Australia

TRAVEL GUIDE

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Australia GALLERY
2019 2019 Fodor’s Go List Destination
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A vast island continent, Australia teems with natural and cultural treasures. Relax on gorgeous beaches along the sprawling coastline, or plunge below the water in Queensland to explore the Great Barrier Reef. Nature enthusiasts revel in exciting adventures in the interior, from trekking around majestic Uluru to spotting wildlife in tropical rain forests. But there's more to life down under than outdoor activities. Cosmopolitan cities like Sydney and Melbourne entice with thriving dining and arts scenes, while world-class vineyards abound.

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Queensland

A fusion of Florida, Las Vegas, and the Caribbean, southern Queensland attracts crowd-lovers and escapists alike. Whether you want to surf or...

New South Wales

For many travelers Sydney is New South Wales, and they look to the other, less-populous states for Australia's famous wilderness experiences...

Victoria

Separated from New South Wales by the mighty Murray River and fronted by a beautiful coastline, Victoria boasts terrain as varied as any in...

Sydney

Sydney belongs to the exclusive club of cities that generate excitement. At the end of a marathon flight there's renewed vitality in the cabin...

South Australia

Renowned for its celebrations of the arts, its multiple cultures, and its bountiful harvests from vines, land, and sea, South Australia is both...

Melbourne

Consistently rated among the "world's most livable cities" in quality-of-life surveys, Melbourne is built on a coastal plain at the top of the...

Western Australia

Western Australia is a stunningly diverse place, with rugged interior deserts, endless, untrammeled white-sand beaches, a northern tropical...

Tasmania

Wild and dramatic landscapes, empty white beaches, heavenly food and wine—Tasmania's charms have been overlooked for too long by international...

Perth

Buoyed by a history of mineral wealth and foreign investment, Perth has high-rise buildings dotting the skyline, and an influx of immigrants...

Adelaide

Australians think of Adelaide as a city of churches, but Adelaide has outgrown its reputation as a sleepy country town dotted with cathedrals...

Brisbane

Founded in 1824 on the banks of the wide, meandering Brisbane River, the former penal colony of Brisbane was for many years regarded as just...

The Whitsunday Islands

The Whitsundays are a group of 74 islands situated within 161 km (100 miles) of each other and around 50 km (31 miles) from Shute Harbour, the...

Australian Capital Territory

The Australia Capital Territory encompasses the country's capital city, Canberra, along with several excellent parks. Canberra has excellent...

Canberra

As the nation's capital, Canberra is sometimes maligned by outsiders, who see the city as lacking the hipness of Melbourne or the glamour of...

Hobart

Straddling the Derwent River at the foot of Mt. Wellington's forested slopes, Hobart was founded as a penal settlement in 1803. It's the second...

Cairns

Tourism is the lifeblood of Cairns (pronounced Caans ). The city makes a good base for exploring the wild top half of Queensland, and tens...

Darwin

Darwin is Australia's most colorful, and exotic, capital city. Surrounded on three sides by the turquoise waters of the Timor Sea, the streets...

Fremantle

The port city of Fremantle is a jewel in Western Australia's crown, largely because of its colonial architectural heritage and hippy vibe. Freo...

Kangaroo Island

Kangaroo Island, Australia's third largest (after Tasmania and Melville), is barely 16 km (10 miles) from the Australian mainland. Yet the island...

Alice Springs

Once a ramshackle collection of buildings on dusty streets, Alice Springs—known colloquially as "the Alice" or just "Alice"—is today an incongruously...

Uluru and Kata Tjuta

It's easy to see why the Aborigines attach spiritual significance to Uluru (Ayers Rock). It rises magnificently above the plain and dramatically...

Launceston

Nestled in a fertile agricultural basin where the South Esk and North Esk rivers join to form the Tamar, the city of Launceston (pronounced...

Broome

Broome is the holiday capital of the Kimberley. It's the only town in the region with sandy beaches, and is the base from which most strike...

Byron Bay

Byron Bay is the easternmost point on the Australian mainland, and perhaps earns Australia its nickname the "Lucky Country." Fabulous beaches...

Townsville

This coastal city has little in the way of sandy beaches or surf, but it does have shady parks, charming colonial buildings, and a boardwalk...

