Posts Tagged With: accomadation

The travelling experience, seen in retrospect….

Our home hidden in the garden

We have now been home 4 days. Looking back on the trip it has been very interesting. Staying at the Backpacker hostel was the most interesting. It is nearly 10 years since I stayed in backpackers hostels. We now observed at close quarters the backpacker travel species both international and local and how they had changed in that time.

They are gregarious creatures and usually travel and congregate in groups of two or more. In the evenings they gather in larger numbers to talk, chatter,laugh and swap stories, loudly, till very late at night. Sometimes, actually most times, accompanied by alcohol They are the young of the species, generally in their teens to late twenties. Their body clocks are set at a different time to ours.

So for two weeks we would go to bed after midnight, when the hostel quieted down. Then sleep through till about 9am. Our usual pattern on the road is bed at 9-00pm, up at 7-00am. (We did revert back to that pattern once we were back on the road).

They are a friendly crowd, most are electronically wired with computers, tablets, a few had Kindles and they all had mobile phones, usually the smart phones. Their dress is trendy, casual, not a daggy pair of old blue jeans to be seen. Their diet surprised me as in the communal kitchen I observed some very healthy meals being prepared. Not too many instant noodle meals.

After two weeks we were pleased to mix again with that other travel species, the “grey nomad” and “baby boomer”. The types that inhabit the caravan parks and camp grounds. Travelling in a variety of vehicles.

That got me thinking of other sub-species of travellers…

The tourist or group traveller that travel on buses and move around in packs led by a dominant organizer. They generally inhabit hotels and graze in restaurants.

Within this tourist group is the traveller on the cruise-liner. They prefer to sleep in one place, the cruise ship, but be taken to different countries. They are loosely organized but have the option of choice at each port.

There is one more species I can think of and that is the lone traveller, dedicated to long distance travel, carrying their few possessions on their back. They travel light, sleep rough in either tents or cheap hostels and have a very basic diet.

Can you think of any other types you have met in your travels? I would love to hear your stories…

Categories: Australia, Backpackers, travel | Tags: , , , | 12 Comments

lorrikeets in rain video

lorikeets in rain video, originally uploaded by gypsy woman1.

Well it is hard to believe but we have now been home 6 weeks, where has the time gone? I did intend to keep the blog posts going but some how life has taken over….We have been busy sorting out the granny flat we are now living in, and though it is just a one room studio style place, with a small kitchen, and very small bathroom, after living in Matilda for a year it seems large to us, and we are enjoying the relative space.The mammoth, but enjoyable, task of sorting the photos is taking time. I am also an obsessive collector of data and information, ie: how much we spent on petrol, eating out, groceries, alcohol etc. So now I have taken the time to work out some of the stats.

  • Travelled a total of 26,996 kms
  • Petrol total cost: $4,336. Most expensive was $1.97/ltr at Dunmarra in the Northern Territory, cheapest $1.17/ltr at Mount Gambia.
  • Freedom camping: 23 nights
  • 4 WWOOF hosts:21 nights
  • 9 couch surfing hosts: 59 nights
  • 2 friends met on road: 11 nights
  • 1 relation:2 nights

116 days we did not have to pay for accommodation, this was a great help to the budget and made it possible to travel for a year on the pension…

  • 206 nights in various priced caravan parks.
  • Most expensive van park was Skenes Creek at $45 on the Great Ocean Road during January school holidays. It was also one of the worst being dirty and very over crowded. 
  • Most expensive accommodation was $98 for one night at the Buddhist Temple near Wollongong.But well worth it for the experience and peaceful atmosphere.
  • To have a break from the rain we left Matilda on her own and stayed in cabins at 3 separate places for a total of 6 nights.
  • During May and June we returned home to the Gold Coast for 46 days.
  • Total accommodation cost: $4,437 , averaged out at $21.50 per night.
  • Very special extra excursions: full day flight to and walk through the Bundle Bundle in the Kimberly, cruise down the Katherine gorge, 4 wheel drive trip into the Karijini Gorge, cruise along the Murray, cruise along the Ord river, cruise through the Geikie Gorge.
  • Caring for Matilda: 2 services, 4 new tyres, 1 replaced windscreen…

We were on the road for a total of 329 days. Including all costs we spent on an average $495 per week….

