My #5 TOP TIPS for roadtripping through Wild Australia
With a perfectly equipped 4WD rental car comes this “survivor” checklist
#1 Always have 2 galons of fuel filled up in your 4×4 campervan, as well as 2 tank of drinking water. You’ll be happy to fuel up your vehicle after driving long hours with no sights of gaz stations. And glad to take an outdoor shower in the middle of nowhere, under the dry and burning sun of the Northern Territory. These are simple yet so important details to add to your “do not forget” list. We rented our fully equipped 4×4 campervan from https://www.apollocarrentals.com.au/ and it was such a great experience overall! I couldn’t recommend any better rental place.
#2 Basics of the basics = sunscreens, mosquitoes repellers, sunburns coolers (I use any pure Aloe Vera gel or lavender sticks, they are the best!), disinfectant, Kleenex, hat and sunglasses. I wore my favorite sunglasses all the way : https://bana-sunglasses.com/collections/best-selling-products/products/cesar-on-fire-blue-1
Be prepared to see no one on the roads, litteraly.
#3 Be aware you are going to drive for about 5h per day, on roads which are not crossing cities or smaller towns. Sometimes, the only signs of civilisation might be the road, and that’s it. The few times you’ll see an other car, wave and say hi, because that might be the only human (other than your partner) you’ll see for hours.
Human connection is rare and appreciable in these moments. Humour and car games are a great deal to kill hours. Snacks and water are also a great combo for killing time.
You get more comfortable with survival ideas
#4 Stay focus on the road and wild life, always. I know this might be dumb and normal to say, but driving through the dry and infinite long straight roads in the empty areas of Western Australia will bring your concentration to a whole new level. Not only you must be careful on not feeling tired too soon, but also have your eyes go from left to right every second in order to spot an animal running and hoping to cross. I remember once driving for 4 straight hours on a infinite straight road, with no ending. The drive was so tiring I had to imagine seeing bridges at the end of the road just to force myself to visualise anything other than this ridiculously successive invariable road.
Too many animals get hit by cars every day, and to see them lying on the side of the road is really heartbreaking. Not only it might be horrific to hit a wild animal, but it is also a danger for you and the passagers.
Coming from Europe, distances might look OK, but we tend to forget how big this continent is. To have a proper idea, Paris to Nice by car is around 900km, which is around 10h by car.
Our trip started from Darwin and ended a bit lower of Perth, which makes a total of 7702 km of driving. It’s almost has if we did Nice to Paris back and forth for 8 times!
Just to have an idea of the size, here is a map of Australia laid on top of Europe:
#5 Finally and most important : be cool, don’t do anything you don’t feel like, really. If it’s too dark and the road to your camp is too offroad and you don’t feel like crossing weird paths, just stop there, and sleep in the car. Don’t try and force the way, believe your intuitions, and stay safe. Most of areas don’t have phone signals, and the apparel you have from the car rental company allows you to be used only once: for extreme emergency only.
For exemple, if you get bit by a deadly snake or spider, or if a crocodile is around the car and you can’t get out. They won’t send help to take the car blocked in a sand dune, or change a tire, and that’s totally understandable. Some places might need written and/or vocal permission to enter with your vehicle, and not all vehicles are entitled to drive in every region.
You can find some basics of Australian roads travel informations:
Here are 2 maps of Northern Territory and Western Australia with suggested route on sealed roads, restricted access required authorization from Apollo, and prohibited roads (no access under
any circumstances) :
– For driving in Western Australia and the KimberleyRegion: https://www.apollocarrentals.com.au/resources/pdfs/au-restricted4wd-access-map-pg1.pdf
– For the Northern Territory : https://www.apollocarrentals.com.au/resources/pdfs/au-restricted4wd-access-map-pg2.pdf
Finally, this is the video we made during our roadtrip, which was by far the best trip I have ever had in my entire life! For the romantics souls, be sure to watch until the very end, as this is the cherry on the top of a beautiful act of love.