Following up on recent columns, from the Great Ocean Road to cruising alone.

We received excellent tips on road trips from Melbourne to Adelaide. Here's a selection of your best advice.

My husband and I travelled the coastal route from Melbourne to Meningie, north into the Barossa Valley and then to Adelaide about 10 years ago. We took two weeks as we stayed three nights in some places. We stayed at Apollo Bay, Portland and Robe, then Mannum on the Murray River, Nuriootpa and Glenelg from where we travelled into Adelaide by train. We returned to Auckland from Adelaide. My favourite places were Robe and Mannum. Highlights of the trip were the Twelve Apostles and the magnificent southern coast, the Cape Bridgewater Petrified Forest and the famous Blue Lake at Mt. Gambier which takes less than an hour to walk around. I hope this helps your reader.

Margaret Antunovich

For the thrill of seeing koalas in the wild, you've got to stop at Victoria's Kennett River, then turn off left into Grey River Rd. Lots of rosellas on the flat area, then up the hill the sharp-eyed will spot koalas in the gum trees. If you want to see kangaroos in the wild, they are plentiful in the area near the Anglesea Golf Club in Victoria.


Cheers, Val Parry

I thought the road between Westport and Greymouth, and the Kaikoura Coast beat the Great Ocean Road hands down, but there's one thing you won't see on those roads: the koalas in the trees at Kennett River. Turn off the main highway and follow the road past the camping ground then start looking in the eucalyptus trees on the side of the road - awesome!

Regards, Kathryn Clark
And following last week's column on cruising for singles, Deputy Travel Editor Stephanie Holmes recalls her own experience of being alone at sea.

A sunlounger. A book. An endless horizon. Enough food at the 24-hour buffet to eat my own body weight, several times over. Yoga lessons, lectures, spa treatments, siestas.

A cruise offered it all. And a cruise by myself meant the freedom to do what I wanted, when I wanted.

For solitude, I'd head to the upper rear deck, away from the ship's pools and the activity. An empty lounger was pretty much guaranteed. I read and napped; a cycle broken only by the rumble of my stomach, at which point I'd wander downstairs for another lap around the buffet bar.

When I wanted company I was spoilt for choice. I could join the ship's multiple and varied daily activities, or seek out the new friends I made at my assigned dinner table.

One of my tablemates was a fellow solo traveller - Angie, a film-maker, model and actress. She was celebrating her birthday by making a start on her bucket list, and a recent divorce wasn't going to hold her back from fun. Every time I passed her she was off to a new activity, a new friend in tow, a smile never far away.

Anyone contemplating a cruise but afraid of going solo should take a leaf out of Angie's book and never let the lack of a companion hold you back from your travel dreams. You know that line about strangers being friends you haven't met yet? A solo cruise is the perfect place to put it into practice.

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