Australia is a huge amazing wonderland of things to see and do. It is a place of adventure, parts of which can be just as dangerous as traveling in the arctic, but for very different reasons. Most tourists wont go anywhere near those areas, but it is a good idea to know the lay of the land a little before you go.
It’s a huge place, and to many people very foreign. The animals the live in this island nation are different from anywhere else on the planet. The sun can be very strong and it is recommended that you always use sunblock when going to the beach. You will be surprised at how quickly you can burn. But for all the seemingly dire warnings, it is one of the most diverse and fascinating places you can visit. Transpiration is great, everyone speaks English (with a funny accent) and the people are warm, welcoming and very friendly. Aussie hospitality is well known everywhere.
But deciding where to visit in such a vast country can be a slightly daunting task. What you get out of this great nation depends n what you seek. There is so much diversity that it can feel like many different countries. Here is a very basic list of some of the great places to visit in Australia. Remember, the longer you have, the better. Distances are long, but some of the train rides alone warrant a visit to this country.
We recommend travelers fly into Brisbane International Airport (Airport Code: BNE) for it’s consistent good service.
Sydney (New South Wales)
A lot of Australians will disagree with this as a choice (but they don’t live in Sydney) but it is the jewel on the crown of this great country. There is loads to see and do, and the city has a fantastic geography to it. There are great beaches, iconic landmarks and a fantastic nightlife. Chances are this is where you will land anyway after a long flight so it is certainly worth a few days to relax.
Uluru (The Northern Territory)
If you come all the way to Australia you must see Uluru. This huge rock in the middle of the desert is absolutely stunning, and the feeling out here is amazing. The night sky alone will leave you in awe. But the rock itself has 1000s of years of history. It is a sacred place to the Aboriginal people of this land, and the splendor of it can only be felt when you see it. You can take an organized tour from Adelaide, which is probably easier then the do-it-yourself version. Count on at least three days minimum for a visit.
The Great Barrier Reef (Queensland)
One of Australia’s greatest treasures which is under threat from global warming and rising sea levels, the Barrier reef Stretches out for 2,300 kilometers. it is home to a vast range of unique animal and plant species. The diving here is fantastic, and even floating along with just a mask and snorkel will leave you wanting more. Because it is so big, it is hard to recommend just one location, but a good start is the Whitsunday Islands. If you are not yet licensed to go diving, you can get certified here. There are also fantastic 3-7 day sailing trips everywhere.
The Grampians National Park (Victoria)
If you are headed south to visit Melbourne or Tasmania, then it is worth stopping in Grampians National Park. It is at the end of the Great Ocean Road (in itself an attraction) and has the most amazing hikes, sandstone ridges and indigenous rock art in south-eastern Australia. It is shear unspoilt beauty at it’s finest.
Daintree Rainforest (Queensland)
Queensland is tropical, beautiful and very laid back. Up north everything slows down a little. The towns of Cairns and Port Douglas in the North are absolutely stunning
But what you really should try to do is see the rainforest from within. This is is Australia’s largest rainforest with about a third of Australia’s reptile, marsupial and frog species living there and about 70% of the country’s bat and butterfly species too. It is an absolute wonderland with tours available that will take you through the tree-top, across mangrove swamps or to animal sanctuaries where you will see rare and interesting species. The really adventurous can hope on a crocodile boat tour.
Fraser Island (Queensland)
Near Hervey Bay in Queensland, Fraser Island is the largest sand island in the world. It is more than120 kilometres of pristine beaches which can get very popular in summer and during school holiday breaks. It also has a bit of a reputation as party central, if you are looking for some serious nightlife. The best thing to do is hire a vehicle, so you can explore the island. Inland are lush rain forests and offshore a wrecks that you can go scuba diving in, so if you can drag yourself off the beach, you won’t be starved for adventure.
The Great Ocean Road (Victoria)
The Great Ocean Road is without a doubt one of the most scenic drives in all the world. Its official length is 150 miles but you could easily take a couple of days to enjoy it. The roads can get very narrow and windy as it hugs the coast line with stunning views of the ocean and cliffs while at other places it winds its way through cool rain forests.
This list does not even take into account Western Australia and the Nullarbor, which are in themselves a trip on their own. With the exception of Perth however, traveling in the west requires more preparation. Taking a train from Darwin to Perth will be the highlight of any train travel you have ever taken in your life though, and if you have time, should definitely be considered
By Military Travel Exchange