From visiting iconic landmarks to mingling with our furry friends – there are many ways to discover the magic of Australia. Because there really are endless amounts of things to do, we tried to make it a little easier for you by breaking them down into 7 ways to explore Australia.
Australia is an exciting and exceptional place to study, live, work and play for many reasons. We have a rich culture and lifestyle culminated from many influences such as our climate, landscape, multicultural diversity and so on. One of the exciting things you get to do as an international student is explore all that Australia has to offer. Here are our 7 categories to explore Australia:
1. Visit Iconic Landmarks
Australia is well-known for its iconic landmarks, both natural and man-made. Every State in the country has something remarkable for you to visit. They are spectacular and breathtaking, and we’d recommend you try to see as much as possible!
In New South Wales, you can’t go past The Sydney Opera House and The Harbour Bridge, not to mention the Harbour itself. The Blue Mountains are also a great place to visit and enjoy lots of wildlife.
In Queensland, there is the World Heritage Listed Great Barrier Reef, the Daintree National Park and K’Gari (Fraser Island).
Victoria is home to the iconic Great Ocean Road and the site of The Twelve Apostles, as well as the famous Bells Beach and Phillip Island Penguin Parade.
South Australia has some of the most beautiful and popular wineries in the country (visit our article about South Australia’s Wine Regions), and the unreal Wilpena Pound. You can also visit the Head of the Great Australian Bite.
Western Australia has beautiful Rottnest Island, the pink Lake Hillier and Esperance.
The Northern Territory is home to the iconic Uluru, Kakadu National Park and Kings Canyon.
The ACT has the Australian War Memorial and Parliament House.
Tasmania has Cradle Mountain-Lake St Clair National Park, the Historic Port Arthur Site and the MONA.
2. Embrace Australian Wildlife
You can’t explore Australia without noticing its unique native wildlife and you would be silly not to try and see as many animals as you can. We’ve got kangaroos, koalas, wombats, platypuses, Tasmanian devils, emus and the list goes on. We would recommend visiting wildlife sanctuaries and national parks for an authentic up-close experience with these iconic animals. Every state has a wildlife sanctuary or zoo you can visit, that highlights our native animals.
3. Surfing on Australian Beaches
Australia is renowned for its absolutely stunning beaches. Both the East and West Coasts have iconic beaches, home to famous surf breaks. We suggest learning to surf at some famous spots like Bondi Beach or the Gold Coast. There is nothing quite like riding your first wave and enjoying the sun and sand with your mates.
4. Attend Cultural Festivals
One thing you should definitely try to do is attend local festivals, and immerse yourself in Australian culture. The country has some iconic cultural festivals, like Vivid Sydney, the Melbourne International Comedy Festival, the Sydney Film Festival, Adelaide Fringe Festival, Margaret River Gourmet Escape and Sydney Mardi Gras. It is a great way to embrace the diversity and richness of Australian arts and culture.
5. Go on Road Trip Adventures
The best way to see Australia’s vast landscape is best explored by road! You’ll see and discover things you maybe wouldn’t have if you didn’t go on a road trip. We think there is nothing better than road tripping with mates to amazing destinations. We’d suggest driving all the way up the east coast from Sydney to Byron Bay, and continue on to The Gold Coast and even further to the Sunshine Coast. Another iconic and beautiful drive is down south, along the Great Ocean Road. And if you drive The Red Centre Way, you’ll see the Outback in all its glory.
6. Experience Indigenous Culture
It is really important to understand the significance of respecting and learning about Australia’s Indigenous culture and heritage. We suggest attending cultural events, visiting art galleries that showcase Indigenous art and learning about the Dreamtime stories. It really is an enriching experience connecting with and understanding the oldest living culture on Earth. We’d suggest visiting the Yabun Festival in Sydney or the First Nations Arts Festival Yirramboi in Melbourne as an example.
7. Attend Sporting Events
Australia is a sports-loving nation, and we take our sports very seriously! We’d definitely encourage you to attend cricket matches, Australian Football Rules (AFL), Rugby League matches or the Australian Open. Nothing beats the atmosphere and camaraderie at these events and it’ll be something you will remember forever.
All in all, Australia is an exciting destination, and there is so much to see and do that it can be overwhelming! Now that you’ve got an idea what there is to see and explore, why not dive depper? Luckily for you, we’ve curated the ultimate Australian Bucket List for International Students, so you don’t miss out on anything whilst you’re here. Have fun and start exploring!