Australia is such a wide-sweeping enormous country that it is hard to decide which places to visit in Australia. From the epic Southern Kakadu to the lush rainforests around Byron Bay, camel riding in Broome, to sampling world-class wines on Victoria’s Mornington Peninsula and around Launceston here are six of the all-season best places to visit in Australia.
1. Byron Bay, NSW
Byron Bay is northern NSW’s signature getaway destination, beloved of Hollywood star Chris Hemsworth who has a mansion there. Byron Bay has a sumptuous laid-back café culture combined with beaches and glorious weather. Byron’s beautiful beachfront makes it a nirvana for surfers, swimmers, snorkelers and anyone who enjoys all things aquatic for their Aussie holiday.
It is also a great place if you’re thinking of a romantic wedding destination in Australia. Head inland and Byron Bay reveals a lovely hinterland offering lush rainforest perfect for bushwalking, horse riding, and even hot air ballooning. At night, be sure to sample Byron’s vibrant nightlife, set around the central area between Jonson and Bay streets.
2. Noosa, Queensland
Set on Queensland’s aptly named Sunshine Coast, Noosa offers a hedonistic combination of amazingly beautiful beaches, quirky inland villages, forest, and a beguiling river and lake network. There’s also a world-class dining scene amidst Noosa’s year-round surfing vibe, serene and green. If you are in a quandary about the absolute best places to go in Australia, enjoy a leisurely day on the beach or hike through the Noosa National Park’s subtropical bush, exploring its bays and rocky headlands.
Keep an eye out for dolphins, turtles and whales frolicking in the water. The Majestic Theatre in Pomona is the world’s oldest silent movie theatre while Noosa’s Botanical Gardens at Lake Macdonald is a hidden gem. A great year-round climate and awesome beaches makes Noosa a charming year-round destination particularly if you are a dedicated foodie!
3. Launceston, Northern Tasmania
Foodies and oenophiles simply adore northern Tasmania’s Launceston region. Elegant architecture coexists with sprawling parkland, set against a backdrop of rolling green hills. For culture-vultures looking for fabulous places to see in Australia, the north of Tasmania is a haven thanks to being home to sublime treats such as venison, lobster, truffles and artisanal cheese. Afterwards, indulge in a tipple of world-class new world wines.
Lush farmland, dotted with picturesque cool climate vineyards and charming eighteenth-century scenery provides a charming backdrop to a different face of Australia. Here, you can mountain bike along a crisscross of off-road trails or go for a leisurely walk down sleepy back road tracks taking in quaint cottages and sedate village life. Visitors in search of the local foodie scene are spoilt for choice with an abundance of local restaurants and cafés to choose from.
4. Southern Kakadu, NT
Kakadu is one of the world’s most epic national parks also included in the UNESCO World Heritage List. Kakadu offers spectacular scenery and panoramic views featuring vast mangrove swamps, rivers and monsoon-fed rainforests. It’s treasure trove of ancient rock paintings and deep gorges ending in plunging waterfalls with crystal-clear pools at their feet makes it one of the key places to visit in Australia.
Networks of walking trails lead you to a series of striking highlights including the Yurmikmik Lookout, Motor Car Falls and Boulder Creek. If you’re after a natural shower experience, take a short hike through the bush to Maguk Plunge Pool. This is just the place to slew off the heat under a wonderful waterfall. The face of Kakadu changes with the seasons, from the wet to dry so you will always find something new to experience here.
5. Broome and the Kimberley Region, WA
It’s hard to go past Broome for visual impact. Once the world’s natural pearl capital, Broome, located to the north of Western Australia is the entrance to the dramatic Kimberley region. Without a doubt, Broome’s star attraction is Cable Beach and its epic sweep of endless white sand fringed by brilliant turquoise water.
Unquestioningly, this is one of the most beautiful beaches in Australia. Another natural phenomenon is the Staircase to the Moon, where two or three days a month, from March through to October, the moonlight shapes an optical illusion creating a stairway to the moon.
6. Mornington Peninsula, Victoria
Escape from Melbourne’s cultural crush comes in the form of the delightful Mornington Peninsula’s more languid pace. Melbourne’s playground since forever, these days the area is renowned as a foodies’ paradise for its fresh seafood and locally produced wine, beer and cider.
Calm beaches on the Port Phillip side are ideal for family beach holidays, while the rugged Bass Strait facing ‘back beaches’ offer panoramic walks along this idyllic coastal strip and are easily reached from Portsea, Sorrento and Rye. Meanwhile, tranquil Queenscliff on the Bellarine Peninsula is just a short ferry ride across the bay from Sorrento.
Despite being home to some of the most venomous animals on the planet, there are so many vibrant and engaging places to visit in Australia. Experience a gamut of climate zones, hundreds of kilometres of beautiful sandy beaches, an epic Aboriginal outback and awe-inspiring natural scenery, superb wine, sublime gourmet food and a thriving art scene, all set against a backdrop of the warmth and welcoming smiles of the locals.