The wide open road: top tips for solo campers


Read Paul Theroux and Cheryl Strayed. Find a copy of Into the Wild and On The Road. Watch The Motor Cycle Diaries. Pop culture is chockablock with literature, movies and songs about the open road. Interestingly, lots of the entertainment we see and hear about the road is associated with solo travel. Hit the road, Jack! (Some references are more positive than others.) 

We completely get it. A road trip on your own is like turning over a new leaf. It’s a rite of passage; it’s a coming of age; it’s the wind in your face and your past to your back. We encourage everyone to take a journey of self-discovery. Go travelling and immerse yourself in nature. Consider these tips as you pack your bags and get outta dodge.

Bring water
Attention Aussie adventurers. You can never have too much water and not just for hiking and biking trips either. If you plan on adding some serious kilometers to your ride the middle of summer, you can never be too careful. A word of advice to anyone planning on doing a solo road trip who isn’t Australian: sometimes you can go hundreds of kilometers without any petrol breaks, Maccas’ stops or shops. This is even the case in Australia’s most populated state, New South Wales. So when in doubt, top up; you never know when you might break down.

Reading and writing material
A journey on your own is going to involve less speaking and more thought, so why not do everything you can with those thoughts. Grab that book you’ve been meaning to read for ages, and grab a notebook to write down your observations along the way. You don’t have to return home with a new outlook on life, but you might just learn a few new bird calls and identify a few new Australian plants.  

Is a smartphone a smart idea?
Your mobile’s great. You can use it as a map, use it as a camera, and use it to call anyone at any time, but perhaps consider not spending too much time with your device as you take off.  It might give you more time to take it all in. Then again, some people derive great joy from broadcasting their adventures on the internet, so it’s up to you. You might inspire someone else to take a journey similar to yours.

Consider how back to basics you want to get
If you have a caravan you plan on sleeping in during your journey, this will require substantially less planning than if you’re going on a 10-day hiking trip on your own. If you plan on doing the latter, we recommend checking out this website. Read about the places you’re going, bring a compass, map, guidebook, walking stick, multi-tool, possibly even an Emergency Positioning Indicating Radio Beacon (EPIRB).  Don’t forget to keep someone constantly updated on your whereabouts.

Have fun, and we hope to see you sometime on your journey.

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