Travelrific® Travel Journal

Picture postcards in prose.™ Check out the blogroll on the front page for official merchandise and other resources!

Archive for australia

Dinosaur Trees in Australia

By Linda Tancs

Just a couple of hours northwest of Sydney is Wollemi National Park, a national park and wilderness area in Australia. Bushwalking is a popular activity thanks to the pristine, rugged wilderness met with pagoda rock formations, sandstone escarpments and deep gorges, among other things. In fact, one of the most fascinating discoveries of all time, the last surviving grove of Wollemi pine, occurred in 1994 during a bushwalking expedition in the deep gorges. Once thought to be extinct, its link to the Jurassic and Cretaceous periods puts it squarely in the backyard of the dinosaurs, who no doubt looked to the trees as a food source. Despite this discovery, the scarcity of the tree makes it highly endangered, and its location in the park is a closely-guarded secret. No worries, though. There’s enough extraordinary landscape to keep you occupied, and the softer light of autumn provides a great backdrop for outstanding photography.

*************

To limit the spread of COVID-19, attractions may be closed or have partial closures. Please keep those affected by the virus in your thoughts and be sure to follow the safety practices advocated by the Centers for Disease Control. Stay safe, and be well.

Nervous Sharks in Australia

By Linda Tancs

It’s hard to imagine a shark being nervous. Yet there is a species of shark called the nervous shark, so named due to its timid nature around humans. It’s one of at least 28 species of shark in Shark Bay. Located in the Gascoyne region of Western Australia, this World Heritage Site is approximately 500 miles north of Perth, on the westernmost point of the Australian continent. And don’t let the name fool you. The locale is home to more than 100 species of reptiles and amphibians, 240 species of birds, 820 species of fish and more than 80 coral and 218 bivalve species. It’s also a safe haven for some of the world’s most endangered species, including the loggerhead turtle, green turtle, dugong and four mammal species not found in the wild anywhere else. You can explore some of the area’s best spots by following the World Heritage Drive or book a tour at the World Heritage Discovery & Visitor Centre.

*************

To limit the spread of COVID-19, attractions may be closed or have partial closures. Please keep those affected by the virus in your thoughts and be sure to follow the safety practices advocated by the Centers for Disease Control. Stay safe, and be well.

Rock Art for Members Only

By Linda Tancs

Quinkan rock art refers to a large body of significant Australian Aboriginal rock art of a style characterized by their unique representations of “Quinkans,” found among the sandstone escarpments around the small town of Laura in Queensland, Australia. It’s regarded by UNESCO as one of the 10 most significant bodies of rock art in the world. You can tour this remote area exclusively with Jarramali Rock Art Tours and admire an area regarded by archaeologists as a 20,000-year-old outback museum. The tour site is nearly six hours away from Cairns.

*************

To limit the spread of COVID-19, attractions may be closed or have partial closures. Please keep those affected by the virus in your thoughts and be sure to follow the safety practices advocated by the Centers for Disease Control. Stay safe, and be well.

From the Indian to the Pacific

By Linda Tancs

You’ll find one of the world’s great transcontinental train journeys aboard Australia’s Indian Pacific. Named for the two oceans the train encounters on its journey, the Indian Pacific travels between Perth and Sydney on a spectacular 2,700 mile-long crossing. The locomotive itself is equally breathtaking, averaging 2,500 feet with 30 carriages. Sights along the route include the Blue Mountains of New South Wales (home to the steepest passenger railway in the world), the barren expanse of the Nullarbor (home to the longest stretch of straight railway track in the world), the mining town of Kalgoorlie and a ghost town named Cook.

*************

To limit the spread of COVID-19, attractions may be closed or have partial closures. Please keep those affected by the virus in your thoughts and be sure to follow the safety practices advocated by the Centers for Disease Control. Stay safe, and be well.

Australia’s Aurora

By Linda Tancs

So much attention is directed at the Northern Lights (aurora borealis) that it’s easy to forget about the Southern Lights, the Southern Hemisphere’s own light show. Known as aurora australis, this celestial ballet is best viewed from southernmost points like Tasmania. Unlike its northern counterpart, you can see it year round although the longer nights of winter present the best potential. A Tasmanian hotspot is Cape Bruny Lighthouse, the country’s second oldest and longest continually staffed extant lighthouse. Get ready for a colorful show of red, green, yellow, blue and purple.