Was it worth it, definately. Would I do it again, yes, yes, yes….


Categories: australian travel, Camping grounds, couch surfing, free travel accomadation, random thoughts | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

The rain came…

Pemberton Bibbulmum Track, originally uploaded by gypsy woman1.

We have been travelling for 8 months and covered just over 14000km, apart from a couple of days drizzle, the weather has been perfect and we have slowly meandered along in the sunshine, but we have caught up with the colder, wetter climate, or has it caught up with us… It has rained for 4 days and the temperature has dropped dramatically. Oh dear, have we got soft? Are we too conditioned to the warmer climate? What ever it is, we have both caught a nasty cold. So instead of enjoying all the walks through the forests in this area, including the famous Bibulmum track, we rented a cosy, wood cabin for 3 days in the Pemberton caravan park, and had total time out, even had a TV…

Rain is now clearing and it is getting warmer so tomorrow we will set off again in little Matilda, she also has had a rest and now we are all rearing to go again.

Categories: australian travel, caravan park, National Parks, Western Australia | Tags: , , , | 1 Comment

Couch surfing again…

Carroll and Jacks house, originally uploaded by gypsy woman1.

5 years ago I stayed with Carroll and Jack for the first time. I met them through “Global Freeloaders” back then and in the 5 days I stayed in 2005 we made a lasting friendship that lasted with the help of the internet.

It was Jack that introduced me to “couch surfing“. He has used it for 3 years with great success, both hosting and staying with hosts.. I’m so pleased I found it as it is adding a whole new dimension to travel for us.

I was pleased to be able to introduce Jack to them. Now Carroll’s name is spelt the same as my surname, very unusual, and we both have men called Jack… so Carroll called “my Jack” , “gentle Jack” and I, of course, just said “Hey “my Jack””

“My Jack” fell in love with their home.Carroll being artistic and a collector of all things different and artistic, every where you looked was something interesting to look at, from the art on the walls to the view out of the window. Carroll’s Jack loved all classical music and so the back ground sound of our stay was the beautiful sound of the classics.

We enjoyed 7 relaxing and interesting days with them and it was a sad farewell, but, who knows what is in the future, maybe they will come to couch surf with us one day…

Categories: accomadation, australian travel, couch surfing, free travel accomadation, travel, Western Australia | Tags: , , , , , | 2 Comments

Perth, couch surfing

Perth, originally uploaded by gypsy woman1.

We are now about half way around and have found a great place to stay for a few days. We found John on the couch surfing network and he has a large double section so there is plenty of room for us to park in the back yard. John has created a mini urban farm using grass clippings, waste, cardboard and has worm farms in old baths and 4 chooks roaming around. The soil here is pure sand but Johns veggies are very healthy. Remember the tv show “The good life” well this is a WA version of it. We are loving it here.

The house is on the Canning Highway and right next to a bus stop, 20 minutes one way to the CBD and 45 minutes the other way to Freemantle.

We had a number of things to do ie, blood tests, eye tests, new tyres on the van etc so have spent the first week getting all these things done. We are all, including Matilda, now fit and ready to carry on the next leg. We will stay here for another week. Perth is a beautiful city, the weather is fantastic, the flies have disappeared and there is a lot of things and places to explore.

Categories: accomadation, australian travel, couch surfing, travel, Western Australia | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

Free camping…

After leaving the rain behind in Stanthorpe we moved on to Allora, the sunflower capital of Queensland. We searched for sunflowers but it is the wrong season, but we did find a bunch flowering in a garden in town. You can’t win them all..

