July 1, 2013
Land of sun and of wilderness, Australia captures the imagination like few other countries. There’s so much to see that even the hardened traveller can be intimidated. One answer to this dilemma is a seasoned tour operator who can help ensure you get the most from your time abroad. Adventure Tours Australia are a great option, and they offer tours all over Australia including an excellent Darwin Tour. Still, there are some things you don’t want to miss whether you’re taking a tour or going solo. Here’s four of the best.
Great Barrier Reef
The Great Barrier reef is so large it can be seen from space. It covers 900 islands and 2,600 kilometers. The Reef is home to a vast array of marine life including dolphins, whales, turtles, sea snakes, stingray, saltwater crocodiles and sharks, plus a tremendous array of fish and plant life. The waters around the reef are some of the clearest to be found anywhere in the world, making it popular with divers. Many Queensland cities offer boat trips to the reef, and you can either dive, snorkel, or stay dry and use one of the glass-bottomed boat’s viewing windows. The best times to visit are April through November, but don’t forget your camera. You’ll need it. For more information see http://www.greatbarrierreef.org/.
Set in a National Park Uluru is probably the most recognisably Australian landmark in existence. A vast sandstone formation nearly 6 miles around it rises over 350m into the air, and is at its most dramatic at sunset or sunrise when the rock seems to glow red. There are numerous options here for the intrepid tourist from camel treks to camping. There are guided Aboriginal tours of the area and several places to stay if you want a longer trip. Alternatively Adventure Tours Australia offer an excellent Uluru Tour that is hard to beat.
The Great Ocean Road
This 250km road runs along the southern coast of Australia from the Ballarine Peninsula to Warrnambool. Built in the 1930s it takes you past some of Australia’s most stunning scenery, with numerous walks starting just off the tarmac. This road is built for the driving fan, but if you’re not keen to drive yourself then bus tours run from Apollo Bay and Warrnambool. There are also helicopter tours available for those who wish to gain some perspective! The route can be driven in a day, but it’s far more sensible to allow two. That way you can make a few stops along the way and not feel rushed. Spring and Autumn are your best bets.
Sydney Opera House & Harbour
Containing the iconic Opera House, a World Heritage site, and the majestic Sydney Harbour Bridge, the harbour area of Sydney is a real treat. If you visit in the New Year you can witness the famous Firework display stretching out across the harbour. The Opera House itself comprises a concert hall, a playhouse, a studio, two theatres, the Utzon room and the Forecourt, as well as a bar, cafe and restaurant. In other words there’s something for everyone, and you can take a tour of the building between the hours of 9 and 5, or just have a quiet drink before taking in your chosen performance. Find out the current schedule of events at the Opera House here http://www.sydneyoperahouse.com/whatson/index.aspx.
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