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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'll be visiting Aus sometime later this year, either Aug-Sept or Sept-Oct. The main thing is diving the barrier reef. I want to tour around Sydney and do some riding as well.. (blue mountains??). Can anyone recommend the best time of year to hit the reef? That will take priority, but hopefully sydney has started to warm up a bit. Hopefully I could hook up w/ some locals when I'm there.

Thanks,
-Kevin
 

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Get your freak on!
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Kevin_O said:
I'll be visiting Aus sometime later this year, either Aug-Sept or Sept-Oct. The main thing is diving the barrier reef. I want to tour around Sydney and do some riding as well.. (blue mountains??). Can anyone recommend the best time of year to hit the reef? That will take priority, but hopefully sydney has started to warm up a bit. Hopefully I could hook up w/ some locals when I'm there.

Thanks,
-Kevin
It is now winter in Australia.. .

That being said, it is a blue sky and is still very warm. Sydney's winter is NEVER bad, and at the moment we are in a drought.

It can snow in the blue mountains, but it very rarely does.

September, october is starting to be spring time, and that would be a great time to see the reef:)

If your willing to come to the northshore of sydney(home of manly beach and alike) then I can show you some nice trails.

I also might be able to meet you for a ride in the blue mountains:)
 

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Angry bunny
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Kevin
First off a geography lesson.
Sydney is approximately 1300km from the closest section of the Great Barrier Reef.
It is a little like me suggesting I want to come to the US and I want to see Los Angeles and Seattle.
Possible I suppose but maybe not the best use of my time.
Keep in mind that Australia's land mass is not that much different to mainland USA's so there is a lot to see.
If you definitely want to see the Great Barrier Reef I would suggest that the Capital City that you want to visit should be Brisbane.
Let us know what you do hope to do while you are here and I/we will try to point you in the right direction.
 

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TR said:
Kevin
First off a geography lesson.
Sydney is approximately 1300km from the closest section of the Great Barrier Reef.
It is a little like me suggesting I want to come to the US and I want to see Los Angeles and Seattle.
Possible I suppose but maybe not the best use of my time.
Keep in mind that Australia's land mass is not that much different to mainland USA's so there is a lot to see.
If you definitely want to see the Great Barrier Reef I would suggest that the Capital City that you want to visit should be Brisbane.
Let us know what you do hope to do while you are here and I/we will try to point you in the right direction.
Yes indeedy.. But having said all this, there is nothing stopping you from flying down to Sydney (from about AUD$100 one way) if it's MTBing that you're wanting to do, you can stay over night in the lower blue mountains, hire some bikes (AUD$40/day) and go ride. heaps of good tracks in the lower blue mtns.
Otherwise, you can have the best of both worlds by staying in downtown Sydney say the Holiday Inn in Potts Point, get up really early and get a train (or drive) up to the mtns (glennbrook aprrox 90mins) do a few long rides. then head back into town to paint it red :D the next day could be spent walking around town..
but you really need a min of 3 days Fri,Sat & Sun ie. Fly down late Friday, ride early Sat am, fly back late Sun. Quite hetic, but it'll be lots of fun. esp if you stay in Potts Point as it'll be close to where all the night life is.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
yep, OZ is big!!

Hey everyone, thanks for the info! Keep it coming.

Yeah, I'm still debating how I'll travel around Aus. It's my first trip there, but I'll be there for up to a month.... depending on finances and such. I'm thinking of flying into Sydney and spending 7-10 days there. Gotta see the opera house, harbor bridge, surf lesseons, etc. Maybe go out to the blue mtns for a couple of days, etc. Then work my way up the east coast (several days), taking in the sites. Then spend a week or so at the reef.

I'm still piecing it all together. I'm leaning toward September. It sounds like the weather would be good at both ends of the continent.

Any suggestions on traveling the east coast? Maybe rent a car and hostel or hotel? Maybe some sort of RV and campgrounds? Maybe take trains or buses (I doubt that would work very well, but who knows)?

Let me know what you think. I'm getting excited about the riding already!!

-Kevin

littlejohn said:
Yes indeedy.. But having said all this, there is nothing stopping you from flying down to Sydney (from about AUD$100 one way) if it's MTBing that you're wanting to do, you can stay over night in the lower blue mountains, hire some bikes (AUD$40/day) and go ride. heaps of good tracks in the lower blue mtns.
Otherwise, you can have the best of both worlds by staying in downtown Sydney say the Holiday Inn in Potts Point, get up really early and get a train (or drive) up to the mtns (glennbrook aprrox 90mins) do a few long rides. then head back into town to paint it red :D the next day could be spent walking around town..
but you really need a min of 3 days Fri,Sat & Sun ie. Fly down late Friday, ride early Sat am, fly back late Sun. Quite hetic, but it'll be lots of fun. esp if you stay in Potts Point as it'll be close to where all the night life is.
 

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Angry bunny
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If it was me (and providing you are happy to drive on the left) I would drive up and stay in motels or backpackers.

If you are not so keen on driving you could get a multi trip bus pass. My cousin's came out from Canada and used the buses to do what you are suggesting between Sydney and Brisbane and then from Brisbane and Cairns. McCafferty's Greyhound busline basically service the whole of Australia.

http://www.greyhound.com.au/

The train is another option but seems to be fairly direct with not too many options for stops along the way.

http://www.countrylink.nsw.gov.au/

There is also plenty of good riding up here in Brisbane so plan a day or so to do that.
 

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I'm by no means an experianced diver but have just been diving the reef for a few days. I stayed at Heron Island which is off the coast of Gladstone. Its at the southern end of the reef so you don't have to worry about stingers like you do up north.

Fantastic marine life and very easy diving. I'd highly recommend it. Most of the dive sites are about a 5 min boat ride from the island and they have a number of moorings so you usually just drift from one to the next with minimal effort.

The downside is that they isn't much else to do on the island other than dive. (You can do 3 dives a day if you feel up to it). For that reason I think that 3-5 nights on the island would be plenty.

If it were me I'd stay a week or so in Sydney then fly up to the reef. You can drive or bus but remember Australia is a really big place. The drive from Sydney to Gladstone is easily over 18 hours if you go via the coast road.

If you want to go to FNQ (Far North Queensland) and further up the reef I understand that much of the diving is on the outer reef and best on live aboards. I've never been to Cairns but I understand it has a large transient backpacker population. Lots of riding up there too from what I can gather.

Your timing is fine but Sydney weather in September-October can be a little hit and miss. It can be amazing as it was during the Games in 2000 but it can also be cool and wet but by no means cold. If you decide to go to Heron it should be ok pretty much all year round but check out the biological calender for Turtle events.

Further north on the reef you go and deeper into Summer you will face the wet season with increasing humidity and cyclones. Yes cyclones are dangerous but present a problem more because they can stuff up your sunny holiday by providing relentless rain, cloud cover and wind.
 
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