Who doesn’t love a great road trip? No one, that’s who! We’re huge fans of packing up the Jeep, grabbing the dogs, hitting the road and seeing where the road will take us. But for a lot of people taking a road trip can be a really daunting task. What to pack, where to stay, who to eat? Argh! So many questions! We know there are so many questions because we get these nervous nellies emailing us and asking all the questions.
To help you be the best road trip version of you we’re whipped up a three part mini series! Today is the first installation;
How To Take A Road Trip Into the Mountains
Australia has some amazing mountainous regions. Ok so we’ll admit that they aren’t spectacularly high, or crazy difficult to get to but they are fairly special. Our home state of Victoria has a beautiful area known as the High Country. Which is for me, the perfect area to road trip through as there’s wineries, breweries, cheese and the beautiful mountains. A match mind in heaven! But driving in the mountains can be a bit more difficult than what you may think, especially if you are unprepared.
The first thing to do in any road trip is a little bit of planning. It’s the really basic safety style planning. Actually, road tripping in the mountains in Australia doesn’t take that much planning. At worst you may come across a fallen tree or a closed road. If you follow the below tips and tricks you should be fine.
You just need to decide – am I camping or glamping? The rest is best to leave up to the spur of the moment as you road along the road of life. So choose yourself an end destination and decide Do I camp or Do I Glamp?
Just a note – Australian is a REALLY big country. Like big ass big. Sadly our telecommunications companies have seemingly forgotten this. And there are a lot of areas that are in cell phone black spots. Which means you’ll get zero reception. Always ensure that you have a first aid kit in your car! For emergency situations please dial 000
If you are here on an amazing working holiday visa and off on a road trip make sure you have emergency assistance such as RACV.
Before leaving home make sure you check your car over. If you’re hiring a car do a quick walk around and make sure there are no obvious issues like bald tyres, leaking fluids, and cracked glass.
Break down the monotony
Like we’ve mentioned Australia is a really big country. Depending on where you are starting you could have a solid 3-4 hours of driving before you get close to those majestic mountains. Drowsy drivers die and the freeways to the mountains can mind numbingly dull. Make sure you take some time off to explore the smaller towns along the way. It’s great to give the local economy a boost with your coffee purchase and also is the perfect opportunity to stretch your legs and explore.
Do I need a 4WD to road trip in the mountains?
No you don’t. There are some really good access roads that take you through and over the mountains in Australia. These maybe dirt roads but as a general rule they aren’t that difficult to drive over. Unless you’re planning on going off road and actually doing 4WDing than a regular car won’t be an issue. A lot of Australian Just be aware that many hire companies won’t allow you to drive off unnamed roads. If anything happens you may be up for the cost of the car. Ouch.
Don’t Forget to Pump the Petrol
Petrol stations (gas stations for our American readers) can be far and few between when you’re road tripping in Australia. It’s always better to be safe than sorry and fill up regularly and if you have room keep a small 10ltr jerry can of emergency fuel in the car with you. This is especially true if you are heading up to the snowfields in Victoria. There are quite a few signs telling you that it’s the last place to get fuel! Don’t be a fool these signs aren’t lying to you. Make sure you’re well aware of your budget for road tripping around Australia.
Beware of the drop bear
And all other Australian animals. They might look cute and cuddly but in all honesty, Australian animals have zero to none road sense. The roads in the mountains can be windy and you may not always see that wombat in time. So please do take care not to squish our beloved animals. Also as wild animals, they don’t like to be touch, harassed, tickle or forced to take a selfie.
How to choose the perfect accommodation for your road trip?
The fun part of planning your road trip is choosing where you stay. On our road trips we like to mix it up between glamping and camping.
Australia has a lot of free campsites. These may be run by local councils or found within national parks. Parks Victoria has a full list of campsites here. Now a basic campsite might have drop toilets or not. Some even have prepared fire areas for your cooking. Just remember that Australia does experience terrible bushfires and will regularly have total fire ban days during summer.
I love using GlampingHub to find really fun and unique accommodation options. With nearly 900 properties listed, it’s the perfect way for us to treat ourselves and explore a new area. Who can ever forget how much fun we had glamping amongst the grapevines in North East Victoria? The pleasure of choosing at least one night’s glamping is that you’ll have a flushing toilet, a shower and a decent nights sleep in a super large bed. Also, we know that camping in the wilderness isn’t everyone’s cup of tea. Maybe you need a delivered cup of tea to start your day? Who am I to judge? Glamping is a really good way to introduce camping to someone who may be a little bit nervous about the whole camping thing.
Driving along the Great Alpine Road in Victoria should be an addition to everyone’s Australia road trip itinerary. Yes we know that Great Ocean Road is spectacular, and next time we’ll cover coastal road trips, but the Great Alpine Road Trip is so understated and underused by the average traveller.
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Coffee Lover | Travel Blogger | Horse Rider | Adventure Racer | Donut Dame. Generally nice lady-enjoys wine, indie movies & random dance parties in my tent.
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