Margaret River

The lovely town of Margaret River is considered the center of the South West's wine region, though vineyards and wineries stretch well beyond...

Katoomba

The largest and busiest town in the Blue Mountains, Katoomba developed in the early 1840s as a coal-mining settlement, turning its attention...

North Coast Islands

...

Fraser Island

Fraser Island, at 1,014 square km (391 square miles), is the largest of Queensland's islands and the most unusual. Fraser is the world's largest...

Mackay–Capricorn Islands

Despite its name, this group of islands lying offshore between Bundaberg and Rockhampton is closer to the southern half of Queensland than it...

Coober Pedy

Known as much for the way most of its 1,700 inhabitants live—underground in dugouts gouged into the hills to escape the relentless heat—as for...

Phillip Island

South of Melbourne and just off the Mornington Peninsula, Phillip Island has long been a playground for Victorians. Both the coast and the interior...

Kakadu National Park

This national park is a jewel among the Top End parks, and many visitors come to the region just to experience this tropical wilderness. Beginning...

Dunsborough

The attractive and fashionable seaside town of Dunsborough is perfect for a few days of swimming, sunning, and fishing—which is why it's become...

Bendigo

Gold was discovered in the Bendigo district in 1851, and its boom lasted well into the 1880s. The city's magnificent public buildings bear witness...

Rottnest Island

An easy 30-minute cruise from Fremantle, or about one hour down the Swan River from Perth, sunny, quirky Rottnest Island makes an ideal day...

Echuca

The name Echuca comes from a local Aboriginal word meaning "meeting of the waters," a reference to the town's location at the confluence of...

Newcastle

Once known as the Steel City, today Newcastle is one of Australia’s hippest cities. It’s flanked by the Pacific Ocean and six beaches on its...

Ballarat

In the local Aboriginal language, the name Ballarat means "resting place." In pre-gold-rush days, nearby Lake Wendouree provided the area with...

Port Macquarie

Port Macquarie was founded as a convict settlement in 1821 and is the third-oldest settlement in Australia. Set at the mouth of the Hastings...

Kununurra

Kununurra is the eastern gateway to the Kimberley. With a population of around 6,000, it's a modern, planned town developed in the 1960s for...

The Grampians

About 93 km (79 miles) north of Port Fairy are the Grampians, sometimes referred to by their Aboriginal name Gariwerd. This 415,000-acre region...

Leeuwin–Naturaliste National Park

The 74.5-mile-long coast-hugging Leeuwin-Naturaliste National Park faces the cobalt Indian Ocean with honey-hued sands and people-free swimming...

Lord Howe Island

Fringed by the world’s southernmost coral reef as well as gorgeous, sheltered beaches, dominated by two dramatic peaks, and inhabited by just...

Noosa

Set along the calm waters of Laguna Bay at the northern tip of the Sunshine Coast, Noosa is one of Australia's most stylish resort areas. Until...

Magnetic Island

More than half of Magnetic Island's 52 square km (20 square miles) is national parkland, laced with miles of walking trails and rising to 1...

Strahan

This lovely, lazy fishing port, once a major stop for mining companies, has one of the deepest harbors in the world. The brown color that sometimes...

Cradle Mountain–Lake St. Clair National Park

This expansive, remote park contains some of the most spectacular alpine scenery and mountain trails in Australia. Popular with hikers of all...

Rutherglen

The surrounding red-loam soil signifies the beginning of the Rutherglen wine district, the source of Australia's finest fortified wines. If...

Victor Harbor

As famous for its natural beauty and wildlife as for its resorts, Victor Harbor is South Australia's favorite seaside getaway. In 1802 English...

Broadbeach

With clean beaches, great cafés, and trendy nightspots, Broadbeach is one of the most popular areas on the Gold Coast, especially with locals...

Great Keppel Island

Positioned at the southern end of the Great Barrier Reef near the Tropic of Capricorn, idyllic Great Keppel Island boasts crystal clear waters...

Port Fairy

Port Fairy is widely considered to be the state's prettiest village. The second-oldest town in Victoria, it was originally known as Belfast...

Blackheath

Magnificent easterly views over the Grose Valley—which has outstanding hiking trails—delightful gardens, good restaurants, and antiques shops...

Devonport and Nearby

In the middle of the North Coast, Devonport is the Tasmanian port where ferries from Melbourne dock. Visitors often dash off to other parts...

