5 WA Holiday Safety Tips

Western Australia is the biggest state in the commonwealth. Because of its size, it also guarantees a lot of surprises for both regular tourists as well as new backpackers and visitors of the golden state. A hired campervan can surely take you to your destination of choice, like from Perth to Broome or in Australia’s heartland – the Outback.

However, you must always remember to watch your step when travelling in the great wilderness of Western Australia, even if you are in a comfy Cheapa campervan. There are real dangers when you step out of your campervan and explore the vastness of the state, even if it’s at one of the pristine beaches or the national parks of your choice.

As the adage say: “an ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure.” So, we have prepared some important reminders for when you visit Western Australia or any other location in Australia, for that matter. So, read on and learn more about the things you can do at the dangerous destinations in the golden state.

Sun’s Out Guns Out!

"Beautiful Track” by Michael Theis available at https://www.flickr.com/photos/huskyte/7975379553/ under a Creative Commons Attribution. Full license at https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/2.0/

"Beautiful Track” by Michael Theis available at https://www.flickr.com/photos/huskyte/7975379553/ under a Creative Commons Attribution. Full license at https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/2.0/ BY Michael Theis

Apply as much sunscreen as possible before you go out. Western Australia is mostly hot, arid land. From the long coastline down to the orange sands of the Outback, you need to protect your skin from the harmful effects of UV rays.

Get the SPF50+ sunscreen that is highly recommended by experts in Australia. Also, remember to apply the lotion 30 minutes before exposing yourself to sunlight.

Although sunscreen would protect you from some of the harmful effects of  UV exposure, it is also great to protect your eyes and face by wearing a good visor and a pair of sunglasses before stepping out.

Swim Safely

The beaches of Western Australia are famous for their cool blue waters and abundant marine life. However, most of the marine life dwelling in these calm seas are untamed. That is why you need to take some precaution when swimming in open water.

"Grey Nurse Sharks” by Tim Sneddon available at https://www.flickr.com/photos/tesneddon/7541965204/ under a Creative Commons Attribution. Full license at https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/"Grey Nurse Sharks” by Tim Sneddon available at https://www.flickr.com/photos/tesneddon/7541965204/ under a Creative Commons Attribution. Full license at https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/ BY Tim Sneddon
The sea is full of sharks and other wild aquatic animals that have been thriving in the waters. However, this shouldn’t prevent you from fulfilling your dream vacation to, let’s say, swim with sharks.

Actually, there are great ways to enjoy being one with the marine wildlife of Western Australia. 

Visit one of the many national parks in the state where you can observe marine animals at a safe distance, like the Aquarium of Western Australia. They offer tours where both kids and kids at heart can watch sharks up close, separated only by a thick industrialised strength glass.

If you’re a true adrenaline junkie, you can still swim with sharks under close supervision, of course. There are several tours in Western Australia that offer shark cage diving tours. You can observe these giant sea predators in their element inside the safety of a stainless steel cage.

Slithering Snakes

The Outback is teeming with of wildlife even if most of the region is covered by desert sand. The loose, orange-hued sand hides some of the most fantastic species of insect and snakes. One thing to remember while walking amidst low shrubs and the stony terrain is to be on the lookout for insects and reptiles that may be venomous. Their stings or bites could even be deadly if you are allergic to its toxic composition.

The best way to avoid these hidden desert creatures is to go on a tour of the Outback with a reliable guide. Or if you want a more intimate vacation, always follow the familiar footpath which has been used by previous visitors. Avoid taking off on your own, especially if you have never toured the desert before. 

"Snake” by dilettantiquity available at https://www.flickr.com/photos/flyingblogspot/3289783307/ under a Creative Commons Attribution. Full license at https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/

"Snake” by dilettantiquity available at https://www.flickr.com/photos/flyingblogspot/3289783307/ under a Creative Commons Attribution. Full license at https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/ BY dilettantiquity

Being lost in the desert is something you would want to avoid. Aside from the creatures lurking in the sand, there is also the threat of dehydration if you wander too far from your campervan. Add to that, it would be very difficult to contact anyone using your mobile phone if you lose your way in the desert.

To avoid getting lost in the desert, it would be better to move in pairs so that you have enough resources as well as instant help when the need arises. Always bring a bottle of water when walking in the desert to avoid dehydration as you take in the smouldering beauty of the legendary Outback.

