Central Coast man Peter Harris is about to complete an epic two-year, 30,000km journey to visit every Australian town mentioned in the Geoff Mack classic tune 'I’ve been everywhere'.
The 43-year-old ‘I've been everywhere man' will set off to Birdsville tomorrow to complete his unusual mission, which was original fuelled by a desire to appreciate the sheer size of Australia and to raise awareness of The Fred Hollows Foundation.
Mr Harris says that although his final drive to Birdsville will bring a great sense of achievement, he's equally sad that his great journey across Australia is coming to an end.
"I have mixed feelings about travelling to my last destination. I'm excited about finishing what's been an excellent adventure, but I am now looking for a further excuse to explore parts of Australia not mentioned in the song!" Harris said.
"There have really been too many destinations to pick an out and out favourite as everywhere has its unique story to tell."
"That said, I've particularly enjoyed visiting Oodnadatta because of its remoteness, Captains Flat with its claim of having the longest bar in the southern hemisphere and Dorrigo with its newspaper still printed on traditional letter press printers."
"I also remember in December 2009 looking forward to visiting the Flying Doctor museum in Cloncurry, Queensland, after an epic 1000km drive only to find it was closed December through January. I just joked to myself ‘I'll just pop back February!'"
Mr Harris recently ticked off town number 93 after visiting Oodnadatta, one of the most remote towns in Australia located over 1000km north of Adelaide. Although it was the second last location on Mr Harris' list, it is also the first town named in Mack's song.
"Apart from raising awareness of a great cause like The Fred Hollows Foundation, this trip has taught me a lot about appreciating our small town history. Unless these towns are your final destination, it's likely you'll travel straight through without too much thought."
"But if you stop, look and listen, there's so much out there to learn about our country's past and present and the experience is going to stay with me forever."
The ‘I've been everywhere man' will conclude his journey next week to coincide with the famous Birdsville Races. You can track his progress on that trip, read about past trips or donate to The Fred Hollows Foundation by visiting his website I've been everywhere.
Get involved in fundraising for The Foundation.