I'm currently visiting my friend Allan in Adelaide in South Australia. I left Sydney in November 2014 and after a couple of weeks in the lovely Blue Mountains I biked the coastal road to Melbourne, spent 2 months in Tasmania and from Melbourne continued on the Great Ocean Road to Adelaide – in total 5,500k. Very little in 6 months because I’ve procrastinated not to ride through the Nullarbor desert west of Adelaide in the 50C (122F) Summer months. Amongst other I’ve helped built a house for 6 weeks, spent an extra month in Tasmania and in general just taken my time and stayed with friends’ of friends a week here and there.
It's been a diverse trip until now taking me past countless stunning beaches as well as through mountains and valleys, small villages and big cities, forests and countryside. Along the way, I've survived a number of close calls – Australia is not a bike friendly country. There are few unconnected bike lanes and bad quality/non-existent shoulders often forced me to ride on the roads, which created dangerous situations because of drivers’ lack of tolerance and patience just squeezing by when there was no room because of oncoming traffic. I’ve also experienced some extreme weather - everything from torrential rain and freezing temperatures to sunny days of 48C (120F). The first half to Southern Tasmania was mostly sunny while the latter half was mostly overcast and still I feel privileged since most days were dry. Though I’ve had countless days with headwind especially riding from Sydney to Melbourne I’ve also been fortunate to have many days with side-/tailwind – a new and pleasant experience for me.
Based on my previous experiences in Australia, I hoped to encounter friendliness, helpfulness, hospitality and generosity but I'm sad to say that in general, Australians seem superficial, self-centred, close-minded and indifferent - many people have talked to me for a few minutes on the road but very few have taken the step to offer their help or invite me to stay. Luckily the people I did get to stay with, have been incredibly kind to set me up with family and friends all treating me like family and that’s the thing about Australia (like Denmark) - once you’re “in” there’s nothing people won’t do for you.
You can read much more and enjoy countless pictures and videos on my homepage:
Navigate through my travel description “Australia 2014/15” at the top of the dark blue menu bar on the left. You're of course most welcome to write in my guestbook and/or send me a personal message as well as referring people you think might be interested to my homepage - see options at the bottom of this mail.
In a couple of days I ride west towards Perth and later north up to Darwin – about 7,500-8,000k of mostly desert and a lot of “nothing”. It of course requires a physical effort but I expect the biggest challenge to be mental - much more about that later.
I wish you and your family all the best - may you be as happy and fortunate in life as I am.
Many greetings from Michael