Stanley

Stanley is one of the prettiest villages in Tasmania, and a must for anyone traveling in the northwest. A gathering of historic cottages at...

Tanunda

The cultural heart of the Barossa, Tanunda is its most German settlement. The four Lutheran churches in the town testify to its heritage, and...

McLaren Vale

The nearest wine region to Adelaide, this area has a distinctly modern, upscale look, even though many of the more than 80 wineries in and around...

Flinders Chase National Park

Some of Australia's most beautiful coastal scenery is in Flinders Chase National Park on Kangaroo Island. ...

Beechworth

One of the prettiest towns in Victoria, Beechworth flourished during the gold rush. When gold ran out, the town of 30,000 was left with all...

Bellingen

In a river valley a few miles off the Pacific Highway, artsy Bellingen is one of the prettiest towns along the coast. Many of Bellingen's buildings...

Leura

Leura, the prettiest and chicest of the mountain towns, is bordered by bush and lined with excellent cafés, restaurants, and gift shops. From...

Alpine National Park

Alpine National Park is popular year-round, attracting campers and hikers in the warm months and skiers in the winter time. The High Country...

Daylesford and Hepburn Springs

Nestled in the slopes of the Great Dividing Range, Daylesford and its nearby twin, Hepburn Springs, are a spa-lover's paradise. The water table...

Coomera and Oxenford

The biggest draws of these two northern Gold Coast suburbs are their family-oriented theme parks—Dreamworld, Warner Bros. Movie World, Wet ...

Lorne

Located between sweeping Loutit Bay and the Otway Mountain Range, Lorne is one of the main towns on the Great Ocean Road, with a definite surf...

Mount Victoria

The settlement of Mount Victoria is the highest point in the Blue Mountains, and there's a Rip Van Winkle air about it—drowsy and only just...

Sevenhill

Sevenhill is the Clare Valley's geographic center, and the location of the region's first winery, established by Jesuit priests in 1851 to produce...

Maroochydore

Maroochydore, at the mouth of the Maroochy River, has been a popular beach resort town for years, and has its fair share of high-rise towers...

Montville

This charming mountain village, settled in 1887, is known as the creative heart of the Sunshine Coast, as many artists live here. There are...

Port Campbell National Park

It is possible to visit Port Campbell National Park on an organized day trip from Melbourne, but a better alternative is to stay overnight at...

Heron Island

Most resort islands lie well inside the shelter of the distant reef, but Heron Island, some 72 km (45 miles) northeast of the mainland port...

Kingscote

Kangaroo Island's largest town, Kingscote is a good base for exploring. Reeves Point, at the town's northern end, is where South Australia's...

Freycinet National Park

The road onto the Freycinet Peninsula ends just past the township of Coles Bay; from that point the Freycinet National Park begins and covers...

Penneshaw

This tiny ferry port once had a huge population of penguins—locals would complain about the birds burrowing in their gardens and you'd often...

Mt. Lofty

There are splendid views of Adelaide from the lookout atop 2,300-foot Mt. Lofty, the coldest location in Adelaide, where snow is not uncommon...

Mooloolaba

Mooloolaba stretches along a lovely beach and riverbank, both an easy walk from town. The Esplanade has many casual cafés, upscale restaurants...

Clare

The bustling town of Clare is the Clare Valley's commercial center. Unusual for ultra-English South Australia, many of its early settlers were...

Peregian and Coolum

At the center of the Sunshine Coast, Coolum makes an ideal base for exploring the countryside. It has one of the finest beaches in the region...

Caloundra

This unassuming southern seaside town has nine beaches of its own, which include everything from placid wading beaches (King's Beach and Bulcock...

Lyndoch

This pleasant little town surrounded by vineyards was established in 1840 and is the Barossa's oldest settlement site. It owes the spelling...

Bridgewater

Bridgewater came into existence in 1841 as a refreshment stop for bullock teams fording Cock's Creek. More English than German, with its flowing...

Queenscliff

In the late 19th century Queenscliff was a favorite weekend destination for well-to-do Melburnians, who traveled by paddle steamer or train...

Wentworth Falls

This attractive township is home to the Blue Mountains' most stunning natural waterfalls and bush walking trails. The Falls themselves straddle...

