There’s no doubt Australia is one of the most remote, fascinating, and highly developed countries in the world. So here’s the best cities to visit in Australia
Australia’s earliest and most iconic city, Sydney presents a relaxed, beachside vibe within a thriving metropolis. View a show at the World Heritage-listed Opera House or take into the waves at Bondi Beach. Explore the trendy Darling Harbour and the historic laneways of The Rocks, then indulge in the city’s many restaurants and secret bars. Catch a ferry into the white sands and turquoise seas of Manly Beach or choose on the exhilarating Sydney Harbour Bridge Climb. The magnificent Blue Mountains make for an easy day trip, with the Royal Botanic Gardens providing the perfect setting for a peaceful stroll. Heritage buildings include Sydney Town Hall, Parliament House and the Australian Museum and vibrant festivals operate through the entire year. Combine this with beautiful coastal excursions, markets, and the possibility of seeing migrating humpback whales, and it is clear Australia’s famous harbour city really does have something for everyone.
2 ) Melbourne
Long thought to be the most European of all the Australian cities, Melbourne is proud to be Australia’s cultural and sporting capital. More than 40 laneways link the town’s center, crammed with hole-in-the-wall eateries, cosy bars and coffee shops and no visit to Melbourne is complete without exploring this concealed inner-city network. Internationally renowned for its road art, you will discover vibrant displays throughout much of the town, with the ever-changing Hosier Lane a favourite for undergoing this urban art scene. Melbournians have a fierce love for Aussie rules football and, being home to the Australian Open, Formula One and Melbourne Cricket Ground, it’s no wonder Melbourne is such a leading sporting city. Make sure you experience the cultural hub of Federation Square, the multicoloured huts across Brighton beach, the thrilling rides of Luna Park and the penguins (yes penguins!)
Capital of the Sunshine State of Queensland, the riverside town of Brisbane is packed between the beautiful Moreton Bay and rugged national parks. A cosmopolitan hub, the city comes with a flourishing bar and restaurant scene, and is home to world-class theatres and museums. Cross Victoria Bridge to discover South Bank, Brisbane’s cultural hub, and its own 17 hectares of lush parklands. The World Heritage-listed Gondwana Rainforests are only a two-hour drive off and you will reach the gorgeous beaches, shipwrecks and vast sand areas of Moreton Island by ferry. Stop by the 130 koalas at the world’s earliest Koala Sanctuary, have a look at the Botanic Gardens or, for a panoramic view of the city, go to the Mt Coot-tha lookout. You might even rock climb or abseil the Kangaroo Point cliffs and cruise the Brisbane River by kayak or stand paddle board.
Despite being among the most isolated cities in the world, the easy-going funds of Western Australia feels anything but secluded. The center’s high-rise CBD is filled with busy shopping streets and arcades, with the diverse neighborhood of Northbridge home to an abundance of cafes, bars and clubs. Kings Park, one of the world’s largest inner-city green spaces, overlooks the gorgeous Swan River and offers views out to the remote Perth Hills. Top beach spots include the sand Cottesloe Beach or even Scarborough to reach the surf. A trip to Fremantle, Perth’s quirky port city, is a must. Expect to find great java, boutiques and handmade beers as well as a playful music, festival and arts scene. Learn about Australia’s convict history at Fremantle Prison or step within the bustling’Freo’ market to discover fresh regional produce and unique food offerings. The scenic scenery, pristine bays and superb holiday of Rottnest island are also only a short ferry ride away.
The Gateway to Queensland’s tropical north, Cairns is famous for its tropical climate and care-free vibe. An ideal base to explore many of Australia’s most famous attractions, Cairn’s is only a short jump from the World-Heritage miracles of the Daintree Rainforest and the Great Barrier Reef. The relaxing beachside resorts of Port Douglas will also be just over an hour’s drive away. But this lively Far North city has much going for it too. Take care to discover its brilliant cafes and bars, stunning beaches and bustling markets. Thrill-seekers possess the options of bungy-jumping or white-water rafting, although the more attentive can embark upon a calm hot air balloon ride or explore the beautiful botanic gardens. For those wanting to find out more about Australia’s history, the region is rich in Aboriginal heritage, with chances to understand how to throw a spear or boomerang and have a rainforest bush walk.
