The Australian people - the Aussies - live the good life on a continent where diversity is uniquely expressed in the nature, wildlife, activities, attractions and inhabitants. The country's land mass is larger than that of Europe - well worth remembering when planning a trip Down Under.
Backpacking in Australia
The huge stretch of highway on the east coast of Australia, between Sydney in the south and Cairns in the north, can be called "the backpacker's highway". There is a huge concentration of backpackers here - and with good reason. The beaches are brilliant, especially for surfers who'll love the big waves. Many of the sun-kissed towns ooze a blend of laidback charm and vibrant nightlife. The scenery, especially in Queensland in the north, is incredibly beautiful where rainforest meets coral reef. There are few places on earth that can compete with the beauty of the Whitsunday Islands or the Great Barrier Reef when it comes to tropical islands, diving, coral reefs and underwater life.
The magic of Australia
The east coast is enchanting, but it's worth travelling the many hundreds of kilometres west to the Northern Territory. In the tropical north is the hot and humid town of Darwin. A little south is the fantastic Kakadu National Park with its beautiful waterfalls, gorges, billabongs, and variety of wildlife - not least the huge salt-water crocodiles.
Further south in the middle of the seemingly unending outback known as the Red Centre, you'll find Australia's most famous landmark - Uluru. The sight of this massive rock never fails to amaze and is definitely a must see. This part of Australia truly is magical.
Go west: Western Australia
If you want to avoid the throngs of tourists and at the same time experience a totally different and unique part of the country, then head west. The state of Western Australia is huge, deserted and wild - really wild - exciting and incredibly beautiful. There are some of the world’s most beautiful and unspoiled beaches, fascinating cliffs and gorges, grandeur and stillness in perfect harmony. Along the way, you'll encounter beautiful wildlife and majestic coral reefs that have yet to be overrun with tourists.
Live like an Aussie
There is so much else to experience in this enticing country, it's just a matter of setting off on the adventure. But you will almost certainly get tired of kangaroos and koalas at some point. Travelling to Australia is one thing, it's something else entirely to give a journey to Australia the time it deserves and slowly allow the country and its atmosphere to work its way under your skin. It is definitely worth staying in one place for an extended period to meet the locals, soak up the Australian way of life and make new friends. The Aussies love the outdoors and activities under an open sky - whether it's their beloved BBQs with a cold beer or the slightly more demanding pastimes of surfing, cricket or Aussie rules football. Cities such as Sydney, Melbourne and Adelaide are among the best places to soak up the Australian way of life, but there are loads of smaller yet equally charming towns and cities around the country that will captivate you forever.