Australia

The Sydney Opera House is the image that everyone thinks of when someone mentions Australia but Australia has so much more to see and do. This blog will feature many of the things that can be seen and done in Australia.

Australia is one of my favorite places that I have visited. There are so many good things that I can say about Australia but one of the things that I like the most about Australia is that all of the major cities are also easy to reach nature and wildlife. This lets me have a good urban vacation and I can easily experience nature and wildlife on day trips from the same place.

Australia is the country that is the most similar to the United States for several reasons. It was originally established by the British and the predominant language is English. Additionally, it is a young county and has modern cities.

The characteristics that make Australia a special place are the major cities, great beaches and coastline, the amazing nature and unusual wildlife.

Major Cities

Sydney is by far the most known city in Australia but there are several other cities in Australia that have a lot to offer. Everyone knows about the Sydney Opera House but most people know very little of the things that can be seen in the Australia’s cities. The following is a brief description of the attractions in Australia’s cities:

• Adelaide – Australia’s wine region, Rundle Mall, River Torrens and Cricket at the Adelaide Oval
• Canberra – Australia’s Capital city, Tidbinbilla Nature Reserve, National Zoo and Aquarium, Australian War Memorial and Australian National Botanical Gardens
• Darwin – Litchfield National Park, Crocosaurus Cove and Billabong wetland cruise
• Melbourne – Australia’s cultural capital with many museums, urban art wall paintings, Yarra River, Art center tower, architectural walking bridges and the Melbourne Star.
• Perth – King’s Park, Elizabeth Quay Bridge, Yanchep Natural Park and beautiful beaches. The photo below is of the Perth Skyline.

• Sydney – Opera House, Harbour Bridge, Sydney Harbour, Darling Harbour, Hyde Park, Royal Botanical Garden, China Town, Bondi Beach, Sydney Tower Eye, ANZAC Bridge, Sydney Zoo and The Rocks.

Beaches and Coastline

Australia has great beaches and coastline. Many of the major Australian cities have beautiful urban beaches and Australia has several world famous beaches like Bondi Beach, the Gold Coast and the Great Ocean Drive but there are many pristine beaches where you may have the entire beach to yourself.

Amazing Nature

Australia is a large country and has lots of amazing nature. The majority of the country is uninhabited and considered as outback territory. The outback is beautiful and is famous for Ayers Rock but Australia also has beautiful mountains, several little known unusual rock formations that I will be featuring in my posts and of course more beautiful beaches than I can mention.

The Blue Mountains near Sydney are loaded with nice scenery like amazing flora, many waterfalls and many beautiful birds. The photo below is of the Three Sisters in the Blue Mountains.

Unusual Wildlife

A visit to Australia would not be complete without seeing some of the unusual wildlife. Australia consists of a huge variety of animals that are unique from any other country in the world. In fact, most of the wildlife in Australia are not found anywhere other than Australia. The percentage of wildlife types that are only found in Australia are:
• 83% of the Mammals that inhabit the continent are only found in Australia
• 89 % of the Reptiles that inhabit the continent are only found in Australia
• 24% of the Fish and Insects that inhabit the continent are only found in Australia
• 93% of the Amphibians that inhabit the continent are only found in Australia

Not only are much of the wildlife in Australia only found in Australian but some of the flora and fauna are vastly different than the wildlife in other places in the world. Australia has a large group of marsupials (mammals with a pouch) and monotremes (mammals that lay eggs). In addition to the strange animals, Australia has a large group of birds and sea life. Australia is home to over 800 species of birds, 4000 species of fish and 50 species of marine mammals. Discovering Australia’s wildlife is a highlight for many people visiting Australia. Some of the most famous Australian Wildlife are:

• Kangaroos and wallabies – can best be seen in the country side in the early morning or late afternoon.
• Wombats and echidna – hard to find but echidnas are more common in Kangaroo Island.
• Koalas – Not easy to find in the wild but they are more likely seen in the National Parks. When you do find some they don’t move quickly so you can have quality time to watch them.

• Platypus –Probably one of the most difficult of the Australian wildlife to see in the wild and they are smaller than expected. They spend most of the time under the water and only come to the surface for a few seconds for air. They look for predators before surfacing so you need to blend into the surrounding before they will surface around you.
• The bird life is extremely diverse and is easier to see and get close to than other places where I have traveled. Some of the birds that can easily be seen are:

o Sulphur-crested Cockatoos
o Galahs
o Australian Magpies
o Crested Doves
o Rainbow Lorikeets
o Many other birds are easy to see but require getting out of the cities and into the country side or National Parks.

Food

Australia is not famous for their food but there are some unique foods that you should try when visiting Australia. Some of my favorite Australian foods are:

• Fish and Chips – Fried fish with french fries
• Kangaroo
• Crocodile
• Barramundi (Sea Bass)
• BBQ – they Barbeque almost everything but known for BBQ shrimp.

Deserts

• Golden Gaytime – ice cream popsicle
• Tim Tams – Chocolate covered cookies in a variety of flavors. Can be found in almost any store.

I have made 4 trips to Australia for a total of about 2 months within the country. I have seen many of the tourist sites and many places that are unknown to most tourist but there are still some things that I want to see and I intend on returning to Australia again to see them.

Where I’ve been in Australia:

Adelaide
Brisbane
Cairns
Gold Coast
Great Ocean Road
Kangaroo Island
Melbourne
Perth
Queensland
Sydney
Tasmania

Note: click on the link above to see my posts on archived topics from each city.
The posts about Australia in this blog will feature many of the interesting sites within Australia and as many of the wildlife species that I could photograph. I hope that you will join me as I reveal all of the wonderful things that Australia has to offer.