Australian East Coast Roadtrip
We've all heard the cliché saying, "there's no place like home." But where is home? As travellers, we are constantly redefining our boundaries, pushing the limits of our own awareness, craving the unknown. Even the places we hate, which leave us exhausted and exploited, teach us something about our world, the human condition or our own limitations and capabilities.
In a country larger than all continental Europe, with no less than 8 climate zones ranging from high humidity to alpine, and a combined costal length of almost 60, 000 km, its little wonder I haven't yet discovered a place which takes my breath away quite as violently as the vast Australian landscape.
Sunset over Bay of Isles, Great Ocean Road
It is something of a tradition, an unspoken rite of passage, for young Australians to jump in a car, with some good mates and a jam-packed playlist, and drive thousands of kilometres across the country, in search of waves, snow, festivals or throbbing cities. Distance isn't a deterrence, and last August I became acutely aware of an Australian's uniquely relaxed opinion of time and scope.
Three German friends made the long flight across the world to road trip the east coast of Australia with me, and it quickly became apparent that when they asked "how far" or "how long," they expected a precise answer in hours or kilometres. My standard replies of, "just round the corner," "not far," or "in a while" weren't going to suffice. They also became frequently frustrated with the Australian farewell of "catch ya later," or "seeya!" when, as they adamantly pointed out to me, they would never see that person again.