1. In New South Wales: Snowy Mountains for skiing and summer adventure
See glacial lakes, snowgum woodlands and colourful alpine meadows on the climb to Mount Kosciuszko, Australia’s tallest peak. At the top you’ll find a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve with 20 species of plants found nowhere else in the world. In winter, hit Australia’s highest ski slopes at Charlotte Pass or carve up the snow at Thredbo and Perisher Blue. In summer, hike past fields of snow daisies, alpine buttercups, billy buttons and other wildflowers. Don’t miss the show of autumnal leaves around Tumut, the place to explore the huge stalactites and thermal pool of the Yarrangobilly Caves. Fish for trout from the clear streams around Tumbarumba and historic Cooma or throw your line in Lake Jindabyne. Adventure beckons across the Snowies, but Jindabyne is a great base for cycling, caving, rafting, kayaking, four wheel driving and horse riding.
2. In Victoria: a High Country of powder and historic mountain towns
Ski or snowboard at Mount Hotham, Australia’s powder capital, or on the steep slopes of the winter playground of Falls Creek. Tackle winter sports, biking or four wheel driving at Mount Buller and marvel at Mount Buffalo’s unique granite beauty. Drive up to Mount McKay for some of the region’s best mountain vistas or bike, horse ride and cross-country ski on Mount Stirling. Go fishing, houseboating and waterskiing at Lake Eildon. Bike ride the Muscat Trail to wineries fringed by gum trees in Rutherglen and feast on fresh berries, cheeses, chestnuts, chutneys and trout in the Alpine Valleys. See the courthouse where Ned Kelly stood trial in the historic gold rush town of Beechworth and old cattle huts in the Bogong Plains. Or base yourself in Bright for walking, cycling and easy access to snowfields and gourmet delights.