Wild Western Australia

The “Golden State” is home to many endemic species. These creatures live in national parks and wildlife sanctuaries where they can be observed by both locals and tourists at a safe distance. Some of the most popular animals in these parks are the kangaroos and wallabies.

"Snake” by dilettantiquity available at https://www.flickr.com/photos/flyingblogspot/3289783307/ under a Creative Commons Attribution. Full license at https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/

"Kangaroo Boxing” by Scott Calleja available at https://www.flickr.com/photos/scottcalleja/6843889051/ under a Creative Commons Attribution. Full license at https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/ BY Scott Calleja

Although you may be allowed to come close to these marsupials, you must approach with caution. Kangaroos could pack a wallop if they feel threatened. It is best not to provoke these animals by teasing them or showing them food that you do not intend to share with them. Those things might rub them in the wrong way.

The best way to observe these wild animals is at a safe distance. If you want to come close, at least have someone from the park 

nearby so that you’ll have someone to assist you when something goes awry. Also, remember the other golden rule that is “do not feed the animals.” Most of the attacks were caused by people trying to feed these cuddly by wild animals.

Actually, this rule applies to all wild animals that you come close contact. No matter how cute or cuddly they may appear, they are still untamed and must be approached with caution.

Campfire Cares

"bushfire” by badjonni available at https://www.flickr.com/photos/badjonni/775970007/ under a Creative Commons Attribution. Full license at https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/

"bushfire” by badjonni available at https://www.flickr.com/photos/badjonni/775970007/ under a Creative Commons Attribution. Full license at https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/ BY badjonni

When you set-up a campfire in the woods, always remember to put it out before leaving the campsite. There had been incidents of bushfires caused by campfires that weren’t properly attended to.

Wildfires destroy several kilometres of forested areas, which would make several wildlife species homeless. Add to that, the plants that once covered the earth would take years to grow. These plants hold the soil together, which prevents soil erosion.

It is only common courtesy to put out your campfire properly before you leave the campsite. In this way, the next visitors would also have a great time in that holiday destination, just like you did.

So these are just some of the things you need to remember when going on a tour of Western Australia. What’s more important is that you enjoy every minute of your holiday. What other safety measures do you have in mind when touring the wilderness of Western Australia? We would love to hear from you. Connect with us on Facebook and on Twitter and share the destinations you’ve been while in a campervan holiday.

6 Big Sydney Day Tour Destinations

“A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step”

– Lao Tzu

Chinese philosopher Lao Tzu emphasized the importance of taking that decisive action of moving towards the direction you want to go. However, where do you begin making that first step if you were in a camper van hired for a quick day tour in one of Australia’s largest and busiest metropolitan centres?

Sydney is a web work of roads, nature trails and bridges that intertwine with the vast expanse of ocean before it vanishes to infinity. A camper van hired for a quick day tour around the city is absolutely a daunting challenge. The city’s approximately 26.15 sqm of steel and concrete towers combined with parks and recreational areas make up the metropolitan region alone. It doesn’t cover the remainder of the city’s rugged nature trails, beaches, and national parks.

Let us help you take that decisive step by giving you a guide on where to go for a quick day tour of Sydney. Not only would you be able to tour some of the most spectacular sights in the city, you would also have a taste of what “the harbour city” has to offer to every traveller eager to make that first step towards a great holiday.

Big Sydney 6

Before even moving a muscle, you must remember that Sydney is a cluster of “regions.” The entire city is so rich in cultural diversity that each of these regions offer a different perspective of what Sydney is truly all about. To help you out, we searched for some of the best places for your day tour in 6 key areas just to get you started.

These locations are within the bay area and are accessible through the various public transportation available in the metropolis. The 6 “regions” are: the City of Sydney, Inner West, Northern Suburbs, Eastern Suburbs, Western Sydney and Southern Sydney.

City of Sydney

The City of Sydney is ideal for first time tourists. The community is right across the legendary Sydney Harbour where you can visit the iconic Sydney Harbour Bridge and the picturesque Sydney Opera House. Both had adorned postage stamps and tourism posters since anyone could remember. Also, both of these man-made marvels could be visited by going on a leisurely stroll along Circular Quay.

"australia :: sydney :: circular quay” by hjjanisch available at https://www.flickr.com/photos/hjjanisch/7312887462/ under a Creative Commons Attribution. Full license at https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/2.0/

"australia :: sydney :: circular quay” by hjjanisch available at https://www.flickr.com/photos/hjjanisch/7312887462/ under a Creative Commons Attribution. Full license at https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/2.0/ BY hjjanisch

This area is where you can check out the city’s 1st central business district (CBD). While at the CBD, visit the Queen Victoria Building (QVB) where you can shop for jewellery and home wares. You can also try the line-up of cakes and pastries that are served in the cafés established in this iconic façade.

