Choosing a Stop Off Destination For Travel From Australia

If you are planning a trip to Australia, you’ve probably already worked out that it’s a long way from anywhere else! It also takes a long time to get here especially if you are travelling from Europe or the US. So, most try to combine a trip to Australia with a few other places just to make the most of being in the southern hemisphere and in this part of the world.

This solution won’t work for everyone though. You need at least 3 weeks to visit Australia so adding on a couple of 3 night stop offs will sadly reduce your time too much. One stop off for a couple of days however could be manageable.

Asia is generally the preferred stop off destination. This is particularly true if you are coming from Europe as most flights stop to refuel here. It means there is usually a very small cost for including a stop over to your flight. Here are some of the best stop off destinations:

Bangkok and Thailand

This is a popular holiday destination for the Australians as there are a few flight operators keeping flights competitive, and it’s still reasonably cheap when you get there.[I:]

For Bangkok I’d look to do the following:

1) Visit the Grand Palace.This is where the king used to reside but it is still used for special occasions. You can’t go inside but you can admire the beautiful buildings.

2) Visit The Wat Sai Floating Market by barge. You can pick one up outside the Grand Palace and try and get one that will take you to the Royal Barges Museum too. The boats here are beautiful and have been used for the King.

3) Chatuchak Weekend Market The place to shop in Bangkok. It has everything here including restaurants too. Go early to avoid the heat and the crowds (opens from 7am)

4) If you would like to see more of Bangkok, then take a Segway Tour. This is a tour with a difference as you will be on a 2 wheeled electronic device. They are easy to use and they give you a real sense of freedom as you cruise the streets of Bangkok.

5) Enjoy the nightlife. A night in Bangkok is usually good value and we’ve all heard of the lady boy shows etc. Bars are a plentiful and generally offer a good night out.

If a beach holiday is more your thing then head to Phuket in Thailand. Jet Star flies directly to Phuket from Australia and you can usually find cheap flights if you wait for a sale or book well in advance.

Phuket itself is a major tourist destination and as a result it is full of touristy stalls, restaurants and heaps of bars. This is not the place if you are wanting a quiet beach holiday. It’s more like going to Ibiza but in Asia! The surrounding area however is lovely and offers more tranquil resorts. Phi Phi Island is a favourite day tour and great place to actually stay (It’s near where they filmed “The Beach.”)

Unfortunately there isn’t room in this article to tell you about all the stop off places. i would also consider Hong Kong, Singapore and Kuala Lumpur. Fiji is another great destination, particularly if you are travelling from the US. This is a very idyllic set of islands, the perfect relaxing getaway.

If your trip to Australia is more than 3 weeks then I’d seriously consider a trip to New Zealand or even the tropical island of Bali. The flight times from Australia are reasonable.