Sometimes the journey is more important than the destination, especially in a land as dominated by unreal landscapes as Australia. Flying is certainly quicker, but nothing can compare to the absolute freedom of being alone in the beautifully vast red heart of the country.
From coastal journeys and outback adventures, an Australian road trip is certainly the best way of experiencing the magnificent scenery that the land has to offer. Driving trough the countries can be fairly easy on most routes, even for the less experienced drivers, but you must be prepared for long distances and unexpected complications that may difficult your trip. Be safe and ready for every situation with the government's road safety tips. Although there is one perfect itinerary for every visitor, there are some routes not to miss. One of them is, without a doubt, the route from Hobart to the Bay of Fires. Although it's not a very long route, as it is located in the gorgeous island of Tasmania, far from the more populated areas of the country, its iconic landscapes of shimmering white beaches, unreal blue waters and challenging mountains will charm even the most reticent traveller.
In order to avoid getting lost, use a GPS system which allows you to know your location at all times. Purchasing physical maps of the area is a highly advisable option for all travellers as a backup option. Gathering information about the weather and road condition of the areas you are about to travel to is crucial in order to prepare for your trip. Make sure you are aware of all state emergency telephone numbers before you start your trip. All visitors travelling to the country need to apply for an Australian visa through the website of the Department of Immigration and Citizenship. There are five different visas for Australia, depending on your nationality and the length of your stay. For short stays, European passport holders are eligible for a free eVisitor visa that allow you to stay in the country for up to three months during a 12 month period. This type of visas must be applied for online (www.immi.gov.au/e_visa/evisitor.htm) with at least two weeks notice prior to the proposed date of travel. The parallel alternative for American and Canadian visitors, is the Electronic Travel Authority (ETA, 601). ETA’s must be applied for online through the Australian Department of Immigration (www.eta.immi.gov.au) and have a cost of US$20. If you wish to extend your travel visa for Australia once you are inside the country, you are required to apply for an Australian Visitor visa (600) that has an approximate cost of US$335. Make sure you apply for this type of visa with at least three weeks notice, as the application process can be long and complex. Regarding the arrival in Australian airports, the traveller regulations are usually efficient and straightforward, with the usual custom declarations. For detailed information about the custom procedure and the different visa requirements for Australia, please contact the Australian Department of Immigration and Border Protection. If you have any bureaucratic questions about how to get an Australian work permit, or you would like to know further information about Australian travel visas, please contact your closest embassy or consulate.