Speaking of shopping, why not visit Sydney’s Chinatown and Haymarket for an introduction to the Oriental palate? Immerse yourself to a parade of authentic Chinese delights as well as a showcase of gift shops that would absolutely inundate your senses.

"Sydney Chinatown” by Pablo Rodríguez available at https://www.flickr.com/photos/prodriguezmad/7756694684/ under a Creative Commons Attribution. Full license at https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/

"Sydney Chinatown” by Pablo Rodríguez available at https://www.flickr.com/photos/prodriguezmad/7756694684/ under a Creative Commons Attribution. Full license at https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/ BY Pablo Rodríguez

Inner West

If you haven’t gotten your fill of the food choices sold at Sydney City’s restaurants, why not try some of those served in the Inner West? This area is all about food and shopping!

Shop around the fashionable streets of Oxford and William. Meanwhile, you can also check-out the second-hand shops at Balmain, Glebe, Leichhardt and Newtown. These streets are also filled with bookshops and cafés that would arouse any bibliophile’s interests.

Among the marketplaces founded in the area, Balmain’s could be one of the oldest, as it has been serving locals and tourists with fresh produce and tasty delicacies since the 1800’s. On the other hand, some of the shops focus on regional gourmet dishes, like Leichhardt, which serves mouthwatering Italian delicacies.

Northern Suburbs

The Northern Suburbs is where you’ll get your first treat of Australia’s wildlife. There are several places that exhibit the local flora and fauna in the continent as well as imported featured species from the African savannah and tropical forests around the world.

Taronga Zoo in Mosman is a perfect spot where family and friends can learn a thing or two about the estimated 4,000 species that have called this park their home. Apart from foreign wildlife, Taronga also hosts several endemic species like the well-loved koala.

If you’re more of a sea-loving chap, you can visit the Manly Sea Life Sanctuary. Or you can also try your agility and strength in commanding the waves at popular beaches in the area, like Manly Beach and Palm Beach. It is also here in Sydney’s Northern Suburbs that you can visit the Northern Beaches for an afternoon of sea and surf.

Eastern Suburbs

The Eastern Suburbs is also about sand, sea and surf, with Bondi Beach serving as the cherry on top of this oceanic delight. Bondi boasts of a 6 km paved path known as the Bondi to Coogee Coastal Walk, which features the thunderous sea juxtaposed the heavy immovable rocks to create an imagery that can only be described as breathtaking.

"Surfer at Bondi Beach” by Justin Otto at https://www.flickr.com/photos/8604504@N03/5664205924/ under a Creative Commons Attribution. Full license at https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

"Surfer at Bondi Beach” by Justin Otto at https://www.flickr.com/photos/8604504@N03/5664205924/ under a Creative Commons Attribution. Full license at https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/ BY Justin Otto

There are also other attractions in the area, most of them beaches and parks where your family and friends can enjoy either a quick dip at the sea or a relaxing afternoon surrounded by nature’s calm. Meanwhile, Watsons Bay is the best place in the area where you can buy fresh, sweet and succulent seafood. It is also known as the oldest fishing village in the city.

Western Sydney

After getting a perfect tan at the fantastic beaches at the Eastern Suburbs, take a step back in time at the heritage sites in Parramatta located at Western Sydney. The Old Government House, which was built in 1799, is the jewel on the crown of Sydney’s 2nd central business district (CBD).

Still hungry for adventure? Well, there’s also something for sports enthusiasts. If you want to catch the latest game, check out the events scheduled at the Parramatta Stadium. Then, visit Campbelltown for their scenic bush walking trails that lead you to Georges River Nature Reserve.

After that, you can end your visit to Western Sydney with a feast at Cabramatta where they serve the best southeast Asian dishes in the city. After all, they aren’t called Sydney’s “Little Saigon” for nothing.

Southern Sydney

Southern Sydney is all about nature’s finest gallery of cliffs, nature trails, and coastlines that strum the chords most familiar to the heartstrings. This area is where you can find the Royal National Park as well as La Perouse Museum, which features the history of Southern Sydney. The museum was named in honour of French explorer Comte de la Perouse who came to the continent in 1788.

