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Lavender Fields Tasmania

All-Australian roadtrip

This is our Australia

Do you long for new adventures outside of the ‘box’ of everyday life? Fabienne and Warrick Wintle share why an all-Australian road trip is the perfect family escape.

There are not too many of us that haven’t been stuck in the revolving door that modern-day life has become.

Excessive workloads, monetary pressures and constant worrying about our children’s future plays havoc with our mindset.

We jokingly call it ‘Groundhog Day’, but that is only sugar-coating something which I personally believe is holding us back from becoming the people we truly want to be and the relationships we desire within our family unit.
We are the Wintle family – mum, dad and two young girls aged 2.5 and 4.5 – and we hit a rut at full speed, almost destroying everything in the aftermath. We needed a change and the only way for this to happen was to seriously challenge ourselves.

This meant stepping away from the security of jobs, the comfort of residential living and taking the kids out of day care to become 24-hour parents.

Oscar Wilde once said, “To live is the rarest thing in the world. Most people just exist, that is all.”

We now had our mantra.

Christmas - Moruya Heads

Crabbing North - Stradbroke Island

Where to from there, you ask?
It was the middle of January 2013 and we escaped Brisbane for a week-long caravanning holiday in Agnes Water/1770. The idea was to clear our minds and come up with a plan to turn life on its head. Since we already had the caravan and the kids loved their mobile home away from home, the idea to ‘escape the ordinary and explore the extraordinary’ on an all-Australia caravanning adventure was an easy choice. We had a garage sale, selling off life as we knew it, and within four months we were setting off into the unknown on a Griswold-inspired family vacation... hopefully without all the drama.

The first month we travelled along the coastline from Ballina in northern NSW to Noosa on the Sunshine Coast, visiting so many beautiful beaches and seaside towns. We laugh about it now but initially thought, “Wow, do childcare workers deserve a medal or what!” We were feeling a little out of our depth but loving the kids’ attention that was bombarding us from dawn till dusk. Time progressed and the adventure was in full swing.

We ditched the caravan for a tent and headed into the rugged landscape of Cape York Peninsula. Away from city lights, the night-time sky shone bright, capturing the imagination of the girls as we sat and told tales of times gone by. These are the most cherished moments. The simple times when you connect with your kids through nature, when you hold them close and when they tell you they love you. We have been blessed with so many of these moments during our travels and each day brings a new adventure or challenge that we throw ourselves into wholeheartedly.

Twin Falls Cape York

Where are we going?
Follow the Wintles’ adventure on or search for ‘ThisIsOurAustralia’ on your favourite social media channels.
We’re not going ‘around’ Australia exactly; we plan to do it in a ‘Figure 8’.
So far we’ve mainly stuck to the eastern coast of New South Wales and Queensland, which means plenty of adventures are still to come.

Life on the road
We regularly meet other families on the road, travelling to reconnect with one another and live the life they have dreamed. “Why didn’t we do this sooner?” is always one of the first topics brought up in conversation as we sit around the campfire. The second most popular conversation is always the education in life skills that kids can receive on the road.

Our girls love getting their hands dirty, whether it’s cleaning freshly caught crabs or building the campsite fire ready for lighting. People are their other passion. They love the excitement of making new friends and have been exposed to so many people from so many different walks of life.

It would be an impossible task to pick a favourite destination, but as far as bringing out our adventurous spirit, I would rate Tasmania at the very top. Our travels took us there for two months during the summertime and every moment was spent immersed in its vast, rugged wilderness. Even the boat ride there was a lot of fun. Tasmanians are a welcoming bunch, with an abundance of free camps in glorious locations that we Mainlanders are used to handing over an arm or leg for the privilege of staying a night. We were also fortunate to be invited to stay with a number of Tasmanian families that showed us just how friendly and relaxed their island lifestyle is.

At the moment we are currently back in Agnes Water, working for a while to enable us to continue our adventure. The kids are attending the local kindy and loving the daily interaction with all of the kids and teachers. We now miss having them with us 24/7 and, dare I say, we both shed a tear as we dropped them off on their first day. Life on the road has been a soul-cleansing experience, allowing relationships to blossom and bringing forth a realisation that we had been living life all wrong.

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