like to visit New Zealand. Any negatives for that country?

9 Answers

answered first by
Crystal from Anchorage


It is almost always cheaper to travel independently versus with a tour company. Australia is massive and fairly expensive to traverse. The three cities that you chose are in opposite corners of the country, too so you have your work cut out for you. I would probably do something like this:

For your question about New Zealand, I actually like traveling there more than Australia. It's definitely a matter of preference, but these are some of the pros of traveling NZ over AUS (please don't hate me Aussies):

  • Cost of living is slightly cheaper (but not much).
  • There is more variety of landscapes (glaciers, caves, beaches, fjords, mountains, rainforest, sea cliffs, vineyards, geothermal bubbling mud pools and hotsprings, etc).
  • I like the weather more.
  • There are NO poisonous snakes or spiders, nor are there deadly jellyfish. In fact there are no really dangerous animals.
  • The distances in between awesome sights and cities is much shorter (making travel easier and cheaper).

Again, this is just my opinion.

Happy travels!

Crystal, Traveler's Toast

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Australia (country)
  2. Perth (city)
  3. Cairns (city)
  4. Townsville (attraction)
  5. Airlie Beach (city)
  6. Whitsunday Island (attraction)
  7. Bundaberg (city)
  8. Fraser Island (city)
  9. Sunshine Coast (city)
  10. Brisbane (city)
  11. Gold Coast (city)
  12. Sydney (city)
  13. (attraction)
  14. Tasmania (region)
  15. New Zealand (country)
2 thankscomments (1)

answered by
Joe from Houston

Tasmania was one of our favorite stops!

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Tasmania (region)
1 thanks

answered by

For a month in Australia, I'd do a few days in Perth, at least a week in Sydney & a few days in Brisbane. From Brisbane, it would be good idea to go north to say Cairns or the Great Barrier Reef. You'll need a few days for that if you want to go snorkelling or diving etc. I would HIGHLY recommend Melbourne for at least a long weekend - maybe 4 or so days if you want to include the Great Ocean Rd for a day as well. You will never hear anyone say a bad word about New Zealand (except aussies, but we're just competitive like that) and so if you can fit in a week in South Islandas well you will never regret it! :)

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Australia (country)
  2. Perth (city)
  3. Sydney (city)
  4. Brisbane (city)
  5. Cairns (city)
  6. Great Barrier Reef (attraction)
  7. Melbourne (city)
  8. Great Ocean Rd (attraction)
  9. New Zealand (country)
  10. South Island (region)
1 thankscomments (1)

answered by
Jan from Australia

Even a month is not enough for Australia, my friend from UK spent her whole 3 months. We're a HUGE country. If you are more adventurous, don't forget to includeDarwin (Kakadu NP) and Uluru Sunset Viewing Area.  Cairns (Great barriers reef), or Tasmania is beautiful too. Lonely planet should give you more guide and as I said if you're more city person, Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane.  


Hope you will have a great time here.....oh! AU is expensive country too.

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Darwin (attraction)
  2. Uluru Sunset Viewing Area (attraction)
  3. Cairns (city)
  4. Tasmania (region)
1 thankscomments (1)

answered by

Australia is big, so a lot to cover in a month. You can do it yourself and domestic flights will be quicker and pricewise not much more than long distance bus or train. From Sydney, try to get to the Blue Mountains Katoomba and the Jenolan Caves-there is no public transport to the Jenolan Caves so a day tour would be best option. While in Brisbane visit Gold Coast(south) and Sunshine Coast  (north) both about an hour from Brisbane. I'd suggest visiting north Queensland -from Cairns you can visit the Daintree Rainforest -there are day tours, Great Barrier Reef and Whitsunday Island. If you want to get away from cities, you can do tours to Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park  in the centre of Australia.

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Blue Mountains (attraction)
  2. Katoomba (city)
  3. Jenolan Caves (attraction)
  4. Brisbane (city)
  5. Gold Coast (city)
  6. Sunshine Coast (city)
  7. Queensland (region)
  8. Cairns (city)
  9. Daintree Rainforest (attraction)
  10. Great Barrier Reef (region)
  11. Whitsunday Island (attraction)
  12. Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park (attraction)
1 thankscomments (1)

answered by
Cindy from Sydney, Australia

Hey Lise, 

I would definitely recommend travelling independently. Official government tourism sites like Visit NSW and offer plenty of information on attractions and things to do and places to stay in areas for easy research and trip planning. 

I recommend using to plan your trips around Australia as it includes train and buses options in there. 

Depending on the time of year, I would recommend doing a drive from Sydney down the South Coast of NSW via the Grand Pacific Drive. Take the Sea Cliff Bridge and you'll be able to see pretty much a good snapshot of Australia's range of landscapes: coastal seaside towns, quite beaches, wooded forests and country roads. 

I would definitely recommend a hike through the Blue Mountains as well, it's about 1-1.5 hour drive from Sydney CBD and there are trains which can take you there. Taking the little Scenic World cable car up is really nice as you get to see panoramic views of the main attractions such as Three Sisters, Katoomba Falls and Jamison Valley. 

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Sea Cliff Bridge (attraction)
1 thankscomments (1)

answered by
Christie from Hershey

I've been to New Zealand three times and there's not a bad word to say about the country. It is my favorite place on earth.

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. New Zealand (country)

answered by
Michael from San Diego

Lise, the people who have answered have given you some good advice about places to visit and the benefits of independent travel.   Australia is a very friendly and visitor-friendly country.  However, you should seriously explore your degree of comfort with traveling alone.  If you've not had a lot of travel experience, then there may be a benefit to either finding others to travel with and/or staying in hostels where you'll meet fellow travelers. Solo travel is exhilarating, but it is not for the inexperienced.  Lonely Planet and other sites have listings of travelers looking for companions.   Depending upon your own level of experience and comfort, you may want to check out these traveler blogs and perhaps find some others who will be in Australia at the same time as you plan to visit. 

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Australia (country)
comments (1)

answered by
Liam from Boise, Idaho

New Zealand is probably rather chilly right now, and you'll need a good amount of time to visit. There are 2 separate islands that take about 5 days to a week to visit, each. 

Sydney is definitely worth visiting. If you're travelling on a budget, you can find free walking tours in most cities. If you just look ahead of time things you want to see, you can generally walk or take a short bus ride to most attractions. I found really helpful for planning my days in Sydney. Just get an Opal card (for transportation) and you're set.

Melbourne is great visit as well.  

comments (1)

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