These are the 6 biggest tourist zones for a memorable day tour in Sydney. Although there are a lot of them, they are all very accessible through the major roads as well as public transportation that connect them to each other. Looking at the list, your itinerary options are definitely limitless.

It’s up to you which of these destinations you would like to cover. When you’re done deciding where to take that first brave step, why not turn on the ignition of that camper van you hired and start touring the gleaming beauty of Australia’s “harbour city” – Sydney? You know you want to.

We always love to hear from you! Which of the featured tourist destinations in Sydney would you visit next? Share your love and comments via Salamanda Travel’s Facebook and Twitter pages today!

5 Gourmet Camp Cooking Hacks

Holidays on the road are incomplete without a scrumptious meal prepared around the campfire as you share stories while the sun sets on the horizon. However, preparing a mouthwatering dinner while on a road trip in an Australian campervan hired by family and friends can sometimes dampen your mood when all you wish to do is just stretch your legs and lay your back after an adventure-packed day outdoors.

Perhaps a few innovative ways to prepare more than just hot dogs and steaks is what you need in order to upgrade your campervan menu handed down to you by previous generations that have enjoyed the legendary Outback. It really is very easy to add fresh ideas into your favourite camping recipes.

So whether you’re camping with friends or family, make mealtimes more fun by checking out these few hacks on how you could make the most out of your campervan kitchen.

Learn to Improvise

First off, you must plan your meals. Avoid thinking of making dishes that would take forever to cook over a campfire (remember, everybody’s had a long day of adventures and are likely to be very hungry), or would require large and heavy pots and pans to prepare (you don’t have much room to bring your entire home kitchen with you). If you want to impress your mates with an elegantly cooked dinner, look for easy-to-prepare, readily available alternatives. Besides, meals that imbibe the rustic feel of a night at a campsite like pot roast with steamed vegetables or baked beans could be as good as a slab of beef from your favourite steak house.

You can also prepare a hearty breakfast using leftovers from last night’s dinner. Bring out the eggs and grate some cheese to create an omelette that would melt the sleep from your mate’s eyes. Squeeze a few fresh oranges and serve the juice in a pitcher and add some honey to give them that sun-kissed vibe to prepare them for another day outdoors.

Have a Knack for Nibbles

Sometimes, a hearty chatter at the campfire is best complemented with light snacks. Load up on fruits, nuts, and popcorn for starters. Nothing beats the combination of quirky conversations and the crackling of popcorn over a campfire.

"Popcorn” by White93 available at https://www.flickr.com/photos/jt_white/4991059908/ under a Creative Commons Attribution. Full license at https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/

"Popcorn” by White93 available at https://www.flickr.com/photos/jt_white/4991059908/ under a Creative Commons Attribution. Full license at https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/ BY White93

If you want something that would be akin to fine dining, try melting some dark chocolate on a pan where you can dip some fruits or marshmallows in it. Voilà, it’s like having your personalised fondue, camper style!

Speaking of marshmallows, a campfire huddle would not be complete if you’re not making s’mores. Try adding new ingredients to this classic campfire snack like candy sprinkles or using vegan marshmallows, as a healthier alternative.

Jostling Jaw Dropping Delights

There are certain dishes that are difficult to prepare outdoors. Examples are baked goodies such as cakes, pies, and brownies so most campers just buy from bake shops or bake them a few days before the camping trip. Well, you’re in luck because there are now innovative ways to make these without an oven, so you and your travel companions can enjoy freshly baked treats in the wild.

For instance, you could try baking brownies using orange peels. You can do this by cutting the top of the fruit and scooping off the pulp. This way, you would be creating a pocket for your brownie mix. Fill 2/3 of the pocket with your prepared batter. Put back the top and wrap the ball in aluminum foil. Bake for 20 – 25 minutes and you’ll have tangy orange-sized brownies for your mates!

You can also make pies using pita bread as an alternative for the traditional pie crust. Or why not try newspapers as an alternative to aluminum foil when cooking fish? The possibilities are endless. You’re camping – you can be as innovative as you want!

"Fish in Newspaper” by Beck available at https://www.flickr.com/photos/beckayork/3803452845/ under a Creative Commons Attribution. Full license at https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

"Fish in Newspaper” by Beck available at https://www.flickr.com/photos/beckayork/3803452845/ under a Creative Commons Attribution. Full license at https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/ BY Beck

Stock Up on the Essentials

After you have planned your meals, right down to your dessert options, it’s now time to stock up on the ingredients and outdoor equipment that you’d be using. Just remember only to bring the essentials, you’ve already planned what to prepare for your gourmet holiday. So, there’s no point in bringing excessive equipment and supplies.