Marananga

The tiny hamlet of Marananga inhabits one of the prettiest corners of the Barossa. This area's original name was Gnadenfrei, which means "freed...

Angaston

Named after George Fife Angas, the Englishman who founded the town and sponsored many of the German and British immigrants who came here, Angaston...

Yandina, Eumundi, and Cooroy

Yandina and Eumundi, just 12 km (7½ miles) apart, are home to some of the most iconic attractions in the area. Don’t miss the Ginger Factory...

Apollo Bay

A small attractive town on a wide curving bay, Apollo Bay is a quieter alternative to busy Great Ocean Road towns like Lorne. There's enough...

Maleny

The Hinterland village of Maleny is a lively mix of rural life, the arts, wineries, cafés, and cooperative ventures. First settled around 1880...

Richmond

Twenty minutes' drive from Hobart and a century behind the big city, this colonial village in the Coal River valley is a major tourist magnet...

Lady Musgrave Island

This island sits at the southern end of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park, about 40 km (25 miles) north of Lady Elliot Island and 96 km (60...

Ikara-Flinders Ranges National Park

Extending north from Spencer Gulf, the Flinders Ranges mountain chain includes one of Australia's most impressive Outback parks. These dry,...

Seal Bay Conservation Park

There are no seals in Seal Bay, but a visit to Seal Bay is a highlight of most people's time on Kangaroo Island—it's one of the only places...

Nuriootpa

Long before it was the Barossa's commercial center, Nuriootpa was used as a bartering place by local Aboriginal tribes, hence its name: Nuriootpa...

Lady Elliot Island

The closest Great Barrier Reef island to Brisbane, Lady Elliot Island is a highly protected coral cay approximately 85 km (53 miles) northeast...

Geikie Gorge National Park

Halfway between Purnululu and Broome, Geikie Gorge, an ancient flooded reef, is one of the highlights of a trip through the Kimberley. ...

Goolwa

Beautifully situated near the mouth of the mighty Murray River, which travels some 2,415 km (1,594 miles) from its source in New South Wales...

Purnululu (Bungle Bungle) National Park

This park covers nearly 3,120 square km (1,200 square miles) in the southeast corner of the Kimberley. Australians of European descent first...

South Stradbroke Island

White-sand beaches, diverse flora and fauna, and a peaceful interior draw visitors to South Stradbroke Island, which is just 22 km (12 miles...

Jindabyne

...

Sunshine Beach

...

Perisher

...

Thredbo Village

...

Sydney

Sydney belongs to the exclusive club of cities that generate excitement. At the end of a marathon flight there's renewed vitality in the cabin...

Melbourne

Consistently rated among the "world's most livable cities" in quality-of-life surveys, Melbourne is built on a coastal plain at the top of the...

Perth

Buoyed by a history of mineral wealth and foreign investment, Perth has high-rise buildings dotting the skyline, and an influx of immigrants...

Adelaide

Australians think of Adelaide as a city of churches, but Adelaide has outgrown its reputation as a sleepy country town dotted with cathedrals...

Brisbane

Founded in 1824 on the banks of the wide, meandering Brisbane River, the former penal colony of Brisbane was for many years regarded as just...

Canberra

As the nation's capital, Canberra is sometimes maligned by outsiders, who see the city as lacking the hipness of Melbourne or the glamour of...

Hobart

Straddling the Derwent River at the foot of Mt. Wellington's forested slopes, Hobart was founded as a penal settlement in 1803. It's the second...

Cairns

Tourism is the lifeblood of Cairns (pronounced Caans ). The city makes a good base for exploring the wild top half of Queensland, and tens...

Darwin

Darwin is Australia's most colorful, and exotic, capital city. Surrounded on three sides by the turquoise waters of the Timor Sea, the streets...

Fremantle

The port city of Fremantle is a jewel in Western Australia's crown, largely because of its colonial architectural heritage and hippy vibe. Freo...

Alice Springs

Once a ramshackle collection of buildings on dusty streets, Alice Springs—known colloquially as "the Alice" or just "Alice"—is today an incongruously...

Launceston

Nestled in a fertile agricultural basin where the South Esk and North Esk rivers join to form the Tamar, the city of Launceston (pronounced...

