Tarnya, Zac, Warren and Josh Sim show a map detailing their eight-month trip around Australia, which they are sharing with the nation.
Tarnya, Zac, Warren and Josh Sim show a map detailing their eight-month trip around Australia, which they are sharing with the nation. Felicia Kosegi

Family road trip goes global

CASUARINA parents Warren and Tarnya Sim wanted their sons to get a truly Aussie education.

So they took them on an eight-month drive around the country.

Josh, 12, (who also happens to be the Tweed Daily News Junior Sport “Scoop” reporter) and Zac, 10, became the envy of their classmates as their friends and teachers kept up to date with their travels via their online video blogs.

Their blogsite “What’s Great About Australia” has even attracted international attention.

“We decided to do a documentary on our travels through the eyes of the kids,” Tarnya said.

“What started off for just our own personal purpose became something so much greater.”

Their videos, edited by the kids, have screened on Channel Nine.

Their website said for many Australians a trek around the country was a lifelong ambition and they decided not to wait until they were retired to do it.

“We’re two average Aussie parents in our mid-40s with a passion for this great country, and we wanted our kids to get a truly Aussie education.

“And with camera packed we plan to share our adventure, as well as a few stories on Great Australians, and Great Australian places.

“That’s why it’s called ‘What’s Great About Australia’.”

The Sims drove 35,000 kilometres in their four-wheel-drive, towing a caravan.

“We did some freaky crocodile infested river crossings,” Tarnya said.

“And off-road sand dunes which were pretty hairy, we got bogged a couple of times.”

They set up their campsite more than 100 times and got five flat tyres.

But, Tarnya added, their 16-foot caravan ensured they became a close-knit bunch.

“It definitely brought us closer together as a family,” she said.

“Sharing a very small van we had no choice but to get along well.”

The boys were home-schooled by their parents during the trip.

“It’s given us a whole new appreciation for the teaching profession,” Tarnya laughed.

“We wanted to do the trip before Josh started high school this year.”

Josh and Zac described it as the trip of a lifetime.

“I really liked the Kimberly and north-west Australia,” Josh said.

“And Ningaloo Reef where dad and I swam with whale sharks.”

Zac named the wildlife as a highlight. “I liked Cradle Mountain in Tasmania because of all the wildlife, we saw Tassie devils, possums, wombats and rare quolls.”

Tarnya added Western Australia and Tasmania were definite favourites for the whole family.

Check out the Sims’ adventures for yourself at www.whatsgreataboutaustralia.tv



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