Australia is a land of stunning natural beauty. If you could name all the geographical features you’ve ever heard of, it’s likely that you’ll find them in Oz. Whether you’re a fan of adventure travel or you’re hoping to explore at a more sedate pace, here are some of the most jaw-dropping natural wonders on offer Down Under.
The Great Barrier Reef
Spanning more than 2,000 kilometres, the Great Barrier Reef is one of the most fascinating and beautiful natural wonders on planet Earth. The scale is difficult to imagine, but if you think that the reef can be seen from space, this gives you an idea of just how vast it is. The reef is home to hundreds of different species, and it affords visitors unrivalled opportunities to explore and discover more about life under the sea. You can snorkel and scuba dive to your heart’s content, and the tiny islands, which are dotted around, make the perfect base to catch rays and appreciate the incredible vistas. If you’re staying along the coast, you can find tours very easily, which will take you out and give you the chance to dive or snorkel and experience the Great Barrier Reef in all its glory.
Lying at the heart of Australia’s Red Centre, Ayers Rock, also known as Uluru, is a giant red rock formation, which dominates the arid landscape and captures the imagination of many a traveller. Ayers Rock is a sacred site for the indigenous populations of Australia, and it is believed to date back more than 500 million years. If you’re visiting the area, Ayers Rock is not the only highlight. Although you’ll be bowled away by the vivid hues and the sheer scale of this monolith, it’s well worth spending a little time exploring the rest of Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, where you’ll find the 36 stacks and domes known as the Olgas. In the summer months, temperatures can reach over 40 degrees in Uluru, so if you are planning a trip, make sure you wear sunscreen, and try and avoid the midday sun. If you’re staying for a couple of days, it’s best to visit at dawn or dusk when it’s cooler and the crowds have subsided.
The Great Ocean Road
The Great Ocean Road is up there with the best road trips in the world. Along the route from Torquay to Allansford, you’ll encounter everything from deserted beaches, canyons and sea caves to charming towns and of course, the iconic stone stacks, the Twelve Apostles.