Australia Travel Guide

In depth Australia travel guides on destinations
plus honest reviews of attractions, accommodation, and restaurants.

I would like to respectfully acknowledge the Traditional Owners, and First People of these lands. I would like to pay my respect to the Elders past, present, and future, for they hold the memories, the traditions, the culture, and hopes of their people.

a soft white sandy beach

Australia is the largest country in Oceania and consists of the mainland, the island of Tasmania, and many small islands. It is made up of six states and two major mainland territories; New South Wales, Victoria, Western Australia, Queensland, South Australia, Tasmania, Northern Territory, and Australian Capital Territory.

Despite Sydney being the largest city, and probably the best known, Canberra is the capital. The other main cities are Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth, and Adelaide.

Given its huge size, it has a diverse landscape, with rainforests, dry forests, mountains, and deserts. Australia is bordered by the Pacific Ocean and the Indian Ocean.

More than 80% of the 24 million population live by the coast due to the middle having such a harsh climate.

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Safety in Australia

The emergency number for police, ambulance and fire brigade is 000.

Australia has a low crime rate, but you should take the same precautions as you would when travelling anywhere.

crocodile entering the ocean on sandy beach

Despite what you might think, shark attacks are rare in Australia. To minimise your risk, swim at patrolled beaches, avoid cloudy days and dusk/evening time and don’t swim a long way offshore or near deep water drop offs.

Crocodiles live in rivers and coastal estuaries in parts of northern Australia. Obey all warning signs and keep away from mangroves and avoid swimming or fishing near their habitat.

From around November to May, marine stingers are found in the ocean in Northern Australia. During this time, make sure to swim within the enclosures on popular beaches. If you are snorkelling or diving, you must wear protective clothing.

Australia also have their share of venomous snakes and spiders. However, deaths are very rare since anti-venom were introduced. If hiking, wear protective footwear. 

Australia has some of the best beaches in the world and with over 10,000 of them, you are spoilt for choice. Popular beaches are patrolled by Surf Lifesavers from October to April, where red and yellow flags mark the safest area to swim. To avoid the chance of being caught in a rips, swim between the yellow and red flags.

You should always pay attention to signs as you enter the beach and on the beach. They can warn of dangers like crocodiles and marine stingers.

The Australian sun is strong so make sure to regularly apply a SPF50 sunscreen and wear protective clothing like rashies, hats, and sunglasses.

Unfortunately, Australia has had some devastating bush fires. They normally occur during summer when it is hot and dry.

Bush fires are dangerous as they take hold quickly and can change direction fast.

Keep on top of any advice by visiting the latest fire warnings on these regional sites:

NSW www.rfs.nsw.gov.au
Vic www.cfa.vic.gov.au
Tas www.fire.tas.gov.au
ACT www.esa.act.gov.au
NT www.pfes.nt.gov.au
QLD www.ruralfire.qld.gov.au
SA www.cfs.org.au
WA www.emergency.wa.gov.au

native bush in australia with fire raging through the trees

Distances in Australia are huge and you can go thousands of kilometres without seeing anyone.

Make sure your vehicle is roadworthy and you have two spare tyres if you are driving in the remote areas. Also take maps, extra food & water and fuel.

Mobile phones have limited coverage in some parts too so don’t rely on them.

Don’t drive tired. Break up your journey with rest stops. The roads can be long and straight which can make you drowsy if tired and even fall asleep at the wheel.

Bucket List of Things To Do in Australia

ferries in front of the sydney opera house

Scuba Dive or snorkel The Great Barrier Reef & Explore Daintree Rainforest, Cape Tribulation, Mossman Gorge

Climb Sydney Harbour Bridge

Have fun at the Theme Parks on the Gold Coast

Discover the gorgeous interior of the Katherine Gorge

4WD on the world’s largest sand island, Fraser Island

See the sunset over Uluru

Take a selfie with a Quokka on Rottnest Island

Visit the stunning Kimberley region & ride a camel on Cable Beach

Take a tour to Kakadu National Park

Surf or go wine tasting in Margaret River

See kangaroos on the beach in Esperance

Take a Whale Watching tour or swim with the Whale Sharks

Explore The Whitsundays from Airlie Beach

Australian States & Territories

aerial view of a bridge with ferries

New South Wales

NSW is on the east coast of Australia and Australia’s most populous state. Sydney is the capital city and Australia’s most populous city.

person scuba diving with turtle

Queensland

Qld is Australia’s second largest state and third most populous. The capital city is Brisbane which is the largest city in the state.

aerial view of a wide sandy beach and inlet

South Australia

SA is the fourth-largest of Australia’s states with more than 77 percent of South Australians living in the capital, Adelaide.

clear turquoise water surrounded by rocks

Tasmania

Tasmania is an island state of Australia, situated to the south of the mainland. The state city is Hobart and also Tasmania’s largest.

ocean stacks close to cliffs

Victoria

Vic is the second-smallest state but the most densely populated. Melbourne is Victoria’s state capital and Australia’s second largest city.

people riding a camel train on a sandy beach

Western Australia

WA is Australia’s largest state and the second-largest country sub-division globally. Perth is the state’s capital city.

hot air balloons over city at sunrise

ACT

The Australian Capital Territory contains Australia’s capital, Canberra. It is an enclave within the state of New South Wales.

waterfall flowing into a waterhole

Northern Territory

NT is an Australia Territory and the third-largest Australian federal division. It has a small population with most people living in the capital, Darwin.

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I would like to respectfully acknowledge the Traditional Owners, and First People of these lands. I would like to pay my respect to the Elders past, present, and future, for they hold the memories, the traditions, the culture, and hopes of their people.

FAQ

Is it better to exchange money in Australia or Overseas?

It depends on what country you are planning to exchange your money into Australian dollars. Countries like Indonesia and Thailand tend to have favourable rates. Check the exchange rates in your country with those advertised online at Travelex.

Do you tip in Australia?

You don’t have to tip in Australia, in fact most people don’t. However, a 10% tip will be appreciated in restaurants and bars.

Can I haggle in Australia?

Haggling is not custom in Australia. However, if you are buying a big ticket item, you can ask if they can do a better price or price match.

What is the legal drinking age in Australia?

The legal drinking age in Australia is 18 years old. ID will be required.

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