Broome

Broome is the holiday capital of the Kimberley. It's the only town in the region with sandy beaches, and is the base from which most strike...

Byron Bay

Byron Bay is the easternmost point on the Australian mainland, and perhaps earns Australia its nickname the "Lucky Country." Fabulous beaches...

Margaret River

The lovely town of Margaret River is considered the center of the South West's wine region, though vineyards and wineries stretch well beyond...

Townsville

This coastal city has little in the way of sandy beaches or surf, but it does have shady parks, charming colonial buildings, and a boardwalk...

Katoomba

The largest and busiest town in the Blue Mountains, Katoomba developed in the early 1840s as a coal-mining settlement, turning its attention...

Coober Pedy

Known as much for the way most of its 1,700 inhabitants live—underground in dugouts gouged into the hills to escape the relentless heat—as for...

Dunsborough

The attractive and fashionable seaside town of Dunsborough is perfect for a few days of swimming, sunning, and fishing—which is why it's become...

Bendigo

Gold was discovered in the Bendigo district in 1851, and its boom lasted well into the 1880s. The city's magnificent public buildings bear witness...

Echuca

The name Echuca comes from a local Aboriginal word meaning "meeting of the waters," a reference to the town's location at the confluence of...

Newcastle

Once known as the Steel City, today Newcastle is one of Australia’s hippest cities. It’s flanked by the Pacific Ocean and six beaches on its...

Kununurra

Kununurra is the eastern gateway to the Kimberley. With a population of around 6,000, it's a modern, planned town developed in the 1960s for...

Port Macquarie

Port Macquarie was founded as a convict settlement in 1821 and is the third-oldest settlement in Australia. Set at the mouth of the Hastings...

Ballarat

In the local Aboriginal language, the name Ballarat means "resting place." In pre-gold-rush days, nearby Lake Wendouree provided the area with...

Strahan

This lovely, lazy fishing port, once a major stop for mining companies, has one of the deepest harbors in the world. The brown color that sometimes...

Noosa

Set along the calm waters of Laguna Bay at the northern tip of the Sunshine Coast, Noosa is one of Australia's most stylish resort areas. Until...

Rutherglen

The surrounding red-loam soil signifies the beginning of the Rutherglen wine district, the source of Australia's finest fortified wines. If...

Victor Harbor

As famous for its natural beauty and wildlife as for its resorts, Victor Harbor is South Australia's favorite seaside getaway. In 1802 English...

Stanley

Stanley is one of the prettiest villages in Tasmania, and a must for anyone traveling in the northwest. A gathering of historic cottages at...

Port Fairy

Port Fairy is widely considered to be the state's prettiest village. The second-oldest town in Victoria, it was originally known as Belfast...

Devonport and Nearby

In the middle of the North Coast, Devonport is the Tasmanian port where ferries from Melbourne dock. Visitors often dash off to other parts...

Tanunda

The cultural heart of the Barossa, Tanunda is its most German settlement. The four Lutheran churches in the town testify to its heritage, and...

Blackheath

Magnificent easterly views over the Grose Valley—which has outstanding hiking trails—delightful gardens, good restaurants, and antiques shops...

Broadbeach

With clean beaches, great cafés, and trendy nightspots, Broadbeach is one of the most popular areas on the Gold Coast, especially with locals...

Bellingen

In a river valley a few miles off the Pacific Highway, artsy Bellingen is one of the prettiest towns along the coast. Many of Bellingen's buildings...

McLaren Vale

The nearest wine region to Adelaide, this area has a distinctly modern, upscale look, even though many of the more than 80 wineries in and around...

Beechworth

One of the prettiest towns in Victoria, Beechworth flourished during the gold rush. When gold ran out, the town of 30,000 was left with all...

Daylesford and Hepburn Springs

Nestled in the slopes of the Great Dividing Range, Daylesford and its nearby twin, Hepburn Springs, are a spa-lover's paradise. The water table...

Leura

Leura, the prettiest and chicest of the mountain towns, is bordered by bush and lined with excellent cafés, restaurants, and gift shops. From...

Mount Victoria

The settlement of Mount Victoria is the highest point in the Blue Mountains, and there's a Rip Van Winkle air about it—drowsy and only just...

Montville

This charming mountain village, settled in 1887, is known as the creative heart of the Sunshine Coast, as many artists live here. There are...

