Safety Tips in Queensland


When it comes to travel in Australia, tourists generally have a higher degree of personal safety than most other places on earth. Crime is relatively low, petty theft is restricted to major cities (and even then muggings and pickpockets are rare) and Australian hospitals and infrastructure are strong, capable and accessible. Queensland, the most northeasterly state in the country, is no different. It is a place with a high standard of living and safety risks are low, whether you’re staying in a Brisbane serviced apartment or camping in the outback of central Queensland. There is, however, a different set of risks when travelling in a new place, and in order to make sure you trip is as enjoyable as possible, here are a few safety tips to adhere to:

Wildlife
In Australia, travellers have much less to fear from its people than they do from its wildlife. Home to several of the most highly poisonous creatures in the world, the main risk with travelling in Queensland is that you’ll encounter one such animal. Snakes and spiders are the most common poisonous animals, and because much of Queensland’s appeal is in its landscapes and the great outdoors, you have more chance of running into something dangerous than you do in Melbourne.
Common sense must prevail, however, and there are a few simple things you can do to make sure you’re safe. Check shoes and boots before putting them on in the morning as little spiders (some of which pack a mean punch) enjoy crawling in overnight and don’t appreciate being woken up by a giant toe coming towards them! If you’re walking in long grass, be on the lookout for snakes, and the same goes for walking in rainforests or on rocky trails. Generally they will get out of your way unless disturbed, so try and make a bit of noise as you’re walking to warn them humans are on the way.
The other major wildlife threat in Queensland is in the ocean, where sharks, some crocs, and box jellyfish can be an issue. In tropical waters, the box jellyfish is seasonal, but seeing as it is the most deadly creature in the entire world you really want to make sure the water is safe to swim in before taking a dive. There will be well-signposted swimming areas that give you the information you need, and if in doubt ask a local or rent a stinger-suit, which will protect you from the long tentacles of the box jellyfish should one decide to take an interest in you!
Sharks populate the waters all around Australia, but shark attacks are relatively rare. Surfers are usually the victims of these attacks when they happen as the sharks mistake their boards for seals and take more of an exploratory bite than anything else. Still, even an exploratory bite can be deadly, so try to stay inside shark nets when available and avoid the ocean when it is murky or late at night.

Apart from having a good travel insurance policy, staying safe in Queensland is mostly about understanding and respecting the environment. Make sure you always have enough water when you are travelling on Queensland’s often-deserted roads, and always let someone know where you expect to be. Queensland is a magical place and a crowd favourite for tourism, and if you follow these simple safety tips you’re sure to have a great time while you’re there.

How to Beat the Winter Blues

Do you spend the winter months counting down the days till summer arrives once more? Does the rain and cold make you feel bitter and resentful? Short of spending your life chasing the sun – maybe even moving every 6 months to swap between the southern and northern hemisphere summers – there’s not much you can do to prevent winter arriving every year. Instead, you need to learn how to embrace and make the most of the cold and windy weather! Here are some of the ways winter can be great – you’ll be forgetting those winter blues in no time.


1. Warm and snuggly inside while watching the crazy weather outside.
Just because it’s often cold and wet outside during winter, it doesn’t mean you have to go out in it!
Forget about those mornings where you have to dash through the rain with your umbrella to get to work: think about how nice it is when you find yourself snuggling up with your doona on the couch, heater on full blast, watching your favourite film, drinking a warm cup of hot chocolate and relaxing with friends and family.
2. Going to sleep hearing the pitter-patter of rain on the roof.
If there’s one thing that winter has got going for it, it’s those cozy nights where you can be warm in bed with your fluffy winter bed linen, your many blankets – maybe an electric blanket and maybe even a hot water bottle! There’s nothing quite so blissful as going to sleep while listening to the rain and feeling thankful to be home.
Compare this to summer, where it can be so hot that sleeping naked, no covers, and even a fan whirring furiously away, still can’t cut through the unbearable humidity. If only there were a way to combine winter nights with summery days: wouldn’t that be the perfect solution?
3. The Snow!
Even if you rarely see snow in your area, and winter to you means only lots of wind and rain: there’ll be somewhere within driving distance where you can go to find and make the most of the snow.
If you’ve never tried winter sports, then now is the time to start. You can’t genuinely complain about winter blues unless you have tried everything winter has to offer.
If you find skiing and snow boarding aren’t for you, you can still at least take part in the apr├Ęs-ski drinking at the resort instead.
4. Winter fashions.
Let’s face it. During summer, you spend most of your time either at the beach in your swimsuit, or in functional clothes that are designed to keep you as cool as possible.
When it comes to expressing yourself and getting creative with fashion: winter beats summer, end of discussion. Coats, scarves, hats, gloves, layers upon layers of clothing…. there’s always a great excuse to go clothes shopping in the winter!
5. Indulgent foods; bubble baths; fireplaces…
There are so many more great things about winter; it is simply impossible to list everything.
Forget the summer barbeque, what about those delicious Sunday roasts? Or warm pumpkin soup with crusty bread? And of course scrumptious winter puddings? The cold weather provides us with a great excuse to indulge in all sorts of comfort food.
Add to this the luxury of enjoying a nice bubble bath or hot shower to keep you warm and relaxed…this doesn’t have quite the same effect in summer. And you cannot deny the appeal of a toasty fireplace spreading warmth throughout the home.
The reality is, beating the winter blues shouldn’t consist of trying to escape summer: you need to change the way you think about it. Focus on all the positives winter has to offer, and you will soon find yourself remembering why these months don’t have to be so bad after all.
You can’t stop the seasons from changing, so you need to change your outlook instead. Once you’ve done this, you can kiss your winter blues goodbye!