This makes things quick and easy to set-up when you’re at the campsite. Also, this would make your holiday baggage lighter and easier to clean-up when you head back home. If this would be your first time taking a campervan holiday, bring  a sturdy cooler as well as a set of good roasters for your campfire. The rest of the supplies you’d be needing can easily be found in your kitchen cabinet like pots and pans, as well as dining utensils.

Clean as you go

Preparing wonderful meals during your campervan holiday can also be environmentally friendly. Just like the examples earlier, using alternatives to certain materials for cooking your meals would help reduce waste after your outdoor retreat.

Using old newspapers instead of aluminium foil to lock-in the flavours when grilling fish helps reduce your carbon footprint. Biodegradable materials could be turned to compost after using them for cooking your delectable treats, like the brownies stuffed in hollowed out orange peels. If you have a garden back at home, you can collect your biodegradable trash and turn them into home made fertilizer for your beautiful greens.

"Campfire” by Jeff Souville available at https://www.flickr.com/photos/133326959@N03/17779428771/ under a Creative Commons Attribution. Full license at https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/

"Campfire” by Jeff Souville available at https://www.flickr.com/photos/133326959@N03/17779428771/ under a Creative Commons Attribution. Full license at https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/ BY Jeff Souville

Just a friendly reminder, it’s a no-no to throw out your garbage at the campfire. It would be better to segregate your wastes and throw them properly after your holiday. Throwing garbage at the campfire not only adds up to the pollution in the surroundings. It could even start wildfires because you keep on adding fuel to the flame.

If that happens, you can wave goodbye to your gourmet campervan experience.

Camping can also be a gastronomic adventure, if you know how to turn home-cooked meals into gourmet dishes miles from the comforts and conveniences of your kitchen. All you need is some creativity and a breath of fresh air in the campsite. Now, why not make your own campervan memories? An Australian campervan hired at our website can help you make the most out of your self-drive holiday.

We always love to hear from you, so share with us your gourmet campfire cooking ideas and experiences today. Connect with us on Facebook and Twitter for more information on how to make your campervan holidays the best ever.

6 Reasons to Visit New Zealand Every Year

One trip to see them all.

Have you ever seen the movie Lord of the Rings? The film was shot in one of the most picturesque countries in the world, New Zealand. And just like how the film has portrayed it, the country is charming, if not magical.

New Zealand’s unspoilt scenery, from its breathtaking glaciers, lush green forests, quaint rolling hills and crystal clear lakes has attracted millions of tourists. The country is also compact and easy to travel from its northern to southern islands thanks to budget ferries.

Renting a campervan or a motorhome is a great way to explore this small country. You can pick them up in two of New Zealand’s largest cities, Christchurch and Auckland.

Whether you have been to New Zealand multiple times or a would be first time visitor, here are six reasons why this place deserves to be on your bucket list:

  1. Hobbit Village

Relive the scenes from the Lord of the Rings Trilogy and The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey in the village of Matamata. Take photos of Bag End, home of Frodo and Bilbo Baggins. The hobbit-sized town also has 43 other hobbit holes; some of which you can enter.

Roam the area and you will notice some familiar places from the two films like the double arched bridge, the mill, and the infamous Party Tree. Run along the green pastures and rolling hills of The Shire.

Not far from Matamata to the east, lies Wairere Falls. Plunging at a stunning height of 153 metres, it is the highest waterfall in the North Island. Wairere also has a scenic walking track and a panoramic view of the Waikato plains and valley from its lookout.

Hobbiton_Village_New_Zealand

"Hobbiton" by Tom Hall available at https://www.flickr.com/photos/tom_hall_nz/15189132237 under a Creative Commons Attribution. Full license at https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/ BY Tom Hall

  1. Glacier Hikes

New Zealand is famous for its snow-capped mountains and glaciers, especially in Southern Alps in the South Island. Leave your footprints in the snow while you hike through many glacial patterns.

Choose between the equally famous neighbour glaciers of Fox and Franz Josef, both in Westland Tai Poutini National Park. Leave your rented motorhome at one of the many campervan sites at the base of the mountain. Book a tour to one of these  informative guided helicopter walks.