Maroochydore

Maroochydore, at the mouth of the Maroochy River, has been a popular beach resort town for years, and has its fair share of high-rise towers...

Sevenhill

Sevenhill is the Clare Valley's geographic center, and the location of the region's first winery, established by Jesuit priests in 1851 to produce...

Coomera and Oxenford

The biggest draws of these two northern Gold Coast suburbs are their family-oriented theme parks—Dreamworld, Warner Bros. Movie World, Wet ...

Lorne

Located between sweeping Loutit Bay and the Otway Mountain Range, Lorne is one of the main towns on the Great Ocean Road, with a definite surf...

Kingscote

Kangaroo Island's largest town, Kingscote is a good base for exploring. Reeves Point, at the town's northern end, is where South Australia's...

Penneshaw

This tiny ferry port once had a huge population of penguins—locals would complain about the birds burrowing in their gardens and you'd often...

Caloundra

This unassuming southern seaside town has nine beaches of its own, which include everything from placid wading beaches (King's Beach and Bulcock...

Bridgewater

Bridgewater came into existence in 1841 as a refreshment stop for bullock teams fording Cock's Creek. More English than German, with its flowing...

Mooloolaba

Mooloolaba stretches along a lovely beach and riverbank, both an easy walk from town. The Esplanade has many casual cafés, upscale restaurants...

Peregian and Coolum

At the center of the Sunshine Coast, Coolum makes an ideal base for exploring the countryside. It has one of the finest beaches in the region...

Queenscliff

In the late 19th century Queenscliff was a favorite weekend destination for well-to-do Melburnians, who traveled by paddle steamer or train...

Mt. Lofty

There are splendid views of Adelaide from the lookout atop 2,300-foot Mt. Lofty, the coldest location in Adelaide, where snow is not uncommon...

Lyndoch

This pleasant little town surrounded by vineyards was established in 1840 and is the Barossa's oldest settlement site. It owes the spelling...

Clare

The bustling town of Clare is the Clare Valley's commercial center. Unusual for ultra-English South Australia, many of its early settlers were...

Maleny

The Hinterland village of Maleny is a lively mix of rural life, the arts, wineries, cafés, and cooperative ventures. First settled around 1880...

Angaston

Named after George Fife Angas, the Englishman who founded the town and sponsored many of the German and British immigrants who came here, Angaston...

Yandina, Eumundi, and Cooroy

Yandina and Eumundi, just 12 km (7½ miles) apart, are home to some of the most iconic attractions in the area. Don’t miss the Ginger Factory...

Marananga

The tiny hamlet of Marananga inhabits one of the prettiest corners of the Barossa. This area's original name was Gnadenfrei, which means "freed...

Wentworth Falls

This attractive township is home to the Blue Mountains' most stunning natural waterfalls and bush walking trails. The Falls themselves straddle...

Richmond

Twenty minutes' drive from Hobart and a century behind the big city, this colonial village in the Coal River valley is a major tourist magnet...

Apollo Bay

A small attractive town on a wide curving bay, Apollo Bay is a quieter alternative to busy Great Ocean Road towns like Lorne. There's enough...

Nuriootpa

Long before it was the Barossa's commercial center, Nuriootpa was used as a bartering place by local Aboriginal tribes, hence its name: Nuriootpa...

Goolwa

Beautifully situated near the mouth of the mighty Murray River, which travels some 2,415 km (1,594 miles) from its source in New South Wales...

Thredbo Village

...

Sunshine Beach

...

Perisher

...

Jindabyne

...

Great Barrier Reef

A maze of 3,000 individual reefs and 900 islands stretching for 2,600 km (1,616 miles), the Great Barrier Reef is among the world's most spectacular...

The Outback

Few visitors who explore Australia's remote Red Centre and wild Top End are left unmoved by the stark, expansive beauty of the landscape. The...

North of Cairns

The Captain Cook Highway runs from Cairns to Mossman, a relatively civilized stretch known mostly for the resort towns of Palm Cove and Port...

North Coast

The North Coast is one of the most glorious and seductive stretches of terrain in Australia, stretching almost 680 km (422 miles) from Newcastle...

Red Centre

The light in the Red Centre—named for the deep color of its desert soils—has a purity and vitality that photographs only begin to approach....

