Top 10: Australia’s East Coast (according to Lonely Planet)
13. Sydney Nightlife
Sydney has much night life, with jazz and rock venues and nightclubs across the city. Kings Cross is the city’s red-light district. There are huge celebrations for New Years Eve and Australia Day in Sydney, including a fireworks display that features the Harbour Bridge.
12. Great Ocean Road
The Great Ocean Road is more than a road – it represents a coastal region of south-west Victoria, Australia, running from Bellarine Peninsula near Geelong to Portland near the border with South Australia. The Great Ocean Road was built as a work project for veterans returning from World War I and was completed in 1932.
11. Far North Queensland
Far North Queensland, is the northernmost part of the state of Queensland. The region, which contains a large section of the Tropical North Queensland area, stretches from the city of Cairns north to the Torres Strait. To the west lies the Gulf Country and North Queensland is the region to the south.
10. Blue Mountains
The Blue Mountains, immediately to the west of the sprawling metropolitan area of Sydney, constitute one of the most accessible areas of relatively unspoilt natural highland beauty in New South Wales. Although not particularly high as a mountain range, the Blue Mountains are nonetheless renowned for their majestic scenery of a unique kind, their cultural attractions and a relatively tranquil, alternative mode of life.
Brisbane is the capital of the state of Queensland. It’s a positive attitude and creative confidence that makes Brisbane a genuine new-world city. Large enough to be cosmopolitan yet small enough to be friendly and accessible, this ‘garden metropolis’ is famous for its leafy, open spaces and the pleasant pace of life that unfolds between the zig-zags of its iconic river.
8. Fraser Island
Fraser Island is a precious part of Australia’s natural and cultural heritage, it is protected for all to appreciate and enjoy. Fraser island is a place of exceptional beauty, with its long uninterrupted white beaches flanked by strikingly coloured sand cliffs, and over 100 freshwater lakes, some tea-coloured and others clear and blue all ringed by white sandy beaches.
7. Noosa National Park
Noosa National Park is a national park in Queensland, 121 km north of Brisbane. It is situated near Noosa Heads between the Pacific Ocean and the Sunshine Coasts’s northern area of urban development and extends southwards, past Lake Weyba to Coolum. An oceanway runs from the Noosa River mouth along Hastings Street town centre and then out around the Noosa National Park headlands and beaches to Sunshine Beach.
6. Byron Bay
Byron Bay is a coastal town in the Northern Rivers of New South Wales, located just off the Pacific Highway, approximately 800 km north of Sydney and 175 km south of Brisbane. Nearby Cape Byron is the easternmost point on the Australian mainland. Byron Bay is famed worldwide for its surfing beaches, scuba diving, whale watching, rural beauty and a laid back lifestyle.
5. Sailing the Whitsunday Islands
The Whitsunday Islands are a group of 74 islands that lie off the coast of Queensland and form part of the Great Barrier Reef. The vast majority of islands are designated national parks and major attractions include access to coral reefs for snorkeling and diving, pristine beaches, especially Whitehaven Beach on Whitsunday Island and clear aquamarine warm waters.
Melbourne is Australia’s second largest city, and the capital of the south-eastern state of Victoria, located at the head of Port Phillip Bay. Melbourne is Australia’s cultural capital, with Victorian-era architecture, extensive shopping, museums, galleries, theatres, and large parks and gardens. Many of its 4 million residents are both multicultural and sports-mad.
3. Daintree Rainforest
The park consists largely of broadleaf lowland tropical rainforests and upland tropical rainforests, although there are also significant mangrove and fan palm communities. The rainforest is an amazing array of biodiversity. Look out for the cassowary, a large non-flying bird with a “helmet” growth on its head to protect it as it runs through the forest.
2. Great Barrier Reef
The Great Barrier Reef is a coral formation, the largest in the world, located off the Pacific coast of Queensland. It is home to a spectacular array of marine life and offers awesome diving opportunities. The Great Barrier Reef can be seen from outer space and is the world’s biggest single structure made by living organisms.
Sydney is the Harbour City. It is the largest, oldest and most cosmopolitan city in Australia with an enviable reputation as one of the world’s most beautiful and liveable cities. Brimming with history, nature, culture, art, fashion, cuisine, design, it is set next to miles of ocean coastline and sandy surf beaches. The city is also home to the Sydney Opera House and the Sydney Harbour Bridge, two of the most iconic structures on the planet.