Australia travel guide

Your typical city dwelling Australian likes nothing better than an early morning run or bracing surf to kick start them into life; well that followed by a flat white, obviously. However, move clear of Sydney and Melbourne and you'll discover the antidote to the fast-paced Aussie lifestyle with national parks, such as Kakadu and Purnululu, providing an inexhaustible supply of inspirational isolation. From aboriginal art etched over ancient rocks in the Northern Territory, to the penguins, vineyards and beach reserves of the south, no trip to Australia is complete without donning your cork hat and letting yourself and your imagination run wild.
Sometimes 'Going Bush' is the only route to take and following a guide into the Outback or exploring many miles from tourist hotspots, will help you to unearth the real Australia as well as a state of mind that many will never hope to achieve.
Find out more in our Australia travel guide.
Australia is...

an infuriatingly attractive ex-partner that you just can’t forget.
Australia isn't...

cheap, but it is totally worth it.

Things to do in Australia


Things to do in Australia

Linger a little longer. There are countless things to do in Australia that you might not initially plan for and no matter whether you're hunting down the best pie seller in Sydney (has to be Harry's) or chatting to an elderly man as he whittles away at a piece of bush wood, don't think twice about listening to local advice or engaging in a moment just a little while longer.
Going on a road trip is a great way to get to know the land and the people with stopovers at rural B&Bs and campsites the best way to break up long journeys and listen to locals yakking over their morning cuppa. There are so many coastal routes to choose from that nowhere else in the world compares, and extending a journey by an extra couple of days is certainly no bad idea.
Listen and learn. Australia is a big old country and allowing yourself to explore as flexibly as possible lets you absorb each and every moment without a second thought to where you are and where you came from. Following a guide to a remote corner of a national park where only you and the stars exist is an unforgettable experience and not to be missed for those who wish to listen and learn from nature.

Things not to do in Australia

Ignore the signs. Australia is undoubtedly one of the world's most spectacular countries. However, if you're approaching from the point of view that you know best then you might be in for a wee bit of a bite. Stingers, rip tides, snakes and 'stay on the bloody footpath' are signs well worth paying attention to; they're put in place for a reason and ignoring them could well cut short your vacation or worse.
Begrudge the “schoolies”. Mid-November through to early December is schoolie season when year 12s hit the beach and let their hair down. After that it's the six week school vacations when families tend to also hit the beach and although they might not be letting their hair down they will be enjoying popular public areas much more than throughout the rest of the year. Don't expect to find uncrowded beaches, especially on the Gold Coast.
Forget your hat. Covering up, taking on lots of fluids and staying out of the midday sun is advice worth taking seriously if you're visiting Australia during their summer. The further north you venture, the hotter it will get and if you've got plans to go sailing in the Whitsundays or visit the Red Centre and Uluru, just don't leave home without sun block, wrap round shades and floppy hat, with or without corks.

Australia travel advice


Tips on going bush

James Frickey, Australia and New Zealand Senior Specialist at our supplier, Audley Travel, shares his Australia travel advice: “If you're looking to follow a guide to remote swimming holes through mountains, desert and deep red gorges, before camping out with just a swag and fire for company, Karijini National Park in Western Australia is an amazing place, about four hours from the nearest town (Port Hedland).”

Trekking tips

“Another location that's less well-known by tourists is Mallacoota which is one of the most remote towns in Victoria and a great, slightly off-route, stop over if you're traveling the Princes Highway from Sydney to Melbourne. This is a vacation hot spot for locals and has some fantastic walking trails to places like Gipsy Point as well as to the endless beaches of Croajingolong National Park.”
“Aussies love sport and one of the best ways to find out more is to head to an Aussie Rules football match to mix it up over a few beers. You'll not only get much more of an insight into the Australian mind set but you might also get a few invaluable tips that definitely won't be included in the guide books.”

Australia travel advice


At Responsible Travel, we think the best people to advise our travelers are often... other travelers. They always return from our tours with packing tips, weather reports, ideas about what to do - and opinions about what not to.

We have selected some of the most useful Australia travel tips that our guests have provided over the years to help you make the very most of your vacation - and the space inside your suitcase.

“Ensure you book well in advance to get the best fare deals. Take out additional insurance if you book a car as an accident could cost you over AUD 3000. Use cash where possible as the surcharge on credit cards is high.” – Jan Baker

“Arnhem Land. This is one of the most special places I have ever visited. It's Aboriginal Land, and only about 6 small tour operators are licensed to take visitors in. As a result we felt less like tourists and more like we'd been given the key to a semi-secret land. It's enormous, and looks and feels wilder than Kakadu. Perhaps the highlight was the visit to the Art Centre and the cave paintings at Gunbalanya.” – Justin Francis

“Realize emotionally, not just intellectually, that once you leave the eastern coast, Australia has a whole lot of geography with relatively few communities, people or manmade attractions/distractions. If you think that countryside is empty, rather than rich in and of itself, pick a different vacation.” – Penny Williams

“It’s difficult to find sustainable accommodation north of the Daintree River so may be greener to do the trip/tours from the comfort of Port Douglas or Mossman (the Cape Trib Connections bus is a fun way to get there from Cairns or Port Douglas and greener than driving yourself).” – Delia Stephens
Photo credits: [Top box - remarkable rocks: Roderick Eime] [helpdesk: Alan Levine] [Trekking tips: Stevage] [Review 1 - Farida Parkyn: Graeme Churchard] [Review 2 - Sandra Mendenhall: Luke Webber]

Written by: Chris Owen
Great Ocean Road and Grampians 3 day tour, Australia

Great Ocean Road and Grampians 3 day tour, Australia

Diverse coast and mountain journey. Great accommodation/food

From AU $672.5 3 Days ex flights
B&B self drive tour of Tasmania, meet the locals

B&B self drive tour of Tasmania, meet the locals

Self-drive staying in Tasmania's most charming B&Bs

From AU $950 7 Days ex flights
Tasmania east coast camping & walking tour

Tasmania east coast camping & walking tour

Authentic Eco tours on Tasmania's stunning East Coast

From AU $1300 5 Days ex flights
Uluru and the Olgas tour in Australia

Uluru and the Olgas tour in Australia

Experience Australia's rugged land of Dreamtime legends

From US $446 3 Days ex flights
Great Ocean Road 2 day tour, Australia

Great Ocean Road 2 day tour, Australia

Spectacular, diverse and thorough small group tour

From AU $397.5 2 Days ex flights
Margaret River walking tour in Australia

Margaret River walking tour in Australia

Walk into luxury in Australia's Margaret River region

From AU $1990 4 Days ex flights
Kimberley small group tour, 5 days, Western Australia

Kimberley small group tour, 5 days, Western Australia

A 5 day adventure experiencing the Kimberley wilderness

From AU $1695 5 Days ex flights
Head of Bight whale tour in South Australia

Head of Bight whale tour in South Australia

Head of Bight Whale tour

From 1550 3 Days ex flights
Larapinta trekking holiday in Australia

Larapinta trekking vacation in Australia

Trek the Larapinta Trail with the best small group operator

From AU $3095 9 Days ex flights
Great Ocean Walk self guided tour, Australia

Great Ocean Walk self guided tour, Australia

An Inn-to-Inn accommodated walking vacation

From AU $1775 5 Days ex flights
Cape to Cape track walking vacation in Western Australia

Cape to Cape track walking vacation in Western Australia

Walk into luxury on the Cape to Cape track

From AU $4550 8 Days ex flights
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