Sydney’s Top Ten Beaches

During the months of September to May, backpackers and residents in Sydney, make sure they take time out to enjoy two of its greatest assets – its sunshine and immaculate beaches.

But with so much choice so close to the many hostels in Sydney, here’s a small guide separating the prime wheat from the less exciting beach chaff travelers are likely to stumble across in the city.

Palm Beach

One of the most well-known beaches in the city, Palm Beach is a long stretch of faultless sand flanked on one side by lush evergreen bush, and on the other the crystal clear water of the South Pacific Ocean and Tasman Sea.

Barrenjoey Beach

Officially discovered by Arthur Philip in the 18th century, this 1.5 kilometer stretch of sand is the lesser known partner of Palm Beach, which is located nearby. Both are within close proximity of the Sydney Harbour Bridge and Sydney Opera House – and hence the most popular Sydney hostels.

Great Mackerel Beach

Backing onto Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park, Great Mackerel Beach is generally only accessible by water taxi or neighboring Palm Beach. Surrounded by lush vegetation, it is a great place for backpackers seeking a bit of peace.

Currawong Beach

For tranquility it’s hard to do better than Currawong Beach, whose lapping shores are savored by visitors and treasured by locals as an excellent place for couples and families to take some time out from the throng.

Bondi Beach
Perhaps the most popular tourist beach in Sydney, Bondi Beach is renowned the world over for its supreme surf and well-policed waves. Located close to the city centre, Bondi Beach is often the natural choice for new arrivals in Sydney hostels.

Balmoral Beach

Located in the Mosman suburb, the area is as much renowned for its views from the surrounding Balmoral Slopes as for its cool waters and golden sands. However, Balmoral Beach also boasts a number of excellent restaurants.

Avalon Beach

Avalon is most popular among surfers – and rightly so. It enjoys some of the best tides and waves in Sydney, and was also a onetime star of US TV show, Baywatch.

Cronulla Beach

Another great beach for families with children, well-patrolled by lifeguards and with a selection of toddler-friendly rock pools to play in.

Manly Beach

One of Bondi Beach’s main rivals for travelers’ affections and a great place for travelers to meet each other and exchange travel tips.

Long Reef Beach

The name says it all for this activity hotspot. A 200 meter long stretch of reefs and a good coastal breeze have made this a hotspot for wave-jumping, wind surfing and kitesurfing.

My Travel Tips

My top 2 out of 10 things to do before my oversea trip

1. Find The Place I Want To Stay ( Hotel, Hostel, Inn, Backpacker lodge)

Checking out the place is important. It helps to determine what needs to be packed and what to expect from a particular place. The best sites I always go few months before I travel are http://www.virtualtourist.com and http://tripadvisor.com. I like the design and forum in VT better, so I normally post my questions in the forum. So far, I have not been disappointed with the VT members’ help. It is one of the reason that I have also shared my travel tips there. Once in a while I will try my best to answer questions posted in the forum especially questions about Sabah. I am glad I found Dr.Izad’s blog. I can recommend tourist to go to his blog and webpage to read more about tips on Mount Kinabalu climbing. I mainly used Trip advisor to find places to stay and to check traveler’s reviews on any particular hotel. They too have their own forum. In the forum you can ask as many questions before you go or even while you are on the go. I’ve selected and stayed at Masters Inn Kissimme Orlando based on view in the forum. Other popular sites you can check are; lonelyplanet and fodors. Try to check for cheap accommodation at here. I have used this site to find accommodation in California and Las Vegas three years back. That was my first experience booking a hotel online. Well, I managed to find a nice hotel and was satisfied with the search and recommendation. Those who are traveling on a budget can check here.

IMPORTANT TIP:-Stay in a place where you can get access to transportation easily especially to and from the airport, close to eating places and also close to the main attractions if possible.

