• mcp avatar

    By - visited on 20 June 2007

We arrived in Australia with high hopes that it might be a possible place for us to settle. The Australian visas cost us a small fortune so we were adamant to get good value out of them. We checked out a few towns south of Sydney which allowed equidistant commutes for me up into the city and Gill down to the University of Wollongong. Visiting many of the towns in 'The Shire' was like stepping out of a time machine having punched in a destination date of the 1970s. {*tyre screech*} ... I'll refrain from bashing it any more as I'll only upset people.

At the end of The Sutherland Shire is the beach town of Cronulla with its large crescent shaped beach. On a sunny day when the wind is blowing out to sea, the uplifted foamy white waves rolling in is an impressive sight. We liked the place and rented an apartment on the fifth floor which looked out to sea. We spent two and half years living in Cronulla. It was a very good base for exploring more of Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific Islands. Internal flights were more expensive than we anticipated so we didn't do as much jetting about as we might have hoped. But we had a fair crack at trips up the east coast.

Back to the town:

Highlights = the beach (but not on a really windy day else you get sandblasted), the coastal path which is a great walk combining sea views and the marina inlet, the food (good quality restaurants and fish market/butchers), the weather was generally solid but windy on the balcony of an evening limiting BBQ options, boat fishing, and the locals were generally a friendly bunch.

Lowlights = living above the Kingsway intersection and listening to the constant racket of Harley Davidsons / wheel screeching Holden Utes / reprobates peeling out of Northies, the flies which were some of the most annoying and cunning we have ever experienced, the beer was completely dire apart from expensive boutique beers and the mainstay VB, the feisty and loud attitude of a lot of folk which seemed like everybody was drinking a lethal mix of Red Bull and turps to get them all riled up, and the petty rules and regulations were childish ranging from local councils to bouncers in bars.

All in all, a fun experience, but a place to settle for Brits? Erm, no!