How long to complete the Australian loop?

by Kate Moran
Great Ocean Road, twelve apostles


One of the main questions we have been asked since arriving back to Adelaide after completing our loop is how long it took it to complete the Australian loop?

So, it took us 263 days to travel around the coast of Australia (via a little inland). That doesn’t sound too long, and in parts, the days flew by and sometimes felt like the days were never going to end.

During this time we spent 179 days in Western Australia, six in Northern Territory, 38 in Queensland, two in Australian Capital Territory, 27 in Victoria, seven in New South Wales and four in South Australia.  

We started our lap in Adelaide, South Australia. You may already know, this is where we converted and transformed the van into our new home. 

-See here for the video!- 

We left Adelaide on 19th April 2019 and heading straight to Perth (arriving 23rd April) to visit a friend and house sit for nearly five weeks.

During our time in Perth, we visited the southwest coast and the Margaret River area. 

On 5th June 2019, we left Perth to continue our journey north along the Western coast. Making sure we stopped off in places like Shark Bay, Exmouth, and Broome.

Unfortunately, we ran out of money very quickly and had to stop for work, in the North West. 

We first found work in Karratha, (via BackpackerJobBoard.com) for a mobile wood-fired pizza van. The work started in July and continued until August 2019. ‘Charlies Pizza’ is originally based in Perth, but during Perths’ winter, Carl and Lisa head North. They trade in Karratha during the weekday evenings and travel to local festivals for the weekends. We loved working with Carl and Lisa, and we would 100% recommend them as employers and more importantly the pizzas. 

Charles and I made the decision, that after only working part-time for four weeks with ‘Charlies Pizza’, and to continue to trip back to Adelaide, we would need to start looking for work again while in Western Australia.

Charles found our work in the Caltex Roadhouse in Port Hedland, promising 40 plus hours a week. This allowed us to spend little and save a lot. We worked in Port Hedland for nine weeks, starting from 8th August to 14th October 2019. 

During this period, we saved $9,000 each (winning)! 

After Port Hedland, we made a quick dash to Brisbane, QLD. Charles and I had friends visiting from London, England to meet us. We made sure we had enough time to visit Darwin and Cairns. 

We made it across the border into Northern Territory on 20th October 2019 and left six days later 26th October. Shockingly we managed to visit Darwin, Katherine Hot Springs, Mataranka, Litchfield National Park, Daly waters and Devils Marbles during this time. 

Crossing the border from Northern Territory into Townsville, Queensland has got to be the worse road, in the whole of Australia. It took us four days to reach Townsville, in our little van.

We spent 38 days in Queensland, including 18 days with our best friends from home in Brisbane, two days with Charles’ Aunty in the Gold Coast, and a night with a friends’ family member in Cairns. 

Drone photo of Daintree National Park in Queensland, Australia.

Seven days well spent in New South Wales, however, we hadn’t had the chance to visit Sydney during this time, due to the bush fire smoke. We had spent five days in Sydney previously, before our lap started in January 2019. 

The bush fires during this time were severe in NSW, we had hoped to hike in the Blue Mountain National Park, and we did give a small walk a go, but visibility was very poor and even breathing was difficult without a P2 mask. Many of the walks and hikes had been closed due to the bush fires around the area. 

Two nights spent in Australia Capital Territory, we were surprised by how much we enjoyed Canberra, however, the bush fire smoke pushed us out sooner than we hoped.

On the 13th December 2019, we crossed the border into Victoria from NSW. It was lovely to spend Christmas and New Year with close friends in Melbourne. We left Victoria on the 9th of January 2019, with the van already up for sale online. 

We made it back to Adelaide on the 10th of January 2020. 

Unfortunately, we needed a little help from a tow truck to make the remaining 190kms. A red engine warning light appeared on the dashboard, and the RAA came to our rescue. There was a silver lining, luckily we were within 200kms away from the home address, which put us in the free recovery area. So a free lift helped us cross over the finish line. 

At least we saved on fuel!

With our pride a little sore, we were welcomed by Charles’ family with open arms back in Adelaide. 

Side Note:

Although the description above only states four days in South Australia, we use Adelaide as our ‘home’. We won’t be leaving Adelaide until we head to Melbourne in March 2020, (an extra 60 days). However, we don’t like to include this in our lap and we weren’t living in the van at this time.

Do you have any questions about our Australian lap? 

We have made a little list of all our favourite places in Australia here have a look! 

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2 comments

SEO Affiliate Program January 25, 2020 - 5:48 am

Awesome post! Keep up the great work! 🙂

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The best place to visit in Australia, and why? • When Wandering January 29, 2020 - 1:51 am

[…] – See here for where exactly we spent our time- […]

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