Other things to do while in this area include riding cross-country in quad bikes, kayaking the mirror-like waters of the nearby glacial lake, and getting close with kiwis (the animal, not the people) at the Westcoast Wildlife Centre.

  1. Māori Culture

The Māori people is perhaps among  the most passionate in the world. Just listening to their “haka” war dance, popularised by the All Blacks Rugby team, lets out a fire inside your heart. The film, Whale Rider, has perfectly portrayed the life and traditions of this vital Kiwi tribe.

Nowhere in New Zealand can you experience Māori culture more genuinely than in Rotorua. The indigenous people of New Zealand are welcoming and gladly let visitors in their homes in the spirit of manaakitanga (hospitality).

Grab a seat as locals perform their evening cultural dances or join classes on how to carve and weave traditional Maui patterns. Satisfy your hunger with steamy hangi food that is slowly cooked through thermal heat.

Aside from the unique local culture, Rotorua is also a haven for adrenaline-pumping extreme sports. The surrounding lush green forest has trails perfect for all mountain bikers, rushing rivers draw many kayakers and river rafters, and bush walks are perfect for all-terrain bike rides.

Maori_Culture_New_Zealand

" Maori" by bradhoc available athttps://www.flickr.com/photos/bradhoc/9712285341 under a Creative Commons Attribution. Full license at https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/ BY bradhoc

  1. Whale Watching

New Zealand is famous for its herds of sheep grazing on lush grasslands, but there is a rarely seen animal that swims in its waters- whales. Half of the world’s whale species like Blue whales, Humpback whales, Southern right whales (Tohora), Pilot whales and Sperm whales are in NZ.

The little seaside town of Kaikoura, 150 kilometres  of Christchurch, is one of the best places to catch a glimpse of these gentle giants.  Take a photo of them slapping their tails or spouting water through their blowholes.

Other places where you can catch a glimpse of whales are in Bay of Islands where there is a large population of bottlenose dolphins, Whakatane which has a sunny warm climate, and Hauraki Gulf where you can spot orca whales and Bryde’s whales.

5. Waitomo Glowworm Caves

Are you fond of stargazing? Now, imagine doing that inside a dark cave, and instead of stars you are looking at glowworms clinging on the roof.

Waitomo Glowworm Grotto in the Northern Island is probably the best memory you will have out of your journey in New Zealand. The cave is a quiet repose that brings a magical moment as if you are frozen in time as you gaze into the living lights.

For the more adventurous,  try the nearby Lost World cave tour where you get a chance to rappel 100 metres  down a cave wall, followed by a dry carving adventure. The cave has a mystical vibe because of an eerie mist amplified by the roar of the Mangapu river echoing throughout its cavern.

Waitomo_Glowworm_Caves_New_Zealand

"Glowworms catching food - 2012-01-28" by Kristina D.C. Hoeppner available athttps://www.flickr.com/photos/4nitsirk/6781019705 under a Creative Commons Attribution. Full license at https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/ BY Kristina D. C. Hoeppner

6. Marlborough Region

Toast a glass of exquisite wine as you explore the wine region of Marlborough. Close to eighty-percent of wine products in New Zealand is produced in this region including the renowned Sauvignon Blanc.

There is nothing like the seafood dining experience in one of the region’s restaurants and wineries. The regional dishes in Marlborough has components of honey, wild meat, oils and nuts produced from its

Aside from wine, the region is also famous for its historic sites and serene coastline. At Omaka Aviation Heritage Centre, they show old plane models from the World War I and II era. Meanwhile, the sea-drowned valleys of Marlborough Sounds offer great kayaking experiences for beginners and pro paddlers.

 

These six things will surely make you want to go back to New Zealand every year. Hire a campervan or motorhome if you want to explore this wonderful country in an inexpensive and convenient way.

Things to do in Melbourne During Summer Season

You can joke about Melbourne’s weather all year round, but not during summer.

The world’s “most liveable city” can rival, if not surpass, the summer experience that other places in Australia has to offer. Melbourne’s magnificent landscape, hidden laneways, sporting grounds and pristine beaches are sure to captivate you.

Melbourne is also a great starting point for any road trip like the Great Ocean Road. Going around the city is easy, especially if you rent a motorhome or campervan that serves as your home on the road.

