Cradle Mountain Canyons, Cradle Mountain, Tasmania © Tourism Australia
Australia Recommends: Exhilarating moments
Mix action and adventure with truly awe-inspiring natural wonders as you swim, trek and climb your way around this great southern land. These are the Aussie places in 2024 that will become one of your life’s greatest adventures.
As the dolphins dive and dance, dash and dart around you, you'll feel so elated. I suppose you’d have to call it an ‘en-dolphin high’.
What sets it apart: marine animals you can encounter up close
The Eyre Peninsula is a place you want to dive into – the clear ocean, the fresh seafood, the rugged outback adventures. Located west of Adelaide on a vast and wind-swept peninsula, this region boasts a unique combination of coast and outback. Whether on land or in the water, the experiences here will get your heart racing. Splash around with sea lions (or even sharks from the safety of a cage), hike through ancient volcanic ranges and spend the night in a bush camp. As you stare at the millions of stars hung above you in the dark outback sky, you’ll memorise every moment on your trip to Eyre.
Southern Great Barrier Reef
Watching turtles hatch around me as I sat on the beach is something I’ll never forget.
What sets it apart: a gathering of giant, graceful manta rays
The Great Barrier Reef, which stretches along the east coast of Australia, is the world’s largest coral reef system. Its sheer size means that there are endless adventures to be had, and the southern portion of this natural wonder serves up some of the best. Islands (like Heron, Lady Elliot and Great Keppel) are teeming with turtles, incredible surf breaks and ancient caves. A trip to the Southern Great Barrier Reef is your chance to dive into an aquatic world where mighty manta rays and even humpback whales come to say hello. So, pull on a snorkel and have an adventure holiday that will leave you in awe.
The wildlife, the colours of the landscapes, the history, the culture, the people, the markets, the sunsets – you have to check it out.
What sets it apart: access to epic national parks
The balmy weather and down-to-earth locals might make Darwin a laidback town, but Australia’s Top End knows how to turn the adrenaline up to ten. Located in the Northern Territory, Darwin is – in a word – fun. Sizzling steam billows from the food stalls at Mindil Beach Markets and jet skis zip noisily along the harbour. You’ll be sad to say goodbye to Darwin, but the surrounding national parks are calling. Thundering waterfalls, cool swimming holes, rugged escarpments – it’s the kind of adventure you’ll reminisce on again and again.
Cradle Mountain-Lake St Clair National Park
There’s nothing like encountering a wombat or echidna waddling through the spectacular nature of Cradle Mountain.
What sets it apart: epic adventure experiences that get the heart racing
In the west of Tasmania lies Cradle Mountain-Lake St Clair National Park. This one mountain – Cradle Mountain – draws in the most adventurous of travellers. But you’ll soon find that this national park has a whole lot more to offer than a single peak. It’s the kind of landscape that forces you to pause and admire. Alpine lakes, misty rainforests and winding rivers – in every direction there’s a new view. As if the views aren’t exciting enough, this region is rich with adrenaline-inducing experiences. Abseil down cliffs and jump from the top of waterfalls; take to the trail on horseback and spot wildlife by night. It’s one exhilarating moment after another.
We watched the sunrise at the Three Sisters, and it felt almost spiritual… the cockatoos chirping and the stunning glow rising over the mountains was awesome.
What sets it apart: the smell of eucalyptus and the sight of blue misty valleys
If it’s the outdoors you love, then the Blue Mountains should be on your bucket list. Just a 90-minute drive from Sydney, the Blue Mountains offer huge swathes of wilderness with quaint villages hidden within. If you're after adventure travel, this is where to find it. True mountaineers can descend into little-known canyons as the mist from waterfalls showers down. Take in an epic sunset as you climb through the roof of a cable car hung above the valley. The heart-pounding experiences continue after dark with glow worm caves and illuminated hikes.