The Blonde Runs

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Aussie East Coast Road Trip: The How

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IMG_9832Dusting off the blog with a series of posts about Nick’s and my recent road trip along the east coast of Australia.  I mean, why do a measly post about my lack of running, when I can post several times over the next few weeks about all the kilometers we racked up, all the beaches we visited, and overload you with all the photos?!  I think this is a much better option…

Let’s begin with how this all came about.  Since moving to Australia, Nick and I spoke frequently about the places we’d like to visit during our duration.  Not really knowing how long we’d be here, we knew we wanted to make the most of our time, and see as much as we could, at least within the restrictions of work and money.  So, we kind of had a verbal short list and long list of everything we wanted to do/see, based on those restrictions.

“Wouldn’t it be cool if….”

“I’d love to see…”

“I just read about…”

“Someone suggested ___ and ___ …”

“If we had two weeks, we could go…”

“But if we had three weeks, we could…”

And so the conversations went.  And the dreams grew. And the excitement started building.  Especially when we found out Nick’s work would be shutting down for a good amount of time over the Christmas and New Year holiday.  Then those dreaming conversations turned into a matter-of-fact:

Let’s do it!”

So we started planning a road trip that would cover the majority of the eastern coast of Australia.  Well…kind of.  “Planning” is a tricky word. And this is where Nick’s and my love for travel and experiences and outlook on how it all should go down differs.  A lot.  But don’t worry, we know this about each other and it was only annoying a few times during the trip.  Let me lay it out for you a bit, in regards to how we wanted to approach this trip:

Nick:  Go with the flow; have a few must-do experiences; have a few specific spots in mind to visit; don’t make any accommodations so we aren’t confined, but just see where we end up each day and then find a place to stay; hire a car in Cairns; but let’s have fun!

Rebekah:  Type A; decide where we are going to be each night so we can book accommodation (it’s summer holiday and the coast is busy); decide on what exactly we want to do so we can book in for those must-do experiences (it’s summer holiday and the coast is busy); not plan every minute of every day, but at least have a rough outline so we aren’t wasting time making last-minute decisions; but let’s have fun!

So yeah, a little different.  But I was determined to calm my Type A personality and travel how Nick does.  At least for part of the trip.  I did book accommodation for Christmas and New Year, because, well, that’s just a given.  And the rest, I was just mildly concerned that we’d miss out on experiences because we didn’t pre-book, or we wouldn’t find ideal accommodation because we also didn’t pre-book.  This trip would stretch me.  And I was prepared and mostly okay with it.

Once things were set in stone that this trip was, in fact, happening, Nick was able to convince his brother, Jason, to fly out from Minnesota and join us for part of our adventure.  Not long after, his sister, Tia (also from Minnesota), found a way to make the trip happen as well.  And just like that, we had travel companions! And it was family!

The route began to take shape, based on their arrival into Brisbane on 30 Dec, their departure out of Sydney on 13 Jan, some technicalities with our vehicle (more on that in later posts), and a lot of “maybe we could do this”, before, during, and after his siblings visit.

Roughly, this is what Nick and I covered over the span of 4 weeks: 

Screen shot 2015-01-19 at 11.19.47 AM

Don’t be fooled by the distance stated on that map. It was actually closer to 7200 kilometers (about 4500 miles-and I’ll have the official total in the final post) because it doesn’t take into consideration the initial trip Nick and I drove into Brisbane, nor does it have all of the little out and backs we took to visit beaches, waterfalls, etc. I’ll go into more detail in subsequent posts with maps, and kilometers/mileage, photos, what we saw, what we didn’t do, etc. You’ll be bored. This is mostly for posterity.

And if you follow me on IG, you may have noticed the recent photodoc of the trip under #australeoni.

XO,

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