''Ridiculously small CONTINENT,... terrifyingly large COUNTRY.''
How did the Land Down Under become the Australia we know today? What hurdles do you have to overcome to make it through the long journey across? And what should you know not become suckers to mainstream commercial tourism?
*** This low-key budget "guide" through space and time can answer many more questions.***
Arriving in Australia for the first time, we're all like those early discoverers who stumbled across something remarkable. Birds sing differently, the sky is an intense blue most of the time, and you hear words you can't find in any dictionary. Everything is weird until you look in the mirror one day and understand it might be you who is the odd one. Today we're exploring the magnificent land on different terms, but in a way it is still the same Terra Australis Incognita, although now a plumper, double-chinned, more ostentatious and luckier descendant, sitting on three centuries of technical progress, skilled immigration, and extraction of abundant natural resources.
Only after linking the country's extraordinary geography with its incredibly interesting history do you realise this country is like no other. No matter if you explore it personally or from the comfort of your couch, AUSTRALIA WANTS TO BE DISCOVERED AGAIN.
In this book, you are:
* going on a 16,000-kilometre journey across the continent, but not before learning the hard way (it needs to be conquered on paper first)
* going through well- and less-known places, seeing that the paid attractions are not always the most worthy ones
* getting many useful tips about how to get most with the least effort and money
* getting history of outback and other interesting places
* hearing about crime stories, criminal plots and murder cases, such as those about missing tourists and underbelly celebs
* learning about history of boom and bust industries like pearling in Broome, diamonds on Lake Argyle, opals in Coober Pedy, gold in Stawell and Hill End and oil shale in Wollemi
* exploring difficult relations between European settlers and indigenous Aboriginal population and why modern Australia cherry-picks alternative ways to explain its history
* seeing the fun and pitfalls of seasonal work in the tropics of Western Australia
* reading about encounters with creatures such as spiders, crocodiles, and why you don't need to panic
* getting place tips for photographers
* exploring the whims of extreme whether such as monsoon rain, floods, snow, hail, and learning where they can take you by surprise
* learning how to explore the Red Centre icons like Uluru/Ayers Rock, Olgas/Kata Tjuta and Kings Canyon for as little money as possible
* climbing Australian mountains like Mount Bruce, Mt Nameless, Mt Sonder, St Mary's Peak, Mt Arapiles, Mt Stapylton, Mt Kosciuszko and learning interesting facts about them
* learning how a small conventional but well-prepared car can become priceless in overcoming harsh Australian conditions and make the travels efficient and fun
* seeing both the humorous and serious sides of low-budget travelling
* and generally getting a different perspective on a continent that is still full of mysteries.
The book is based on 15 years of observations. The journey that serves as its backbone starts in Perth and goes through the Western Australia, Pilbara, Kimberley, Darwin, The Red Centre, South Australia, Victoria, and finishes on the threshold of Sydney.
Australia is one of the best-prepared countries for car touring but one that can often be unpredictable, with many traps, not only aimed at your wallet. Some knowledge offered here will help overcome those challenges and―if you don't plan to do it yourselves―it will keep you informed and entertained.
From section two onward, the book contains illustrated maps, many Google map links, images as well as the route, fuel estimates and the travel budget.