Life Down Under is truly epic – on a large scale. Australia is the sixth largest country in the world and has extremely varied landscapes, unique wildlife and some of the world’s best beaches. From Ayers Rock in the barren Outback to the tropical seasonal rainforests of Cairns – there’s no other place like Oz.

Australia – the second most popular choice for a gap year or work sabbatical – is a top destination to take part in a volunteer programme. But it’s also great for anyone who’s simply looking for a time. According to our survey, the majority of people who visit Australia are 25 years old or older – possibly due to the high cost of living. But a trip to Oz is worth every penny. Find out why…

Blue Mountains National Park, NSW, Australia

Where to go in Australia

Best for city life: Sydney – the capital of New South Wales

Best for culture: Melbourne – the coastal capital of the south-eastern state of Victoria

Best for the coast: Mornington Peninsula – south of Melbourne

Best for scenery: Blue Mountains – stunning eucalyptus forests west of Sydney

Mornington Pier at sunset. Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

The best things to do in Australia

  • Walk the Sydney Harbour Bridge, which offers spectacular views of the Sydney Opera House and Harbour
  • Snorkel in the Great Barrier Reef off the coast of Queensland in north-eastern Oz
  • Visit the Red Centre and see Uluru (Ayers Rock), but don’t be tempted to climb it, as it’s disrespectful to the indigenous Aboriginal people
  • Wandering the laneways in Melbourne for the best food, street art and bars
  • Drive the Great Ocean Road and take in the magnificent scenes
  • Watch sea turtles hatch in Mon Repos Conservation Park in Queensland
  • Try and get your head around an Aussie Rules football game

Essentials: what you need to know

When is the best time to go to Australia?

  • North Coast: This area is driest and most accessible between April and September
  • South Coast: You’ll get comfortable temperatures from October to April, with manageable tourist crowds
  • The Outback: September to November and April to June offer pleasant daytime temperatures and mild nights.

Visa: You’ll need a visa to visit and work in Australia. But getting the ETA holiday visa (Electronic Travel Authority) is usually a very speedy process.

Vaccines: No
 
Currency: Australian Dollar: $

Time zones:

  • Western Australia UTC +8:00
  • Central Australia: UTC +9:30
  • Eastern Australia: UTC +10:00

Language: English

Tipping:

  • Food & drinks: 0%-10%
  • Taxis: round up
  • Salon services: round up

Slang: “Come over this arvo mate, I’ve got heaps of snags for the barbie.”

  • Arvo: afternoon
  • Heaps: lots, loads
  • Barbie: barbecue
  • Snag: sausage

Five dishes we love:

  • Aussie meat pies – hand-sized meat pies containing diced or minced meat and gravy. These are often filled with onion, mushrooms or cheese.
  • Kangaroo steaks – similar to venison if you can handle eating kangaroo
  • Vegemite – a thick savoury yeast and vegetable spread often for toast
  • Peach Melba – a dessert of peaches and raspberry sauce with vanilla ice cream
  • Tim-Tams – two chocolate biscuits sandwiched with chocolate cream

Sounds great! How do I get there?

Check out our great offers and deals for flights to Australia.

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