My husband will be going to Perth for business this Oct or Nov (not locked in to specific dates) & I can travel with him & keep myself busy while he is working. As it is soooo far from Northern California he has not wanted to ever go that far. However, I have always wanted to go to Australia/New Zealand/Cook Islands. No reason, just thought it would be an awesome adventure! So, this may possibly be my only chance. We will need 5-7 days in Perth & then can possibly add another week or so of vacation time. As it costs so much to get there & I have no idea yet on cost of hotels/apts or condos yet(&which would be most cost effective for our time frame. We do like to have refrigerator, microwave, coffee pot,etc if possible. I can cook to save some $$ on eating out all the time) So, I do have to be reasonable with my wish list, but it doesn't need to be a totally "bare bones" type trip either. My hope is to find input from those with recent experience which can help us figure this out...Questions I can think of right now are:
Airlines/flights/day of the week - We have to drive to either Sacramento (2 1/2 hrs) or San Francisco (4 1/2 hrs) or fly from Sacramento to another larger city like Los Angeles or ??? Are there certain cities that service Australia frequently & therefore have better fares? And, are there certain airlines that are either Good/Great or Not so Great to fly this far with? We have some airline points (Southwest & United) which could get us to different US cities to fly out of if that helps with cost. I don't think they could get us to Australia though(United, maybe an upgrade?).
As I'd like to also see the other side of Australia would flying to Sydney or ? get us a better fare & then from there fly to Perth. Then fly back when he is done with work & continue the vacation from there?
Aside from Perth, where else would be areas we absolutely should visit while in Australia if possible? And, is flying to New Zealand for a few days reasonable? Or, am I trying to hard to fill my wish list? Also, while in Perth, what should we plan to do/see together & what can I do on my own?
This is probably a lot of information to ask for, yet I could ask a lot more...I haven't spent much time researching any of this as I never thought it would happen. So now I have know idea where to start!
Thank you for your time! B.P. In Northern Cal