6) Byron Bay
Byron Bay Famed for the world-class surf, Byron’s royal headland offers beaches for everyone from learners to pros. With plenty of surf schools around, areas to ski and kayak diving areas, you’re guaranteed to be hitting the water in some shape or other. Also boasting amazing nature walks, a superb music landscape, whale viewing, day spas along with plenty of yoga retreats, it’s easy to see why Byron is popular. The town’s hippie heart beats most strongly during balmy evenings on Main Beach. Here you’ll find groups of free spirits celebrating the sunset with interpretative dancing, drumming circles and hypnotic fire twirling. Join the party and afterwards meet with other travellers and locals in one of Byron’s many pubs and clubs.
7) Alice Springs
Found in the middle of Australia’s vast outback, you will find the city of Alice Springs. With the ruggedly beautiful MacDonnell Ranges working on both sides, you won’t have to venture far to discover ochre-red gorges, white gum trees and plunging waterholes. For an insight into Aboriginal Australian culture, there’s no better destination. With its broad assortment of lodging and dining options, Alice Springs is the principal base for visitors headed to the iconic Uluru. Formerly known as Ayers Rock, Uluru is UNESCO World Heritage-listed and deeply sacred to the Aboriginal inhabitants. This gigantic red rock is millions of years old also makes for an epic sight at both sunset and sunrise. Inside Alice Springs itself you can also find excellent museums and outstanding galleries of Indigenous art, in addition to being able to hear at least six unique desert languages being spoken.
8) Gold Coast
Specializing in enjoying the sunshine, the Gold Coast features shimmering home made resorts and hotels along with world-renowned beaches. With a few 52 kilometres of pristine sand, epic surf breaks and stunning sunsets, it is little wonder the Gold Coast is one of Australia’s top holiday destinations. The city has set the scene for world-class surf events and blockbuster films, together with the famous Surfers Paradise offering waterfront shopping, excellent dining and a buzzing nightlife. Home to a thriving culinary landscape, the Gold Coast offers everything from casual seafood shacks and street eats to breweries and dining. And, as Australia’s answer to Orlando, The Gold Coast also boasts a variety of theme parks and water parks such as the Warner Brothers Movie World, Dreamworld and much more. Called the’green behind the gold’, the Gold Coast’s Hinterland is often wrongly overlooked. The national parks here contain amazing waterfalls, subtropical jungle, abundant wildlife and charming mountain villages.
Australia’s Northern Hemisphere is an adventure traveller’s paradise, and the perfect place to begin researching is its own tropical capital Darwin. Comparable to Asia than other Australian cities, Darwin’s residents represent over 50 different nationalities. And also this cosmopolitan mix is the most evident in the city’s much-loved markets. The Mindil Beach Sunset Markets offer some 60 food stalls serving up tasty international cuisine. With plenty to offer travellers, Darwin’s museums also present an superb insight to the city’s past, whilst museums showcase the abundant Aboriginal art of the region. Nature is an integral part of the adventure, together with all the famous Kakadu and Litchfield National Parks just a few hours away and the unique Tiwi Islands reachable by ship. With more crocodiles in the Northern Hemisphere than anywhere else in the world, there are plenty of opportunities to go and watch these ancient reptiles on your own.
As the dynamic capital of South Australia, it’s easy to miss out time in Adelaide. The town’s festival season includes important events such as Womadelaide, the Adelaide Festival of Arts and also the globally famous Adelaide Fringe. With eclectic dining, a pumping arts and live-music scenery and buzzing nightlife, you won’t be stuck for something to do on a Saturday night. The town is home to lovely sandy beaches, wide boulevards and the beautiful Adelaide Botanic Garden. To get a panoramic view of town a visit up Mount Lofty is a must, as is the Central Market to adventure Adelaide’s foodie culture. The world-famous Barossa, Clare and McLaren Vale wine areas are also near by, making Adelaide the wine capital of Australia. And, for a weekend off, the rugged natural beauty of Kangaroo Island is easily accessible by ferry.