Tourists can’t believe how big distances are between Australian cities

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Apart from becoming immediately overwhelmed by our unique way with words, there’s one other thing expats can’t seem to get their heads around about Australia.

And we have heard it many times before – just how big the land is.

British expat Jordana Grace, a radio host on Queensland’s 92.7 Mix FM, regularly posts about her experiences living Down Under, namely all her culture shocks.

In her latest TikTok, she explained to her viewers how Aussies aren’t phased by travelling long distances, where as in her home country, it’s the opposite.

“Welcome to Australia, how distance is not a concept,” she joked.

“In England, if I had to go from Swindon to Bristol, a 45-minute drive, it’d be a full-on day excursion.

“I’m talking turning my TV off at the wall, feeding the cat enough for the week and redirecting my mail.”

She said, mentally, “it’s a big deal”.

“[But] because Australia is the size of the moon, distance doesn’t worry Aussies,” she joked.

She said the biggest lesson she’s learnt is that Australia is a state of mind and that Aussies will drive an hour and a half, each way, just for a doughnut.

She warned fellow expats not to fall for “sneaky” Australians and dig deeper when they ask you things like if you want to go to the beach, because it could be “1000km”, even though they say it’s “just down the road”.

“Always get the travel time in minutes,” she advised.

“But if you want to seem like a local you don’t want to seem like distance bothers you – act nonchalant and do these three replies: ‘too easy’, ‘cruisy’ or just nod.”

Unsurprisingly, Jordana’s clip was bombarded with comments from Aussies weighing in on the country’s sheer size.

“If something is actually far away, we’ll call it ‘woop woop’ and THAT is how you know it’s far,” one local wrote.

Another said she regularly drives an hour to the next town for fish and chips because they are better.

“I drove two hours to go to a 24-hour Kmart because I wanted to buy an air fryer at 10pm,” another Aussie chimed in.

One said it took them 15 hours to drive from Perth to Border Village, on the border of WA and SA.

It comes after a Reddit thread recently attracted plenty of discussion from overseas travellers about the sheer size of Australia. They were baffled about the time it takes to get from one city to another.

“I was doing fieldwork (catching lizards) near Mt Isa and had a Wicked camper when two Dutch tourists stop and ask me at about 3pm in the afternoon if they would make it to Broome by dark,” one Aussie wrote.

“When I laughed and told them they were still in Queensland, they responded with a shocked, ‘That cannot be – we have been driving all day!’”

Another person wrote: “Holy hell, it must have been bizarre for them. In the same distance they could have travelled from the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Luxembourg, France, Switzerland, Liechtenstein, and end in Italy.”

Some pointed out the bizarre fact that Melbourne is 20km closer to Antarctica than it is to Darwin – a piece of information that continues to leave many in disbelief.

“Melbourne is (about) the same distance from the equator as Bodrum, Turkey and Granada, Spain. Which is why you can fry and egg on centre court at the [Australian Open] in January,” one person wrote online.

“I don’t wanna be that guy, but the distance to Darwin is probably set in the middle (downtown) of the city rather than where it starts (closer city border), so it might be the same distance or less,” another argued.

Others continued comparing locations to show just how huge Australia really is, which according to Geoscience Australia, it’s 7,692,024 sq km.

It states Australia is the planet’s sixth largest country after Russia, Canada, China, the USA and Brazil.

“It accounts for just 5 per cent of the world’s land area of 149,450,000sq km, and although it is the smallest continental land mass, [mainland Australia] is the world’s largest island,” it explains on the government website.

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