Australia is a magical land on the edge of the world

Australia

Thus, review of the last continent, where I visited a remote and difficult to access for Australia Russians. Some people believe that this is a very expensive country, even in the "Eagle and Tails" about Australia each series begins with wailing top of that they have to live from hand to mouth. In fact it turned out that at the current exchange rates Australia - a country of medium price range, much like Spain or Greece. Given that there are numerous low-cost flights there from Southeast Asia get a great place to visit (well, if not for the visa).

Visa
Visa to Australia at the moment, the most difficult for Russian citizens due to the large number of failures. The requirements are the same as for a visa in New Zealand, I have the same documents sent, only a trip plan written with Australia + New Zealand (two times fewer seats than in fact happened). Visa costs 140 AUD (about $ 100), plus the need to be fingerprinted at the visa application center in Moscow and one of the few cities in Russia (almost another 1,500 rubles). I asked multivisa (to go back and forth to New Zealand), the validity of multivisa - 1 year.
In this case, the actual border control Freestuff incredibly, both times it lasted 30 seconds, without question, like I rode somewhere in Spain. The customs office, however, selectively shmonali in search of food and other banned substances. Theoretically, packaged instant noodles to eat dry food types can be imported (fruit, meat, milk, spices strictly impossible), but it is better not to bother, especially because in Australia it all can be bought quite cheaply.
Money
Australian dollar (AUD) is now equal to 0.7 US. 5. The smallest denomination coins are very bulky, especially 20 and 50 cents; 50 cents seems to be the biggest and most serious coin that I saw at all. In this case, $ 2 - the smallest diameter of the coin, only thicker.
ATMs give the amount not less than 1,000 AUD. The Commission has, 3-4 AUD.
In exchange, curiously, it is shown for the AUD exchange rate, rather than the other currency, which is the number of the course to share, not to multiply.
Accommodation
As in New Zealand, here decides to Airbnb. The situation is even better, because the Australian city more housing options is also bigger and the prices are slightly lower. I spend an average of housing $ 20 per day, and there was a choice rather big.
Hostels are 20-25 AUD per day. Cheap hotels - from 50-60.

Transport
Australia is almost big as America. To travel long distances, you need to either fly or drive for a long time to cut through the desert.
In Australia, four major airlines: Qantas (very expensive), Virgin (cheaper), Tiger Air and Jetstar (loukost). I flew all but the Qantas, they are essentially the same: all the baggage charge, hand luggage 7 kg. If you receive your boarding at the front, it may be asked to weigh, but by a small margin does not dig. Australia - first discovered my country, which is still on domestic flights can fly without a passport if I printed the boarding himself or shown on the phone, at any stage of the passport did not look. In Europe in recent years are always looking passport when boarding, and in the US - before security control.
The train suddenly there are in Australia and you can use them. There are two lines across the country: Sydney - Perth and Adelaide - Darwin, but then Adelaide them go only tourist trains. In the east there are quite a passenger line, the travel price competitive with buses and airplanes (and not as in the US, where the train is 5 times more expensive). I went on a long distance train Sydney-Melbourne in a sitting car, sitting down in the city of Goulburn, where there is a branch to Canberra. That day was a national holiday, and flight prices were higher than usual, and the bus too, so that about 100 AUD per ticket was a normal goal.
Long-distance buses are mainly represented by Greyhound. They have flights even in the center of the country and in the west, it is possible for a couple of days to get to Perth, or to cross the desert from south to north from Adelaide to Darwin. Main routes go along the coast of Adelaide - Melbourne - Sydney - Brisbane - Cairns. The fare is approximately AUD 10 per hour trip.
Public transport
Darwin - quite rare in the city buses. From the airport you have to go about 20-30 minutes to the nearest stop, driving the price of 4 AUD
Adelaide- an excellent transport system, there is a subway / train and bus more or less often. I lived in a one-story residential area, and the bus went past every 15 minutes, while there were other buses that stop at the bus stop on the other side of the block. Both days I bought an unlimited travel for 10.30 AUD, it is on a head cheaper than buying one. Regular bus service from the airport.
Brisbane and Gold Coast- here you need to buy a card, travel card. Collateral and the account balance can be returned in full (for example, at the airport), so no loss. Several trains lines and buses, trains go quite far, up to the Gold Coast, where to go more than an hour. In the Gold Coast there is a tram line that starts from the train station and walking through the main tourist areas. The price of travel depends on the number of zones and the time of day, at least about 2 AUD, up to the Gold Coast 6-8 (in rush hour is more expensive). The airport is an increased rate of approximately 20 AUD. There is an alternative take the local bus to a large shopping mall, which run free shuttles to the airport, but unfortunately this works only during the day.
Sydney- again, trains, buses, soon another will open the subway. Need to buy a transport card, it is free, but to return the balance of the balance is impossible, and you can only fill up to the amount of $ 10 in increments of 5, so plan carefully. The fare is highly nonlinear: the morning rush hour to get out of my district in the center (20 minutes) was worth almost 4 AUD, while in no rush hour drive to the Blue Mountains (more than six hours) cost only 6-7 AUD. There is also a daily limit - 15.80 dollars (and on Sunday the whole is less than 3 shall be deemed free of charge), if you spend so much more is not charged. From the airport by train much higher rate as in Brisbane, but you can walk to the next station (about 20-30 minutes walk), and then there will be the usual price.
Canberra- there are buses, are rare in comparison with other cities. Unlimited day costs AUD 9, but I was all on foot.
Melbourne - a smart system with numerous train and tram, which crosses the city center almost on all major streets. The fare is very unusual: One trip costs 4.40 (2 hours) and NL on the day of 8.80 (on weekends and holidays 6.40). You need to buy a travel card-6 AUD in any machine. Card can not return, you can fill up for any amount, including small coins. In the afternoon the airport can be reached by local bus, early in the morning just to express 20 AUD.
Hobart- there are buses, less than in large cities. To the foot of Mount Wellington travel costs 3.50. The airport express trains run for 20 or there is a stop on the road in 20 minutes walk from the airport, which stop coaches, which, however, go very rarely, once every hour or less. On this bus can be reached in 4.80.
Perth - there is no sense to buy the card, it costs $ 10 and gives a small discount. Simply pay cash benefit if you pay cash and transplants are free, and tickets can be bought on the day. Day ticket costs 12.80, on a map of the same limit. Can be purchased from any bus driver. Ticket for 2 hours and costs 4.80 two zones (eg to the airport). Tickets are one for buses and trains.

