Australia has been on my bucket list ever since I can remember. Even before I really knew what a bucket list was, I dreamed of exploring Australia, cuddling koalas and snorkelling on the Great Barrier Reef. Although I still haven’t made it to Oz, I have kept this Australia bucket list and hope that one day soon I’ll be able to tick some of the items off. Here are my top ten dream places to visit in Australia before you die!
Great Ocean Road
Who doesn’t love a road trip with a view? The Great Ocean Road has got to be one of the best coastal drives in the world, so I would love to rent a car or a campervan and take a road trip through Victoria. The Great Ocean Road runs between the cities of Allansford and Torquay and features some absolutely stunning views, including the ‘Twelve Apostles’ and miles of blue ocean.
I admit, I haven’t really thought this through in any detail, but after watching Crocodile Dundee when I was a kid, I desperately wanted to go walkabout. I still struggle to comprehend the vastness of the Australian outback, living in England where you can be in a new city in an hour or two, driving between cities in Oz can take days! I don’t think I’d dare to do it alone though, I’d need a guide or a tour, or at least a travel buddy to keep me company in the wide-open spaces.
Uluru (also known as Ayers Rock) is that huge red rock in the middle of the Northern Territory’s dry Red Centre. The rock is sacred to indigenous Australians and is hard to beat for pure wow factor. I would love to go and visit Uluru, and see it rising up on the horizon as we approach. Star gazing is incredible out there, so spending the night at the foot of the big red rock is definitely on my Australia bucket list!
The Great Barrier Reef
I always wanted to go snorkelling on the Great Barrier Reef, but since learning to dive a couple of years ago, diving has got to be the way to go. I have seen Finding Nemo far too many times to count so the reef simply has to be on my Australian bucket list. The Great Barrier Reef Marine Park stretches along the north east coast of Australia and is the same size as 70 million football fields – about the size of Italy. How crazy is that? But it is under pressure from climate change and other threats so like any of our natural wonders we need to do all we can to protect it and visit responsibly.
OMG how unbelievably cute are quokkas?? These little guys are from the same marsupial family as wallabies and marsupials and have become famous for their friendliness and apparent fondness of selfies! They are most common on Rottnest Island, and have very little fear of humans so do tend to get quite close to visitors who love snapping photos of them. Although I certainly don’t condone chasing down animals for the ‘Gram, there is no denying that they are adorable, and I’d love to see them in the wild.
Sydney Opera House is probably the most iconic building in Australia, and certainly worthy of anyone’s Australia bucket list. For me, as well as attending a performance inside the Opera House, heading there for New Year’s Eve to watch the fireworks display is definitely on my list. While I’m in town, climbing Sydney Harbour Bridge has got to be another bucket list thing to do in Sydney. I do get nervous looking down from a great height, but after climbing up the O2 in London, I feel brave enough to tackle the climb in Sydney!
Australia is famous for surfing, and I’ve heard that Byron Bay is the place for backpackers to catch some waves. As well as being a great place for beginner and more experienced surfers, Byron Bay is also known for beautiful beaches, diving, whale watching, and for having a kick-ass nightlife. What more could you ask for??
Bubble gum coloured pink lakes are fascinating, there is no doubt about that. Scientists aren’t even sure exactly why Lake Hillier, on the Recherche Archipelago off the south coast of Western Australia, is pink, but it seems to be a saltwater loving algae or bacteria which gives the lake its vibrant colour. I visited some pink lakes in Mexico, so I’d love to check out some in Australia to see how different they are and get some more gorgeous pink photos!
Nature continues to surprise me, so I marvel at any natural phenomena that I come across. Wave Rock is a natural rock formation shaped like a breaking wave, close to the small town of Hyden about 180 miles east-southeast from Perth. The area is also renowned for wildflowers and orchids, and there are other bizarre rock formations to visit too like Hippo’s Yawn and Mulka’s Cave where you can see aboriginal hand prints and cave paintings.
The Bungle Bungle Range
This is a new one on my Australia bucket list but having seen some photos of the weird and wonderful rock formations of Bungle Bungle in Purnululu National Park in Western Australia I simply can’t resist. Apparently, the best way to see the UNESCO listed orange and black sandstone domes is from the air, so a helicopter ride to see them deserves a place on the list!
So there it is, my top ten Australia bucket list destinations that I would love to visit before I die. Have you been to any of these? Have I missed any major bucketlist destinations? I’d love to hear your recommendations, please leave your comments below.
If you’re looking for travel insurance for your trip to Australia, get a quote now from World Nomads.
Like this post? Pin it to read later:
Just to let you know, this post may contain paid or affiliate links, which help to maintain Tales of a Backpacker and give me the chance to keep travelling, and to keep creating awesome content for you!
Tales of a Backpacker is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. I only recommend goods and services I believe are useful and reliable.Last updated: February 15, 2020