5 Destinations You Must See On Your Australian Vacation

by RobertKeith

Australia is a huge country (2,9 million square miles) with a lot to see. Most of the must-see attractions are found in the Southeast and Southwest.

To assist you in planning your Aussie itinerary, here is a list of the top five must-see destinations to visit on your next Australian vacation.

1. The Bungle Bungles
The Bungle Bungles are an extensive, natural Devonian sandstone and conglomerate rock cones or towers found in Purnululu National Park in the eastern Kimberly area of Western Australia. These beehive-shaped structures often include alternating, regular dark grey stripes or bands composed of single cell photosynthetic organisms or cyanobacterial crust. The conical towers have domed summits, steep sides, and a sharp break or slope at their bases.

The popular plateau is separated by a deep, 330 to 660 feet slot canyons and sheer-sided gorges. While the locals there, stockmen and Aborigines, have known about these beehive-shaped towers, the now-famous Bungle Bungles were not officially discovered by anyone else until some time in 1982. The area was designated a National Park in 1987 and an official World heritage site in 2003. 
You can reach the unique Bungle Bungles by driving approximately 50 miles on dirt roads in a four-wheel drive vehicle. You will also have to hike a bit to actually reach these remarkable formations. So grab your hiking boots and essential gear and head for the (beehive) hills. 

The Bungle Bungles
The Bungle Bungles

2. Canberra 
170 miles from southwest of the city of Sydney is the country’s capital--Canberra. It is roughly 410 miles northeast of the city of Melbourne and the country’s largest inland city to boot. There are 403,468 residents and they are known as Canberrans. 
In 1908, the location of Canberra was decided upon as a compromise between the country’s two largest cities: Melbourne and Sydney. What makes this an unusual city here is that it was actually planned out of any actual state like Brasilia in Brazil or the United States capital, Washington, D.C. Australians held a worldwide competition for design concepts for the city. 
The winning blueprints were those submitted by two American architects named Marion Mahony Griffin and Walter Burley Griffin. Construction crews broke ground in 1913. Today visitors who have an interest in the government of this nation are all sure to see the High Curt, and famous Parliament House, which was built on Capitol Hill. Other places of interest include the National Gallery of Australia, the Australian War Memorial, the National Film and Sound Archive, and the National Zoo and Aquarium. 

3. Castle Hill 
Just yards short of officially being a mountain, the legendary Castle Hill is a giant pink granite rock monolith that is located in in the famous suburb of Castle Hill in Townsville. At a height of 938 feet above sea level, it is the centerpiece of the town. Indeed, it is the dominating landmark of the entire city skyline. 
Accessible by paved roads, it is easy to visit. In fact, Castle Hill is visited by over 2,500 people every day. If you enjoy hiking, several trails are also available. Veteran visitors have reported that the 360-degree views from the top of this giant stone are worth the trip, especially at sunrise and sunset. 
History buffs will love Castle Hill, too. During World War II it was reportedly once used by United States soldiers. Locals tell the tale of American armed forces offering to demolish Castle Hill and use the pieces to construct a crude bridge to Magnetic Island. On one corner of this tremendous attraction, one can still see an observation bunker from the second world war. 

4. Coober Pedy 
Situated in the northern part of South Australia, Coober Pedy is 526 miles north of the city of Adelaide via Stuart Highway. Coober Pedy is derived from the Aboriginal phrase Kupa-piti which roughly translates to “boy’s waterhole.” The local population was last reported to be 1,762. 
801 women and 962 men reside there. Over 17 percent of the locals (302 people) are Torres Strait Islanders and/or Aboriginals. Most of the year these people live underground because of the incredibly excessive heat. 
Coober Pedy is well-known for its underground homes, named “dugouts”, which were specifically designed because of the daytime heat. If you have ever wondered what it is like to live underground there are many choices of subterranean accommodations. Also known as the world’s opal capital, because precious opals are mined there. 
The opal mining officially began on February 1, 1915, when the first opal was discovered. It provides the world with the majority of its opals. Interestingly, despite the 70 opal fields there, Coober Pedy actually counts on the tourist trade just as much as opal mining for employment. 

5. Cottesloe Beach 
For over 100 years, the locals of Perth, have favored Cottesloe Beach, located in the western beachside suburb of Perth. In fact, literally generations of people from West Australia have enjoyed diving into the water from the floating bell just off the shore. With 0.6 miles of pristine white sand, this is a popular place for building sand castles, swimming, snorkeling, and surfing (whether you are an expert or just a beginner. It is also a great place to take in a memorable view as the sun sets over the Indian Ocean. Dine locally and enjoy a beer or glass of wine or even picnic on the beach. Stay at one of the seaside hotels or even serviced apartments. If you go in March you might even be able to take in the yearly Sculpture by the Sea. It's a popular outdoor art exhibition that temporarily turns the beautiful beach into an interesting open-air art gallery. 

There you have it, fellow travelers, five destinations you must see on your Australian vacation. Are you looking for additional places to see on your next visit down under? Check with the experienced travel professionals at Charter North Tours before you make your itinerary. Bon Voyage!
Updated: 08/26/2018, RobertKeith
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Mira on 08/29/2018

Thank you so much for this! I would have liked to see more photos, though, so as to get a better sense of the places and also pin the article on Pinterest.

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