New year, new hope, much wider horizons to explore

STEPHEN SCOURFIELD finds many options in WA and over east to excite travellers in 2021

Unpredictably, the last nine months have taught us about unpredictability. No plan is permanent, no schedule set in stone, no itinerary immutable.

We’ve become adept at adapting. “Fluid” is the new “fixed”.

After staying home and pottering around in parks, we embraced our big backyard.

Then Australian interstate borders started to open and re-close and reopen, and words like “spike” and “cluster” and “variant” have joined our daily lexicon.

And where does all that leave our travel plans for 2021?

Well, 2020 educated us to more than just how to operate Zoom (“you’re still on mute, mother. Un-mute. UN-MUTE ...). It taught us to value what we have.

WA’s isolation, which has often seemed a disadvantage, became a great asset. Locked in by the threat of 14-day quarantine, we wandered around and up to WA’s perimeters, and that will form much of our travel in 2021.

But for bigger adventures, we will wander over State borders, just to see the view from “over there”. And we’ll take heart from the fact that, despite State Government threats of the possibility of snap border closures, the Sydney spike was handled differently to the instant border closure between WA and South Australia on November 15, the day after it opened. With the northern beaches cluster, the State Government waited for days for genome sequences and acted more circumspectly. (Though, this week, with Victoria, it was back to “shut the gate”.) But we’re all learning this thing as we go along.

Read the full story here.

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