If you still do not have  the slightest idea what to do when you’re in Melbourne this summer, here are 10 things that will surely make your trip memorable:

1. Sip a Cup of Melbourne Coffee

Melburnians love their coffee, perhaps a bit more than everyone else. If you are a coffee lover yourself, Melbourne presents an opportunity to taste several coffee brews around the world. Simply head over to cafes like Breakfast Thieves, Chez Dre or Kettle Black to have a great breakfast with an equally great tasting cup of coffee.

Melbourne_Coffee

"Coffee time with a magic at St Ali South" by Katherine Lim available at https://www.flickr.com/photos/ultrakml/10698833933 under a Creative Commons Attribution. Ful license at https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/ BY Katherine Lim

2. Tour the CBD via the Circle Tram

Riding Melbourne’s free tram is the most convenient way to explore the city’s business district. The tram also plays an audio commentary that discusses the details of city landmarks and its attractions like the Princess Theatre, Docklands, Melbourne Aquarium, City Museum and Parliament House. To ride in one, wait at any tram stop along the tracks and look for the City Circle sign.

3. Hang Out at the Summer Night Market

Spend your nights with tasty food and good drinks while watching splendid acts from street performers and musicians. Held every Wednesday night from November to March, the Summer Night Market gathers around 200 vendors that serve Middle Eastern, Spanish, Indian and Vietnamese food. Catch this feast of world flavours at Queen Victoria Market in Elizabeth Street.

4. Watch Films at The Moonlight Cinema

Watch a great movie under the night sky while picnicking in the grassy hillside of the Royal Botanic Gardens. Catch your favourite flicks from new releases, cult movies and even retro films. On some occasions, movie goers can also see a mass flight of bats. This year, tickets cost $14 for children and $19 for adults.

5. Catch a Game at the Melbourne Cricket Ground

There is nothing like watching an exhilarating game of cricket or Australian footy. Buy a ticket for your favourite team’s game and cheer for them on the day of their match. MCG also hosts tours that introduce the stadium’s rich history and day-to-day operations. The “G” remains the largest stadium in Australia, with a seating capacity of 100,000.

Melbourne_Cricket_Ground

" CWC Aus v Eng at the MCG" by Tourism Victoria available at https://www.flickr.com/photos/visitmelbourne/16545211875 under a Creative Commons Attribution. Full license at https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/ BY Tourism Victoria 

6. View the City at the Top of Eureka Tower

If you want to see Melbourne in its entirety, head over to Eureka Tower. On the 88th level is a viewing deck that gives you a bird’s eye view of the city. The highest building in the southern hemisphere,  its top ten floors is also plated in  24-karat gold. Tickets are sold at $19.50 for adults and $11.00 for children 4-16 years old. Kids under 4 years are free.

7. Picnic at the Royal Botanic Gardens

You don’t have to leave Melbourne to experience nature. Head over to the Royal Botanic Gardens and immerse yourself in 38 hectares of landscaped gardens with a large collection of plants from around the world. The infamous Heritage Walk tour allows you to see the  Gardens through the eyes of its traditional Aboriginal inhabitants. Many of the plant species in the garden also have displays that provide information about them.

8. Swim at St. Kilda Beach

Summer is never complete until you have spent a few days at days at the beach. Just 6 kilometres from the city centre lies St. Kilda Beach which is popular for its sweeping views of Port Phillip. St. Kilda’s serene foreshore has an extensive network of boardwalks and paths ideal for walking, cycling, jogging and inline skating.

9. Take a Selfie at the Arty Alleyways

Melbourne is home to many artists and it is not only in galleries and exhibits that you can delight yourself in visual art. Just head over to one or two laneways in the main city grid and you will stumble upon some of the best street arts in the world. A galore of colourful murals, starting from Hosier Lane in the north, gives life to the once shortcut passages of the city.

Melbourne_Street_Art

"Melbourne street art." by Andrew available at https://www.flickr.com/photos/63168233@N06/7547584298 under a Creative Commons Attribution. Full license at https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/ BY Andrew

10. Visit the Animals in Melbourne Zoo

Get lost  in the wilderness of Melbourne Zoo. Just less than 4 kilometres  from the heart of the city, stands this wildlife sanctuary that is home to over 250 animal species. Come and see all your favourite animals from lions, tigers, elephants, orangutans and even Victoria’s iconic little penguins and Australian fur seals.

 
These are just a few of the activities you can do in Melbourne this summer. To fully enjoy your stay in this magnificent city, travel aboard a motorhome or campervan. This option is not only cheaper than staying in a hotel, it also gives you schedule flexibility.