I'm from australia too, getting stuff sucks so much. I never got too much into robotics as it just didnt want to pay $20 (Jaycar electronics, search for my post about it) for the AVR which i might fry. I did some work for an adelaide company elabronics and i got a free board from them so I'm doing a little work with them and I'm thinking a might buy the board which admin is making. Look into getting PIC uC's from microchip if you go to their site you can get 2 deliveries a month of microcontrollers for free!
Jaycar electronics is the best for getting stuff in australia that I've found, you can get some stuff from dick smith electrical however its a little bit more expensive than jaycar.
Hope I could help,