5 Romantic Holiday Destinations in Australia

If you’re thinking of taking a romantic trip with your beloved, Australia has more than a few seductive locations to choose from. It’s one of the most beautiful countries on earth with a range of ways to indulge that special someone, so if you are planning on a trip with a heavy dose of romance, we’ve got a few suggestions to tempt you! Buy that travel insurance policy, book those plane tickets and pack your sexiest underwear—these 5 holiday destinations are sure to turn the heat up in your romance.


The Whitsundays
Can it get any more idyllic than the breathtaking Whitsunday Islands? Turquoise waters, white sand, tropical islands, coral reefs and luxury accommodation—it’s easy to fall in love here, with you surrounds, with nature, and with each other. A popular honeymoon spot for Australian and international tourists alike, the Whitsunday Islands are home to some of the most exclusive resorts in the country. Oh, and did we mention there is an island in the shape of a love-heart?
The Hunter Valley
Curl up by the fire with a big glass of the region’s finest and enjoy the peace, quiet and indulgence that the Hunter Valley has on offer. A few hours’ drive north of Sydney, the Hunter Valley is home to some of Australia’s finest wineries and has a strong focus on indulgence. It’s the perfect place to relax and unwind
in the picturesque Australian bush, surrounded by some of the best food and wine you’ll ever get to taste. Ahh, bliss.
The Blue Mountains
Also two hours’ drive from Sydney, but in the other direction, are the Blue Mountains. A mountain range with historical as well as cultural significance, the Blue Mountains contain both untamed nature and quaint village life to be explored. Bushwalking is a popular activity here, and what better way to woo then with the stunning natural backdrop of the Australian bush land. Once you’re finished with the great outdoors there are antique shops to check out (a must for any couple’s weekend away) as well as wonderful restaurants and boutique accommodation options.
The Great Ocean Road
If you’re looking for a romantic holiday that keeps on moving, why not take a drive for two along the Great Ocean Road in Victoria. Passing landmarks like the 12 Apostles rock formation and stopping at charming little seaside villages, you’ll be blown away by the grandeur and beauty of this untamed terrain. Add to the breathtaking scenery the scores of charming accommodation options and you’ve got yourself a windswept holiday that’s oh so Heathcliffe and Kathy, darling.

Sydney

The stunning Harbour City is not short on romance, and a weekend away here with the one you love is bound to be an experience to remember. Whether you’re taking in a leisurely breakfast at Bondi Beach or enjoying a glass of bubbly on a Sydney Harbour cruise, there is no shortage of romantic things to see and do in this global and thriving city.

How to Survive in Sydney

It’s said to be one of the greatest cities in the world - people flock to Sydney from all over the globe to see its sights, enjoy its relaxed lifestyle and take advantages of its beaches. It can be an amazing but tough city to live in for a traveller or a tourist though, especially if you want to stay longer than a couple of weeks. If you are planning to shack up here for a while, consider these hints below to help you make the most of your time in Sydney.


1. Live where you want to live
The whole point about travelling is to explore new places and live the life that you wouldn’t ordinarily be living in your hometown. Sydney is huge, so figure out what appeals to you and look for a unit or even some share accommodation in Sydney that is going to fit in with your lifestyle. For the majority of you, this will mean living near the beaches. There are dozens to choose from and although Bondi and Manly are the most popular, other beaches like Coogee, Dee Why, Cronulla and Palm Beach have lots to offer as well. Of course, you can also consider other spots in Sydney like the CBD, the suburbs or even as far out as the Blue Mountains for a unique living experience.
2. Consider sharing a house
If you’re up for it, house sharing is a great way to save money and meet new people. Living in a share house in Sydney means that you can save on money by splitting rent and other expenses. It might not be as cheap as you’d like and you’ll still probably have to contribute to a kitty, but it’ll still be cheaper than living on your own. So if you don’t want to have to fork out the amount of money it would cost to have your own apartment by the beach or pay to stay in a hotel, consider a share house and save some dosh.
3. Make sure you have a work visa
You’re probably already on top of this if you’re used to travelling, but if not, make sure you get yourself a visa that allows to work in Australia, even if it is just for a short amount of time. You don’t have to use it, but you also never know when you might need some extra cash. This doesn’t mean you have to get a “serious” job, but if you can wait tables, work behind a bar or head up some other tourist groups, a visa means you’ll be able to support yourself and earn some cash on the side.
4. Make new friends
If you’re travelling alone or only with a couple of people, try and make new friends in Sydney. You can make friends with local Sydney-siders or with other travellers from your own country or other countries. Making friends is also a great way to explore the city and get new ideas about what there is to see and how to see it. You might find a friend who knows all about diving or you might meet a Sydney-sider who knows a great pub. Making friends means you can also have someone to turn to and ask advice from if you need it, which can be helpful when it comes to things like transport, going out and where to go to get other kinds of help.
5. Sydney as a home base

One of the greatest things about Sydney is that it can also act as your gateway to the rest of Australia. If you happen to settle down in here and you can afford it, you can use your accommodation in Sydney as a home base from which to explore the rest of the country. Weekends and week-long trips to other places like the Whitsundays, the Barrier Reef, Melbourne, Ayers Rock, Tasmania and Perth are as easy as pie! And with Sydney as your base, it also means you have somewhere stable to come back to.