Lately the hot place to vacation has become Australia. Why? There isn’t really one answer; in fact, there are as many answers as there are people who go there. It could be because it’s a huge country with an enormous variety of places to see, unique wildlife, gorgeous beaches, exciting cities, fun things to do and an interesting history.
Besides, there’s only so much Disney World one family can enjoy in a lifetime.
In 1786, following the American Revolution, the British needed a place to put their convicts. According to King George III, Australia, known then as Botany Bay, seemed like the ideal place, so around 750 prisoners arrived on the shore with about 400 sailors and servicemen. By 1868 the European Aussie population consisted of about 168,000 beggars, thieves, prostitutes and criminals.
Despite their infamous ancestry, these days most of Australia’s population is law-abiding, and situated on the coasts, particularly the fertile east coast, home to big cities like Cairns, Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne. The top end of the country is tropical, and monsoons and typhoons are not uncommon. Western Australia is a broad plateau with only a few areas of fertile land and lots of desert regions, some of which run right up to the sea.
Unique to Australia, of course, are the opposite seasons. While everyone else here is freezing at Christmas, Australians are usually by the pool or on the beach. This means summer down under attracts a massive influx of tourists.
Lots To Do:
Australia has around 500 national parks where you can experience the wildlife, go camping, take up an adventure sport or simply relax and soak up the great Aussie outdoors. National parks range from lush, green tropical rainforests to dry, empty outback. If you’re brave enough to venture out on your own, remember to be prepared for the natural elements.
Those elements could include getting up close and personal – intentionally or not – with some of the wildlife such as kangaroos, crocodiles, dingoes and koalas.
The beach culture in Australia is huge, to say the least. With 25,000 miles of coastline, you can pretty much have a beach to yourself. However most people head for the Great Barrier Reef, which is renowned worldwide for its underwater wonders, sailing trips and water sports. Here you can see some of the most impressive coral, dolphins, turtles, beach whales, sharks and seabirds you’ll ever see.
The cities of Australia (or Oz as the natives call it) offer a lifestyle that rivals any in Paris or New York. Shopping, dining and entertainment are second to none. There’s no shortage of cinemas, live music venues, concert halls, or nightclubs either, with Sydney alone playing host to many international music, art, film, and sports festivals.
Most tourists flock to places like the Sydney Opera House, Bondi Beach, the Great Barrier Reef, Fraser Island and Ayres Rock for the utmost in sightseeing experiences.
So whether you’re scuba diving in the Great Barrier Reef, taking in a concert at the Sydney Opera House or putting the burn on your credit card at the shopping centers, Australia has something for everyone.