*************

To limit the spread of COVID-19, attractions may be closed or have partial closures. Please keep those affected by the virus in your thoughts and be sure to follow the safety practices advocated by the Centers for Disease Control. Stay safe, and be well.

Australia’s Many Heads

By Linda Tancs

The Red Centre is the beating heart of Australia’s Outback. Aptly named for color, it’s an extraordinary landscape of desert plains, mountain ranges, gorges and some of Aboriginal Australia’s most sacred sites. Kata Tjuta (the Olgas) is among its many natural wonders and cultural landmarks. Translated as “many heads,” Kata Tjuta comprises soaring, domed rock formations that glow at sunrise and sunset. The site is sacred to the local Aboriginal Anangu people, who have inhabited the area for more than 22,000 years. The best way to view this area is by walking one of the trails. One of the shortest walks is to the Kata Tjuta dune viewing area, which offers panoramic views of the landscape. If you’re eager to escape the crowds, then maybe the longest walk is for you. Known as the Valley of the Winds Walk, the 4.5-mile trail compensates for its steepness and difficulty with breathtaking views between the domes.

*************

To limit the spread of COVID-19, attractions may be closed or have partial closures. Please keep those affected by the virus in your thoughts and be sure to follow the safety practices advocated by the Centers for Disease Control. Stay safe, and be well.

The Bellarine Trails

By Linda Tancs

Australia’s Bellarine Peninsula is a peninsula located southwest of Melbourne in Victoria boasting fabulous trails. First there’s the tasting trail, featuring the best of cool-climate wines that define the region. Along with nationally rated five-star wineries, the trail includes top suppliers of local produce, olive oil, cheeses, pies and seafood. You can walk off your gastronomic experience along the second route, the Bellarine Rail Trail. That’s a 20-mile walking and cycling track following the route of the former South Geelong to Queenscliff branch line. Pace yourself; the hike takes about eight hours to complete.

*************

To limit the spread of COVID-19, attractions may be closed or have partial closures. Please keep those affected by the virus in your thoughts and be sure to follow the safety practices advocated by the Centers for Disease Control. Stay safe, and be well.

Old and New in Tasmania

By Linda Tancs

The Museum of Old and New Art (MONA) in Tasmania is the largest privately funded museum in the Southern Hemisphere. Its charm lies in the fact that you can view antiquities and modern art side by side in a mostly-underground facility located on a winery estate in Berriedale. Just a stone’s throw from Hobart by ferry or road, the MONA Roma Express bus operates between Hobart and MONA often and takes around 30 minutes one way.

*************

To limit the spread of COVID-19, attractions may be closed or have partial closures. Please keep those affected by the virus in your thoughts and be sure to follow the safety practices advocated by the Centers for Disease Control. Stay safe, and be well.

Bondi to Bronte

By Linda Tancs

Sydney’s best known coastal trek is the Bondi to Bronte Walk. A favorite with locals and tourists alike, the two-mile stroll follows the coastline from Bondi Beach to Bronte Beach. It may be one of the most photographed walks in Australia with its sandstone cliffs and stunning panoramic views. You might even spot a humpback whale or two. Start your walk around sunset for some particularly magical vistas. The best way to get to Bondi’s starting point is via public transport, with trains traveling between the city and Bondi Junction, and plenty of buses departing from Bondi Junction to Bondi Beach.

*************

To limit the spread of COVID-19, attractions may be closed or have partial closures. Please keep those affected by the virus in your thoughts and be sure to follow the safety practices advocated by the Centers for Disease Control. Stay safe, and be well.

Sleeping With the Fishes in Australia

By Linda Tancs

Reefsuites, Australia’s first underwater hotel, gives new meaning to the phrase “sleeping with the fishes.” Moored offshore at Hardy Reef, each room features floor-to-ceiling views of the spectacular underwater world of the Great Barrier Reef, including 1,500 species of fish along with turtles and rays. What better way to be surrounded by marine life without a wetsuit? There’s also access to the underwater observatory and optional activities like helicopter touring and scuba diving. Located 40 nautical miles from Airlie Beach, the journey begins with a cruise through the Whitsunday Islands to Hardy Reef.

*************

To limit the spread of COVID-19, attractions may be closed or have partial closures. Please keep those affected by the virus in your thoughts and be sure to follow the safety practices advocated by the Centers for Disease Control. Stay safe, and be well.

%d bloggers like this: