Amazing experiences beyond the beach
As an island nation, Australia is surrounded by so many stunning beaches it is easy to get swept away. It truly is the perfect destination for a beach holiday, but it’s certainly not all there is to see and do. Australia also has vibrant lakes, rugged mountains and an exciting range of bucket-list activities to do in its urban areas – and that’s just the beginning. So dry off and head inland to discover some of these unforgettable experiences.
Descend into the Jenolan Caves
Australia boasts beautiful sandy beaches and turquoise waters, but some of the country’s most impressive nature lies beneath the ground. Descend into the Jenolan Caves, located near the Blue Mountains, to find 9 spectacular show caves, underground rivers and awe-inspiring formations.
When you’re back above ground, explore the surrounding bush and Blue Lake, where you could spot wildlife including kangaroos and wombats. Have lunch at the award-winning Chisholm’s Restaurant, in historic Caves House, where you can also stay the night.
Wander through California Redwoods
You might think the Great Ocean Road is all about beaches as you drive the impressive coastline carved by nature, but take the time to venture off the main road and you’ll discover impressive hidden gems that many visitors miss. One of the most unique wonders in the area is the California Redwood forest in the Aire Valley.
These towering trees were planted as a softwood logging experiment in the 1930s but were never cut down. Today they rise as high as 60 metres, creating a twilight effect of light through the canopy. Walk the eerily quiet trails, take photos and stop for a picnic. Nearby you’ll also find Hopetoun and Beauchamp Falls, where you can take in the spray as the water comes cascading down to the forest floor.
Experience the magic of Dark Mofo
Heating up the chill of Tasmania’s winter is Dark Mofo. Hobart’s captivating mid-winter festival explores centuries-old winter solstice rituals, giving the entire event a playfully dark and sinister vibe. Run in conjunction with Hobart’s iconic Museum of Old and New Art (Mona), the annual festival celebrates the winter darkness with large-scale public art and musical performances around the city.
Foodies will enjoy events like rowdy Medieval-style banquets, while the brave can participate in one of the festival’s most popular drawcards: the annual Nude Solstice Swim, which sees hundreds of nude swimmers plunge into the chilly River Derwent at sunrise. Dark Mofo takes place annually in June, with a new program of exciting events and installations introduced each year.
Gaze at the Milky Way stars from the outback
There’s something truly magical about getting away from the city to connect with nature, and Australia’s outback is the perfect place to stop, be silent and take it all in. The night sky is one of the most impressive features, as billions of stars are visible and bright enough to see with the naked eye. Learning how to locate the Southern Cross, a famous constellation visible in Australia, and listening to Aboriginal stories and legends of the night sky is one of outback Australia’s most special nature experiences.
Seek out your next big adventure
You can learn to surf in almost any Australian coastal town, but if you’re looking for another way to get your blood pumping you’ll find that Australia is an adventure-seeker’s playground. In Tasmania you can abseil down the world’s tallest dam; head to the Gold Coast to climb 270 metres (886 feet) to the summit of the Q1 building, or skydive over some of the country’s most beautiful beaches near Sydney or in the Whitsundays. Australia also offers unique opportunities to get up close to wildlife. Cage dive with great white sharks in South Australia or “swim” with Darwin’s biggest crocodiles at Crocosaurus Cove.
Source: To plan your next trip to Australia or search for more information on the best places to visit and stay visit www.australia.com