Food
With food in this country in order. There are three networks: Woolworths (more expensive), Coles (cheaper), Aldi (the cheapest). Typically, Woolworths and Coles have in each area somewhere near the Metro, Aldi rarely occurs. The store prices are normal, especially if you buy the package more. Compared with New Zealand prices significantly lower than, for example, where I bought a pound of yogurt for $ 5, and in Australia a 3-4 kilogram. Meat dominates beef, a kilogram costs 15-25 AUD. Kangaroo meat is also sold, but rarely need to specifically look for. Pack of pasta can be bought for as little as 1-2 AUD. I still very much gone cold coffee, which is sold in bottles of 750 ml cans and 2 liter - I just, in contrast to the Asian mikrobanochek 150-200 ml, and costs 3-4 AUD bottle.

In the market you can buy cheap fruit: apples and tangerines are from AUD 2 per kilogram.
In restaurants, the prices are about the same as in New Zealand: 10-12 AUD in Chinese canteen, from 20 in a normal restaurant. The fast-food type McDonald's almost one to one, with the replacement of NZ $ Australian: lunch with quad Big poppy stands 12-13 AUD.
Internet
I enjoyed Dreams, the tariff of 10 euros / GB. The local operators packages cost around AUD 10 per 1 GB.
What to see
at first glance it seems that Australia is a great desert, but actually all inhabited places are much more lively as well and generally quite cool in the south of Tasmania, it is on the same latitude as the south of New Zealand.
It so happens that I have visited in all administrative units of the first level in Australia - she became only the third country, where I visited all the regions after Malaysia and Belarus. So take a walk on the cities and regions.
Darwin (Northern Territory) - sparsely populated state, the southern part of which - the hottest part of the desert, where the famous Ayers Rock, and the north - tropical jungle, in neighboring Indonesia. In Darwin I had a little time, but because of the strong late aircraft became even less, so I looked at the huge saltwater crocodiles only nursery in the city center, but in general if to drive off a little bit out of town and there in their river is full, and there are special boat trips to see them in the wild.

Adelaide (South Australia) - a beautiful city, where I first saw wild kangaroos (in Belair National Park).

In general, surprisingly in Australia a lot of beautiful old cities with a solid 19th century buildings, such as Port Adelaide, Fremantle (Perth suburb), Brunswick (a suburb of Melbourne), Goulburn in New South Wales.
Brisbane and Gold Coast (Queensland) - two neighboring big city with skyscrapers and the beach for surfing on the Gold Coast.

I still had to go to the Glasshouse mountains national park nearby. In the same state in the north is the Great Barrier Reef - one of the most famous places in the world for diving.

Sydney (New South Wales) - the main town, opera, bridge, coastal cliffs, mangroves right in town, and the Blue Mountains in a half-hour drive.

Canberra - capital of Australia. It can be bypassed for a few hours.

Melbourne (Victoria) - the second city of the country, a lot of beautiful architecture.

And here beside one of the most famous places in Australia - Great Ocean Road (full day tour costs about 100 AUD).

Hobart (Tasmania) - the coolest place I got to the golden autumn. Nearby there is a mountain of Wellington, which can be reached by car / bus and walk down for 2 hours on foot from the cold rocks in an almost tropical forest below.

Perth (Western Australia) - a city on the other side of the continent, in the largest state. I've seen enough here plenty of wild kangaroos and swans. And near Rottnest Island, where beautiful beaches, lakes and pink Quokka - so small plump kangaroos, are not afraid of people.

The results
I really liked Australia, perhaps it is now one of my favorite countries. Incredible closeness to nature, beautiful landscapes, excellent infrastructure, inexpensive - what more do you want? I want to go there again.

For 18 days I spent $ 1656 based on internal flights. There really was a break because I flew to New Zealand from Brisbane, and flew back to Sydney, but between these cities you can fly over US $ 50. Some statistics spoiled what had been a national holiday in the middle of April, first Easter, then Veterans Day 1 and 2 World war II, it significantly increased the price of airline tickets and even buses. But minus the long distance transport over long distances, we have left? $ 20 per day for housing and 10 for daily steaks Beef, another 5-10 to travel around the city. In some of Italy per housing need more money.