IMPORTANT TIP: – Unless you can’t stay in a place less than a 5 star hotel, opt for a cheaper hotel. After all you are not going to stay there. You will need a hotel just to sleep as most of the time you will be out there, exploring. Anyway, if you are on a special vacation like honeymoon, then it’s fine to splurge on a nice hotel and other things.

2. Check The Transportation System

If you are going oversea, then the first transport system that you have to check is the airlines than goes to your destination. There are two ways you can do this. It’s either calling your travel agent and asks for a quotation of your place or routes of interest or go and do your own search and booking online. Do call two or three travel agents as they normally give different rates.

You can also check the MRTA systems, Bus and even Ferry services. (If related). MRTA are common in major cities and it’s easy to get access to it. Just get the map for the MRTA routes and you are on it. Subways are more common in big city like New York. Subways in New York are superb. It is one of the best transportation systems I have ever seen.

Important TIP: Go for airlines with at least one stopover if you are not rushing to go home. For example, if you plan to go by MAS to Los Angeles, there is a stop over in Taipei. To kill two birds with one stone, do spend 2-3 days in Taipei. If you are heading to New York by the same airlines, there is a stop over at Stockholm, Sweden. In 2004, I went to Los Angeles via Taipei and stop for two nights. Last June, I didn’t manage to stay 2 nights at Stockholm as planned initially. If not because I have a meeting just after my trip I would have spend some time there too. To go to Australia, you can either check Qantas or other airlines too. I went to Sydney in 2001 and Singapore Airlines gave a cheaper rates compared to other airlines. If you plan to go to other places within Australia, you can check Virginblue.

5 Travel Tips For Travel to Fiji

Fiji offers a unique blend of culture and natural beauty and travelling to this friendly country always promises a magical vacation. Most people go to Fiji for the gorgeous beaches and relaxing sun and none are disappointed.

Whether you’re looking to dive amongst spectacular coral and fish, laze on the beach under the sun, or explore rich cultural and historical sites, Fiji offers the diversity to please any traveller. As you plan your trip, consider these 5 travel tips:

#1 Choose the Right Island

Think about what you hope to get out of your trip as you start to plan. If you are looking to swim, snorkel, surf and kayak, try the Yasawa Group. If you and your family are seeking a fun time in the sun, look into the Mamanuca Group. If you want to experience awesome diving, consider Taveuni, Beqa Lagoon, to name a few. If you want to tuck away in a romantic secluded spot, escape to the remote beaches of Kadavu, or the Northern Islands of Fiji.

#2 Learn Some Language

English is the official language in Fiji, but the native language is well persevered and widely spoken. There are many terms that you might hear incorporated into everyday language. Before you go, make an effort to learn a bit of the language for the full cultural experience of Fiji.

#3 Book a cheap flight online

Australians and New Zealanders should rejoice in the fact that the flight to Fiji is not only short (3 hours from Sydney to Nadi) but that there is a good range of cheap flight deals and packages to Fiji. There are several international and regional airlines that operate flights to and from Fiji as well as affordable domestic flights to whisk you comfortably from island to island.

#4 Pack Smart

Unless you are planning to take a trek high up into the mountains, don’t worry about packing clothes for cold weather. Fiji is almost always warm, even in the evening and night. Pack plenty of light clothes including bathing suits and cotton shirts, shorts and dresses. Even formal evening events won’t dip below the ‘crisp casual’ range of clothing, so don’t worry about packing formalwear. Prepare yourself for the occasional tropical rain and with a waterproof jacket. As with any beach outing, protect yourself from the elements with hats, sunglasses, sunscreen and insect repellent.

#5 Know the Customs

While beachwear is perfectly acceptable at the resorts, scanty clothing is inappropriate in villages. When shopping, remember that bargaining is encouraged at small local shops and stalls, but not at all in major department and grocery stores. Tipping in Fiji is not customary. Visit any village or private home, especially on a weekend, and you will undoubtedly be offered a coconut shell filled with kava, a traditional drink with mildly intoxicating properties. Enjoy!