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Australia Travel Tips & Resources

What to Expect When Traveling to Australia

Australia is one of the great travel destinations of the world. It is an incredibly beautiful and diverse island, continent, and country. If you think of Australia as the largest island in the world, or the smallest continent, it is still big. It’s big enough to be the 6th largest country in the world with the 7th longest coastline. It is also the largest country without land borders.

The “Outback” takes up the center of the giant island, other areas contain everything from rainforests, to mountains and canyons, to renowned beaches. Major attractions are undoubtedly Australia’s extraordinary scenery and exotic wildlife – kangaroos, koalas, wallabies and wombats remain the country’s ambassadors.

Places to Visit in Australia

Ninety Mile Beach

Ninety Mile Beach

Located in the Gippsland region on Victoria’s southeastern coastline, it’s the longest uninterrupted beach in Australia and the third longest in the World. This is one of the most natural and unspoiled beaches in the world, ideal for beach fishing, swimming, whale and dolphin-spotting or just lazy walk or sunning. While you are there, why not take in an classic Australian tradition, BBQ on the beach!

Sports in Australia

Sports in Australia

If you are into spectator sports, the Australian Open, one of Tennis’s Grand Slams, is held in Melbourne every January, or you can catch the Surfing World Tour in the Gold Coast (if you surfing why not Surf “The Pass” at Byron Bay), or venture to the remote Outback town of Birdsville for its annual horse racing weekend.

The Outback

The Outback

Nothing says Australia like the Outback. This vast open space tells the story of Australia’s pioneering spirit and unique identity. You can four-wheel the Outback to see it up-close and personal. You can journey the Outback north to south (Darwin to Adelaide) by rail on the Ghan or you can take an epic train trip from Sydney to Perth on the Indian-Pacific train.

Enjoy Australian City Life

Enjoy Australian City Life

Australia’s capital cities are unique to each other but what they share is a warm welcome, great food and wine and dynamic events.

Sydney

Sydney

The Cicular Quay is the main ferry terminal in Sydney and the most central point for visitors. From here you can be dazzled by Sydney’s iconic structures, the Sydney Opera House and the Harbour Bridge. Enjoy a performance at the Opera House or take the Backstage Tour. At the Sydney Harbour Bridge (nicknamed “the coat hanger”) visitors are welcome to walk or bike the structure. If you are felling adventurous, join a a BridgeClimb.

Melbourne

Melbourne

The National Gallery of Victoria anchors a range of galleries, museums and other art sites. Head over to the Heide Museum of Modern Art at Bulleen for insight into the famed Heide Circle, the group of Australian modernist painters who lived and worked at “Heide,” a former dairy farm on the Yarra River. Melbourne is considered Australia’s culinary capital and home to the annual Melbourne Food and Wine Festival.

Traveler Resources

Common Costs
16oz Domestic Beer in a market $15.50 (AUD)
Airport Taxi from Syndey Airport to City Centre $40.00 (AUD)
Cocktail in Downtown Club $18.00 (AUD)
Two-hour surf lesson at Bondi Beach $90.00 (AUD)
Basic dinner for two in a neighborhood pub $56.00 (AUD)
Quick Facts
Currency Australian Dollar (AUD)
Capital Canberra
Largest City Sydney
Official Language English

U.S. Embassies & Travel Information

Australia

Australia Flag

Yarralumla, ACT 2600
Tel: +61 2 6214 5600
Hours of Operation: M-F, 8:00AM – 5:00PM

About the Area

Australia is a country and continent surrounded by the Indian and Pacific oceans. Its major cities – Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne, Perth, Adelaide – are coastal. Its capital, Canberra, is inland. The country is known for its Sydney Opera House, the Great Barrier Reef, a vast interior desert wilderness called the Outback, and unique animal species like kangaroos and duck-billed platypuses.

Travel Tips

  • Unless you are an Australian or New Zealand citizen, you will need a valid Australian visa to enter the country. New Zealand passport holders can apply for a visa upon arrival country. All others must apply for a visa before leaving home. 
  • Because Australia is an island with unique biodiversity, the government works hard to prevent the introduction of invasive species. You must declare all animal and vegetable derived products and your luggage will be thoroughly scanned. If you don’t declare something there are strictly enforced fines.
  • The colorful Australian banknotes depict famous Australians both past and present.
  • Banknotes currently in circulation are of $5, $10, $20, $50 and $100 Australian dollars. 
  • Regarding coins, there are 1 and 2 dollars and 5, 10, 20 and 50 cents in circulation.

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