4WD Australia adventures

This is the story of a young Irishman who followed his thirst for adventure all the way to Australia. It’s the story of our director, David Smyth, and how he developed his passion for 4WD-ing around Australia. And in many ways, it’s a big part of the story of why Forward Travel is what it is today.

A 4WD Australia adventure is on so many travellers’ bucket lists. And now – with the borders closed – it is the perfect time to travel Australia and see what our beautiful country has to offer. So buckle up while David shares where his passion for 4WD began.

A 4WD on a rough road

The call to adventure

“More than 20 years ago I set off on my first big adventure after arriving in Australia. My travels around Ireland were relatively comfortable and easy tours and camping. But here I was in Australia, about to head off on a camping trip to the Flinders Ranges in my little old Mitsubishi.

People tried to deter me, explaining that I would need something much sturdier than my old faithful. 

I was young, stubborn, determined… and perhaps a little naive. Nothing was going to stop me. I was going bush to see first-hand what I had only ever seen on TV as a kid growing up on the other side of the world. I couldn’t wait to see the red dirt, the kangaroos, the snakes and everything else Europeans think they will see in Australia.

4WD travelling on a bumpy road

A bump in the road

And then I hit my first corrugated track. After an hour of being slowly shaken to within an inch of my life, I knew the naysayers were onto something.

I watched 4WDs effortlessly pass me, literally leaving me in a trail of their dust. But I persisted – albeit slowly – confident I would be ok.

After a few days of my joints being slowly and steadily separated by the vibrations of corrugated tracks – not to mention the impact to my poor little car – I was continuously seeing trails marked ‘4WD access only’. The realisation finally hit home – that the real adventure was to 4WD Australia.

An empty rough road

The road less travelled

As much as I love travelling and experiencing the tourist trail… true exploration is where my heart is. I have always lived by the motto of the road less travelled. This motto and the idea of getting off the main tourist trail is what led to the creation of Forward Travel.

I am a passionate believer in exploring the lesser known side of our world and getting off the tourist trail.

In my opinion, there are some truly magical experiences that await those who take that path.

I’ve grown a lot since I was that naive, stubborn boy from Ireland who took his first steps to explore Australia… and nothing has really changed! Well, except for the vehicle I drive. After 20 years of 4WD Australia adventures, hitting all kinds of trails around the country, my passion for the road less travelled has never subsided.

My curiosity will always get the better of me as I follow tracks, roads and trails, without worrying whether the vehicle I’m driving can cope. My passion grows every time.

A trail on the map

Sharing the passion for 4WD Australia

My 4WD Australia adventures have allowed me to push the boundaries of how I experience travel. The things I have seen and the people I have met just wouldn’t be possible if I wasn’t behind the wheel of a 4WD.

Australia is a truly massive country. You would need two lifetimes to see it all… but having the right vehicle will take you so much further.

On that first trip I took to the Flinders Ranges in my little Mitsubishi, I never could have imagined the experiences I have had since.

My most recent trip took me to the more remote parts of New South Wales. I visited places like White Cliffs, NSW’s very own Coober Pedy, with its underground dwellings and opal mines… Menindee Lakes and Kinchega National Park on the Darling River where you find flooded lakes and haunting river red gums rising from the water… and Mungo National Park where the remains of Mungo Man and Mungo Woman were discovered.

Every time I help a client to experience the excitement of a 4WD adventure, my passion is reignited. We are so fortunate to have these experiences right here in our own backyard.”

Whatever you want to see and wherever you want to go, we can tailor a 4WD Australia itinerary. You can join us on our 4WD tour through the wonders of NSW or we can create your own unique adventure. Contact us to start planning your next adventure.

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