Australia is a sport loving nation, where cricket, rugby, tennis and footy are played throughout the year. It is summertime Down Under and it is cricket time as well, with the World Cup 2015 being held in Australia and New Zealand. I thought it would be the perfect time to visit these wonderful countries, with my wife and usual crew, to soak in the weather, watch some cricket, enjoy the beaches as well as the great food and delectable wine that is on offer. I had planned my trip almost a year in advance with the aim of watching two heavy duty games in the group stages – India against arch rivals Pakistan and pre-tournament favorites South Africa. Here are the highlights of my ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 experience in Australia:

First feel of the World Cup fever:
Right from the moment we reached the Changi Airport in Singapore to board the flight to Adelaide we could see that the world cup had started, Terminal 2 in Singapore was full of cricket fans from all over the world trying to go to Australia. Flights were full and the Melbourne Airport, from where we were transferring, was jam packed; it took us forever to clear immigration to head to domestic airport to board our flight to Adelaide. My cousin sister along with my two lovely nieces came to the airport to see us and we had some family bonding time at the airport. England however did not have that warm and pleasant a start to the tournament. On a dark and foreboding day in Melbourne the British team was summarily thrashed by the Australians!

Getting around Oz:
Australia is big. There’s no other way to describe it! It’s also a great place to drive around; you can rent caravans, RVs (Recreation Vehicles), big SUV’s or Sedans. You can take flights, buses or trains and go to different cities and watch the games of your choice. While my brother-in-law with his friends drove eight odd hours from Melbourne to Adelaide, we decided to take a flight so we could maximize our time in Australia as this trip was more about cricket.

A taste of Australia:
While Hunter Valley is the most popular and best known wine region in Australia, I prefer the South Australian wines more and have always wanted to go to Barossa Valley near Adelaide. This trip presented us with that opportunity. We stayed four nights in the Valley and it was definitely not enough; we could only manage to visit ~10% of the wineries in the region. We however bought enough wines which we got shipped to Singapore; it’s quite easy to do that and I highly recommend it as they deliver to quite a few countries, door to door. Food in Angaston town was great – we visited the best pizza place in the country called Roaring 40’s and also tried some local craft brew.

And the cricket!:
Australia is a fantastic place to watch! The facilities for spectators are just wonderful in both the Adelaide Oval and the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG). There’s a great selection of restaurants, bars, food and beer. The design of the stadiums is so good that you hardly miss the action even when you go to get beer or food as there are plenty of screens to follow the game. People in Australia love their sport and are quite tolerant of fans – Australians and international. A great example of that was in Adelaide’s street parties which stopped the traffic for hours; even in Melbourne the locals allowed the fans to enjoy their evening out in the streets.

If you haven’t been to Australia you are missing a lot. The country has so much to see and do, so many things to eat, so many different wines and local brews to drink … Too bad we had so little time!

This year when cricket’s biggest event rolls up be where the action is! Plan a trip to Australia and New Zealand with Eventraveler’s ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 page.

(Image by Rhondda)

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