10 Places in Australia to Check Off Your Bucket List
There is nothing like the excitement of travelling, but there’s always that moment when you feel stuck in the touristy confusion of not knowing what to do when you get to the end of your itinerary. Expand your vacation and scope of the world as MiLLENNiAL takes you on a tour of the top “must-do” global experiences by continent.
Australia has a beachy beauty unlike many other places in the world. Its Aboriginal people, abundance of indigenous art and variety of fine arts makes it a cultural and historical amalgam. Follow along on the last stop of this global bucket list as MiLLENNiAL explores the land down under.
Dive the Great Barrier Reef
Australia is home to the Great Barrier Reef, the largest coral reef system in the world. Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1981, the reef covers about 214,000 square feet. Thanks to its massive size, the Great Barrier Reef easily homes “the world’s largest collection of corals (in fact, more than 400 different kinds of coral), coral sponges, mollusks, rays, dolphins, over 1500 species of tropical fish, more than 200 types of birds, around 20 types of reptiles including sea turtles and giant clams over 120 years old,” according to greatbarrierreef.org. Tons of experiences like diving, snorkeling, submarine rides and more offer the perfect hands on learning experience for tourists.
Visit Port Campbell National Park
Victoria, Australia is a region located in the southwestern region of Australia and also home to Port Campbell National Park. According to visitmelbourne.com, “Port Campbell National Park is world famous for its extraordinary collection of wave-sculpted rock formations and the Twelve Apostles.” Breaking the surface of the water are the seven limestone wave-sculpted stacks known as The Twelve Apostles. Although only seven are visible from the current viewpoint for visitors, it is said that historically, 12 were visible when travelers took the route that connects Port Campbell to Princetown. According to visit12apostles.com, “while any time of day provides a great spectacle, sunrise and sunset are particularly impressive for the blazing hues created.” Other activities in the National Park include fishing, tons of water sports, and heritage tours of the area.
Enjoy Fraser Island
This small island is also a World Heritage Site and features both rainforest and white sand beaches for visitors to enjoy. Fraser Island is the perfect place for a relaxing, private couples or singles getaway. The seclusion makes it easy to escape the realities of real life and the island is surrounded by some of the clearest blue water you’ll find. Kingfisher Bay Resort and Eurong Beach Resort are the only two housing accommodations on the island, each offering accommodations for different types of travelers.
Visit the Sydney Opera House
You’ve seen it and heard of it, but you still might not know exactly what it is. The Sydney Opera House is a multi-platform venue for various performing arts including opera, theatre, music and more. Another World Heritage Site, the opera house was built in 1973 and has been a local attraction ever since. Australia’s government website describes the Sydney Opera House as “Australia’s most recognizable building and is an icon of Australia’s creative and technical achievement.” Not only can you catch a show at the Sydney Opera House, but guided tours are offered as well.
Visit WhitSunday Islands
The WhitSunday Islands are a collection of 74 islands off of the Eastern coast of Queensland, Australia. According to tourismwhitsunday.com, “the WhitSundays is a feast for the senses. The stunning natural landscapes of coast and islands are dotted with secluded beaches and friendly towns.” Also, the islands rest in the middle of the Great Barrier Reef, making this a great location to not just relax and explore, but to take on some marine activities as well.
Climb Sydney Harbor Bridge
While the Sydney Harbor Bridge is beautiful enough for the views of the city it provides and the actual construction itself, it gets even more amazing when you climb it. Bridge Climb is a company that offers climbing tours of the bridge. Your climb begins in their Climb Base and from there they give you all necessary items for the climb. “With your Climb Leader as your guide, step by step you’ll ascend the arches of the Bridge and enjoy the iconic views of Sydney, situated in one of the most beautiful harbours on earth,” Bridge Climb’s website states. You’ll get a history of the bridge during your climb and be allowed to take photos at the top. Find out more at Bridgeclimb.com
Visit Tjapukai National Park
The Tjpukai culture is the oldest living culture in the world, which belongs to the Tjpukai aboriginal people of Australia. Tjpukai Cultural Park is open daily for visitors to learn about the history of the people indigenous to Australia’s rainforest. Packages offered include admission to three of Queensland’s most popular attractions, tours and self-drive tours. Lunch can also be included in these packages for an additional cost. If you’re more interested in learning only about the Tjapukai culture, day and night tours are offered separately.
Relax on Whitehaven Beach
One of the 74 beaches in the WhitSunday Islands, Whitehaven beach has been acclaimed as one of the most beautiful beaches in the world. Whitehaven is also the largest of the 74 beaches, but still offers seclusion and relaxation since it’s only four miles long. Some boating and touring companies offer day trips to the beach, but independent travelers with some boating experience can sail over themselves and enjoy a night of camping on the beach.
Explore the Jenolan Caves
The Jenolan Caves, located in Jenolan, Australia, are a system of 11 caves. The government website for the caves describes them as having “pure underground rivers and astonishing limestone formations.” Open to the public for viewing and touring, the caves offer different tours for all levels of expertise with some being geared specifically towards families. The Jenolan Caves are a great place to visit because no matter what time of year you’re in Australia, they remain around 60 degrees Fahrenheit.
Visit Yarra Valley
Yarra Valley is the Napa Valley of Australia. Like many wine countries, Yarra Valley offers a relaxing getaway where good food and even better wine are expected and delivered. Accoring to experienceyarravalley.com, “The Yarra Valley is recognized as one of the world’s premier wine growing regions with over 80 sensational cellar doors, superb restaurants serving fresh regional produce, luxury accommodations, iconic scenery and stunning artwork.” Aside from wine, the region offers spa treatments, cooking classes, botanical gardens and more.
Australia is a beautiful place full of vibrant, varying cultures. The surrounding body of water makes for amazing beach trips and the beautiful architecture of Australian buildings makes the skyline a sight to behold. This island is a place for families, singles and couples alike where you can enjoy art, nature and adventure all to the lulling and relaxing tune of the surrounding waters.
Naja Rayne is an ambitious journalism major with a concentration in news-editorial.