When in town having a look around, we were told about camping for free down at Dalrymple creek. Wow what a find, beautiful sheltered sites and being first there for the day we had the pick of the best position. Soon 2 other vans arrived and we struck up a friendship with them, which resulted in Frank bringing over his early edition, hand built  Maton guitar after dinner, and as the sun went down, he sang a medley of country songs, some of which he had composed. Wal and Kate with little dog Sam joined us and we all swapped stories. It was a magical evening.  They told us of good free, or cheap, camp sites. What a fantastic start to our years adventure, this is the essence of travel, meeting people and hearing their stories and sharing hints and tips to make camping and travelling easier.

Categories: australian travel, camping, camping australia, Camping grounds, free travel accomadation, grey nomads australia, travel | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

Cut off from cyberspace….

We are now without an internet connection for a short while, so I have come to the local library for my “fix” but find that I cannot send e-mails only surf the net, BUT I can look at and add posts to my blog…

The last two days have been totally hectic. Wednesday moved over to the friend’s house that we are looking after for a week. Shut up the flat, then had a lovely afternoon and evening sharing a meal with friends when they dropped  in to visit us in our temporary home.

Thursday was Garden club AGM, finally I have passed on all my commitments and can now concentrate on the adventure ahead.

Thursday evening we caught up with some other friends we had not seen for a while, and had a meal with them at the Casino. It will be a round of farewells for the next week before we disappear into the sunset. 

This week will be a lovely chance to wind down from all the rushing around of the past few weeks and relax. It is like staying in a holiday resort with swimming pool, spa, mini gym and BBQ areas. A great way to start our years adventure…

Categories: accomadation, australian travel | Tags: | 3 Comments

Date is set and we will be on our way….

I can hardly believe it, suddenly the time has slipped round and we have a firm date and, more importantly, some where to go.

Every thing has fallen into place so seamlessly that it seems we were meant to do this trip at this time.

The gradual working through “the list” culminated last weekend when we welcomed Hamish and partner, with 2-year-old son, into our life and our home. They answered our advert for a house to rent, along with  a number of others, but they seemed so perfect for our house we were very pleased when they decided they would like to move in. They had just spent 6 months travelling round Australia, another coincidence, and needed some where to move into immediately. That created 5 days of furious activity to finish moving the last of things into the flat, full top to bottom clean of the house, including touch up painting in one bedroom, and a major clean out of the garage.


But now we are almost ready, just a few loose ends to tidy up. Then another couple of  coincidences, a friend asked if we could house sit for a week while they were on holiday. The date, FEBRUARY 24th has now become our “D” day(departure day). Another friend told us about the Stanthorpe apple and grape festival on March 5th, 6th, 7th.  “Of course,” John said, “it will be hard to get accommodation this close to the festival date.” I googled Stanthorpe accommodation and struck gold, we have booked into Sommerville Valley tourist Park

 March 5th is our combined birthday, what a good day to be on the way…

26 days to the start of our gypsy life….

Categories: Camping grounds, preparing to go, random thoughts, Stanthorpe apple and grape festival | Tags: , , , , , | 4 Comments

More free accommodation

Another way to help the travel budget stretch is to contact <> This is a world wide organisation with a list of people willing to let you sleep on their couches, or any other thing they have available. A hilarious account of one Aussie mans attempt to travel and only use the couch surfing network can be read in “Sleeping around,a couch surfing tour of the globe” by Brian Thacker. I have not tried couchsurfing out yet but when we take off next April 2010 we are looking at all ways to make the $$’s go further and this sounds a great way to also meet people.

Another way to “sleep around” is to join the “WWOOF” organization. The details are on This is not totally internet based as you have to buy their book of farm hosts and register with the WWOOF organisation, which you can do over the internet. Also you are required to do 4-5 hours of farm or related type jobs to “pay” for your full board and lodging. I have “WWOOFed around Australia and met a very interesting and friendly group of people. From picking and packing bananas to helping on a seahorse breeding unit and weeding endless veggie patches I loved every minute and the meals they all served where made from home grown, organic produce, cooked with love. I can recommend the experience…

Categories: Books, free travel accomadation, travel | Tags: , | Leave a comment

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