The South West Wine Region

The South West—Western Australia's most popular destination, with 2.4 million visitors annually—should not be missed if you are coming to this...

The Gold Coast

Resorts, theme parks, and 300 days of sunshine a year ensure the Gold Coast, the most developed tourist destination and one of the fastest-growing...

The Blue Mountains

Sydneysiders have been doubly blessed by nature. Not only do they have a magnificent coastline right at their front door, but a 90-minute drive...

The Kimberley

Perched on the northwestern hump of the loneliest Australian state, only half as far from Indonesia as it is from Sydney, the Kimberley remains...

The Gold Country

Victoria was changed forever in the early 1850s by the discovery of gold in the center of the state. News of fantastic gold deposits caused...

Murray River Region

From its birthplace in the folds of the Great Dividing Range in southern New South Wales, the Mighty Murray winds 2,574 km (1,596 miles) northwest...

Sunshine Coast

The Sunshine Coast is a 60-km (37-mile) stretch of white-sand beaches, inlets, lakes, and mountains that begins at the Glass House Mountains...

Great Ocean Road

The Great Ocean Road, which snakes along Victoria's rugged and windswept southwestern coast, is arguably Australia's most spectacular coastal...

The Hunter Valley Wine Region

To almost everyone in Sydney, the Hunter Valley conjures up visions of one thing: wine. The Hunter is the largest grape-growing area in the...

The Barossa Wine Region

Some of Australia's most famous vineyards are in the Barossa, just over an hour's drive northeast of Adelaide. More than 200 wineries across...

Mornington Peninsula

The Mornington Peninsula circles the southeastern half of Port Phillip Bay. A much larger piece of land than it first appears, the peninsula...

Yarra Valley and Healesville

The Yarra Valley spreads eastward from Melbourne's suburban fringe, and is a popular area with both locals and international visitors. Because...

Fleurieu Peninsula

The Fleurieu has traditionally been seen as Adelaide's backyard. Generations of local families have vacationed in the string of beachside resorts...

Sunshine Coast Hinterland

The Sunshine Coast Hinterland, extending from the Glass House Mountains just northwest of Brisbane to Eumundi and Yandina, west of the northern...

The Dandenong Ranges

Melburnians come to the beautiful Dandenong Ranges, also known simply as the Dandenongs, for a breath of fresh air, especially in fall when...

East-Coast Resorts

From Hobart, the east-coast Tasman Highway travels cross country to Orford, then passes through beautiful coastal scenery with spectacular white...

The Clare Valley

Smaller and less well known than the Barossa, the Clare Valley nonetheless holds its own among Australia's wine-producing regions. Its robust...

Gold Coast Hinterland

No visit to the Gold Coast would be complete without an excursion to the region's verdant hinterland. The natural grandeur of the area lies...

Coffs Harbour

The area surrounding Coffs Harbour is the state's "banana belt," where long, neat rows of banana palms cover the hillsides. Set at the foot...

West MacDonnell Ranges

The West MacDonnell Ranges—stretching westward from just a few kilometers outside Alice Springs for around 200 km (125 miles)—are a spectacular...

Southern Downs

If the Brisbane cityscape has given you a thirst for pastoral rolling hills—and fabulous wine—you're in luck, because some of Queensland's best...

The Adelaide Hills

With their secluded green slopes and flowery gardens, the Adelaide Hills are a pastoral vision in this desert state. The patchwork quilt of...

The Huon Valley

En route to the vast wilderness of South West National Park is the tranquil Huon Valley. Sheltered coasts and sandy beaches are pocketed with...

Southport and Main Beach

South of Southport, look for the turnoff to the Spit, a natural peninsula that stretches 4 km (2½ miles) north, almost to the tip of South Stradbroke...

Port Arthur and the Tasman Peninsula

When Governor George Arthur, lieutenant-governor of Van Diemen's Land (now Tasmania), was looking for a site to dump his worst convict offenders...

Glass House Mountains Area

More than 20 million years old, the Glass House Mountains consist of nine conical outcrops—the eroded remnants of volcanoes—that rise dramatically...

The West Coast

The wildest and least explored countryside in Australia lies on Tasmania's west coast. Due to the region's remoteness from the major centers...

