Australia is one of the world’s most popular destinations for backpackers, with around 100,000 visas granted to people wanting to backpack through Australia each year.
This is unsurprising when the country boasts such iconic cities as Sydney and Melbourne, along with awe-inspiring sites such as the Sydney Opera House and ‘must-visit’ backpacker hotspots like Bondi Beach.
However, there’s far more to Australia than its cities, architecture and beaches. Here are five natural wonders of the world that alone offer five great reasons to backpack through Australia.
The Great Barrier Reef
No trip to Australia would be complete without an underwater adventure to The Great Barrier Reef.
Over 3000 reefs combine to create the world’s largest coral reef, which stretches along 2,300km of the Queensland coastline and expands across 245,000 km2 (an area larger than the UK and Ireland combined).
If you’re not keen on scuba diving, don’t worry. Many people choose snorkelling as a means to get up close with some of the 1,500 types of fish, 30 species of sea mammals and seven species of endangered marine turtle.
Frequently hailed as the world’s most beautiful beach, Whitehaven Beach in the Whitsundays stretches for 7km of pure white sand and finishes at the Northern end with a stunning ‘Hill Inlet’ where small islands of sand form around the clear blue waters to create a stunning fusion of colours.
Many people have said that Whitehaven Beach is the most beautiful site they have ever seen.
This magnificent sandstone formation (more commonly known as Ayers Rock) lies in the largely barren landscape of Central Australia.
You’ll have to travel across hundreds of kilometres of deserted land (the nearest town, Alice Springs, is 450km away if you travel by road), yet a glimpse of this unique natural wonder is without doubt worth the journey.
At 348 metres high and 9 km in circumference, Uluru is the largest of its kind in the world. Be sure to visit Uluru at sunset or sunrise (or both) when the light appears to alter the rock’s colour and many say it looks at its most beautiful.
Covering 184,000 hectares, Fraser Island is the largest sand island in the world.
Anyone wishing to backpack across Australia should be sure not to miss this incredible natural beauty which is home to vast rainforests, more than 100 freshwater lakes and miles of white sand beaches.
In Spring and Summer the rainforests sprout countless magnificent wildflowers while animal lovers will be in awe of the thousands of birds and rare and endangered species that call Fraser Island their home.
The Blue Mountains
Just a few hours’ drive from the bustling city of Sydney lies a natural wonder of monumental size.
Primarily formed of sandstone, the Blue Mountains are home to lush forests, vast stretches of rocky terrain and deep gorges. Many creatures live in the forests such as koalas, dingo’s and countless species of birds.
Australia is a beautiful country to visit. Of course, the weather is amazing, and the country’s well maintained roads coupled with its reputation for safety and a low crime rate make it one of the hottest tickets on the planet.
We have put together this quick guide to all the essential information you need to know before heading to Australia, meaning that when you arrive you are able to kick back, relax, and enjoy it.
You might carry around your SPF10 or 15 with your belongings on a daily basis at home, but they aren’t going to cut it in Australia. The country is one of the most intense on Earth in terms of sun exposure, so you need to ensure you are covered up with a minimum of SPF30, even on days when it appears there is significant cloud cover.
No one wants to see your half naked body, so keep that covered and you’ll save yourself issues with sunburn, too. If you are planning to travel through the outback, look for something with insect repellent included within it.
As we are seeing on current news reports, bushfires are a huge problem in Australia. While the intense heat coupled with the barren landscape can cause these, a lot of the time they are down to careless tourists.
If you are camping, where possible stay at designated campsites where small fires will already be set up and can be lit when you require them to be. If you are going it alone, look out for signs advising of fire bans in some locations. Should you light a fire, ensure it is fully extinguished before heading on with your journey.
Beachfront attacks by sharks tend to be rare in the country, but if you are swimming in the sea be sure to stay within the clearly flagged areas. Crocodiles are very common throughout the country, and while crocodile inhabited areas will usually be signposted, you should show care when around any river, lake, or other water source. It is usually worth getting some advice before camping or fishing, too.
One element of Australia that many recognise is the large presence of snakes and spiders. The bottom line is this; if you leave them alone, then generally they will stay away from you, too. Ensure you avoid the temptation to go barefoot in certain locations, too, lest you unwittingly stand on a spider and receive a nasty bite!
While there is much to be aware of in Australia, none of these travel tips are beyond the realms of common sense. Ensure you stick to these guidelines and you will be assuring yourself of an enjoyable, safe trip to the country, wherever you are heading to.Categories: Guides
Localities: Australia, Oceania
Travel Themes: Nature