When you think of Australia, you probably conjure up images of barbeques on the beach, surfing, and driving through the outback for miles without a soul in sight. However, there’s much more to Oz than meets the eye. It’s not all about adventure travel and outdoor pursuits. Australia has an incredibly rich history, and no trip Down Under is complete without gaining an insight into the significance of Aboriginal culture. When you’re planning your gap year or an extended holiday in Oz, make time to discover the ancestral lands and learn more about how history has shaped this wonderful nation.
A spiritual journey through ancestral lands
Aboriginal culture dates back more than 50,000 years. Today, you still find thriving communities, and there are traditional influences running through modern-day Australian culture. Aborigines are very proud of their heritage, and they enjoy sharing their stories, tales, myths and legends through a variety of media. If you visit a cultural centre, you’ll find all kinds of examples, from dance and art, to sculpture and cookery.
The ancestral lands are the heartbeat of Australia. You’ll find traces of Aboriginal culture all over this vast country, but there are some very special and scared places. If you’re eager to learn more about the history and culture of Australia, here are some locations you should discover on your travels.
Uluru: Uluru is best known for the enormous red rock mass that is Ayer’s Rock. For decades, tourists have flocked to this site to marvel at its size and stature. For many more centuries, Uluru has played a significant role in Aboriginal culture. Creation myths suggest that the rock was created by ancestral spirits and it remains a very holy place. A guided tour complete with commentary will enhance your appreciation of this unique area.
Daintree Rainforest: home to sprawling forests beneath verdant canopies, Daintree Rainforest is one of the most active communities in Australia. Here, you can learn all about day to day life, and see how the traditions, habits and beliefs dating back centuries shape modern practices. Learn to fish, take a lesson in bush medicine or hone your boomerang-throwing skills.
Kimberley: the area surrounding Kimberley looks like something from a film. Be prepared for geographical features that will blow your mind combined with a soothing sense of serenity. Visit the caves and see the paintings adorning the walls or learn about the legendary tales of the Bungle Bungles and their infamous black and yellow domes.