Australia Australia The Land Down Under

Our Western Australia Road Trip

Western Australia Road Trip MapIt’s been a while since we arrived in Australia and even though we have been living down under for over two years now we have still to undertake any kind of extensive travelling.

We have always been very busy since the day we arrived down under. To begin with we had to find somewhere to live, then we became pregnant, and bought a house. Add to the mix a small thing called work and you’re not left with very much free time. That was until now!

During the past week we’ve spent over six days travelling around Western Australia.

We left our home at Quinns Rocks and travel north to a place called Geraldton, then from there we travel to Carnarvon, Monkey Mia, Kalbarri with a final stop in a beautiful little coastal town called Dongara.

If I’m being honest, the distance was a lot more then I ever anticipated. After all we were travelling across only a small section of Western Australia but somehow managed to cover nearly 4500 km within this time!

Over the next few days I’ll be posting a few Blog entries covering some of the things we saw and some of the places we’ve been to. To begin with though, lets look at our mode of transport.

We rented a motor home through a company called Apollo Campers. I was pretty impressed with the way these things were designed. Travelling with two kids we wanted (OK.. I wanted) something big so we went for the Euro Deluxe, here’s a few piccies of ‘The beast’.

Deadly 60 - Australia

The blurb from the Apollo Website read:

Enjoy the ultimate self-drive experience in the exceptional Euro Deluxe. This spacious six berth vehicle boasts smooth handling and is surprisingly easy to drive. The thoughtfully designed interior features all the comforts you expect from a vehicle of this calibre. Assets include a well-appointed kitchen with microwave, gas stove and refrigerator.

Enjoy the freedom to travel wherever you like, with shower and toilet on board. Additional luxuries include air-conditioning and a large side awning for al-fresco dining. The Euro Deluxe is ready to travel when you are.

Sold to the man from Northern England!! I was there, or at least I would have been had Apollo not stuffed up by over booking their vans resulting in our Motor home not being available to be picked up when I arrived at the depot at the pre-arranged time of 10am.

Apparently, one of the Euro Deluxe camper vans had broken down somewhere ‘up north’ (that was a comfort…not!) so they had to send a replacement vehicle leaving this particular depot one vehicle short.

Our Van should be here sometime after lunch I was told so (after taking an $80 cab to get there) I begrudgingly drove one of Apollos hire cars back to Quinns rocks (a nice 50 minute trip) to wait for the phone call.

Perth Australia: What to do in Perth

A couple of hours later we got the call saying that the van had arrived and was now being prepared so I should be there in about an hour to pick it up. Knowing it was likely to be a good two hour round trip, I set off straight away.

The handover was pretty poor if I’m being honest. The van was still being cleaned when I arrived so I had to hang around. About 15 minutes later I finally got the keys and left minus the first aid kit, instructional DVD and Map book that we should have been given.

I didn’t realise this until I was 10 minutes away from the depot. I rang the girl at Apollo who apologised again. She wasn’t having a good day; still.. neither were we!

OK, so we lost about 5 hours of travelling time in total. This wouldn’t normally be that big a deal as I’m used to (and quite enjoy) driving long distances. It wasn’t just about me though!

You see the first leg our trip was to a place called Geraldton which was a five hour (or 410 km) journey away and the late pick up meant that instead of arriving there before dinner time, we’d now be travelling into the night with two very tired and grumpy kids in the back.

Are things finally starting to happen?

Still, it made for an interesting journey. The kids were so excited by the trip that they were pretty well behaved (though tired) and we managed to make it along the very dark country roads, thankfully without killing any live stock, arriving at Geraldton by about 9pm.

We called ahead to the camp site in Geraldton en-route to advise them that we would be late and they were good enough to leave us a key for the front gate with a map to our ‘powered’ motor home site.

We parked up, plugged in the power supply (which controlled the air conditioning; the noise of which closely resembled a Boeing 747 at take off so was rarely used), had some dinner and then got the kids to bed.

Beer-o-clock and bed! It had been a long day for everyone

More Entries and pics to follow over the next few days..

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Written by Mark

As the founder of Getting Down Under, Mark is passionate about demystifying the process associated with a move to Australia. Having launched Getting Down Under in early January 2006 and made the move to Australia from the UK in the same year, Mark continues to share resources and support for those looking for assistance. If you have a question for Mark, please post in our Community Forums. Please note All information provided on Getting Down Under should be considered in conjunction with our disclaimer. Please seek professional advice if you have any doubts! 

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