There’s nothing more Australian than hitting the open road with a car full of mates, camping gear in the boot and a quiver of boards strapped to the roof. Whether you’re escaping the grind on a Friday afternoon and or setting out on a big journey, there are few things as fulfilling as a summer road trip with your friends.
Australia is brimming with easy and accessible adventures, many of which can be accomplished over a weekend! To celebrate the spirit of the Australian road trip and to encourage you to partake in your own summer adventures, we’ve teamed up with our friends at North Journal, Bear Rentals, Dead Kooks, and Poler to bring you eight epic Australian summer journeys – all easily obtainable! Each journey will provide inspiration and expert tips from locals within each area and the Corona creative community that’ll help make your next roadie a breeze.
Corona Journey No.44 – The Great Western Highway
With the vast majority of Australians living by the coast (around 85% of us), it is no surprise that most of us also decide to holiday by the coast. The allure of a weekend away leads us down a new path, to a new beach, with a different headland and an exciting new patch of sand. For many of us, the ocean is in our blood so you can’t blame us for all the trips up and down the coast. We’re just chasing the addictive salt water and can’t stand the thought of a hot summer too far from the sea. However, if you know where to look and what roads to take west, the inland route is not only something new and inspiring but easily attainable within a couple of hours from the busy Sydney CBD.
We saw a window of opportunity away from work deadlines and decided to pack up our Bear Rentals landy and hit the Great Western Highway. We weaved our way out of the Sydney mess and found ourselves ascending to the stunning Blue Mountains. Within 90 minutes, we had swapped high rise apartment blocks for huge gum trees and imposing cliffs. This journey is an ode to trading the ocean for fresh water waterfalls, and trendy beach cafes for caves with BBQs.
ENJOY THE TRAFFIC
Sitting in traffic can be a real kick in the teeth when you are trying to escape work early at the end of the working week. The whole ‘Friyay’ thing has really caught on, and more people than ever are leaving early on a Friday, meaning the traffic is actually pretty bad from midday onwards. However, I’ve learnt to embrace the madness because it only makes the empty roads and mountain air that much sweeter. A trip into the highlands makes you consider leaving the madness for good, thinking “Maybe I’ll open an axe shop in the mountains and never worry about traffic again.” These awesome thoughts would never happen if you were able to just zip out of the city in five minutes. It’s all about the contrast my friends.
FIND A CAVE, MAKE SURE IT HAS A BBQ
We always like to have a rough idea of where we will lay our head for the night, whether it be a campsite by a river, a dirty old pub or a massive cave with sleeping bags and a BBQ. There is an interesting character out this way named Mark the Hatter, who one day stumbled across a giant cave when he was tracking some goats he had seen disappear into the bush near the town of Monkey Creek in the Blue Mountains. After establishing that these odd goats were crazy and had disappeared into the depth of the valley below, he realised there was a giant, beautiful cave there that no one knew about. So Mark took it upon himself to find who owned the land and purchased it from them. Nowadays, Mark lets you stay in the cave perched atop a stunning hidden valley, and it’s called Hatter’s Hideout – a spot tucked away from the touristy Katoomba. Mark has also constructed a good old Aussie BBQ setup within the cave, complete with tomato sauce and an open grill for the steaks and sausages.
CLIMB A BIG ROCK
The Blue Mountains is full of cliffs, rocks and valleys. If you are careful and adventurous you should find a nice high point, choose a climbing buddy and go for it. You will get the greatest view of all for sunset and the exercise counteracts those beers you will be having later on.
FIND A HIDDEN VALLEY
The Blue Mountains is full of easy to get to lookouts, often full of foreign tourist buses and people in suits taking selfies. You can’t blame the selfie suit wearers for driving to the epic lookouts – they are easily accessible and have incredible views. However, do your homework and look around. The mountains are full of hidden secrets where you can spend the whole afternoon with just your mates and the odd rock wallaby, with not a tourist bus in sight.
MAKE THE MOST OF THE 50 YEAR STORM
After a whole summer of little more than a teaspoon of rainfall, the weekend we chose to duck off to the mountains we had two full days of monsoon-like downpour. It poured, and poured some more. After our epic sunset on the first day we were left drenched for the next two days, but we made the most of it and found an incredible waterfall which was made only more amazing by the excessive rain. We spent the whole day just hanging in the adjacent cave, jumping off the falls and swimming in the freshwater pools. All of which wouldn’t have been possible without the once-in-50-years storm.
FIND A WAY TO THE TOP AND JUMP
There is something about jumping off waterfalls, it must be us humans wanting to be like the water we see flowing off the cliff. Either way, one of the most fun things about stumbling across an awesome waterfall is jumping off it. Just make sure the pool at the bottom is deep enough and clear of obstacles. We did a bunch of swimming around the drop zone to make sure there were no logs or rocks. Once you are confident the coast is clear, JUMP.
FIND THE PUDDLES
Having the ideal wet weather vehicle came in handy with the constant downpour. Thanks to Bear Rentals we had the much loved Land Rover Defender, so it meant we were able to hit all the fire trails and dirt roads in the area, no matter how drenched they were. Those muddy trails also led to some pretty epic hidden lookouts as well. We just followed them, then followed them a little more, until we eventually ended up at the edge of a cliff.
ENJOY THE FOG
Many people head to the mountains for the spectacular views, the dark blue hues that soak the valleys and the greenest tree tops spreading as far as the eye can see. When reality hits, and you realise that being at such a high altitude can create foggy mornings and even hazier afternoons, just embrace the weird and creepy look it gives the place. Go out and find the spookiest corner you can find.
Want to win the ULTIMATE Corona Summer Journeys prize pack? Then share your Summer Journey with us!
There’s a hefty summer bounty up for grabs including:
To share your Summer Journey with Corona simply upload a photo from your adventure to Instagram, tag @coronaextra_au and three friends in the caption, along with the hashtag #CoronaJourneys. Easy!
For more entry details and T&C’s click HERE.