One of my favourite nutritionists and social media stars Lola Berry often refer to the importance of biophilia, the healing power of nature. It’s so easy to get caught up in the stress of our hectic and busy lives, even when we are travelling. Nature can be the perfect solution: if you’re feeling a bit tense, stressed, tried, anxious, unhappy or all of the above, then get out in nature.
As an Aussie, I still have so much of my own country to explore. There is so many incredible places to visit. Some I have been lucky enough to have explored, others are still on my bucket list. From ancient rain forests on the fringes of modern cities, to climbing snow-capped mountains and swimming in some of the purest water on earth. To snorkeling with sea turtles, walking among cute quokkas or floating alongside a whale shark, spying koalas napping in trees or spotting a crocodile on the banks of a billabong. There is no shortage of beautiful nature experiences in Australia.
My Ultimate Australia Nature Bucket List.
Sunset at The Twelve Apostles √
The Twelve Apostles is a collection of limestone stacks off the shore of the Port Campbell National Park, by the Great Ocean Road in Victoria. It takes over 600 years for the Southern Ocean to shape and then reclaim these monuments of the sea. Best time to view these beauties is around dawn or dusk.
The Great Prom Walk
The Prom holds a special place for me. You’ll need to set aside 3 – 4 days for The Great Prom Walk, because you won’t want to miss anything as you hike through Wilson’s Promontory National Park. There are two trails to choose from and rumour has it you should opt for the shorter 35.5 kilometre option, which winds up to Windy Saddles, before heading back down to Sealers Cove, through the ferns.
There’s a wide variety of winter activities at Mt Buller, an easy three hour drive from Melbourne. On its 80+ runs, you’ll find ski slopes to suit every ability. You can even ski under the stars between July and August. Trek to the top of Mt Buller in snowshoes, head out on a sled dog ride or hurtle down the slopes on a toboggan.
Indulge in some of the worlds best wines in the incredible Barossa Valley
South Australia is one of the world’s premier wine producing areas, and there are more than 200 wineries within a short drive of the capital, Adelaide. The state is home to 18 major wine making regions. Taste wines and eat superb gourmet produce at many cellar doors in the various wine regions. The Barossa Valley is incredible to explore… even if you are the designated driver.
Swim alongside the gentle whale sharks at Ningaloo Reef
Ningaloo Marine Park is a World Heritage-listed site found half way up the West Australian coastline. The crystalline water harbours the coral reef swarming with turtles, tropical fish, manta rays, humpback whales and the elusive whale shark. Nowhere on earth do these majestic creatures reliably congregate in such large numbers as here!
Snap a selfie with a Quokka
Off the coast of Perth, this laid-back island is home to Australia’s most photographed marsupial. The quokka – found only on Rottnest – is a furry, cat-sized animal with a cuddly appearance and a tendency to smile. In recent years it has become a social media star, thanks partly to the fact that quokkas are less shy around humans than many other Aussie animals.
See a pink lake
The Pink Lake in Esperance delivers everything it promises—a pink lake. Located in the south west of WA, you’re best visiting the lake by land or air. The former means only one thing (road trip!), while the latter means chartering a plane or helicopter, which sounds like the best idea I’ve had all day.
Walk the base of Uluru √
A lot of people don’t actually realise that it is disrespectful to the traditional owners to climb Uluru. So take up the challenge of walking the entire perimeter of the rock. It’ll take you 3-4 hours and is 9.8 kilometres in length. Time it to finish just before sunset.
Swim in all of the incredible waterholes √
There are so many incredible croc-free swimming holes to hop between up north like the incredible infinity edge one pictured below looking over the Kakadu National Park. Just make sure you check with rangers before swimming that there haven’t been any croc sightings at waterholes and billabongs.
Dive the Great Barrier Reef √
The Great Barrier Reef, off the coast of Queensland, is the largest living thing on Earth, and even visible from outer space. The 2,300km-long ecosystem comprises thousands of reefs and hundreds of islands made of over 600 types of hard and soft coral. It’s home to countless species of colourful fish, molluscs and starfish, plus turtles, dolphins and sharks. There is no shortage of places to dive the reef either. Check out my post on Hamilton Island for more info on visiting the reef.
Retreat to an incredible rainforest
The Daintree Rainforest is the oldest, and arguably most scenic, living rainforest on Earth. Its beauty provided inspiration for the Hollywood blockbuster Avatar and it is just a 90 minute drive from Port Douglas, which is definitely worth a visit and a good place to base yourself for your trip to the Great Barrier Reef.
New South Wales
Walk the Bondi to Bronte Coastal track
As you walk on top of the sandstone cliffs, between two of Sydney’s most famous beaches, the trail takes you right on top of the ocean. There are lots of vantage points along the way where you can rest up and soak in the amazing views and, if you’re lucky, you may even spot whales and dolphins. A good starting point for the iconic Bondi to Bronte walking trail is at Notts Avenue, close to Bondi Icebergs Club. From there simply keep heading south along the coast.
Visit the Three Sisters in the Blue Mountains √
The Three Sisters are at Echo Point in Katoomba, on the cliff edge overlooking the Blue Mountains National Park. The best views of the Three Sisters are from Echo Point Lookout but you can also head out hiking and abseiling to experience some truly memorable angles on these formations and you can visit the Three Sisters year round.
Visit the most perfectly shaped beach in the world
Wineglass Bay, on Tasmania’s Freycinet Peninsula, is considered one of the top ten beaches in the world. This flawless crescent of dazzling white sand and sapphire-coloured sea set against pink and grey granite peaks is one of Australia’s most beautiful natural environments. It’s the perfect location for fishing, sailing, bushwalking, sea kayaking, rock-climbing, or simply soaking up the spectacular coastal scenery.
There you have it! Have you guys been to any of these places before? Is there any others that you think I’ve missed?
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