Need advice for a 4 people trip in late february/early march

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Need advice for a 4 people trip in late february/early march

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Old 11-10-2011, 10:56 PM
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Need advice for a 4 people trip in late february/early march

Hi everybody,
I'm a physicist from Bordeaux, France, now living in Melbourne (since august 2011) as a post-doc. I'm planning to go on a trip around Australia in late february/early march with 3 friends from Bordeaux coming here for 18 days. This time of year being the wet season in the tropical North, we're gonna focus on Victoria, South Australia, Tasmania, the red center, with 3 main parts, and I need your help :

-the first big part will be 1 week in Tasmania. Since wer'e mostly interested in wildlife, landscapes, and national parks, we're not gonna do much historic tourism, just rent a car and cruise around the island. Although we're probably gonna start the first day in Port Arthur, but then visit Tasman National Park. The 2nd day would be Freycinet NP, the third day the Bay Of Fires, and 4th and 5th day Cradle Mountain/Lake St Clair NP. Now my big question is : what about 6th and 7th day ? There are 3 main national parks in the South West, Franklin-Gordon Wild Rivers‎ National Park, Mount Field National Park, and SouthWest National Park. Which one do you think we should do considering the time we have, the season (late summer) etc... ? Can we do 2 out of 3, or should we focus on only one ? Or are you thinking about another park we should do ? I was thinking about Maria Island before Freycinet, but half of its appeal is the historical part, and the South West park are apparently really beautiful and underestimated.

-The second part would be a 7 days road trip between Melbourne and Adelaïde. The first 2 days would be focused on the East region of Melbourne : Philip Island, Wilsons Promontory, and Tarra-Bulga National Park. I'm not sure in what order yet. Do you think we could squeeze in Healesville for its animal sanctuary ? Is it worth it ?
The next 2 days would be the Great Ocean Road. One day in Great Otway National Park, one in Port Campbell National Park. Then comes my next big question : what to do on the road to Adelaïde ? I wanted to go there for Kangaroo Island, where we're gonna spend at least one day. That leaves 2 days : there's Coorong National Park but its bird population apparently declined over the last years and it might be less interesting then. There's the possibility of spending 2 days on Kangaroo Island. I've also read about Canunda National Park, but the South part is only accessible by 4WD, and we don't have any experience in 4WD driving. Are the parts accessible by 4WD vehicles still worth it ?
There are also a good number of great national parks north and west of Adelaïde, like Innes National Park. We could also not do a 100% coastal drive and try Murray River National Park. On the north there are some great desertic parks like Lake Eyre, but it's kinda far, and I'm not sure late summer is the best time to do them... What's your opinion ?

-The last short part would be Uluru/Kata Tjuta. One of our friends doesn't like the desert, that's why it will only be 2 days : arriving at Uluru by plane from Adelaïde around 12pm/2pm, we would walk around Uluru and then watch the sunset. Then early in the morning before dawn, we'd head to Kata Tjuta, watch the sunrise, and then take the valley of the winds walk, and go back to Melbourne in the afternoon. What bugs me is the price of the flight to Uluru : it's a 600$ return flight... I was thinking about a road trip from Adelaïde to Alice Springs but it's really long, and the parks we could do on the way like Lake Eyre might not be at their best in late summer, what do you think ? Might it be worth it after all ?

That makes 7+7+2=16 days, the 2 days left would be visiting Melbourne (the first one and the last one), chilling out after and before a long plane trip. I'm open to any kind of suggestion, even if it means completely rethinking my trip, we have time, and maybe the 2 days left would be better spent doing something else. Thanks in advance for your help.

Last edited by Hallu; 11-10-2011 at 11:01 PM.

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