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Traveling Guide: Environment-friendly to Paradise!

Angelina Kumst

Industrial Engineering

TU Dresden (Germany)

Instagram: angelinakumst | Facebook: Angelina Kumst

G´day guys!

Are you ready for a vacation and a little trip to paradise?

Even in wintertime the sun is shining extraordinarily bright on the Gold Coast of Australia. Byron Bay invites you to incredible experiences and a purely relaxing atmosphere embedded in a remarkable scenic landscape. The little Paradise is located about 800 kilometres north of Sydney and can be a perfect place for you to escape from assessments or the noisy and busy life of the city.

While the geographical extent of Australia is barely imaginable, a friend of mine and I have decided to plan a 3-day trip to this place on earth that feels like an island of peace. It is well known for extraordinary spirit, beautiful surf sports and incredible white beaches next to Brisbane.

To get there we took the NSW TrainLink from Central to Casino. From Casino we traveled by bus for another 2 hours to Byron Bay. The whole journey took us 14 hours. You might ask yourself now, why we haven’t considered to fly to Brisbane or go by Car to Byron Bay - that wouldn’t have taken so much time?

There are several reasons:

1 - Environmental friendliness!

Internally, we want to mitigate flights as much as possible due to the massive air-pollution aircraft's are emitting in comparison to any other vehicles. Researchers have investigated the distinctive impacts of multiple transportation vehicles and figured that the train is causing about 160g/passenger kilometres CO2 equivalents less as airplanes. We want to travel responsibly and consciously in order to keep our Carbon footprint as low as possible. Why hurry? 😉

2 – Impressions!

We do enjoy slow travelling. During the time on the train and bus we were lucky to see so many beautiful landscapes and mammals of Australia, that we would have missed in the air. In addition, we’ve met so many open-minded and friendly people, had time for extended chats and were moved by a guitar player and singer.

3 – Space!

What do I mean by space? The trains especially the NSW TrainLink have very convenient seats and much more legroom than common airplanes provide. Toilets are in every wagon and the board bistro offers snacks and beverages. If you want to move your body a little bit and stretch out your legs, it’s a nice opportunity to walk some meters across the train. You can also have a nice chat with the friendly staff.

4 – Time!

Do you sometimes tend to cancel traveling plans because of assignments or are concerned about getting everything done on time? Don’t worry! Even if the most trains are currently not providing open internet access, you can prepare your journey and download all documents you need to write your papers. Nevertheless, no open WiFi seems to be a big disadvantage, but I want to encourage you to please view the internet free zone as a positive circumstance. Enjoy yourself and the time without getting in a rush.😊

5 – Student Discount!

If you are a student, you can save real money for your trip. If you have a student ID card (even the International student ID) you can get high discounts for online booking tickets. For example, we payed for the return ticket from Sydney to Casino only $53 instead of $96!

If you now feel heartened to plan your next trip by train or bus, I have some additional and hopefully inspirational preparation tips for you, to make your time highly comfortable:

1 - Take delicious food and drinks with you! Even if you can buy at the board restaurant or resting place, snacks, mains and drinks, are much more expensive than bringing your own stuff. Also, the most affordable snacks are packed in single use plastic and you would produce a lot of waste during the trip. Another advantage for bringing your own food is that you can prepare your favourite meals prior and decide by yourself what you would like to eat and drink during the time.

2 - Download your beloved songs, movies or a new book that you likely want listen, watch or read – it’s a perfect chance for you to do it now! You have a lot of time to fill with activities you always postponed.

3 - Take an interesting newspaper, magazine or journal with you! Not only you can benefit from the content also your sitting neighbour does. It can also be an opener for conversations – maybe he/she shares some interests with you or wants to solve a brain-teaser with you?

4 - If you are of creative capabilities or you would like to try something new: what about writing cards, lyrics or a letter to someone you have not spoken to in a long time? Are you interested in learning knitting or crochet – buy a needle and the wool and try it out! Do you like to draw and never took time for learning a new portrait technique? There are plenty of people around you that I’m sure you have never drawn before.

If you are now thinking of traveling to Byron Bay – I can highly recommend to do so 😉 – then you should have a look at the Arts Factory Lodge. It’s an exceptional place to stay, very cheap so perfectly affordable for students and you will never regret the experiences you can have there – which kind of experiences do I mean? I can barely tell you. It’s totally up to you!

Enjoy your next adventures, gather experiences as much as you can and always stay safe!

I wish you an impressive, hearty and unforgettable time at UTS and in Sydney!

See you around guys!

Cheers, Angelina 😉

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