Katherine Gorge

Officially called Nitmiluk, the Aboriginal or Jawoyn name for the cicadas associated with the creation stories of the area, this stunning canyon...

Norfolk Island

...

The Snowy Mountains

...

Uluru and Kata Tjuta

It's easy to see why the Aborigines attach spiritual significance to Uluru (Ayers Rock). It rises magnificently above the plain and dramatically...

Kakadu National Park

This national park is a jewel among the Top End parks, and many visitors come to the region just to experience this tropical wilderness. Beginning...

The Grampians

About 93 km (79 miles) north of Port Fairy are the Grampians, sometimes referred to by their Aboriginal name Gariwerd. This 415,000-acre region...

Leeuwin–Naturaliste National Park

The 74.5-mile-long coast-hugging Leeuwin-Naturaliste National Park faces the cobalt Indian Ocean with honey-hued sands and people-free swimming...

Cradle Mountain–Lake St. Clair National Park

This expansive, remote park contains some of the most spectacular alpine scenery and mountain trails in Australia. Popular with hikers of all...

Flinders Chase National Park

Some of Australia's most beautiful coastal scenery is in Flinders Chase National Park on Kangaroo Island. ...

Alpine National Park

Alpine National Park is popular year-round, attracting campers and hikers in the warm months and skiers in the winter time. The High Country...

Port Campbell National Park

It is possible to visit Port Campbell National Park on an organized day trip from Melbourne, but a better alternative is to stay overnight at...

Freycinet National Park

The road onto the Freycinet Peninsula ends just past the township of Coles Bay; from that point the Freycinet National Park begins and covers...

Seal Bay Conservation Park

There are no seals in Seal Bay, but a visit to Seal Bay is a highlight of most people's time on Kangaroo Island—it's one of the only places...

Ikara-Flinders Ranges National Park

Extending north from Spencer Gulf, the Flinders Ranges mountain chain includes one of Australia's most impressive Outback parks. These dry,...

Geikie Gorge National Park

Halfway between Purnululu and Broome, Geikie Gorge, an ancient flooded reef, is one of the highlights of a trip through the Kimberley. ...

Purnululu (Bungle Bungle) National Park

This park covers nearly 3,120 square km (1,200 square miles) in the southeast corner of the Kimberley. Australians of European descent first...

The Whitsunday Islands

The Whitsundays are a group of 74 islands situated within 161 km (100 miles) of each other and around 50 km (31 miles) from Shute Harbour, the...

Kangaroo Island

Kangaroo Island, Australia's third largest (after Tasmania and Melville), is barely 16 km (10 miles) from the Australian mainland. Yet the island...

North Coast Islands

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Fraser Island

Fraser Island, at 1,014 square km (391 square miles), is the largest of Queensland's islands and the most unusual. Fraser is the world's largest...

Mackay–Capricorn Islands

Despite its name, this group of islands lying offshore between Bundaberg and Rockhampton is closer to the southern half of Queensland than it...

Phillip Island

South of Melbourne and just off the Mornington Peninsula, Phillip Island has long been a playground for Victorians. Both the coast and the interior...

Rottnest Island

An easy 30-minute cruise from Fremantle, or about one hour down the Swan River from Perth, sunny, quirky Rottnest Island makes an ideal day...

Lord Howe Island

Fringed by the world’s southernmost coral reef as well as gorgeous, sheltered beaches, dominated by two dramatic peaks, and inhabited by just...

Magnetic Island

More than half of Magnetic Island's 52 square km (20 square miles) is national parkland, laced with miles of walking trails and rising to 1...

Great Keppel Island

Positioned at the southern end of the Great Barrier Reef near the Tropic of Capricorn, idyllic Great Keppel Island boasts crystal clear waters...

Heron Island

Most resort islands lie well inside the shelter of the distant reef, but Heron Island, some 72 km (45 miles) northeast of the mainland port...

Lady Musgrave Island

This island sits at the southern end of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park, about 40 km (25 miles) north of Lady Elliot Island and 96 km (60...

Lady Elliot Island

The closest Great Barrier Reef island to Brisbane, Lady Elliot Island is a highly protected coral cay approximately 85 km (53 miles) northeast...

South Stradbroke Island

White-sand beaches, diverse flora and fauna, and a peaceful interior draw visitors to South Stradbroke Island, which is just 22 km (12 miles...

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