Things not to miss

written by Andy Turner
updated 5/22/2019
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#01 Eating out in Melbourne (VIC)

Nowhere in Australia does food culture better: edgy urban cafés, stylish bohemian bistros and glamorous fine-food restaurants.

#02 The Kimberley (WA)

Regarded as Australia’s last frontier, the Kimberley is a sparsely populated, untamed wilderness that contains some stunning landscapes.

Bungle Bungle Massif © Philip Schubert/Shutterstock

#04 Fraser Island (Qld)

The giant dunes, freshwater lakes and sculpted, coloured sands of the world’s largest sand island form the backdrop to popular 4WD safaris.

#04 The Franklin River (Tas)

The Franklin River not only provides one of the wildest white-water roller coasters on Earth, it is the only means of access to an astounding rainforest wilderness.

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#05 Crocodiles (NT)

Head up north to see the Territory’s population of fearsome crocs.

#06 Bushtucker

Never mind wattle seeds and witchetty grubs, in Australia you can slap rooburgers on the barbie and eat croc and emu steaks in a restaurant.

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#07 Wilpena Pound (SA)

There are some fantastic hikes in the Flinders Ranges National Park but few top the spectacular scenery at the elevated basin of Wilpena Pound.

#08 The Great Ocean Road (Vic)

On two wheels or four, the 280km route along the surf-battered cliffs bordering the Great Ocean Road is perfect road-trip material, and can also be followed as a rewarding hike.

#09 South Australia’s wineries (SA)

Easily accessible from Adelaide, the Barossa Valley, Adelaide Hills, McLaren Vale, Clare Valley and Coonawarra vineyards are all wonderful places to unwind. For more information, see Wineries and B&Bs in the hills & McLaren Vale wineries.

#10 Atherton Tablelands (Qld)

With its rainforest, crater lakes and abundant wildlife, you could spend days exploring the Atherton Tablelands.

#11 Bondi Beach (NSW)

Beach, surf and café culture: Sydney’s famous beach has something for everyone.

#12 Indigenous tours (NT)

Seek a small-group Aboriginal-run tour in the Territories to get a taste of 40,000 years of Australian culture.

#13 Blue Mountains (NSW)

World Heritage-listed, the Blue Mountains are a wonderland of ancient forests, deep valleys and lookouts from sheer cliffs, all just an hour or so from Sydney.

#14 Sailing in the Whitsundays (QLD)

There’s fantastic sailing and diving – and whale watching in season – in the white-sand Whitsunday Islands.

© cusycon/Shutterstock

#15 Rent a 4WD

Adventure off-road from Queensland’s Cape York to the Territory’s central deserts or WA’s Kimberley.

© Moving Diary/Shutterstock

#16 Mardi Gras (NSW)

Sydney’s irreverent Oxford Street parade, from “dykes on bikes” to the “Melbourne marching boys”, ends the summer season.

#17 Big Day Out

What began as a one-off Sydney gig in 1992 is now a rollicking caravan of home and international acts that tours the nation from late January. Aussie Aussie Aussie, oy oy oy!

#18 Surfing

No wonder Aussies named a town Surfers Paradise – whether point, reef or beach breaks, there are world-famous waves on most coasts and warm water to boot.

#19 Kangaroo Island (SA)

Fantastic coastal scenery and a huge variety of wildlife, from seals and sea lions to kangaroos, wallabies and koalas on a pristine island.

#20 Uluru (NT)

Yes, it’s a magnet for tourists the world over. But visit at dawn or dusk and you’ll understand why Uluru, aka Ayers Rock, is a sacred site for Aboriginal people.

#21 Sport at the MCG (Vic)

Taking in a game of cricket or, better still, Aussie Rules football at the venerable Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) is a must for any sports fan.

#22 The Overland Track (Tas)

The 80km route from Cradle Mountain to Lake St Clair is Australia’s greatest extended bushwalk: five or more days of exhilarating exhaustion and stupendous scenery.

#23 Kakadu National Park (NT)

Abundant wildlife and fascinating Aboriginal rock art in Australia’s largest national park, a World Heritage-listed wilderness that featured in Crocodile Dundee.

#24 Circular Quay (NSW)

Scale the bridge, take a harbour ferry to Manly or just marvel at the Opera House sails at the most iconic location in Sydney, a shorthand for Australia itself.

Travel advice for Australia

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written by Andy Turner
created 3/24/2014
updated 5/22/2019
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